Fox News Breaks All Primary Debate Records with 24 Million Viewers

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A good night for Megyn Kelly‘s show on Fox News might mean 3 million total viewers. During that same 9 p.m. hour last night, Fox pulled in more than 24 million viewers for the first Republican presidential primary debate, smashing all previous records and representing approximately 16% of U.S. households with televisions. 7.9 million of those viewers fell into the coveted 25-54 demo.

Those numbers make last night’s debate not only Fox News’ highest-rated program ever, but also the highest-rated cable news program of all time.

Four years ago, the first GOP debate of the 2012 cycle was also held on Fox, but that debate drew just over 3 million viewers, a stark difference that can likely be explained, in part, by the celebrity of Donald Trump.

At 5 p.m. on Thursday, the so-called “undercard” debate had 6.1 million total viewers and 1.2 million in the demo, more than four times the audience that regularly tunes in to The Five during that hour.

Sports Illustrated’s Richard Deitsch offered up this sports comparison on Twitter, demonstrating just how massive last night’s primetime audience really was:

[Photo via screengrab]

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