August 20, 2014 2:15pm PT by Michael O'Connell
Anderson Cooper Tops Cable News Ratings With Tuesday Ferguson Coverage
Police in Ferguson, Missouri, may be keeping a lot of journalists from getting close to the ongoing protests — but that is not deterring viewers.
Ratings were up again on Tuesday night, with Anderson Cooper's on-location coverage for CNN topping all other broadcasts among adults 25-54. He hit a high during the 9 p.m. ET hour with an average 601,000 viewers in the key demo. That put him ahead of Fox News Channel's perennial top two, The Kelly File (530,000) and The O'Reilly Factor (521,000). The latter was again hosted by Eric Bolling. O'Reilly, who has been calling in, cut his vacation short to cover Ferguson from his New York studio and returns Wednesday.
The demo race among the advertiser-favored adults 25-54 also belonged to CNN in both primetime and total day — though FNC edged past the network during the clutch later hours of protests, 11 p.m. and midnight ET.
FNC did not surrender its total viewership crown at any hour during the day and was the only network improved from Monday with an average 2.3 million viewers in primetime and 1.4 million viewers over the course of the day.
Even as tensions mount in Iraq, and all networks continue to cover recent U.S. intervention, the daily schedules are still focusing heavily on Ferguson. The Aug. 9 shooting death of unarmed teenager Michael Brown at the hands of local police has prompted riots.
The latest development is the planned Wednesday arrival of Attorney General Eric Holder, who will meet with locally stationed FBI.