MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, Lawrence O’Donnell Still Stomping Fox News

This is beginning to be something of a trend. Last week MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow and Lawrence O’Donnell crushed their Fox News competition – again. The week-long average for Maddow in the 25-54 demographic was 378,000, vs. Sean Hannity’s 352,000. O’Donnell bested Greta Van Susteren 359,000 to 245,000.

MSNBC Stomping Fox News

The Ed Show continues to lag behind his network companions, but perhaps he should be cut some slack because he is also airing opposite the highest rated program on cable news, The O’Reilly Factor. Even so, MSNBC’s primetime lineup managed to beat Fox News outright on two nights (Wednesday and Thursday).

The frequency with which MSNBC is topping Fox dispels any notion that this is an anomaly. In fact, from election day through November 30, Maddow and O’Donnell beat Hannity and Van Susteren by 13% and 20% respectively. The full primetime averages for this period for Fox and MSNBC are separated by only 2% with O’Reilly lifting Fox barely into the lead.

Fox News can no longer boast that they are the runaway leader in cable news. Before long they may not be the leader at all. Their audience may be tiring of being lied to and they might not appreciate the filters that Fox has put between them and the real world. There can be only so many times that someone can discover that what they thought they knew for sure was not even close to correct. And people who get their news from Fox have been in that situation too many times already.

Even Fox News executives recognize that by building a bubble of misinformation they alienate their viewers and destroy their credibility (what little they have). Consequently, Fox CEO Roger Ailes has thrown a rug over two of his top contributors, Karl Rove and Dick Morris. Producers must now get prior permission before booking them. Not that that alone would change much, because Sarah Palin, Donald Trump, and the rest of the Fox menagerie will still be honking feverishly at perceived enemies and invented scandals.

In the coming months there may be some dramatic shifts in the cable news arena. Fox’s wobbly leadership will continue to be challenged by MSNBC’s post-election burst of energy. And CNN will likely being putting pressure on both when their new president takes the helm in late January. At this point, I wouldn’t place any bets because literally anything can happen. Who would have predicted a year ago that a lesbian Rhodes scholar (Maddow) would be knocking out the boob tube’s biggest boob (Hannity)?

[Update:] Jealously rears its ugly head. In retaliation for having the audacity to get better ratings than Hannity, Fox is now bashing Maddow for getting a Grammy nomination for the spoken word reading of her book, Drift: The Unmooring Of American Military Power. And the tone of Fox’s attack is typically juvenile as they resort to calling her “Rachel Madd-Cow.”

Fox Nation Maddow

Seriously, how old are these people? Or is this just the only level of discourse they think their audience can comprehend?


23 thoughts on “MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, Lawrence O’Donnell Still Stomping Fox News

  1. Although, despite conservative protestations to the contrary, quantity via ratings do not automatically equal quality, in this case I’d say the latter has definitely influenced the former. It’s a great development however you think it happened.

  2. Mark, do your stats indicate that the MSNBC lineup increased viewers; did the viewers move from Fox to MSNBC; or did Fox just lose viewers? Just curious.

    • I haven’t done an analysis of that so I don’t want to speculate. However, I think it’s safe to assume that Fox viewers weren’t switching to MSNBC. My guess is they went to Honey Boo Boo.

    • It was only a matter of time before MSNBC would stomp all over FOX! We do not live in a stone age and we certainly do not live in Pleasantville… We live in a different generation. A generation where, people don’t judge you based on the color of your skin, your sexual preference, or what religion you are, etc… The FOX crew should understand that they are so far off on the issues. If they don’t come to this realization, and fast, then I suspect all of Fox’s employees will soon be unemployed.

      • Fox watchers like myself do so to offset the three networks plus MSNBC and CNN, all of which are overwhelmingly biased and leftist beyond belief. In fact, TV news quality in US (excepting Fox) has sunk to now resemble what eastern European news networks were circa 1980. Only die hard leftists would watch similar pro-socialist garbage in Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary etc.. In many ways, Fox news fits the “Radio Free Europe” of the day. Many more people listened to RFU than ever admitted it (the left always had “ears”, you know , and many folks simply wouldn’t take the risk).
        As the economic chickens continue to come home to roost in the next couple of years, don’t worry, people will abandon the left in droves. I’d laugh if it weren’t for the fact that this will likely kick everybody’s ass, myself included. Hell, maybe we can still blame ol’ W?

        • @Karl – like Fox, your universe is upside-down. Several rigorous, non-biased studies have been done on the understanding of news events possessed by viewers of the various news channels. ALL of the studies found that viewers who got their information primarily from Fox were most likely to have a complete misunderstanding of the facts. So, in your analogy it is Fox that represents the propaganda machine and MSNBC that represents RFU.

          Let’s address your misunderstanding of some current facts. It was 8 years of Republican governance that exploded the debt, crippled the banking system and burned down the U.S. economy. On 20 Jan, 2009. The Republican leadership met at the Caucus Room, in D.C. and decided that they would vehemently obstruct everything that President Obama would attempt. That decision is responsible for our economy limping along these last four years. If they would have been more successful, we would still be in a recession. Because, as Senator Mitch McConnell said publicly, the Republican agenda was to make Obama a one term president. The Republican economic chickens have already come home to roost. It’s now called the Great Recession. Thanks to Mr. Obama, it’s not called the 2nd Great Depression. You would do yourself a huge favor by not watching so much Fox…

          • scooper kind of says it all….typical progressive or is it democrat or is it liberal meandering which then eventually leads to lying. Lying and bullying seem to be the only thing that you all do well. Barack Obama has to have an enemy and if he doesn’t, he creates one. Example: Sequestration was his baby, his idea because he needed votes in the last election. So now that the narcissist -in chief has gotten his way, he flips all of this around and blames it on his enemy(the Republcans) Just as for the first four years he blamed President Bush for EVERYTHING!!!! He is the most inept,incompetent,divisive leader we have ever seen.And who follows him around like little puppy dogs? Uninformed downright clueless voters like you and at least 75% of his constituents. Rachel Maddow is one of the angriest white women who has surfaced since Lizzie Borden. What America needs is another government program to support more dependent,inept voters who want big daddy to take care of them.
            I find it soooo ironic that the majority of liberals these days come from generations of good Americans who left their tyrannical,dictatorial governments(Poland,Russia,Eastern Bloc counties) because they rejected government abuse and corrupt power. But here are the new generations embracing government power,Presidential over reach,government abuse because of it’s behemoth size. How proud your great and great great grandparents would be that you are creating the very same scenario that they rejected and that they gave up everything for!!!

            • Wow – That’s some choice wingnuttery. (Rachel Maddow = Lizzie Borden???}. Thanks for stopping by to demonstrate how utterly insane the typical rightist is.

              And FYI: Majorities of Republicans in both the Senate and the House voted for the sequestration and then boasted that it was a victory for their side. Sorry to burden you with facts. I know they are difficult for your kind to grasp.


    Supported the illegal invasion of Libya causing the deaths of more Africans than any US president in recent history. The result of the supposedly democracy seeking rebels was the ethnic cleansing of Black Libyans and African immigrants in Libya. Reportedly thousands have been murdered. See Glen ford article.

  4. The collapse of our economy was actually started by Democrat Jimmy Carter in 1977 with the passage of the “Community Reinvestment Act”. His grandiose dream of all Americans being able to purchase a home of their own. He is the one who started the BS of having banks lower the standards for acquiring loans and making loans to people who in no way were capable of paying for the mortgages they got.

    This languished for several years and then was ressurrected by Bill Clinton in 1994. Then Fanny and Freddy got into the act and along came the unscrupulous banking industry getting their greedy hands into the pie and the rest is history.

    Of course it didn’t help that W embroiled us in a couple of wars and charged it off to the national credit card. And Iraq wasn’t based on lies either. All intelligence said Saddam Hussein had WMD’s. Why in hell do you think every one signed on for the invasion? It’s preposterous to think allied countries would join such a purpose if they didn’t believe it was a valid cause!

    But, if you will check, you will find out that W and John McCain actually tried to rein in this nonsense in 2001. Several times, as a matter of fact. But the democratically controlled congress stopped them.

    As for FOX news. I like O’Reilly, but get tired of the same old droning on by Hannity and have no idea how Van Sustern is still on her own show. By the time she is on, it is a total rehash of every thing that has been said before.

    Rachel Maddow is as big a liar as you say FOX is. As for O’Donnell, he’s a joke. Ed is in a despicable league of his own. Shoot him and put him out of his misery.

    • Wow. I’ve seen some delusional theories in my time, but this deserves an award.

      Poor people whose combined assets are a fraction of the economy (while the top 1% control more than 50% of the economy) – poor people who want to own homes are responsible for the economic collapse? And it all started in 1977, which means Saint Reagan did nothing about it and the boom times in the 90’s never occurred?

      Thanks for the laugh.

      • Mark,

        did you research any of what I said? If you do you will see what I’m saying is what happened. The full story plays out over several years as I related in my remarks. The bottom line is that the real estate boondoggle and the greed of Wall Street bankers, along with the ill fated wars, is what brought about the collapse.It all combined as a perfect storm. If you notice the economic recovery still seems to be hanging on the recovery of the housing industry.

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