NBC's 'Today' show surges in ratings after Lauer's departure

NBC's 'Today' show surges in ratings after Lauer's departure
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NBC's "Today Show" has surged in the ratings front since the departure of Matt LauerMatthew (Matt) Todd LauerMet opera fires conductor after sexual misconduct probe Maria Bartiromo: I'm 'grateful' to the men who 'tried to intimidate me' Left-wing, right-wing: The case for realignment of political labels MORE, topping ABC's "Good Morning America" in overall viewers in each of the two weeks since the longtime host was dismissed over sexual harassment allegations.

"Today" averaged 4.58 million total viewers during the week of Dec. 4 through Dec. 8, compared to 4.38 million for "GMA" and 3.57 million for CBS over that same period.

NBC for a second consecutive week also beat ABC in the key 25-54 demographic that advertisers covet most, averaging 1.63 million viewers in the category to ABC's 1.3 million and CBS's 916,000. 

The back-to-back wins mark the first time in nearly a year that the NBC morning program has beaten ABC in total viewers for two straight weeks.

The morning show landscape has changed dramatically in the span of only a few weeks, with "CBS This Morning" host Charlie Rose being fired one week before Lauer's ouster at NBC on Nov. 30. That has left ABC's George Stephanopoulos as the only male lead co-host among the three major broadcast networks' shows not to be facing sexual misconduct allegations.

Lauer has been replaced on an interim basis by Hoda Kotb, who usually hosts the fourth hour of the "Today" show at 10 a.m. with Kathie Lee Gifford.

NBC "Weekend Today" host Craig Melvin is rumored to be in the running to become Lauer's replacement, along with occasional fill-in host and "Today" cast member Carson Daly and "Sunday Today" host Willie Geist.