Chris Cuomo Hemorrhages Female Viewers After Brother Andrew’s Sexual Harassment Scandal

Last week’s ratings took a tumble compared to this time last year

chris cuomo cnn

Female viewership of CNN’s “Cuomo Prime Time” took a dive last week after anchor Chris Cuomo’s brother, Andrew Cuomo, was found by New York Attorney General Letitia James to have sexually harassed 11 women. Andrew Cuomo resigned as governor of New York Tuesday while CNN’s Cuomo was on vacation.

Before he departed for his annual birthday trip, however, women departed his show: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday of last week — after the Tuesday morning announcement of James’ findings regarding the governor — “Cuomo Prime Time” averaged 453,000 total female viewers, of whom just 76,000 were in the advertiser-coveted age demographic of 25 to 54, according to Nielsen Media Research ratings data. (Cuomo was off Friday.)

In total female viewers, that’s a 21% decrease from his second-quarter average of 570,000 and in the demo, it’s a 41% decrease from his second-quarter average of 128,000. Year-to-date, total average female viewership was down last week by 45% and was down in the demo 61%. Compared to the same four days last year, “Cuomo Prime Time” was down 48% in average female viewers, falling from 878,000, and was down 64% in demo-age female viewers, falling from 213,000.

James’ report last week also confirmed that the journalist testified in the independent investigation into his brother’s behavior, confirming reporting from earlier this year that he strategized with the governor’s team on how to deal with the accusations. Their relationship has seen them bantering on-air during the COVID-19 pandemic and has caused CNN significant headaches.

Cuomo is not the only cable news host to lose female viewers this year. Overall, ratings are down across the board following the major news events of 2020. In the 9 p.m. ET hour opposite Cuomo, Fox News’ “Hannity” pulled in a total of 1.135 million total average female viewers last week, which was down 10% compared to the second quarter, 14% year-to-date and 39% compared to the same week last year. In the demo, which included 146,000 female viewers last week, those decreases were 25%, 27% and 47% for women, respectively. MSNBC’s “The Rachel Maddow Show,” too, saw declines, pulling in 890,000 total average female viewers last week and 91,000 average female demo viewers. While “Maddow” still had more female viewers than Cuomo — nearly doubling CNN in the overall total — the decreases were about the same or higher: Compared to the second quarter, Rachel Maddow lost 36% of total average female viewers while year-to-date she lost 44% and compared to the same week last year, she lost 50%. In the demo, those losses were 49%, 59% and 63%, respectively.

Chris Cuomo is slated to return to CNN next Monday.


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