Fox News Tops Cable News Ratings for RNC Night 2, Gains 51% More Viewers Compared to 2016

Fox News had 7.9 million total average viewers during the 10-11 p.m. ET timeslot

Last Updated: August 26, 2020 @ 3:42 PM

Fox News maintained its lead in total average viewers over CNN and MSNBC in cable news ratings for the second night of the Republican National Convention Tuesday, giving FNC the highest-rated day two coverage of any convention in cable news history. CNN once again did well in the advertiser-coveted age demographic of 25 to 54 for cable news and came in second to Fox News, but the network slipped behind NBC in broadcast ratings for both total average viewers and the key demo.

According to early Nielsen Media Research, 7.9 million total average viewers watched Fox News from 10 p.m. ET to 11 p.m. ET on Tuesday, the hour that all three cable news networks were taking the event live. Of those, 1.6 million were in the key demo. CNN brought in 2.1 million total viewers on average and 616,000 demo viewers. MSNBC was in last place for cable news, bringing in an average of 1.8 million total viewers for the hour and 385,000 viewers between 25 and 54.

During the second night of last week’s Democratic National Convention, about 18.6 million people tuned in across CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, NBC, CBS and ABC. Of those, nearly 12 million watched on cable news. Comparatively, in the second night of the RNC, just under 18 million watched across all six major networks during the 10-11 p.m. ET timeslot, while about 11.9 million were watching cable.

Fox News’ total viewership numbers were up 51% from the second night of the RNC in the last election cycle. In 2016, the second night brought 5.269 million total average viewers to Fox News in the 10 p.m. ET hour, of whom 1.167 million were in the demo. For CNN, 2016’s second night saw 3.069 million total average viewers and an average of 946,000 demo viewers. MSNBC had 1.533 million total viewers on average, with 467,000 of those being between 25 and 54.

Viewers of the second night saw remarks from President Donald Trump, First Lady Melania Trump, Tiffany Trump, Eric Trump and former Florida attorney general Pam Bondi.