CNN Town Hall With Democratic Candidates De Blasio and Bullock Marks Ratings Low

Bullock-de Blasio back-to-back events mark all-time ratings low for town halls on the network in 2019

Last Updated: August 29, 2019 @ 5:14 PM

Nielsen ratings for CNN’s Sunday night town halls with two Democratic presidential hopefuls are in and they’re not good for the network.

The back-to-back televised events featuring Montana’s Gov. Steve Bullock and New York City’s Mayor Bill de Blasio scored just 402,000 total viewers, 82,000 of those were in the coveted 25-54 demographic.

All told, the Nielsen ratings show that the evening was down 25% in total viewers and 38% in the demo when compared to CNN’s 2019 average for Sundays between 6 and 8 p.m. ET.

“CNN does not host presidential town halls for ratings. We host them because substantive conversations with presidential candidates inform and empower voters to make the best possible choices for their families and communities. And it’s the right thing to do,” a CNN spokesperson said in a statement.

At the same time on Fox News, Nielsen shows 873,000 viewers and 121,000 in the demo. For MSNBC at that time, there were 664,000 viewers and 84,000 in the demo.

De Blasio appeared on Fox News’ “Hannity” earlier in August. That appearance, notably on a weeknight primetime show, brought in 3.3 million viewers, 546,000 of whom were in the 25-54 demographic. The show was up 5% overall and 8% in the demo when compared to his yearly average.

July’s Democratic Debate from Detroit drew 8.7 million viewers on CNN and Spanish-language offering CNN en Espanol. That tally was way less than the 15.3 million total viewers first round pulled combined on NBC, MSNBC and Telemundo the previous month, but of course, the CNN debate did not have a broadcast partner. It was also the second debate of the primary season and not the first.

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