Don Lemon is out at CNN.
The cable network said in a Monday afternoon tweet that “CNN and Don have parted ways. Don will forever be a part of the CNN family, and we thank him for his contributions over the past 17 years. We wish him well and will be cheering him on in his future endeavors.”
But Lemon leveled accusations against his former employer on Twitter:
“I was informed this morning by my agent that I have been terminated by CNN,” Lemon wrote. “I am stunned.”
The former host continued: “After 17 years at CNN I would have thought that someone in management would have the decency to tell me directly. At no time was I ever given any indication that I would not be able to continue to do the work I have loved at the network. It is clear there are some larger issues at play. With that said, I want to thank my colleagues and the many teams I have worked with for an incredible run. They are the most talented journalists in the business, and I wish them all the best.”
But CNN shot back with another tweet disputing Lemon’s claims: “Don Lemon’s statement about this morning’s events is inaccurate. He was offered an opportunity to meet with management but instead released a statement on Twitter.”
Lemon has long been polarizing figure on CNN and drew the ire of conservatives he regularly trashed — and lately he’s managed to anger groups you wouldn’t necessarily expect.
In February he apologized for comments about Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley and women he considered out of their “prime” that many deemed “sexist” and “completely offensive.” Some CNN staffers weren’t buying his mea culpa, however.
Earlier this month, on the heels of a Variety exposé on Lemon’s alleged history of misogynistic behavior, CNN dismissed the story on grounds that its sources are anonymous.
Lemon on Thursday interviewed the grandson of the suspected shooter of black teen Ralph Yarl, asking him if he believes his grandfather is racist. The grandson, Klint Ludwig, said he believes his grandfather holds “racist tendencies and beliefs.” Lemon wanted more, and Ludwig added that “he’s just a stock, American, Christian male. [He’s] older, you know, that’s just how they are.” Lemon kept pressing for more details, and he got them.
“I feel like a lot of people of that generation are caught up in this 24-hour news cycle of fear and paranoia perpetuated by some other news stations,” Ludwig told Lemon. “And he was fully into that, sitting and watching Fox News all day, every day blaring in his living room. And I think that stuff really kind of reinforces this negative view of minority groups and leads people to be all — that doesn’t necessarily lead people to be racist, but it reinforces and galvanizes racist people.”
Don Lemon: Why do you say that your grandfather is racist?
Grandson of homeowner who shot Ralph Yarl: He’s just a stock American Christian male, older… that’s just how they are pic.twitter.com/Vy605fuubc
— End Wokeness (@EndWokeness) April 20, 2023
Last July Lemon said the media should not treat Democrats and Republicans as equals because the GOP is “very dangerous to our society,” and in September he defended President Joe Biden’s “semi-fascism” term to describe “MAGA Republicans,” arguing Biden’s words were “unifying” because some believe they are “true.”
Not long after his Biden comments, CNN announced that Lemon’s prime-time show would be ending and that he was joining a new morning show with Poppy Harlow and Kaitlan Collins.
He continued with his left-wing commentary, suggesting the vast wealth inherited by King Charles III after the death of his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, should be spent on reparations for descendants of the victims of the African slave trade — after which a British commentator raked him over the coals.
Later in September as Hurricane Ian was hitting Florida’s west coast, Lemon tried and failed to get an expert from the National Hurricane Center to blame the storm’s intensity on climate change.
In October he wrapped up an emotional finale of his prime-time program by telling viewers that “I was not always perfect” — as well as sniffling and fighting back tears — and got roundly mocked for it.
After 17 years of racist comments is way too long! Should have been gone with his first racist comment! That is how long I haven’t watch Certainly Not News! Still not going to watch this network after dismissing a racist! A little too late for that!