Republican Debate Had Startling Amount Of Viewers

( – The third Republican presidential primary debate on Wednesday night drew fewer than 7 million viewers on television, marking the lowest viewership for a debate in this election cycle.

Nielsen Media Research reported that NBC News’s broadcast of the debate, which aired from 8-10 p.m., attracted 6.8 million viewers on linear television, with 1.3 million in the coveted 25-54 age demographic.

These numbers exclude viewers who watched the event on streaming platforms or caught clips and highlights on social media and other platforms.

NBC News, however, highlighted the overall audience, stating that the event garnered a total of 7.5 million viewers across linear television, digital, and streaming combined. The network emphasized that it achieved the largest prime-time audience ever on “NBC News NOW” and the highest peak audience on the streaming platform, although specific streaming figures were not provided.

In comparison, the viewership for Wednesday’s debate was lower than the second GOP presidential primary debate on Fox Business Network, which attracted 9 million viewers last month, and the first event on Fox News in August, which had 12.8 million viewers.

The absence of former President Trump, a major audience draw and the current front-runner for the party’s nomination, was notable in all three of the primary debates. Trump skipped these debates due to his substantial lead in national polls.

The third debate featured a reduced field of candidates presenting their visions for the country and arguing why they are the best alternative to Trump.

Moderators Lester Holt, Kristen Welker, and Hugh Hewitt received widespread praise for their sharp questioning, composure in the face of direct attacks from candidates, and control of the sometimes heated exchanges.

The fourth presidential primary debate is scheduled for December 6 in Alabama and will be hosted by the cable news channel NewsNation.