Nielsen: Obama's SOTU Audience Smallest on Record

Wednesday, 29 Jan 2014 09:47 PM

By Cathy Burke

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President Obama's State of the Union audience was historically small, Nielsen ratings released Wednesday showed.

The president's annual speech to Congress pulled in a record-low average of 33.3 million network viewers, the ratings found.

Viewers have been dropping out throughout the Obama years, the tally shows, with 33.5 million watching the address last year, 37.8 million in 2012, 42.8 million in 2011, 48 million in 2010, and 52.4 million for the president's first address in 2009.

In contrast, nearly 67 million people tuned in to watch then-President Bill Clinton give his address to the joint session of Congress in 1993 — the first year Nielsen began keeping track.

President George W. Bush hit his high mark with 62 million viewers for his speech in 2003.

Nielsen reported that 8.8 million people saw at least one of the 2.1 million tweets sent in the United States about the State of the Union 2014.

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