CBS’ Face the Nation with Margaret Brennan had a strong week. The first-run broadcast on May 17 averaged more viewers than any other Sunday politics program for the second consecutive week (3.86 million) and posted week-to-week audience growth in multiple measurements.
Face the Nation’s second half-hour was broadcast contiguously across 91.026% of the CBS affiliates.
Since the Covid-19 pandemic (March 16-May 17), FTN delivered its largest audience ever dating to the 1987-1988 season and the largest audience in Adults 24-54 since the 2008-2009 comparable periods.
Meet the Press with Chuck Todd continued to win the Sunday show race in the key A25-54 demo, averaging 832,000 viewers in that measurement. The program averaged +41% (+241,000) more demo viewers than ABC and +7% (+58,000) more than CBS. A relatively commanding win in the demo, a category it has won on 12 consecutive Sundays.
An additional 815,000 total viewers and 168,000 A25-54 demo viewers watched the Sunday program through re-airs on NBC and MSNBC.
Meet the Press remains the No.1 Sunday show for the 2019-2020 season, despite some recent losses in Total Viewers.
ABC This Week with George Stephanopoulos remained in third place this past week, both in Total Viewers and in the key Adults 25-54 demo.
Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace drew 1.46 million Total Viewers and 405,000 demo viewers on the Fox network. The cable replays hauled in a combined 3.33 million Total Viewers and 606,000 demo viewers. Altogether, that’s roughly 4.79 million Total Viewers and 1 million demo viewers.
Compared to the prior Sunday (May 10), Face the Nation was +1% in Total Viewers, and +6 in the demo. Meet the Press was -4% in Total Viewers but +5% in the demo. This Week had a poor week relative to the prior week, -5% in Total Viewers and -10% in the key demo. Fox News Sunday, on the other hand, was +2% in Total Viewers and +6% in the key demo.
Compared to the same Sunday in 2019, Face the Nation was +34% in Total Viewers and +34% in the demo. Meet the Press was +24% in Total Viewers and +17% in the demo. This Week was +22% in Total Viewers, but just +5% in the key demo. Fox News Sunday was +20% in Total Viewers and +21% in the key demo.
The May 17 numbers for the first-run broadcasts:
|CBS||Face the Nation||3,862,000||774,000|
|NBC||Meet the Press||3,625,000||832,000|
|FOX||Fox News Sunday||1,456,000||405,000|
As for the May 2020 sweep period, it was Meet the Press that came out on top for the third consecutive May sweep period, averaging the largest total audience and the largest adults 25-54 audience.
May 2020 was MTP’s best total viewer sweep delivery in over two years (since February 2018 sweep).
In addition to winning both key measurements, Meet the Press was +29% in Total Viewers and +23% in demo viewers versus May 2019 sweeps. Face the Nation, which came up just short to MTP in Total Viewers, had a strong month relative to the prior May sweeps: +34% in the aforementioned measurement and +32% in demo viewers.
ABC’s This Week was +17% in Total Viewers and +3% in demo viewers versus May 2019 sweeps.
Additionally, Fox News Sunday was +22% in Total Viewers and +17% in demo viewers.
The May 2020 sweep numbers for the first-run broadcasts:
|NBC||Meet the Press||3,946,000||890,000|
|CBS||Face the Nation||3,874,000||792,000|
|Fox||Fox News Sunday||1,506,000||402,000|
Source: The Nielsen Company, NTI (Total Viewers and Adults 25-54); Live + SD for 5/17/20, 5/10/20 and 5/19/19 or as dated. Broadcast Season based on Live+7/Most Current: 2019 -2020 Season (9/23/19 – 5/20/20) and 2018 -2019 Season (9/24/19 – 5/22/19). Sweeps based on Live+7/Most Current: May 20/20 (4/23 – 5/20/20), May 2019 (4/25-5/22/19) and February 2020 (1/30-2/26/20). Sweep periods (November, February, May and July). NOTE: Due to the digital transition, the 2009 February sweep was 3/5 – 4/1/09. Averages based on regular telecasts.