ABC stations rate big on election night

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ABC's owned-and-operated stations in the three largest television markets captured the ratings crown for local election night coverage on Nov. 5 2002. WABC-TV won the ratings race in New York with a 5.4 household rating, representing 394,000 homes, from 11 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. WNBC-TV, an NBC O&O, was a close second with a 5.2 rating and 380,000 homes, while CBS O&O WCBS-TV pulled up the rear with a 2.9 rating delivering 212,000 homes during the same time period.

In Los Angeles, KABC-TV garnered a 4.0 rating for its 11 p.m.-to-midnight coverage, while KNBC-TV secured a 3.7 and KCBS-TV a 3.0. In the 10 p.m. hour, Tribune-owned WB affiliate KTLA-TV captured the lead with a 5.9 rating, beating out network coverage and local coverage. The station's partnership with corporate sibling the Los Angeles Times to include polls and political analysis from the newspaper was instrumental in the successful coverage, said Jeff Wald, KTLA's news director.

In Chicago, WLS-TV led the night with a 12 rating, followed by NBC O&O WMAQ-TV with a 7.4 and CBS O&O WBBM-TV with a 2.8, according to WLS. Also in Chicago, Tribune's WGN-TV was tops from 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. with a 9.9 rating, beating network coverage from the Big 3 and local coverage from the Chicago Fox affiliate, according to WGN.