Summary:

HuffingtonPost.com and Politico.com, two sites that didn’t exist in the last presidential election, lead the list of most-trafficked sites i…

HuffingtonPost.com and Politico.com, two sites that didn’t exist in the last presidential election, lead the list of most-trafficked sites in the standalone political sites and blogs category, according to numbers released by *Comscore*. HuffPo has 4.5 million visitors in September, up 472 percent versus year ago, while Politico.com attracted 2.4 million visitors (up 344 percent) and DrudgeReport.com saw 2.1 million visitors (up 70 percent).

The full chart, below:

 
     Selected Stand-Alone* Political Blogs & News Sites
    September 2008 vs. September 2007
    Total U.S. - Home/Work/University Locations
    Source: comScore (NSDQ: SCOR) Media Metrix
                                           Total Unique Visitors (000)
                                   Sep-2007        Sep-2008      % Change
    Total Internet: Total Audience  181,858         189,468             4
    HUFFINGTONPOST.COM                  792           4,545           474
    POLITICO.COM                        532           2,362           344
    DRUDGEREPORT.COM                  1,215           2,059            70
    REALCLEARPOLITICS.COM               192           1,129           489
    FREEREPUBLIC.COM                  1,022             987            -3
    Capitol Advantage                   794             959            21
    DAILYKOS.COM                        192             923           381
    TOWNHALL.COM                        407             884           117
    NEWSBUSTERS.ORG                     113             732           547
    WORLDNETDAILY.COM                   411             636            55
    TALKINGPOINTSMEMO.COM                32             458         1,321
    MICHELLEMALKIN.COM                  103             247           140
    REDSTATE.COM                         38             235           514
    CROOKSANDLIARS.COM                  122             218            79
    RAWSTORY.COM                        219             212            -3
    POLLSTER.COM                        N/A             194           N/A
    MEDIAMATTERS.ORG                    145             178            23
    FIVETHIRTYEIGHT.COM                 N/A             169           N/A
    CQPOLITICS.COM                      N/A             139           N/A
    AMERICABLOG.COM                     N/A             104           N/A
 

And while these numbers are in and of itself interesting, the biggest question for any of them is what happens the day after? More true for sites like HuffPo and Politico….while HuffPo thinks that its expansion into non-political content will help, for Politico, it is about getting into print (or at least that was the stated strategy last month…the media world has changed for the worse since then, for sure), and launching an ad network. Even though online political advertising is not holding up, amidst the downturn. For 2008, only about $17.7 million is expected to flow online from political advertisers, including candidate campaigns, PACs, 527 groups and party committees. And even then nearly 60 percent of Obama’s online ad dollars went towards Google (NSDQ: GOOG) as of August — more than $3 million, reports ClickZ.

Both of them, some others down the list, would probably need to raise money pretty soon, if they don’t have a war chest already.

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