CNN CEO Rebukes Don Lemon and Defends Nikki Haley: ‘His Remarks Were Unacceptable’

CNN CEO Chris Licht has responded to the latest scandal at the low-rated network with a blistering rebuke of doomed host Don Lemon.

Licht defended Nikki Haley and Lemon’s co-hosts who were stunned at his absurd comments.

As Slay News reported, Lemon tried to take a swipe at Haley on Thursday by commenting on her age but ended up trashing women in general.

Lemon tried to claim that Haley is not “in her prime” because she is 51 years old.

He then tried to argue that women are “in their prime in their 20s and 30s.”

Lemon then realized that the claim excluded his female co-hosts before adding, “and maybe their 40s.”

He said: “I’m just saying what the facts are. Google it.

“Everybody at home, when is a woman in her prime, it says 20s, 30s, and 40s.

“And I’m just saying Nikki Haley should be careful about saying that politicians are not in their prime, and they need to be in their prime when they serve.

“Because she wouldn’t be in her prime according to Google or whatever it is.”

Lemon’s co-host Poppy Harlow, 40, was stunned by his remarks and tried to cut in and give him a way out.

However, Lemon kept digging his own grave by continuing his anti-women rant.


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Harlow reportedly stormed off the set over his comments.

Licht said: “His remarks were upsetting, unacceptable, and unfair to his co-hosts, and ultimately a huge distraction to the great work of this organization.”

Nikky Haley was not satisfied either and said:

“This is something that I have faced all of my life.

“I have always made the liberals’ heads explode.

“They can’t stand the fact that a minority, conservative, female would not be on the Democratic side.

“He made that comment,” she said.

“I wasn’t sitting there saying sexist middle-aged CNN anchors need to have mental competency tests, although he may have just proven that point.

“What I was saying is that we need to be transparent.

“Those elected officials that are making key decisions for us Americans on national security, and keeping our kids safe and the debt, yes we need to know exactly that we are sending people that are mentally competent to do that,” she said.

Lemon apologized to CNN’s staff saying:

“I’m sorry I don’t mean to hurt anyone. I did not mean to offend anyone.

“What I said came out wrong and I wish I hadn’t said it.

“I believe women of any age can do anything they set their minds to.

“The people I am closest to in this organization are women.”

“When I make a mistake, I own it and I own this one as well.

“I understand why you are upset and disappointed,” he said.

“I was trying to make the point that no one’s age should define their ambition or potential for success and I was saying those comments to Nikki Haley.”

According to The Daily Mail, CNN employees want Lemon fired.

One insider said that there was mounting pressure for Lemon to be fired after his continual gaffes on the early-morning show.

They told “Don has been skating on thin ice for so long and many wanted him fired in December when he freaked out on Kaitlin Collins for no reason.

“She was in tears and it was so inappropriate.

“Regardless of his political affiliation, his comments that Nikki Haley being past her prime were disgusting.

“Poppy was fuming, as she should be, and still is.

“He is rude, self-righteous, and clearly sexist.

“Nikki did the right thing by calling him out.

“His apology meant nothing and there is so much pressure for him to be canned.

“It would be a shock if he wasn’t.”

READ MORE: CNN Staff Stab Don Lemon in Back, Leak Private Apology to Media: ‘Tone Deaf, Giving Himself Kudos for Owning His Mistake’

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By David Hawkins

David Hawkins is a writer who specializes in political commentary and world affairs. He's been writing professionally since 2014.

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