- Share this article on Facebook
- Share this article on Twitter
- Share this article on Email
- Show additional share options
- Share this article on Print
- Share this article on Comment
- Share this article on Whatsapp
- Share this article on Linkedin
- Share this article on Reddit
- Share this article on Pinit
- Share this article on Tumblr
The on-air audience for the State of the Union address fell considerably from a year ago.
President Joe Biden’s second State of the Union averaged 24.17 million viewers across the four main broadcast networks (ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC) and three largest cable news channels (CNN, Fox News and MSNBC). That’s down by about 29 percent from 33.83 million who watched the State of the Union on those seven outlets in 2022.
Final figures from Nielsen put the speech’s audience at 27.31 million viewers across 16 outlets, down 28.5 percent from the 38.2 million viewers across 16 outlets for Biden’s first official State of the Union last year. The 27.31 million figure is the second-smallest for State of the Union addresses (or presidential addresses to Congress for incoming executives) of the past 30 years, behind only Biden’s first address to congress (26.94 million) in 2021.
Fox News had the largest for the speech with just under 4.7 million viewers, beating out ABC’s 4.41 million for the top spot. NBC finished third with 3.78 million viewers, followed by CBS (3.64 million), MSNBC (3.57 million), CNN (2.41 million) and the Fox broadcast network (1.66 million). Spanish language broadcasters Univision (1.08 million) and Telemundo (836,000) added about 1.9 million viewers to the total. The rest came from NBCLX, PBS, CNBC, CNNe, Fox Business, NewsMax and NewsNation.
ABC led the prime news demographic of adults 25-54, drawing about 1.07 million viewers in that age range. NBC and Fox News each had about 852,000, followed by CBS (706,000), CNN (657,000), Fox broadcast (511,000) and MSNBC (499,000).
Elsewhere Tuesday, LeBron James breaking the NBA scoring record delivered strong ratings for TNT. Its telecast of the Los Angeles Lakers-Oklahoma City Thunder game where James surpassed Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s long-standing record of 38,387 career points brought in 2.98 million viewers — the biggest NBA audience for TNT since the opening night of the season — and was easily the night’s highest-rated program among adults 18-49 with a 1.29 rating (equal to about 1.68 million people).
Feb. 9, 8:20 a.m. Updated with final State of the Union numbers.
Sign up for THR news straight to your inbox every day