When you are hot, you are hot.
And right now, no one in cable news is hotter than Rachel Maddow.
Maddow's ratings have been rising since the Democratic National Convention. For the first time in her four years at MSNBC, Maddow's show has started pulling a higher average among the important 25-54 demographic than her chief Fox News Channel competitor Sean Hannity.
Last week, Maddow averaged 567,000 viewers in the 25-54 demo. Hannity drew 500,000, giving Maddow a 13 percent higher rating. In contrast, Piers Morgan's CNN show averaged 198,000.
Now, those numbers are slightly skewed. Maddow beat Hannity on Monday and Tuesday, but needed a strong Friday to top him.
This is the first time Maddow has beaten Hannity since he ditched his former co-host Alan Colmes. She did beat them a few times in late 2008, but could not sustain her lead.
It also is not coincidence that her numbers are so high after the leaking of Mitt Romney's "47 percent" tape.
MSNBC has posted its highest demo numbers since January 2009. Fox News Channel is still on top in the demo, but it is getting closer and was within 20,000 viewers.
Will this last? Or is it a hiccup in the Fox News machine?