Former CNN anchor and reporter Don Lemon was let go from the network five months ago after 17 years with the company, and is now speaking out further about the situation.
On “The Pivot” podcast, Lemon finally elaborated more on the story of his shocking departure from the news network. He claimed that he was not a part of the “new direction” that the company wanted to go in. He appeared to feel vindicated when he learned that CEO Chris Licht, who allegedly fired him, has since been fired himself.
“They’re gone now.” Don Lemon feels vindicated after the CEO who fired him from CNN was fired himself. (Audio: The Pivot Podcast/Mediaite) pic.twitter.com/USmvKHjsIT
— Mike Sington (@MikeSington) August 18, 2023
Lemon was reportedly let go after he made controversial comments regarding Republican presidential hopeful Nikki Haley. The anchor stated that the reason why Haley would not be a good candidate is that she is “past her prime.” Lemon’s comments were largely criticized for what some felt were sexist undertones. Many asserted that Lemon could have simply criticized Haley’s policies instead of her age.
Following the clip, which was a part of “CNN This Morning”, some viewers allege that Lemon was actually fired for a different interview. Lemon spoke to a different Republican presidential hopeful, Vivek Ramaswamy, regarding institutional racism. The anchor is an openly gay Black man, and directly corrected Ramaswamy’s false claims that Black Americans secured all of their civil rights immediately after the American Civil War.
Don Lemon showing everybody why nobody needs to invite paid plant Vivek Ramasmarmy to speak on camera ever again @donlemon
— Tara Dublin ((isn’t paying for this)) ???????????????????????? (@taradublinrocks) August 28, 2023
Lemon was fired from the network in a sudden manner with allegedly no warning, and it remains unclear which interview could have played a role in his termination. This came after the network welcomed a new CEO, Chris Licht. CNN rapidly became the antithesis of Fox News during the Donald Trump presidency, and slowly became a left-leaning center network. In an attempt to cater to a more neutral viewer base, Licht began inviting conservative political figures onto the network.
Now, supporters of Lemon continue to criticize his longtime network for allegedly firing him over fact checking Ramaswamy.
I so wish he was back on CNN.
— natnewscot (now on ????) (@natnewscot21) August 18, 2023
Lemon departed CNN two years after his close friend and former co-anchor Chris Cuomo was additionally suspended from the network. Some suspect the pair have a new collaboration in the works.
Don Lemon on the phone with his good girlfriend Chris Cuomo coming up with a plan to take down CNN. pic.twitter.com/tiHgOJNVTD
— Carlos (@carlosjharris) April 24, 2023
It remains unclear who will replace Licht as the new CEO of CNN at this time, but big changes are allegedly underway. Lemon is yet to confirm or deny whether either of his final two high profile interviews cost him his longtime position with the network. Neither of Lemon’s “CNN This Morning” Co-Anchors, Poppy Harlow and Kaitlan Collins, have commented on Lemon’s firing from the morning programming. Licht is yet to comment further regarding his own firing as well.