NBC News led in the ratings throughout the campaign season, too. Meet the Press was regularly rated the No. 1 public affairs morning show on Sundays, and NBC News coverage beat all other TV networks with the top overall rating for the second presidential debate and topped the ratings among younger viewers for the first presidential and vice presidential debates. MSNBC also topped CNN in total viewers for vice presidential debate coverage and analysis.
The news team, led by NBC Nightly News and Rock Center anchor and managing editor Brian Williams, brought decades of experience covering politics to their reporting. Veteran journalist Tom Brokaw, who has covered every presidential election since 1968, was among the correspondents, as were Meet the Press moderator David Gregory, chief foreign affairs correspondent Andrea Mitchell, political director and chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd and Today co-host Savannah Guthrie.
NBC not only live broadcast the conventions and presidential and vice presidential debates, but also live-streamed them through NBCPolitics.com, the NBC Politics app and the NBC News Xbox application. Post-debate and election-night analysis and news coverage was top-notch with the "Truth Squad" fact-check team, led by Andrea Mitchell, ensuring that the candidates were kept honest on their statements. NBC News’ First Read blog also provided up-to-the-minute analysis, and campaign news was broken faster than ever with full social media integration.
Democracy Plaza at NBC’s Rockefeller Center headquarters served as a stunning backdrop for the NBC election night broadcast, drawing tens of thousands of visitors to the public spaces. Election results were displayed in real time as states on the U.S. map imposed on the Rockefeller Plaza ice rink turned red or blue and banners representing electoral votes rose up the front of 30 Rockefeller Plaza toward 270.
NBC News was also the first news organization to call the race for President Barack Obama, thanks to careful data analysis by the NBC News Decision Desk.
For decades the NBC News team has brought the biggest stories to the most American households, and the historic 2012 election season was no different. Its status as the most trusted and most-watched news team on network television is more solid than ever.