FOX News Channel leads cable news debate ratings

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FOX News Channel lead the cable news ratings race last night, scoring a total of 11.4 million viewers. CNN came in second place with a total of 9.8 million viewers and MSNBC received 4.9 million during last night's presidential debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.

That brings the total number of cable news viewers to 26.1 million, which easily beats the Mitt Romney-Barack Obama debate four years ago. That one reeled in 21.1 million viewers.

NBC took the lead with 15.6 million viewers across the top broadcast stations last night with NBC's "Nightly News'" Lester Holt moderating the debate hosted at New York's Hofstra University.

ABC took second place with 11.6 million, CBS came in third with 10.2 million and Fox in fourth with 5 million, equaling a combined 42.4 million total viewers. Nielsen will release more data later today.