Politics 2012: 67 Millions Watch Obama Romney Debate

Roughly one out of four or five Americans watched the presidential debate.

We live in politically charged times.  The high interest in the presidential election was reflected by an estimated 67.2 million Americans, who watched the first of the three debates between President Obama and his GOP challenger Mitt Romney.

The figure came in well above the 52.4 million who watched the first such debate of the 2008 election season.

Wednesday’s 90-minute debate from the U. of Denver in Colorado was carried across 11 networks and was moderated by Jim Lehrer of PBS.

ABC was on top for the 9-10:30 p.m. ET window with 11.3 million, followed by NBC (11.1 million) and CBS (10.6 million).

According to Nielsen, Fox News Channel drew an average audience of 10.42 million for its commercial-free telecast, which marked the highest aud for a presidential debate in the cabler’s 16-year history.

CNN (6 million) easily topped MSNBC (4.7 million), and CNN won the youth vote over its cable rivals, drawing 1.46 million viewers in the adults 18-34 demo.