Secondary coverage, primary interest for first election debate on Seven

Monday night’s first federal election debate had 415,000 people tuning in across the capital cities to watch Prime Minister Scott Morrison go head to head with Opposition Leader Bill Shorten.

The figures made it the 19th most-watched program of the night overall, just behind ABC’s Four Corners, and marked a large increase from the number of people who tuned in to watch the 2016 debate on Sky News three years ago.

The debate, which Shorten won according to the popular vote, was shown at the prime time of 7pm on multichannel 7Two in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide, and on Seven’s main channel in Perth, pulling in 317,000 and 98,000 viewers respectively.

Across its various broadcasts, including an encore showing later in the evening, the program drew roughly 603,000 viewers from the five metro cities, which was enough for it to scratch into the overall top 10.




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