According to media research company Nielsen, Obama scored 52.3 million for his inaugural address to a joint session of Congress in 2009, and just over 48 million for his first State of the Union speech in 2010.
Embarrassingly for Trump, Obama’s 2010 figures were reported at the time as a sign his popularity “may be slipping”.
Of course this is all familiar territory - then press secretary Sean Spicer was wheeled out last year to insist the crowd watching Trump’s inauguration in January was the biggest in history.
It was not.
A series of reports at the time suggest that rather than dismiss the debate as irrelevant, Trump had taken it to heart. This from the New York Times:
“Mr Trump grew increasingly angry on Inauguration Day after reading a series of Twitter messages pointing out that the size of his inaugural crowd did not rival that of Mr. Obama’s in 2009. But he spent his Friday night in a whirlwind of celebration and affirmation.
“When he awoke on Saturday morning, after his first night in the Executive Mansion, the glow was gone, several people close to him said, and the new president was filled anew with a sense of injury.”
Against Obama, Trump has not fared well in other areas recently.
At the end of the 2017, three of Obama’s tweets made Twitter’s “most retweeted” list, and two appeared in the “most liked” category. Trump failed to feature on either list.