Fox News easily won Tuesday night's coverage of the Super Tuesday primary elections.
From 7PM-12AM, the network averaged 2.111 million total viewers (538,000 A25-54 viewers). MSNBC came in second with 879,000 total viewers (223,000 A25-54 viewers), and CNN placed third with 556,000 total viewers (177,000 A25-54 viewers).
TV critic David Zurawik notes that Tuesday's coverage on Fox News also brought out a new Sarah Palin, in the Alaska studio Fox built for her, and that Palin "never sounded better in her new role."
She looked relaxed, she made her points, and the distance suggested by the contrast in settings made her seem "small" enough on-screen so that Hannity didn't look like he was about to genuflect or get whiplash from nodding in agreement every time she opened her mouth.
I think this is case where the money was well spent on creating a set to make Palin feel happy and calm. It was a daring idea to let her be herself in a small remote studio in Alaska instead of an high-powered commentator in a blue blazer sitting in a New York studio -- in spite of the conventions of 24/7 cable TV. The Fox News executive who made this call made a good one, and I suspect the ratings are going to continue to reflect that.
Fox News built Palin a studio in her Alaska home to facilitate her appearances on the network.