Don Lemon appears on CNN.
CNN said on Monday that it was parting ways with Mr. Lemmon, the star anchor who was a regular member of the network’s primetime lineup before a brief but meaningful stint as a morning show co-anchor. Disputed tenure.
“CNN and Don have parted ways,” the network said in a statement Monday. “Don will always be a part of the CNN family and we are grateful for his contributions over the past 17 years. We wish him well and will be rooting for him in his future endeavors.”
Mr Lemon’s morning show with Poppy Harlow and Kaitlan Collins will continue, the network said. “‘CNN This Morning’ has been on the air for nearly six months and we are committed to its success,” CNN said.
Mr Lemon, 57, made his usual appearance on the show Monday morning.
“My agent notified me this morning that I have been fired from CNN,” Mr. Lemon said in a statement posted on Twitter. “I was stunned. After 17 years at CNN, I thought someone in management would be decent enough to tell me straight up. There was never any indication that I couldn’t continue doing the work I love on the network.”
One of CNN’s most recognizable stars, Mr. Lemon made a name for himself as a fiery political commentator during his eight-year tenure as a primetime anchor. But within the network, he began to lose support after making comments in February about women and ageing that were widely seen as sexist. The incident sparked a national uproar and drew a rare public rebuke from CNN Chairman Chris Licht.
Mr. Lemon had asserted on the radio that Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley, 51, was “not in her prime, sorry,” adding that “women in their 20s and 30s was considered to be in her prime maybe in her 40s.” He dismissed the hostess’ objections, responding, “I’m just stating the facts—Google it.” He later apologized to CNN’s newsroom and agreed to accept a A corporate training program to address his behavior while on-air.
Allies of Mr Lemon had hoped he would turn the page. But CNN executives gradually came to the conclusion that his future at CNN had become untenable because of sensitive internal discussions, according to two people who spoke on condition of anonymity.
In recent weeks, CNN reservations staff have discovered that some guests do not want to appear on the show with Mr. Lemon, and morning-show research reviewed by CNN executives has found that his popularity with viewers has declined, one of the people said. decline.
Monday’s announcement caps a dramatic decline for Mr. Lemon, who was happily sitting in the prime-time anchor chair just seven months ago. His long-running 10 p.m. show “Don Lemon Tonight” has attracted fans for its scathing exchanges and relentless commentary on politics and the Trump White House.
Mr. Lemmon introduced the role to “CNN This Morning,” but for an hour when many viewers — making breakfast and sending the kids to school — wanted easygoing conversation, not thunderous monologues, it left embarrassing.
Tensions have also arisen between Mr Lemon and one of his co-anchors, Ms Collins. The “CNN This Morning” crew was upset after an incident backstage in December in which Mr Lemon accused Ms Collins of constantly disturbing him.