Bernie or Bust: Fox’s Klobuchar Town Hall Draws a Million Fewer Viewers Than Sanders
Following independent Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders’ ratings success last month with his Fox News town hall, several 2020 Democratic presidential expressed interest in taking their case to the network’s conservative viewership, even while the Democratic National Committee barred Fox News from carrying any of the party’s presidential primary debates.
One of the Dem contenders to sign on with Fox post-Bernie was Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), whose town hall event aired Wednesday evening. Klobuchar, however, was unable to come close to drawing the audience Sanders pulled in, though the hour-long forum did eke out a ratings victory in its time slot.
According to Nielsen, Klobuchar — who is currently polling in low single-digits among Dem primary voters — delivered a total viewership of 1.608 million and 235,000 in the key 25-54 demographic. In comparison, MSNBC attracted 1.5 million total viewers during the same 6:30-7:30 PM time slot while CNN drew 759,000 viewers overall.
The Sanders town hall, which also aired at 6:30 PM, delivered a total audience of 2.554 million and doubled Klobuchar in the key demo with 489,000. So far for the 2020 cycle, the Sanders Fox News town hall is the most-watched candidate forum.
Besides drawing nearly a million fewer viewers than her Senate colleague, Klobuchar also lost a large percentage of the audience from her lead-in. Special Report with Bret Baier drew a total viewership of 2.168 million and 282,000 in the demo in the half-hour prior to Klobuchar’s town hall, and The Five grabbed 2.510 million viewers overall and 391,000 in the demographic during the 5 PM time slot.
This isn’t the first time that Klobuchar has had a difficult time drawing viewers to a cable news town hall event. Late last month, CNN ran five consecutive forums on the same night, with the Minnesota lawmaker leading off the slate. Airing at 7 PM, her CNN town hall drew 869,000 total viewers and 183,000 in the key demo, placing third in both categories. It was also the least-watched town hall of the evening.