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Sarah Palin's debut was a ratings hit for Fox News

Former Alaska governor and Republican party's 2008 vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin's debut as a commentator on the right-wing Fox News was a ratings hit for the TV channel.

world Updated: Jan 14, 2010 12:50 IST

Former Alaska governor and Republican party's 2008 vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin's debut as a commentator on the right-wing Fox News was a ratings hit for the TV channel.

Palin's first appearance as an on-air analyst with the network, on Tuesday night's "O'Reilly Factor," drew 3.954 million total viewers - more than everything else on cable news in the 8PM hour combined, Huffington Post reported.

CNN's "Campbell Brown" placed second with 999,000 total viewers, MSNBC's "Countdown with Keith Olbermann" placed third with 906,000 total viewers, and HLN's "Nancy Grace" placed fourth with 704,000. It was also enough to beat ABC's primetime programs from 8:30-11:00.

Palin's analyst debut on "O'Reilly" drew more than her appearance on the "Factor" to promote her book in November, which averaged 3.868 million total viewers. Palin's debut analyst appearance also drew 993,000 A25-54 viewers.

Fox News' Executive Vice President for programming Bill Shine predicted that Palin would be a ratings magnet.

"Along the way, we'll talk to her and have conversations and I'm sure everything will be fine," Shine was quoted as saying about worries that Palin would make false assertions while on Fox News air. "In the end, that's probably going to help us in that that's what people will want to watch."

At her debut appearance on Fox News on Tuesday, Palin slammed a new book about the 2008 presidential campaign that largely portrays her as wholly unprepared for the national stage and poorly versed in a range of pressing issues.

"These reporters were not any part of what I was doing there as the VP candidate," Palin said. "I don't know who they are. I haven't met these guys."

The book - "Game Change," written by political reporters Mark Halperin and John Heilemann - alleges Presidential candidate John McCain's aides quickly grew troubled with Palin's lack of understanding on key issues, including the job of the Federal Reserve, the difference between North and South Korea, and the purpose of the war in Afghanistan.

"It's a bunch of BS from [McCain campaign manager Steve] Schmidt and those guys," Palin said. "It's pretty made up."