Don Lemon returned to CNN This Morning on Wednesday and issued another apology for comments he made about women on the show last week.
“I appreciate this opportunity to be back on CNN This Morning today,” Lemon wrote on Twitter shortly before the show. “To my network, my colleagues and our incredible audience — I’m sorry. I’ve heard you. I’m learning from you, and I’m committed to doing better. See you soon.”
He did not address the situation on the show. At the top of CNN This Morning, Lemon and his co-anchors went right in to the news of the day — Ukraine and President Joe Biden’s visit to Poland. Co-anchor Kaitlan Collins was in Warsaw.
Lemon’s comments on Thursday’s show drew pushback from co-host Poppy Harlow and a backlash from others. Nikki Haley, who recently launched a presidential campaign, has been fundraising and merchandising off of them.
In a conversation about Haley’s proposal that presidential candidates over age 75 take competency tests, Lemon said that “this talk about age makes me uncomfortable,” but then added, “Nikki Haley is not in her prime, sorry, when a woman is considered to be in her prime is her 20s and 30s and maybe 40s.” Harlow then stopped him. “Wait,” Harlow said. “Prime for what?” “It depends. It’s just like prime, if you look it up. If you Google, ‘when is a woman in her prime,’ it will say, 20s, 30s and 40s.”
Lemon had been absent from the show since Thursday. He issued a tweet later on Thursday expressing regret over the comments, and he apologized to staffers in an editorial call on Friday. “I’m sorry that I said it. And I certainly see why people found it completely misguided,” Lemon said.
CNN Worldwide chairman and CEO Chris Licht wrote in a memo to staff late Monday: “I sat down with Don and had a frank and meaningful conversation. He has agreed to participate in formal training, as well as continuing to listen and learn. We take this situation very seriously.”
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