Television ratings for President Obama’s State of the Union speech Tuesday are in and the news is that America just isn’t into this president anymore. Viewership appears to have plummeted to a 15 year low. Variety warns that these are preliminary numbers but “early numbers [are] suggesting perhaps the lowest tune-in for the annual event in 15 years.”
The news was even worse for MSNBC, which advertised itself heavily as the only place for liberals to tune in. The Lean Forward network crashed and burned in a distant 3rd place behind fox News and CNN:
For the 9-11 p.m. ET period, which includes post-address coverage, Fox News drew 3.485 million viewers and 827,819 in the demo, while CNN averaged 2.375 million and a first-place 982,428 in the demo. MSNBC drew about 2 million overall, including about 494,000 in the demo.
A special 11 p.m. live edition of “The Kelly File” on FNC ruled the 11 o’clock hour in both total viewers (2.40 million) and the demo (532,000). CNN ran second (1.13 million, including 459,000 in 25-54) and MSNBC third (995,000, including 293,000 in 25-54).
Bloomberg reports that last year’s speech only had 33.3 million viewers, a personal worst for Obama and the lowest since 2000. “That figure means that the speech was seen in about 20 percent of U.S. households,” Bloomberg concludes.
Judging by the news coverage today, other than inspiring a number of op-eds about ending the State of the Union ritual, the speech didn’t have much impact at all.
CNN’s Jake Tapper chose to open his 4pm hour on the one issue Obama didn’t want to discuss last night: al Qaeda. Seventeen minutes in, Tapper still hasn’t covered the State of the Union.
John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC