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40 Million Watch President Obama’s Press Conference

1 minute read | March 2009

President Barack Obama capped off a week of television appearances with a prime time press conference on Tuesday March 24, 2009. The event was carried live from 8:00 to approximately 9:00PM on 11 networks. The sum of average audience for those networks was 40,354,000 and had a combined household rating of 25.9. The networks carrying the press conference were ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, Telemundo, Univision, CNBC, CNN, FOX News Channel, MSNBC, mun2.

Networks Households Viewers P2+

Telemundo, Univision, CNBC,

CNN, FOX News Channel,

MSNBC, mun2

29,799,000 40,354,000
source: The Nielsen Company

The President’s first prime time press conference was watched by 49.5 million people on eight networks on February 9, 2009.

In the week before the press conference President Obama visited The Tonight Show with Jay Leno on Thursday March 19. The program was seen in 8.9 million homes in the 56 metered markets that represent 70% of all U.S. TV households and earned an average 11.2 rating and 26 share in those local markets. On Sunday March 22 more than 17 million people watched 60 Minutes featuring an extended interview with the President, making the show the 4th most watched show of the week behind American Idol and Dancing with the Stars.

In the two months since taking office President Obama has communicated directly to the American people and the world via television on multiple occasions. Here is a summary of some of the most visible TV appearances.

Event Date # Of


Household Rating Household Share Number of Households Viewers


Press Conference 2/9/2009 8 30.8 47 35,311,433 49,455,000
Address to Joint Session of Congress 2/24/2009 10 32.5 49 37,165,000 52,373,000
60 Minutes 3/22/2009 1 10.4 17 11,960,000 17,042,000
Source: The Nielsen Company

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