That represents a 4.5 million viewer drop from the last debate which took place on Feb, 26 and was broadcast on CBS. It also puts it pretty far off the second NBC-MSNBC debate which scored 19.7 million viewers, a record total for a Democratic debate. An additional 3.9 million viewers tuned in via live streams on CNN’s digital platform.
None of the Democratic debates thus far in this cycle have come near to the 24 million viewership figure posted by Donald Trump’s first debate on Fox News in August of 2015.
Last night’s affair, which featured a fair amount of shouting back and forth between the two remaining candidates for the Democratic nomination, was carried out in front of an empty theater, after CNN and Univision announced debate would have no audience and would be moved to one of its studios in Washington, D.C.
It marked the first debate to feature fewer than six candidates, as the Democratic race was drastically furloughed both in the build up to and in the aftermath of Super Tuesday. Although Tulsi Baggard is still technically a candidate, she was not invited to participate in this most recent debate due to her low polling numbers.
The debate was moderated by CNN’s Jake Tapper and Dana Bash, and Univision’s Ilia Calderón.