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Audience Estimates For President Obama’s Address To Joint Session Of Congress
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Audience Estimates For President Obama’s Address To Joint Session Of Congress

On Tuesday, February 24, 2009 President Barack Obama delivered his first address to a Joint Session of Congress, the traditional first-term equivalent of the State of the Union.  The address was carried live on 10 national television networks – ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, Telemundo, Univision, CNBC, CNN, FOX News Channel and MSNBC.  The figures below are the sum of the preliminary average audience estimates for the sources noted and for the approximate common time.  Exact times varied by network.

President Obama’s Address to Joint Session of Congress –

Tuesday, February 24, 2009 Approximately 9:00-10:30 PM (ET)

Networks Rating Share # of Homes # of Viewers 2+
ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, TELEMUNDO, UNIVISION,

 

CNBC,CNN, FOXNC, MSNBC

32.5 49 37,185,000 52,373,000
Source: The Nielsen Company (February 25, 2009).

Selected State of the Union/Addresses to Joint Sessions of Congress

  Number of Networks Rating Share # of Homes # of Viewers 2+ Notes
1/28/2008 9 24.7 38 27,702,000 37,515,000 Last year
1/28/2003 8 38.8 56 41,447,000 62,061,000 Pre-Iraq War
1/29/2002 8 33.6 49 35,547,000 51,773,000 Post-9/11
2/27/2001 7 27.6 42 28,201,000 39,793,000 Bush’s 1st
1/19/1999 7 31 48 30,700,000 44,500,000 Post-Impeachment
1/27/1998 8 37.2 56 36,513,000 53,077,000 Pre-Impeachment
2/17/1993 4 44.3 N/A 41,200,000 66,900,000 Clinton’s 1st
Source: The Nielsen Company (February 25, 2009).

2008- ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, Telemundo, Univision, CNN, FNC, MSNBC,

1999, 2001 – ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, CNN, FNC, MSNBC

1998, 2002, 2003 – ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, CNBC, CNN, FNC, MSNBC

1993 – ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN

Source: Nielsen, Live + Same Day from 2006 to present, Live Only for prior years