56.9 Million Tune In for Election Coverage

(Image credit: MSNBC)

As the polls closed, 56.9 million people tuned in during primetime to watch coverage of the Presidential election Tuesday night, according to Nielsen.

The total was down 20% from four years ago when 71.4 million watched as Donald Trump pulled off a surprising victory. 

Election night coverage across 21 networks drew a 31.2 household rating, down from a 40 rating in 2016. 

There was a huge drop in viewing among 18- to 34-year-olds. The Joe Biden-Donald Trump countdown drew 7.7 million viewers in the younger demo, down from 13.3 million four years ago.

Fox News Channel racked up the most total viewers on the night, with 13.6 million. CNN was next with 9.1 million, followed by MSNBC with 7.3 million, ABC with 6.1 million, NBC with 5.6 million, CBS with 4.3 million and Fox with 3.4 million.

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.