Fox News Channel was No. 1 in total viewers for Tuesday night’s midterm election coverage, when all of cable news — and most of broadcast — programming was halted for race results. Fox News even beat each of the broadcast nets outright.
CNN finished first in the key news demo, however, which encompasses adults 25-54. Fox News was second by that metric, according to Nielsen. MSNBC was third in cable news’ primetime results in both main Nielsen metrics, though it fared a little better in total viewers than CNN did earlier in the evening.
Isolating just broadcast, it was NBC topping ABC outright to finish No. 1 among the over-the-air channels. CBS came in a pretty distant third.
Below is how primetime (8 p.m. ET – 11 p.m. ET) shook out among all six of the main players. The networks are ranked by total viewers and listed in descending order.
Fox News: 7.8 million total viewers/2.4 million adults 25-54
NBC: 5.7 million/2.3 million
ABC: 5.3 million/2 million
CNN: 5.1 million/2.5 million
MSNBC: 4.7 million/1.4 million
CBS: 3.9 million/1.3 million
Obviously the demo rankings would be a bit different.
And here is how cable news looks if one chooses to include the 6 and 7 p.m. hours, which are when polls closed and results began coming in.
Fox News: 6.1 million total viewers/1.8 million adults 25-54
MSNBC: 3.9 million/1.1 million
CNN: 3.9 million/1.9 million
Viewers of the conservative-leaning Fox News Channel are probably pretty happy with how the Senate seats worked out. Not so much on that big House of Representatives loss for Republicans.