Fox News made it 10 years in a row as the top-rated cable news network, a streak that began after Rupert Murdoch and Roger Ailes’ operation first overtook CNN in total viewership in January 2002. Said Ailes: “We are extremely proud of the phenomenal achievement created by the hard work and talent of the FOX News Channel employees and recognize how difficult it is for a cable network to sustain this level of dominance for a decade. America has clearly embraced fair and balanced news.” For January, FNC averaged 1,942,000 viewers in primetime, compared with CNN’s 841,000 and MSNBC’s 801,000, according to Nielsen. The network claimed nine of the top 10 programs in cable news in the key adults 25-54 demographic, and ranked fifth overall in the cable universe behind ESPN, USA, History and TBS.
Meanwhile, MSNBC beat CNN in total day, while CNN scored with a pair of GOP presidential debates, the latest of which, on January 26, drew 5.36 million viewers.