The story is having the opposite effect at Fox News, where conservative commentators were more skeptical about the significance of the almost daily leaks related to Trump's handling of Comey's dismissal and reports that the president shared classified intelligence with Russian diplomats during a White House visit. The NBC-owned network led by "The Rachel Maddow Show", now the No. 1 show in cable news with an average of 2.9 million viewers last week, became the go-to destination for viewers transfixed by the unfolding investigation into the White House scandal.
But it also comes shortly after the firing of star anchor Bill O'Reilly, as Fox is trying to establish a new prime-time lineup.
For the week of May 15, MSNBC averaged about 2.44 million viewers.
MSNBC's recent primetime ratings winning streak was halted Monday night as breaking coverage of the explosion around the United Kingdom's Manchester Arena on Monday shuffled the recent pecking order of the cable-news networks.
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Fox News Channel has found itself somewhere it has rarely been the past decade, behind first place.
Perhaps the network's loyal viewers are becoming more aware of its extreme bias and that they need to look elsewhere for certain stories, or perhaps the departure of Bill O'Reilly has hurt it - but either way its ratings are falling.
1 in the demo for total day, with 353K viewers. The Rachel Maddow Show, Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell, and The 11th Hour all won their respective time periods in total viewers, with Maddow's program ranking as the week's top non-sports show on cable.
Fox News points out they're still in the lead for the month overall, while CNN notes they remain in the lead during daytime. The attack outside of an Ariana Grande concert, where 22 people were killed, dominated cable news coverage across all three major channels. Fox News, meanwhile, finished in third place in that category for the first time since June 2000. The channel's viewership during Ms Kelly's old 9pm slot actually soared shortly after Mr Carlson replaced her, and held steady in the 8pm hour after Mr Carlson switched to that time to fill in for Mr O'Reilly. In contrast, the torrent of negative headlines about Mr Trump may have made his supporters less likely to watch cable news at all.