More Americans turned to Fox News for election night coverage than all the cable competition combined Tuesday. And more impressive yet, during the key hour of 10 to 11 p.m. Tuesday, Fox News drew a larger audience than ABC, NBC or CBS. When was the last time a cable channel beat the networks during the crucial time period of such a major event?
The biggest loser of the evening was MSNBC, which has also been ridiculed across the Web Wednesday for the irresponsible and over the top behavior of the hosts of its election night coverage: Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow, Lawrence O'Donnell, Chris Matthews and Eugene Robinson. Read my post and see video of their performance here.
Here are some of the ratings highlights for the Fox coverage that was co-anchored by Bret Baier and Megyn Kelly:
From 10 to 11 p.m., Fox News beat all three broadcast networks -- averaging 6.9 million viewers vs. 5.9 million for ABC, 6 million for CBS and 6.1 million for NBC.
Fox News also beat CNN and MSNBC combined during the total coverage period of 6 p.m. to 3 a.m.
Here's a snapshot of prime time (8 to 11 p.m.):
Fox News: 6.957 million viewers overall, with 2.439 in the key demographic of 25 to 54.
CNN: 2.423 million viewers overall, with 1.030 million in the key demographic.
MSNBC: 1.957 million overall, with 669,000 in the demo.
And more ratings glory for Fox:
FOX News beat MSNBC and CNN combined during every hour in total viewers and 25-54. Tuesday's performance was also amongt FOX News Channel’s top ten telecasts in the channel's ratings history in total viewers. Furthermore, Tuesday marked FNC’s highest primetime delivery since the Presidential Election in 2008. All of this, according to Nielsen:
*FOX News Channel peaked with 7,167,000 viewers between 9-10PM
Meanwhile, CNN peaked with 2,592,000 viewers between 10-11PM
And MSNBC peaked with 2,040,000 viewers between 10-11PM
*Compared to the 2006 midterm election, FNC’s primetime is up 128% (FNC averaged 3,060,000 in 2006)
Vs. CNN which was down 18% and MSNBC, which was flat (0%) over 2006 primetime midterm coverage.
Total Election Coverage (6PM-2AM)
FNC: 5,302,000 in P2+ (1,888,000 in 25-54)
CNN with 1,789,000 viewers (782,000 in 25-54)
MSNBC with 1,544,000 viewers (584,000 in 25-54)