Even after a dozen GOP debates this year, viewers are showing no signs of fatigue as they propelled last Thursday’s Iowa debate on Fox News to a new high among cable news outlets.
Fox averaged 6.7 million viewers during the two-hour debate, topping the previous high of 6.1 million viewers it set on September 22. Even better for Fox was that it averaged 1,835,000 viewers in the key A25-54 demographic, topping the previous high of 1,728,000 set by MSNBC on September 7th by a wide margin.
The Fox debate fell short of the numbers posted by ABC for their debate on December 10, but together they were the most watched back-to-back debates of the year.
Fox has now broadcast four debates since May and is averaging 5.5 million viewers per debate while increasing its audience each time. Compare that to CNN which is averaging just four million viewers for the same number of debates and saw its last debate attract nearly two million fewer viewers than its previous one.
With Republican voters set to cast their first votes next month, it remains to be seen if the recent surge in the GOP debates will continue next year as the presidential field inevitably begins to shrink.