HLN comes out on top again this week with the highest weekly average in the Adults 25 -54 demographic during the 8PM and 10PM hours. They only won the 10PM timeslot once last week, but because special programming was not included in the averages, it was enough for them to claim the hour.
MSNBC had the highest rating during the 9PM hour , but was only using a 2 day average compared to the 5 day average that was used for CNN, FOX, and HLN. MSNBC’s special programming during the 9PM and 10PM hours on Thursday and Friday won the timeslots.
CNN didn’t have a great week. The high points were on Wednesday with Tom Foreman’s look at the best and worse of 2008 at 8PM and Larry King at 9PM with both programs winning their timeslots.
1 2 day average. FOX & MSNBC special programming on Wednesday, Thursday, & Friday nights excluded.
2 3 day average. CNN special programming on Wednesday and Thursday excluded. MSNBC special programming on Thursday & Friday excluded.
3 4 day average. FOX & CNN special programming on Thursday excluded.
^ Courtesy Nielsen Media Research; Demographics where noted; Live + Same Day (LS) Fast Track Nationals.
In other ratings news, this was released by CNN:
Blitzer Leads The Situation Room to No. 1 Among Younger Viewers in 2008
Throughout a record-breaking year for CNN, more viewers in the 25-54 demographic turned to CNN during the 5 p.m. hour than to any other cable news channel. Additionally, The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.,was No. 1 among 18-34 and 18-49 viewers in 2008.
For the three hour block, The Situation Room attracted, on average, 81,000 viewers in the 18-34 demo, as compared to the 61,000 viewers who turned to Fox News and the 53,000 viewers who turned to MSNBC. In the 18-49 demo, an average 219,000 viewers watched The Situation Room versus 209,000 and 129,000 who turned to Fox News and MSNBC, respectively.
At 5 p.m., The Situation Room averaged 245,000 viewers in the 25-54 demographic, compared to the 243,000 for Fox News’ Election Headquarters and 197,000 for MSNBC’s Hardball. According to Nielsen data for the year, The Situation Room also beat its competitors in the 5 p.m. hour in the 18-49 demo with 213,000 viewers, versus Fox News’ 190,000 and MSNBC’s 146,000, as well as in the 18-34 demo with 77,000 viewers, compared with Fox News’ 57,000 and MSNBC’s 58,000.
“I attribute 2008’s ratings to The Situation Room’s incredibly hardworking, talented team who tirelessly wrote, booked, produced, directed, anchored and performed countless other tasks to craft the most comprehensive and fair newscast every weekday,” said Sam Feist, CNN’s political director. “Viewers trusted Wolf Blitzer and this team during 2008, and we promise to not disappoint in 2009 and beyond.”
The Situation Room airs weekdays from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Eric Sherling is the program’s executive producer.
Could Sanjay Gupta be leaving CNN?
This from the CNN Political Ticker:
Chief CNN medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta has been approached by the Obama administration about the U.S. surgeon general's post, according to sources inside the transition and at CNN.
Watch: John King on Dr. Gupta
The transition team is impressed with the combination of Gupta's past government experience, as a White House fellow and a special advisor to then-first lady Hillary Clinton, along with his medical career as a neurosurgeon and his communication skills, the transition source said.
Gupta has declined comment on the matter.
CNN released a statement saying, "Since first learning that Dr. Gupta was under consideration for the surgeon general position, CNN has made sure that his on-air reporting has been on heath and wellness matters and not on health-care policy or any matters involving the new administration."
Here is the video clip from John King's report that aired on The Situation Room:
Howard Kurtz also filed this report for the Washington Post:
The offer followed a two-hour Chicago meeting in November with Obama, who said that Gupta could be the highest-profile surgeon general in history and would have an expanded role in providing health policy advice, the sources said. Gupta later spoke with Tom Daschle, Obama's White House health czar and nominee for Health and Human Services secretary, and other advisers to the president-elect.
The Michigan-born son of parents who were born in India, Gupta has always been drawn to health policy. He was a White House fellow in the late 1990s, writing speeches and crafting policy for Hillary Clinton. His appointment would give the administration a prominent official of South Asian descent and a skilled television spokesman.
Gupta, who hosts "House Call" on CNN, has discussed the job offer with his bosses at CBS and CNN to make sure he could be released from his contractual obligations, the sources said.
His role as journalist and physician have sometimes overlapped. During the 2003 Iraq invasion, Gupta was embedded with a Navy unit called Devil Docs and, while covering its mission, performed brain surgery five times, the first of which was on a 2-year-old Iraqi boy.
Gupta's only hesitation in taking the post is said to involve the financial impact on his pregnant wife and two children if he gives up his lucrative medical and journalistic careers. But he is expected to accept the position within days.