If ABC News President Kim Godwin really did think that the alleged affair between GMA3 anchors T.J. Holmes and Amy Robach was “ratings gold,” Nielsen numbers seemingly confirmed that hunch.
On Thursday, December 1 — one day after the Daily Mail reported that Holm and Robach “have been locked in a passionate romance” — 1.81 million viewers watched GMA3: What You Need to Know, according to Nielsen data cited by Variety on Friday, December 9. That’s an 11 percent increase from the average of 1.63 million viewers who tuned into GMA3’s prior three broadcasts.
Insiders told the Daily Mail that Holmes and Robach’s relationship went from platonic to romantic in June, if not earlier — and that they split from their respective spouses, attorney Marilee Fiebig and Melrose Place alum Andrew Shue, in August.
A day after that reveal, as Holmes and Robach deactivated their Instagram accounts, TMZ reported that ABC News wouldn’t discipline the duo, since they were two consenting adults at equal levels in the company.
“All [ABC News cares] about is the ratings,” a source told Page Six that day. “This is ratings gold. That’s why Kim wanted them on the show today.”
On Monday, December 5, however, Godwin told staffers on an internal call that she would be taking Holmes and Robach off the air because their alleged affair, which “not a violation of company policy,” had become “too much of an internal and external distraction,” as Page Six reported separately.
With Gio Benitez and Stephanie Ramos filling in on GMA3 on Monday, viewership fell back down to 1.67 million, according to the Nielsen data.
Holmes and Robach haven’t commented on their alleged affair. TMZ added on Thursday, December 8, that ABC’s human resources and legal departments were investigating the matter amid reports that Holmes allegedly had an affair with a former Good Morning America producer years ago.