Foreign policy debate drew lowest viewership of all three 2012 debates

The final debate between Mitt Romney and President Obama garnered the smallest viewership of all three debates, Nielsen Ratings said on Tuesday.

Roughly 59.2 million people tuned in Monday night to the event, which was focused on foreign policy. Nielsen previously reported that 65.6 million people had watched the second debate and 67.2 million people had watched the first.

The two other debates focused on domestic policy and the U.S. economy, with the second debate featuring a town-hall style format.

By comparison, in 2008, 56 million people had tuned in to watch the third presidential debate between then-Illinois Sen. Barack Obama and Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.). The first and second 2008 general election debates had viewerships of 52 million and 63 million, respectively, according to Nielsen.

The third 2012 debate aired live against two other popular events: Monday Night Football and the Major League Baseball NLCS championship game. Nielsen found the football game had a viewership of 10.7 million people and the baseball game had a viewership of 8.1 million people.

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