ABC News Biden Interview Tops Friday Night Ratings With 8.5 Million Viewers

ABC News’ interview with President Joe Biden won its timeslot across major demographics on Friday night, as well as bringing in the most viewers with 8.5 million viewers in the fast overnight national ratings. The early numbers also showed ABC coming out on top in both in the 18-49 and 25-54 age demographics, though the 18-49 number just narrowly edged out Fox’s “WWE Friday Night SmackDown.”

The special, with anchor George Stephanopoulos interviewing Biden amid rising concern over his mental acuity and whether he can remain the Democratic Party’s nominee, was also the most-watched ABC News primetime non-election/debate program since Stephanopoulos’ 2018 interview with former FBI director James Comey.

In separate fast affiliate viewership numbers, ABC’s Biden one-on-one came ahead of a near-tie between CBS’s “Lingo” and Fox’s “WWE Friday Night SmackDown,” the former drawing 2.1 million while “SmackDown” pulled 2 million in the early viewership report. A rerun of “Night Court” on NBC came in last with 1.2 million viewers.

The early affiliate ratings, tracking live plus same-day viewing, showed the interview pulling in a 0.58 rating in 18-49 to 0.55 for “SmackDown,” 0.18 for “Lingo” and 0.12 for “Night Court.”

In the 25-54 age range, ABC pulled a larger 0.91 rating, with “SmackDown” in a lower second with 0.72, “Lingo” trailing with a 0.26 and “Night Court” last with 0.19.

Biden’s interview drew a largely negative response, with voters and pundits seemingly not reassured following his disastrous debate performance against Republican candidate Donald Trump. The president also said he has not had a neurological exam and declined to agree to have one performed by an independent physician.

More accurate final ratings are not yet available.

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