The American people have spoken, and the results are in -- NBC has been declared the winner in the 2012 election.
Though down slightly from its 2008 presidential election coverage, NBC's coverage of the Obama-Romney showdown on Tuesday night handed the network a handy overall victory, according to preliminary numbers.
While the nature of election coverage renders all of the networks' numbers more approximate than usual, NBC currently holds a commanding first place in the advertiser-cherished 18-49 demographic with a 4.6 rating/10 share -- a 2 percent dip from the 2008 election -- and in total viewers with 12.6 million.
ABC took second place in ratings and total viewers with a 3.8/8 and 11.1 million. The network took the biggest hit versus 2008 among the networks, dropping 18 percent in the demo compared to the Obama-McCain election.
CBS drew third place in ratings and total viewers with a 2.7/6 and 8.4 million. The network was the only one to show an increase over the 2008 election, climbing 8 percent from the last presidential election.
Fox came in fourth in ratings and total viewers, posting a 2.0/4 -- a 9 percent drop from 2008's preliminary numbers -- and 5 million.