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Political victories ripple in restless Tweetville. Qorvis Communications took an overnight snapshot of the social media footprint of Iowa caucus victors Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum and Rep. Ron Paul to find that the trio added thousands of Twitter followers within hours of their wins. Mr. Paul grabbed 5,621 followers, Mr. Santorum 5,067 and Mr. Romney 2,890 - which must account for something.

Well, yes. The Twitter accounts of Mr. Paul and Mr. Santorum grew more in 12 hours than President Obama’s Twitter account grew during the entire month of December.

“Twitter doesn’t measure votes, Twitter measures momentum,” explains analyst Wyeth Ruthven, who deems the phenomenon “social media bounce.”


“President Obama is more popular overseas than he is here. But then again, he’s created more jobs over there,” NBC “Tonight” host Jay Leno said last fall - just one of 342 jokes told about Mr. Obama to late-night audiences in 2011. The president remains the top joke target of the midnight hour monologues despite his soaring rhetoric and podium prowess.

So says the Center for Media and Public Affairs, which tracked jokes from Mr. Leno, “Late Night” host Jimmy Fallon and CBS’ David Letterman through the end of the year. There’s much comedic bias. In the overall spectrum of buffoonery, Republicans were the targets of almost three-fourths of the jokes, the study found, with Herman Cain, Texas Gov. Rick Perry and Rep. Michele Bachmann enduring the brunt among the GOP hopefuls.

The top Iowa finishers, however, were spared. Mitt Romney drew 79 jokes all year. Rep. Ron Paul was the butt of a mere 17 jokes, Rick Santorum just 16.


• 75 percent of Iowa caucus voters say they are Republicans, 23 percent are independents.

• 60 percent say they are “white evangelicals.”

• 46 percent decided whom to vote for on the day of the caucus.

• 33 percent of this group voted for Rick Santorum.

• 42 percent rate the economy as the most important issue in the race, 34 percent cited the budget deficit, 13 percent abortion.

• 25 percent said the most important candidate quality was to be a “true conservative.”

• 37 percent of this group supported Ron Paul, 36 percent supported Mr. Santorum and 1 percent supported Mitt Romney.

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