Cable ratings reveal substantial drop-off in viewership for Fox News following ouster of Tucker Carlson

April 27, 2023
Ben Marquis

When Fox News announced on Monday that a decision had been made to "part ways" with its top-rated primetime host Tucker Carlson, no explanation was given and the reasons for that decision continue to remain unclear.

What is clear, however, is how a substantial portion of his viewers reacted -- primarily by changing the channel or turning off the TV, as per the ratings for Monday night, the Conservative Brief reported.

According to the numbers, it appears that around a half million viewers decided to tune out for Monday's interim replacement host, Brian Kilmeade, in comparison to the viewership numbers for the Monday one week prior to Carlson's ouster from the network.

Viewership immediately declined post-Carlson

The Daily Caller reported that the TV ratings data for Monday, April 24, revealed a significant drop-off in viewership for Kilmeade on "Fox News Tonight" as compared to Carlson's "Tucker Carlson Tonight" on Monday, April 17, both in terms of total viewers and among the key demographic of adults aged 25-54 that is targeted by advertisers.

According to ShowBuzzDaily, the "Fox News Tonight" replacement episode on April 24 ranked 21st out of the top 50 cable programs with an average of total viewers just under 2.6 million and garnered a rating of 0.24 among the key demographic.

Among just cable news shows for April 24, the replacement program hosted by Kilmeade ranked 3rd behind Fox News' "The Five" in 1st place and MSNBC's Rachel Maddow in 2nd.

Carlson dominated cable ratings last week, last year

Compare that to ShowBuzzDaily's report for Monday, April 17, in which Carlson's program was ranked 9th out of the top 50, had a total average of 3.17 million viewers, and drew a rating of 0.37 among the key demographic.

Carlson's show on that night was also ranked 1st among all of the cable news programs for that day.

The Daily Caller further noted that according to Adweek's assessment of the entirety of 2022, Carlson's program ranked 2nd overall with an average of 3.3 million total viewers, placing only behind "The Five" with an average of 3.42 million total viewers.

That outlet also revealed that Carlson had averaged more than a half million viewers among adults aged 25-54 last year, making it the top-rated program among the key demographic for the second year in a row.

Theories abound for Carlson's departure, but nothing is confirmed

Conservative Brief noted that there were a number of speculative theories circulating with regard to why Fox News decided to end its relationship with its top-rated host, and while some are intriguing and plausible, none have been confirmed thus far.

What can be confirmed, though, is that Fox News has taken a hit in the ratings and could conceivably lose even more viewers over time, particularly if more verifiable information about the decision to cut ties with Carlson is revealed that is unfavorable for the network and its executives.

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