‘Daily Show’ Ratings Boosted by Obama But Don’t Beat Recent Visits

Courtesy of Roger L. Wollenberg-Pool/Getty Images

President Obama’s seventh and final appearance with Jon Stewart on “The Daily Show” drew the largest audience for the Comedy Central show in five months — even if it pales in comparison to viewership numbers for other recent visits.

According to Nielsen estimates, Wednesday’s edition of “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” averaged 1.514 million viewers, the most since early February and the second largest for any installment of the show this calendar year.

The top-rated episode of “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” remains Obama’s fourth visit to the show in late October 2008, just a few days before his first presidential election. It did a 1.7 rating in adults 18-49 and 3.577 million viewers overall.

Obama’s first appearance on “Daily Show” as president (and his fifth overall), in October 2010, drew 2.839 million viewers. And Obama’s stop in October 2012 (a few weeks before his second election) garnered 2.806 million.

In November 2005, a visit by a relatively unknown Barack Obama — shortly after his powerful keynote speech at the Democratic National Convention — drew 1.21 million.

On Wednesday’s show, Obama joked with Stewart that he would issue an executive order to prevent him from leaving the show on Aug. 6.  Stewart announced in February he was leaving his 16-year post as “The Daily Show.” South African comedian and “Daily Show” contributor Trevor Noah will take over for Stewart on Sept. 28.

Comedy Central is currently streaming all “Daily Show” episodes online across multiple platforms. “Your Month of Zen,” a continuous online stream consisting of nearly 2,000 episodes, began in late June with Stewart’s first show from Jan. 11, 1999 and culminates on the night of his final episode on Aug. 6.

See more: Why Amy Schumer turned down the “Daily Show” job


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