CNN finished behind Fox News and MSNBC in total viewers last week, but Saturday’s coverage of the New York City bomb blast proves that viewers still head to CNN for breaking news.
The network averaged 1.53 million viewers at 10 p.m. ET while news was unfolding, compared to 1.49 million for Fox News and only 450,000 for MSNBC. CNN also won the key news demo of adults age 25-54, averaging 476,000 demo viewers compared to 338,000 for Fox News and 102,000 for MSNBC.
Viewers stuck with CNN’s coverage, which was anchored by Don Lemon and Poppy Harlow, as the network also won the 11 p.m. ET hour by averaging 1.33 million total viewers and 453,000 in the demo.
The breaking news coverage victory is significant for CNN, as the network has battled MSNBC for second place behind Fox News since winning the primetime demo for the entire month of July. New York captured the attention of American TV viewers on Saturday night when a bomb exploded in the Chelsea area of Manhattan, injuring 29 people.
A pipe bomb also exploded Saturday in New Jersey before a charity race for Marines and sailors, but no one was injured. Five explosive devices were also found near an Elizabeth, New Jersey, train station.
On Monday morning, the FBI announced it was searching for 28-year-old Ahmad Khan Rahami for questioning in connection to the bombing. He was quickly arrested by local and federal law enforcement in New Jersey following a shootout with police.