An average of 5.7 million viewers – 1.1M of them in the news demo – sat glued to FNC last Thursday, from 10 AM to 7 PM ET.
That’s when Christine Blasey Ford dramatically detailed her claim Brett Kavanaugh had pinned her on a bed at a party, tried to remove her clothes, and put his hand over her mouth to keep her from screaming when they were in high school.
Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh also set off some dynamite to that block of time, wildly chewing scenery as he accused committee Democrats of taking out on him their “revenge on behalf of the Clintons,” and asking one of them if she had ever
blacked out while drinking.
President Donald Trump’s top-court choice also told senators his yearbook “Devil’s Triangle” references were about a drinking game, while “boofing” referenced “flatulence.”
It was Kavanaugh’s performance that capped FNC’s day. At 5 PM and 6 PM he commanded crowds of 7.51M and 7.55M, respectively, on that network alone, beating the debuts of ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy (6.81M) and CBS’s Murphy Brown (7.50M) later that night. Pundits think those series and others suffered that night as viewers stayed tuned to cable news nets, or collapsed on their sofas after a full day of TV news viewing and were chewing the cushions in an ecstasy of grief.
Kavanaugh gave Sean Hannity a run for his money; the brightest star in the FNC firmament logged 5.86M viewers for the week, 1.336M in the news demo, marking his second highest ratings in both metrics since returning to the 9 PM ET timeslot.
Next day, news-viewer catnip Senate Judiciary Committee, was back at it, from 9 AM to 2 PM ET, with camera-ready speechifying and deal brokering to allow for a week-long FBI probe into Ford’s assault allegations, with FNC topping the cable news ratings, though about 2M viewers shy of previous day, averaging 3.7M million total viewers (719K in the news demo).
For the week, In Total Day, the top three networks in all of basic cable were news networks. Top 5 for the week were:
In primetime, FNC clocked 3.239M viewers for the week, toMSNBC’s 2.116M, and CNN’s 1.193M.