Obama Press Conference Nets 40.4 Million Viewers


Six weeks after his first primetime press conference, President Barack Obama has taken a hit with the Nielsens.

Obama's press conference last night garnered a cumulative 25.9 rating, 29.8 million households and 40.4 million viewers across 11 cable and broadcast services in the 8 p.m. hour, according to Nielsen Media Research data.
That was 18% less than the 49.5 million who tuned in the president's first primetime press conference on Feb. 9, which garnered a 30.8 rating and 37.2 million households on eight networks. Last night's speech also marked 22% decline from the 52.4 million who watched his Feb. 24 address to a joint session, which was televised by 10 networks and collected a 32.5 rating and 37.2 million households.
On March 24, Fox News, CNN, MSNBC, CNBC and mun2 aired the speech on the cable side, while Obama was also covered by broadcasters ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC, and Spanish-language services Univision and Telemundo.
As for Obama's appearance on CBS's 60 Minutes on March 22, the interview with Steve Kroft helped deliver a 10.4 rating, just under 12 million households and 17 million viewers, making it the fourth most-watched show of the week behind Fox's American Idol and ABC's Dancing with the Stars.