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Resistance Porn Ratings Fail: Jan. 6 Committee Hearing Crushed by ‘Young Sheldon’ Rerun

• June 10, 2022 3:38 pm

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CBS opted to bump a Young Sheldon rerun from its 8 p.m. primetime slot in favor of the Jan 6th committee hearing on Thursday evening. The decision backfired.

Just 3.24 million people watched the network's "Capitol Assault Hearings" coverage Thursday night, according to the TV Ratings Guide. Exactly one week prior, 3.86 million people tuned into CBS to watch a Young Sheldon rerun, meaning an old episode of the coming-of-age sitcom garnered roughly 600,000 more viewers than the inaugural hearing. 

That gap is even more pronounced for new Young Sheldon episodes. More than seven million people, for example, watched the show's season five finale, titled "A Clogged Pore, a Little Spanish, and the Future," during CBS's 8 p.m. slot on Thursday, May 19. Three weeks earlier, 6.9 million people watched a new episode titled, "Uncle Sheldon and a Hormonal Firecracker." 

The revelation suggests that Democrats will struggle to use the hearings to attract voters ahead of the November midterm elections, particularly as Americans experience record-high inflation and gas prices. Just hours after the hearing's conclusion, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that inflation rose 8.6 percent in May, the fastest rate in more than four decades. 

Republicans pointed to that announcement Friday morning to argue that Democrats are not prioritizing issues that are important to voters. Google trend data show midterm voters have "very low interest" in the January 6 riots compared to issues including jobs, taxes, and inflation, according to Axios.

"While President Biden and Nancy Pelosi are detached from reality and focused on their political smokescreen January 6 hearings, Kansas families are struggling just to make ends meet each day as they deal with a level of inflation many of them have never seen in their lifetimes," Sen. Roger Marshall (R., Kan.) said in a statement. "I call on Speaker Pelosi and House Democrats to hold a prime-time hearing on the out-of-control inflation their policies have created," House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy added in a Friday morning tweet.

Thursday night's hearing is not the last for the Jan. 6th committee, which will meet three more times next week alone. Those hearings, however, will almost certainly get fewer viewers—none are scheduled to air during primetime.

Published under: CBS, January 6, Media