Viewership drops 20 percent for Trump State of the Union address; Fox News only network to see uptick

Viewership drops 20 percent for Trump State of the Union address; Fox News only network to see uptick
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Overall viewership for President TrumpDonald John TrumpWinners and losers from the South Carolina debate Five takeaways from the Democratic debate Democrats duke it out in most negative debate so far MORE's State of the Union address on Tuesday night fell 20 percent, with Fox News the only network to record gains.

Overall, 37.2 million viewers watched Trump's third address to Congress, a sharp 20-percent decline from the 46.9 million who watched in 2019, according to Nielsen Media Research.

Fox News was the most-watched network on broadcast or cable television during the president's address, with 11.5 million viewers tuned in. It was the only network to see a viewership increase from last year, with 400,000 more viewers tuning in, marking a 2-percent increase.

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Audience losses compared to the 2019 address were considerable at other networks, including a 41-percent drop on MSNBC, according to Nielsen. NBC's viewership fell by 33 percent and CBS and ABC both saw 30-percent dropoffs. 

CNN finished second on the cable news front Tuesday night, with 2.78 million people tuning in. MSNBC was third with 2.23 million viewers.

On the broadcast side, 4.8 million people watched the speech on NBC, 4.66 million on CBS, 4.12 million on ABC and 3.51 million on Fox.

By comparison, President Obama's final State of the Union address in 2016 was watched by 31.3 million viewers, while 43.5 million people tuned in for President Clinton's speech during his 1999 impeachment trial.

President George W. Bush had the most-watched annual address in 2002, with more than 62 million people watching just months after the 9/11 attacks.