Rachel Maddow’s tireless coverage of the Russia scandal has made her MSNBC program #1 in total viewers, viewers age 25-54, and is the first MSNBC show ever to lead the rating for an entire quarter in total viewers.
According to a press release sent to PoliticusUSA by MSNBC:
“The Rachel Maddow Show” continued its cable news dominance, finishing as the #1 cable news program in total viewers and in A25-54 (for the 2nd consecutive quarter). This is the 1st quarter that any MSNBC show has ranked #1 in all of cable news. “Maddow” posted the show’s highest ever quarterly delivery in both total viewers (2.7 million vs. CNN’s 1.2 million and FOX News’ 2.3 million) and A25-54 (606,000 vs. CNN’s 403,000 and FOX News’ 486,000). Compared to 3Q16, “Maddow” was up +75% in total viewers (vs. CNN’s +17% and FOX News’ -20%) and +68% in A25-54 (vs. CNN’s +22% and FOX News’ -14%).
The reason why Maddow is dominant is simple but unique.
Maddow doesn’t feel the need to breathlessly cover Trump’s tweets. She doesn’t get caught up in the tornado of chaos and drama that is the Trump presidency. Rachel Maddow has dedicated much of her airtime to the scandal that is fueling much of the chaos. On a nightly basis, Rachel Maddow talks about the Russia scandal. It isn’t always the top story, but it is usually mentioned.
Rachel Maddow’s success should terrify and this White House because she is diving deep into the story that dominates Trump’s mind, and the bad news for the President is that people are watching. The American people are interested in this scandal and they are following it closely. Rachel Maddow is dominating the cable news ratings because she is talking about one of the biggest potential crimes in American political history.
Under normal circumstances, it is difficult to prove a relationship between cable news ratings and American politics, but Maddow and Trump are a unique case. Maddow is focusing on the one story that could end the Trump presidency. Maddow’s reporting on Russia and Trump has record numbers of viewers tuning in, and the vast majority of those viewers aren’t supporting the President.
Rachel Maddow is being rewarded by viewers because she is cutting through the clutter and providing clarity to chaos.
For a president who needs divisiveness and distraction to survive, Rachel Maddow is Trump’s worst nightmare.