Bin Laden Killing: CNN Draws Biggest Audience on Cable News

Network edges Fox, MSNBC for Osama coverage in best performance since election night 2008

More people tuned into CNN for the news on Osama Bin Laden’s killing than Fox or MSNBC, according to preliminary figures just released by Nielsen.

Between 10 p.m. (ET) on Sunday and 3:00 a.m. (ET) on Monday, CNN drew an average of 4,142,000 total viewers and 2,101,000 25-54-year-olds, beating Fox News, which averaged 2,845,000 total viewers and 1,267,000 25-to-54-year-olds during that time.

MSNBC was well back, with 1,584,000 total viewers, and just 800,000 in the coveted 25-54 demographic.

All three cable news networks peaked between 11 p.m. and 12 a.m., when President Obama addressed the nation.

Also read: Obama's Balancing Act: Slay W.H. Correspondents, Then Osama

CNN — which almost always benefits when there’s a breaking news event — drew about 7,809,000 total viewers during that hour, ahead of Fox (4,772,000) and MSNBC (2,308,000) by a healthy margin.

Among “demo” viewers, CNN drew an average of 5,306,000 before midnight, ahead of FNC (3,532,000) and MSNBC (1,878,092).

Overall, it was CNN’s best performance since Election Night 2008. For Fox News, it was best Sunday night turnout since the U.S. invasion of Baghdad in April 2003.