Don Lemon Has ‘No Regrets’ After CNN Firing
Don Lemon stepped out onto the red carpet at the TIME 100 Gala in New York on Wednesday following his abrupt firing from CNN earlier this week.
The former anchor appeared to be in good spirits and was joined by his his fiancé, Tim Malone. “I’m doing well, and I’m here to celebrate… I’m happy to be here,” Lemon told ET. “I am happy to be moving in a new direction. I’m going to miss all the talented people and journalists at CNN, who are my friends and who I love, and who I’ve been speaking to.”
On Monday, Lemon announced on Twitter that he would be parting way with CNN, writing that he was “informed this morning by my agent” that he’d been ousted from the cable network. The longtime host said he was “stunned” and that that he hadn’t received “any indication that I would not be able to continue to do the work I have loved at the network.” He added: “It is clear that there are some larger issues at play.”
CNN confirmed Lemon’s exit in a statement: “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.”
In February, Lemon received harsh criticism after making sexist comments about Republican presidential hopeful Nikki Haley and the years women are “considered to be in their prime.” Although Lemon issued an apology and spent several days off the air, CNN’s bookers reportedly struggled to find guests that wanted to appear on-air with him, while research showed Lemon’s popularity had dipped with audiences.
When speaking with ET, Lemon said he had “no regrets.” In another conversation with Extra, he compared being fired to other unexpected moments in his life. “I didn’t think that I would be at work one evening and I’d get a phone call that my sister had died, but I had to deal with that. I didn’t think that, you know, my dad would die young of diabetes, I had to deal with that, you know,” said Lemon. “So there are lots of things that come your way that are unexpected, but I’m a survivor, I come from strong, sturdy stock in Louisiana, and a lot of people who are rooting for me and who love me.