Barack Obama's show even tops 'Idol'
By Richard Huff
DAILY NEWS TV EDITOR
Friday, August 29th 2008
More than 38.3 million people tuned in to see presidential nominee Sen. Barack Obama address the Democratic National Convention Thursday night.
That was the largest audience for the 2008 DNC this year, and bigger than the audiences for the "American Idol" finale or "The Academy Awards."
Sen. John Kerry drew just 24.4 million for his acceptance speech in 2004.
The audience watching Obama's nomination speech was actually larger than reported, though unmeasured. Nielsen's estimate counts 10 networks' coverage in the 10 p.m. hour, but not PBS and C-Span, which also carried the event.
"There has been enormous interest," CNN senior vice president David Bohrman said. "[The presidential race] has transitioned into a must-see TV event....People have become transfixed."
CNN had 8 million people watching. ABC averaged 6.6 million; NBC averaged 6.1 million; CBS, 4.7 million; the Fox News Channel, 4.2 million and MSNBC averaged 4.0 million.