Ratings: Democratic Debate Dominates Wednesday With 15.3 Million Viewers

Democratic Debate Ratings

NBC’s coverage of Night 1 of the 2020 presidential election’s first Democratic debate averaged 7.4 million total viewers and a 1.6 demo rating, dominating Wednesday in both measures.

Update: With viewership via MSNBC and Telemundo now folded in, the grand total is 15.3 million — just shy of the 2016 election’s first Democratic debate, which featured featuring Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, Martin O’Malley, Jim Webb and Lincoln Chafee, and amassed 15.8 million. But you can add onto this year’s total more than 9 million viewers who live streamed the debate.

In a TVLine poll, Elizabeth Warren, Julian Castro and Cory Booker most impressed during the two-hour face-off.


CBS | Big Brother (4.5 mil/1.1) dipped from Tuesday’s special premiere. Opposite the debate, The Amazing Race (3.8 mil/0.7) was down week-to-week as well as versus its previous, in-season finale (4.3 mil/0.9).

ABC | Last Wednesday’s leader, Press Your Luck (4.2 mil/0.8), as well as Match Game (3.1 mil/0.6) each dipped a tenth, while Card Sharks (3.3 mil/0.6) slipped two tenths.

THE CW | Jane the Virgin (672K/0.2) was steady.

FOX | MasterChef (2.6 mil/0.7) was steady, First Responders Live (1.9 mil/0.4) slipped.

Want scoop on any of the above shows? Email InsideLine@tvline.com and your question may be answered via Matt’s Inside Line.