Media / MSNBC MSNBC Just Scored an Unprecedented Victory On Wednesday, it finished No. 1 in cable ratings for first time By John Johnson, Newser Staff Posted Aug 18, 2017 10:21 AM CDT Copied MSNBC's Rachel Maddow. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton, File) (Newser) – A controversial week in DC has led to bragging rights for MSNBC. On Wednesday, the network finished with the highest ratings in the cable-network universe, which Variety reports is a first for the network. MSNBC averaged 1.52 million viewers for the "total sales day" (meaning the 6am-2pm period), squeaking by Fox News and its 1.5 million. Nickelodeon, meanwhile, edged out CNN for the bronze, with 1.17 million vs. 1.13 million. Of consolation to CNN: It finished No. 1 for the day in the key demo of people ages 25 to 54. Cable news, of course, has been providing blanket coverage of the violence in Charlottesville and the backlash to President Trump's response, and helping MSNBC is its reputation as the "resistance network for the Trump era," per TVNewser. Rachel Maddow led the way, with her 9pm show drawing 3.25 million viewers for the top ranking in that time slot. Lawrence O'Donnell's show at 10pm brought in 2.54 million, and both landed among the top 10 shows (non-cable included) for the day.