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Primaries Deliver Big Numbers for Cable News Networks

Tuesday’s primetime coverage of the presidential primaries in Texas, Ohio, Rhode Island and Vermont generated big numbers for the three cable news networks.

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) clinched the Republican nomination with his wins Tuesday, but the real focus of the news coverage was on Sens. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) and Barack Obama (D-Ill.), who have been engaged in a closely contested race for the Democratic nomination.

The focus on the two Democratic candidates helped CNN and MSNBC, which saw boosts in the key 25-54 demo.

From 8 p.m.-11 p.m., CNN lead with 1.59 million demo viewers, MSNBC finished second with 876,000 and Fox News Channel finished third with 830,000.

In total viewers, CNN averaged 3.7 million, Fox News averaged 3 million and MSNBC had 2 million.