CNN Tops Cable, Broadcast Rivals in Convention’s First Night


CNN outpaced its cable and broadcast competitors in total viewers during its coverage of the first night of the Democratic National Convention, drawing more than 4.26 million viewers during the 10 p.m. ET hour.

During this same hour—highlighted by Michelle Obama’s speech—ABC garnered 4.17 million viewers and CBS checked in with 3.46 million. Fox News Channel drew 2.92 million viewers and MSNBC had 2.1 million viewers.

Nearly 3 million total viewers and 1.1 million viewers 25-54 tuned in CNN’s live continuing DNC coverage from 7 p.m. to midnight ET, CNN officials said. FNC trailed with 2.6 million total viewers and 670,000 viewers 25-54 and MSNBC was last with 1.9 million total viewers and 736,000 viewers in this demographic during this same five-hour period.

CNN’s highest-rated hour was at 9 p.m. ET when 4,536,000 total viewers and 1,674,000 25-54 viewers, ranking as the second-highest rated program in ad-supported cable for the night among total viewers.

NBC Universal officials said the combination of its broadcast and cable networks attracted a total 6.8 million viewers throughout the night and, among viewers 25-54, its 1.6 rating topped both ABC and CBS by four-tenths of a percentage (1.2 each).

MSNBC averaged 2.15 million total viewers in primetime, network officials said, up 88% from its 2004 DNC coverage.

According to The Nielsen Co., more than 17.1 million households (15.1 rating) tuned into one of the major cable or broadcast network’s coverage Monday night.