Election TV ratings showed huge interest, but MASH did better

Miami HeraldNovember 5, 2008 

If there was any doubt that Americans were more politically engaged this election than they have been in years, Tuesday night's Nielsen ratings removed it.

About 71.5 million people watched election coverage during prime time Tuesday, compared to 59.2 million in 2004 and 61.6 million in 2000.

ABC had the most viewers, 13.1 million, though if you add Fox News and the Fox broadcast network together their audience would total 14.1 million.

On the other hand, before we start patting ourselves on the back for civic participation, it's worth remembering that the series finale of MASH drew 106 million viewers, the "who shot J.R." episode of Dallas, 83.6 million, and the last Cheers show 80.5 million.

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