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Mitt Romney-Rick Santorum debate ratings on CNN beat NBC lineup

February 23, 2012 |  3:13 pm

Rick Santorum, left, and Mitt Romney

The Mitt 'n' Rick Show is so entertaining, maybe they should make a regular series out of it. It already has NBC beat.

At least that was the case Wednesday night, when the GOP presidential debate featuring a showdown between Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum delivered 4.7-million total viewers for CNN, according to Nielsen.

Unfortunately for NBC, that was more than the audience for its entire struggling prime-time lineup between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m.: the sitcoms "Whitney" (4.1 million) and "Are You There, Chelsea?" (3.4 million) and the newsmagazine "Rock Center With Brian Williams" (2.7 million).

Ouch.

The CNN face-off was far from the most-watched debate. A December outing on ABC, when the GOP field had more active candidates (it's now down to four), scored 7.6 million viewers.

Still, the Republican debates have proved to be a ratings draw the past few months. Too bad for TV executives that Wednesday's outing was supposedly the last of 20.

What did you think of the debate?

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-Scott Collins (twitter.com/scottcollinsLAT)

Photo: Rick Santorum, left, and Mitt Romney squared off in Wednesday's GOP presidential debate on CNN. Credit: Jae C. Hong / Associated Press.

 

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