40M watch Obama press conference


President Barack Obama capped off a week of television appearances with a prime time press conference on Tuesday March 24th. The sum of average audience for the 11 networks carrying the event was 40,354,000 and it had a combined household rating of 25.9. That, though, was down from his first primetime press conference in February.

The networks carrying Tuesday’s press conference were ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, Telemundo, Univision, CNBC, CNN, FOX News Channel, MSNBC, mun2. Here is their combined audience total from The Nielsen Company.


The President’s first prime time press conference on February 9, 2009 was watched by 49,455,133 viewers and had a combined 30.8 household rating over eight networks. The networks then were ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, Univision, CNN, Fox News Channel and MSNBC.

In the week before the press conference President Obama visited NBC’s “The Tonight Show” with Jay Leno on Thursday, March 19th. The program was seen in 8.9 million homes in the 56 metered markets that represent 70% of all U.S. TV households and earned an average 11.2 rating and 26 share in those local markets. On Sunday, March 22nd, more than 17 million people watched “60 Minutes” on CBS featuring an extended interview with the President, making the show the 4th most watched show of the week.

In the two months since taking office President Obama has communicated directly to the American people and the world via television on multiple occasions. Here is a summary from  Nielsen of some of the most visible TV appearances.