CNBC Scores Record 14 Million Viewers With GOP Debate

Network’s previous presidential debate drew 3.1 million viewers in 2011

BOULDER, CO – OCTOBER 28: Presidential candidates Donald Trump (L) speaks while Sen. Marco Rubio (L) (R-FL), Ben Carson, and Carly Fiorina look on during the CNBC Republican Presidential Debate at University of Colorados Coors Events Center October 28, 2015 in Boulder, Colorado. Fourteen Republican presidential candidates are participating in the third set of Republican presidential debates. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

CNBC’s GOP debate drew 14 million viewers on Wednesday, a record number for the business network.

The debate is a strong number for the network, which doesn’t have as large a built-in audience as its GOP debate predecessors, Fox News and CNN, which attracted 24 million and 23 million viewers, respectively.

CNBC sold out its advertising inventory ahead of the debate, charging $250,000 for a 30 second spot.

The Los Angeles Times reported that the network promised advertisers at least 15 million viewers, so they fell a million viewers short of that guarantee.

CNBC has fielded much criticism following its debate by GOP candidates and pundits for what they deemed were unfair questions and bias.

In response, a CNBC spokesperson simply said, “People who want to be president of the United States should be able to answer tough questions.”

CNBC’s main competitor, Fox Business Network, will try to best their performance when it airs the next GOP debate on Nov. 10.