Most-Watched Sunday Show in Total Viewers and Key Demo Across Full Third Quarter

#1 in Key Demo for 19 Straight Quarters; Beats ABC and CBS By Double Digits

Closes Out Last Sunday of Quarter With Special Edition Program at #1 in Key Demo

Sept. 22, 2020 – Meet the Press with Chuck Todd (MTP) officially closes out the 2019-2020 season as the #1 most-watched Sunday show across the board, according to Nielsen Media Research data. Plus, ends the third quarter of 2020 (3Q’20) as the most-watched Sunday show in total viewers and in the key demo.

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2019-2020 SEASON

For the fourth straight season, MTP once again dominated in total viewers, the all-important A25-54 key demo, and among A18-49 viewers.

An average of 3.461 million viewers tuned into the broadcast during the 2019-2020 broadcast season (Sept. 23, 2019 - Sept. 20, 2020) topping ABC’s This Week by +16 percent (+484,000) and CBS’s Face the Nation by two percent (+76,000). This marks MTP’s best total viewer streak since the 2011-2012 season across-the-board win and best season average in three years (since the 2016-2017 season). Compared to the prior season, MTP was up five percent (+175,000) among total viewers.

MTP continues to dominate in the demo most valued by news advertisers, winning the season with an average of 810,000 A25-54 viewers. MTP topped both ABC and CBS by double-digits: ABC by +19 percent (+128,000) and CBS by +17 percent (+115,000). This marks MTP’s fifth straight season win in the key A25-54 demo and MTP’s best demo streak since the 2011-2012 season.

MTP was also #1 among A18-49 viewers, again topping both ABC and CBS by double-digits. MTP averaged 554,000 A18-49 viewers, +23 percent (+103,000) more than ABC and +18 percent (+86,000) more than CBS. This marks MTP’s fifth straight season win in the A18-49 demo and MTP’s best A18-49 streak since the 2013-2014 season.


Including all 3Q broadcasts (11 for MTP, 11 for CBS, and 12 for ABC), MTP averaged the most viewers with 3.133 million total viewers, topping ABC by +13 percent (+359,000) and CBS by +2,000. This marks MTP’s 11th consecutive quarterly win in total viewers. Compared to 3Q’19, MTP was up +10 percent (+291,000) and increased its total viewer advantage over ABC by +52 percent year over year.

MTP won the third quarter of 2020 in the all-important key demo for its 19th consecutive quarter and topped both ABC and CBS by double-digits. MTP averaged 664,000 A25-54 key demo viewers: ABC by +11 percent (+67,000) and CBS by +17 percent (+98,000). MTP increased its A25-54 viewers advantage over ABC by three percent and over CBS by +27 percent year over year.

Note: CBS’s Face The Nation chose to retitle and exclude five of their 11 broadcasts this quarter, effectively eliminating their lowest rated programs from the average, including at the height of the political conventions. By excluding nearly 50 percent of their regularly scheduled programs, FTN’s six rated broadcasts narrowly tops MTP’s nine rated broadcasts by two percent (+69,000) of the Nielsen-rated broadcasts.


MTP was the #1 most-watched Sunday show in the key demo this past Sunday, September 20.

Sunday’s special edition broadcast featured interviews with Sec. Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State and former Democratic presidential nominee; Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Chair of the Senate Republican Conference; Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), member of the Senate Judiciary Committee; and Sec. Alex Azar, Secretary of U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Plus, Nina Totenberg, American Legal Affairs Correspondent for National Public Radio; Pete Williams, NBC News Justice Correspondent; and Andrea Mitchell, NBC News Senior Washington Correspondent joined to remember the legacy of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

617,000 A25-54 key demo viewers tuned into the Sunday program: four percent (+25,000) more than ABC’s This Week and nine percent (+49,000) more than CBS’s Face the Nation.

MTP averaged 3.101 million total viewers, topping ABC’s This Week by eight percent (+227,000). Just one percent separated MTP from CBS, which continues to rate for only the first 30 minutes of its hour-long broadcast and averaged 3.148 million total viewers following the highly-rated CBS Sunday Morning. Compared to the same Sunday last year, MTP was up seven percent (+205,000) and compared to last week MTP was up two percent (+62,000).

An additional 887,000 total viewers and 205,000 A25-54 viewers watched the Sunday program through rebroadcasts on NBC and MSNBC.

MTP continues to dominate the influential Washington, D.C. market, more than doubling the competition across the board. MTP has won every Sunday with total viewers in over five years (since March 22, 2015), topping the competition for more than 230 consecutive Sundays.

Tune in to MSNBC’s MTP Daily weekdays at 1 p.m. ET for more from moderator Chuck Todd, and follow the broadcast on Facebook and on Twitter for the latest.

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Media contacts

For more information, contact:

Richard Hudock
NBC News

Joya Manasseh
NBC News