Nearly 70 million viewers watch election coverage
President Barack Obama, accompanied by first last Michelle Obama and daughters Malia and Sasha arrive at the election night party Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012, in Chicago. Obama defeated Republican challenger former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
LOS ANGELES (AP) — President Barack Obama's re-election isn't the TV ratings record-breaker his first victory four years ago proved to be.
The Nielsen Co. said Wednesday that an estimated 66.8 million viewers watched election returns on broadcast and cable networks Tuesday.
The audience fell short of the record 71.5 million viewers who tuned in to the 2008 election and the historic election of the first African-American U.S. president.
NBC came out on top among all networks, averaging 12.1 million viewers during Tuesday's prime-time hours of 8-11 p.m.
Fox News Channel held the No. 2 slot with 11.4 million prime-time viewers, the biggest average ever in the network's 16-year history.