Tucker Carlson’s show slipped a bit in demo ratings on Monday, which was the Fox News host’s first episode since Media Matters unearthed old audio of Carlson making crude remarks about women and statutory rape during radio interviews.
Last night’s program drew 2.895 million viewers, with 495,000 of those coming from the key adults 25-54 demographic. Those numbers topped all of Tucker’s cable news competition, but they’re down from his quarter-to-date averages. Versus last Monday (2.862 million) and the same night last year (2.791 million), Carlson’s latest episode ticked up in total viewers.
“Fox News is behind us, as they have been since the very first day. Toughness is a rare quality at a TV network, and we are grateful for that,” Carlson said, addressing the online boycotts against him, during Monday’s show. “We will never bow to the mob, ever, no matter what.”
Carlson is the host of cable news’ No. 2 show, sitting just behind fellow Fox News program “Hannity,” which airs after his. That means Carlson owns his 8 p.m. hour among direct competition, and that claim holds true for both total viewers and among adults 25-54, which is the key demographic for companies advertising on news programming.
We can extrapolate that even further: Carlson has the most-watched show at 8 p.m. in all of cable, including the ESPNs and HGTVs of the world. Among his main demo, Carlson currently ranks below ESPN and USA Network.
For 2019 to-date, Carlson episodes are averaging 2.937 million total viewers per episode, with 525,000 of those coming from the main demo.
Carlson has lost dozens of sponsors after a series of comments led to backlash. In December, he said that immigrants made the United States a “poorer” and “dirtier” country. Carlson subsequently lost more advertisers after suggesting that high-earning women had become a cause for social ills in the U.S. and warned that men would not want to marry them.
The latest outcry arose after liberal watchdog group Media Matters on Sunday dropped a compilation of years’ worth of audio that documented Carlson’s regular appearances on the the radio show of Florida shock jock Bubba the Love Sponge between 2006 and 2011. In the recordings, Carlson made disparaging remarks about women, including calling television host Alexis Stewart “c-ty.”
“Media Matters caught me saying something naughty on a radio show more than a decade ago,” Carlson said on Sunday. “Rather than express the usual ritual contrition, how about this: I’m on television every weeknight live for an hour. If you want to know what I think, you can watch. Anyone who disagrees with my views is welcome to come on and explain why.”