CNN Wins Opening Convention Coverage

The cable news networks' first big night of the political season has gone to CNN--by a landslide.

In prime time--among key 25-54 viewers--CNN pulled in 1.7 million viewers in the key 9 p.m. hour, when a Ted Kennedy tribute was aired during its coverage of the Democratic National Convention, and 1.6 million viewers at 10 p.m.

Not only did CNN easily beat its cable competitors, the cable network also grabbed more viewers than ABC or CBS. For example, during the 10 p.m. hour, CNN pulled in 4.26 million viewers to ABC's 4.17 million and CBS' 3.46 million. NBC posted the best numbers--4.71 million total viewers.

Among cable networks, MSNBC was second to CNN, with 866,000 25-54 viewers at 9 p.m. and 894,000 25-54 viewers at 10 p.m. Fox News was in third place among this key demographic: 769,000 at 9 p.m. and 827,000 at 10 p.m.

In total viewers, CNN was also the champ. It grabbed 4.5 million total viewers in the 9 p.m. hour and 4.2 million in the 10 p.m. hour. Fox News was a distant second place, with 2.8 million at 9 p.m. and 2.7 million at 10 p.m. MSNBC came in third: 2.3 million at 9 p.m. and 2.1 million at 10 p.m.

Still, Fox News' "O'Reilly Factor" had something to crow about at the 8 p.m. hour. It beat both CNN and MSNBC convention coverage in total viewers, scoring 3.3 million total viewers. CNN earned 2.2 million and MSNBC had 2.0 million during this time period.



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