A total of 136,000 viewers tuned in to see Trump make an utter fool of himself with Axios reporter Jonathan Swan, according to Nielsen Media Research. That may not seem like a large number, especially compared with the millions of viewers who have since watched the interview online, but it is still a decent amount above the show’s usual audience of just over 100,000 total viewers.
The interview currently has almost 3.5 million viewers on HBO’s YouTube channel, and is the number one trending video on the platform. All told, it has been viewed over 40 million times across all platforms, including social media. A clip of the interview on Axios’ Twitter account alone currently has around 36 million viewers.
Returning to the HBO numbers, around 46,000 of those viewers were in the key news demographic of people aged 25-54, with 25,000 falling in the 18-49 demo. That represents increases of 10,000 viewers and 2,000 viewers on the show’s average in those respective demos.
In the interview, which was taped on July 28, Swan challenges Trump’s on how he uses statistics to describe the country’s fight with coronavirus. Swan pointed, rather logically, to the number of U.S. COVID-19 deaths as a percentage of the entire country’s population, to which Trump inexplicably replied, “You can’t do that.”
Later on, Swan also queries Trump on Rep. John Lewis, the civil rights leader, who recently passed away. Trump says he would not attend Lewis’ funeral, seemingly in part because Lewis did not attend his inauguration.