President Biden’s State of the Union address tops 37 million TV viewers

President Biden during his State of the Union address
President Biden gestures during his State of the Union address at the U.S. Capitol on Tuesday.
(Bloomberg via Getty Images)

President Biden’s State of the Union address Tuesday was watched by more than 37 million TV viewers, according to Nielsen data, higher than his speech to Congress last year.

The speech was probably seen by millions more people beyond the TV audience, as the event was streamed online across a wide number of platforms.

Fox News said it counted 3.8 million streaming “starts” of the speech on its digital properties. The stream of the speech on YouTube showed 1.7 million views as of late Wednesday.

Biden’s address to Congress on April 28, 2021, was watched by 26.9 million viewers. Donald Trump’s final State of the Union address in 2020 had an average TV audience of 37.2 million viewers.


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In the speech, Biden announced a ban on Russian aircraft in U.S. airspace in response to Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine. The president also touted his ongoing legislative goals and his pledge not to raise taxes on American households earning less than $400,000 a year.

Fox News had the most TV viewers with an average of 7.2 million watching from 9 to 10:09 p.m. Eastern. The figure was the highest ever for the conservative leaning network’s coverage of a State of the Union address by a Democratic president. Fox News launched in 1996.

ABC was second with 6.3 million viewers, followed by CBS (4.9 million), CNN (4.8 million), NBC (4.7 million), MSNBC (4 million), Fox broadcast network (1.86 million), Univision (1.4 million), Telemundo (1.2 million), Newsmax (462,000) and CNBC (284,000).