More than 50,000 fair-weather friends have deserted Mitt Romney on Facebook after he lost the election to President Barack Obama. He has been losing Facebook friends at an average rate of 847 friends per hour since Tuesday.
As soon as the former Massachusetts Governor lost the presidential election, his Facebook "friends" began "unliking" his Facebook page. According to Mashable, more than 55,000 users have "unliked" the former Massachusetts Governor’s Facebook page since 11:30 pm on Tuesday, averaging 847 each hour on November 10.
Mashable reports that both candidates were gaining fans on Facebook and Twitter on Tuesday, although Obama gained about five times as many. But almost as soon as Romney conceded the election his social media followers began deserting him in droves.
Some of Romney's former Facebook friends will be looking out for a new leader to follow and some may have crossed over to Obama. There has been a net increase in Obama's social media followers. Obama's Facebook likes have risen to over 33 million, about 900,000 more than he had on the election night and about 21 million more than Romney ever had.
Obama's Twitter following has risen to over 23 million, about 1 million more than he had on election night. Digital Journal reports Obama also set a Twitter record on Tuesday night, beating Justin Bieber for the most re-tweeted tweet ever.
The surge in Obama's Twitter following may have been helped by setting the world record for the most-retweeted tweet.
The Washington Post notes that the drop in Romney's following may support the view that he was never popular among Republican base voters. Many analysts argue that most of the support he got from conservative voters came from the fact that many saw him as the only alternative to Obama. Digital Journal commented:
"...deep-seated fear of Obama, and not enthusiasm for Mitt Romney, is driving religious conservatives to support the GOP presidential nominee... religious conservatives are faced with a stark choice between the lesser of two evils — a Mormon (Romney) and a 'Marxist' (Obama)."
An observation indicative of the trend of thought among Republican strategists for future elections is that Florida Senator Marco Rubio has seen an increase in the number of "likes" on his Facebook page since election. Many Republican strategists are warming up to Rubio as the party's hope with Latino voters, a fast growing demographic.
Romney tweeted on Saturday evening (Nov. 10): "From the bottom of our hearts, Ann and I thank you for your support, prayers, efforts, & vote. We are forever grateful to every one of you."
The last previous tweet was on Nov. 6: "With your help, we will turn our country around and get America back on the path to prosperity. Please vote today."
Mashable reports Romney has updated his Facebook page only twice since the election. He posted a photo of himself as governor before a crowd with a caption "Thank you," and then another photo without a caption.
Many of Romney's supporters and opponents continue to post their views. Mashable quotes May Kollaritsch, a fan of Paul Ryan, who warns the world about Obama as the prophesied antichrist, saying:“I never did like Obama with his pointed ears and narsasistic(sic) attitude. Remember everyone The antichrist is going to make llots (sic) of promises and fool a lot of people.”
The Examiner, however, comments that while Kollaritsch associates pointy ears with the Devil, many fans of Star Trek's Commander Spock associate pointy ears with superior logic and mental capacity.
The Washington Post speculates on what Romney might be up to next and advises the former presidential candidate, pointing to the examples of Senator John McCain and Sarah Palin, who successfully reinvented themselves on social media after their failed 2008 bid.