MSNBC’s Democratic convention coverage anchored by Rachel Maddow beat Fox News all night and nearly tripled Fox’s audience for Michelle Obama’s speech.
The ratings as provided to PoliticusUSA by MSNBC:
MSNBC scored 4.34M total viewers during primetime (8 pm-11 pm) – ahead of CNN (4.1M) and FOX News (3.4M). At 10pm, MSNBC drew 5.2M total viewers – ahead of CNN (4.8M), ABC (4.4M), CBS (1.98M) and FOX (2M). During former First Lady Michelle Obama’s keynote address, MSNBC was also #1 delivering 5.4M total viewers.
Rachel Maddow, Joy Reid and Nicolle Wallace helmed coverage at 8 pm ET and throughout the evening with Brian Williams continuing coverage at 11 pm ET for the highest-rated Night 1 of a convention in MSNBC history.
MSNBC was the only cable news network to grow compared to the 2016 DNC. During prime, MSNBC’s total viewership was up +16% while FOX News (-9%) and CNN (-20%) were both down compared to Night 1 of the DNC in 2016. At 10pm, MSNBC was up +11% while FOX News (-35%) and CNN (-23%) compared to Night 1 of the DNC in 2016.
In A25-54, MSNBC drew 838K viewers for prime and 1M at 10 pm.
If one believes that cable news ratings are circumstantial evidence of voter enthusiasm, night one of the convention got off to a great start for Democrats. MSNBC being the only cable network to grow over the 2016 convention also suggests that voter enthusiasm has switched parties in 2020.
Trump’s act has grown stale. He is not getting the same free media coverage that he got in 2016. The novelty candidate has become a pandemic saddled failed president, and at least on night one, the ratings suggest that voters are ready for a change.
For more discussion about this story join our Rachel Maddow and MSNBC group.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association