More viewers tuned in the opening night of the 2012 Republican National Convention than the comparable night in 2008 and Fox News Channel tallied the most viewers.
While broadcast and cable networks presented varied coverage plans on Aug. 28, nine networks carried the RNC's opening night in Tampa - it had been originally scheduled for Monday, but was delayed owing to the impact of Hurricane Isaac - during the 10 p.m. hour, combining for a 14.7 rating and some 22.3 million watching, according to Nielsen live + same-day data. That compared with 21.5 million watchers over five networks on what was the second night of the 2008 RNC.
Featuring speeches by Mitt Romney's wife Ann and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, the coverage was led by Fox News Channel, which averaged 6.88 million viewers in the 10 p.m. hour. NBC (10 p.m. to 11:05 p.m.) was second with 4.77 million, followed by CBS (10 p.m. to 11:03 p.m.)with 3.12 million. ABC was fourth with 2.86 million, ahead of CNN's 1.473 million and MSNBC's 1.468 million.
Among the so-called news demo of adults 25 to 54, NBC set the pace with 1.73 million of those viewers, versus 1.68 million for Fox News Channel. CBS and ABC were third and fourth, respectively, with 938,237 and 920,346. CNN (413,467) and MSNBC (411.738) were next.