MSNBC Continues Secure Handle On 2nd Place Over CNN

MSNBC has spent 2010 taking over the second place position on cable news from CNN (still far behind FNC). First, it was prime time. Now, it’s total day.

For the first time since 2001, MSNBC beat CNN in the total day A25-54 demographic this quarter. The network also beat CNN in prime time, both categories, for the four consecutive quarter.

While MSNBC was the only cable news network to grow quarter-to-quarter (in total day, demo), it experienced declines as well, like the rest of cable news. Countdown was down 21% in the demo, Rachel Maddow down 16%. Still, it was the 16th consecutive quarter MSNBC beat CNN at 8pmET and the fourth consecutive quarter at 9pmET. The final quarter of a Countdown repeat at 10pmET had MSNBC beating CNN in both categories.

Morning Joe was #2 in total viewers, but tied for 3rd in the demo. The Ed Show had its best quarter ever at 6pmET, topping CNN in both categories. Hardball at 7pmET topped CNN in both categories.

Beginning this quarter, Lawrence O’Donnell will look to hold the lead over Anderson Cooper. MSNBC as a whole will have its toughest competition from CNN all year, as the election season is traditionally stronger for CNN.

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