Nolte: Democrats Are Losing Millions and Millions of Debate Viewers on CNN

The stage is prepared where the CNN/New York Times will host the Democratic presidential primary debate at Otterbein University, Tuesday, Oct. 15, 2019, in Westerville, Ohio. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
John Minchillo/AP Photo

CNN’s Tuesday night Democrat debate drew only 8.3 million viewers, a huge drop from the 14 million who watched the previous debate on ABC and Univision.

Tuesday’s debate was the fourth this year among those Democrats angling to win their party’s presidential nomination, and the ratings were the lowest of the year, even when you add the 449,000 live streams.

Back in July, far-left CNN hosted the second debate of the year, a two-night event that drew 8.7 million and 10.7 million viewers, for an average of 9.7 million. This was also a massive drop-off from the previous debate.

In June, the first Democrat debate of the year, hosted by NBC, MSNBC, and Telemundo, drew 15.3 million viewers on night one and 18.1 million viewers on night two, for an average of 16.7 million.

I supposed you could argue that people are already losing interest in the presidential campaign. But with Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) surging into first place against former Vice President Joe Biden, that doesn’t make much sense. There’s a real horse race happening among the Democrats. This is an election in flux where anything can still happen, so I doubt interest is waning.

The problem appears to be … CNNLOL.

The first and third debates were hosted by NBC and ABC, respectively, and garnered gonzo ratings: 16.7 million and 14 million.

The third and fourth debates, hosted by CNNLOL, resulted in a mammoth collapse in viewers, around a 40 percent drop: 8.7 million and 8.3 million.

For those of you who might be under the mistaken belief a cable channel like CNN cannot compete with broadcast outlets like ABC and NBC, that’s just not true.

To begin with, CNN is available in nearly 80 million households. Secondly, during the 2016 presidential campaign, 15.5 million viewers watched the first debate between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders on CNN.

CNN hosted a Republican debate during the 2016 primary that attracted 23 million viewers.

So, at one time, CNN was able to compete with the broadcast networks. But now Democrat primary voters are turning away in droves whenever one of their debates airs on the far-left cable channel.

CNN must be the problem.

What other explanation is there?

CNN is not only the lowest rated (by far) and least trusted of the cable news networks, it is also staffed by the least interesting anchors in the business. You don’t have to like MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow or Chris Matthews to find them interesting, to see they are real people with minds of their own. But as we are learning through the Project Veritas reporting, everyone at CNN is a Jeff Zucker clone, a puppet repeating his talking points, expressing his far-left beliefs. As a result, the network is now predictable and dull; one note and blah.

CNN has changed A LOT since the 2016 presidential campaign, since the days when it could actually compete with Fox News and the broadcast network for debate viewers, even Republican debate viewers.

But since Trump’s election, CNN has worked overtime to whore out its credibility, and has done so just because the fake news outlet is too immature to accept the results of the 2016 presidential election. And in doing so, CNN has allowed Zucker to cast a gray pall over the entire enterprise, which makes it lifeless, tedious, and boring.

If Democrats want to attract a serious number of eyeballs, and I’m sure they do, they need to dump CNN as a debate partner.


Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC. Follow his Facebook Page here.


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