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On Wednesday night, eight candidates will participate in the first 2024 GOP presidential primary debate. Former President Trump will not be among those contenders onstage in Milwaukee, and a recent Truth Social post suggests that he is likely to sit out all GOP debates ahead of the 2024 primary season.

As part of its continued coverage of the 2024 election, CivicScience gauged American intent to watch the first GOP debate. According to recent data, interest is high for the opening debate, with 44% of U.S. adults at least ‘somewhat likely’ to watch (16% are ‘very likely’). Although registered Republicans are the most likely to tune in, 38% of Democrats are at least ‘somewhat likely’ to check it out – with Independents mirroring the Gen Pop interest levels.

Americans who are generally ‘very concerned’ about the economy and jobs are twice as likely as any other level of concern to say they’ll ‘definitely’ watch the first GOP debate. Although it’s at least somewhat likely to be a proxy for political party, 54% of those ‘not at all concerned’ about the economy ‘definitely will not’ watch on Wednesday.

But former President Trump’s lack of involvement could impact viewership – it just varies among parties. Over half of U.S. adults who typically watch debates say his absence makes them ‘just as likely’ to tune in, with 25% claiming they’re ‘less likely’ to watch. (The smallest share, 22%, claim they’re ‘more likely’ to tune in.) Three in ten registered Republicans say they’re ‘less likely’ to tune in, outpacing all other voters.

Curious to know how the prolonged 2024 election season might impact your consumers’ behavior and attitudes? Book a meeting today with CivicScience, and get a head start on the coming political shifts.