The fourth Democratic primary debate broadcast Sunday on NBC was watched by 10.2 million viewers, according to Nielsen data.
The figure ranks second among the four Democratic debates held so far and is up substantially from the 8.03 million who watched ABC’s telecast of the Dec. 19 meeting of the three contenders for the 2016 Democratic nomination, Hillary Clinton, Sen. Bernie Sanders and former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley.
The debate, moderated by “NBC Nightly News” anchor Lester Holt and NBC News chief foreign affairs correspondent Andrea Mitchell, was also seen by an additional 1.2 million viewers across Internet streaming platforms including NBCNews.com and the news division’s YouTube channel.
The Democratic National Committee has been criticized for its scheduling of those dates, saying they favored Clinton by minimizing TV exposure to Sanders.
But the audience for NBC’s telecast was higher than all but one of the Democratic primary debates in the 2008 campaign when Clinton unsuccessfully competed against Barack Obama for the nomination.
NBC’s debate and “60 Minutes” were only head to head in the Western and Mountain time zones.