The second and final debate between President Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden drew a much smaller audience than the first debate. According to early Nielsen ratings, more than 55 million people watched compared to the 73.1 million that saw the first debate.

The debate drew viewers across the six biggest broadcast and cable networks.

The 90-minute showdown was up against "Thursday Night Football" on Fox. In a matchup of struggling teams, the New York Giants faced the Philadelphia Eagles, with the game going down the wire which could have influenced the debate's ratings. However, the debate did not have to compete against the World Series, which has received weak ratings.

In 2016, the final debate between Trump and Hillary Clinton drew just under 72 million viewers. The first debate between Trump and Clinton drew 84 million viewers — still the largest viewing audience for a presidential debate.

A big difference between the 2016 and 2020 debates may have to do with early voting and mail-in voting. Roughly 50 million people have voted ahead of the upcoming election.

A 1980 debate between incumbent Jimmy Carter and Republican Ronald Reagan drew 80.6 million viewers.