Don Lemon Returns to CNN With Barely a Wrist Slap After Insulting Nikki Haley

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Don Lemon made his return to CNN This Morning following a brief hiatus after sexist comments directed at South Carolina governor and 2024 Republican contender Nikki Haley drew backlash. Lemon’s liberal leaning seemingly protected the male host from cancellation with CNN opting for “formal training” instead.

For what it’s worth, the host made a point to grovel on Twitter ahead of his return.

His words read like a less pained and heartfelt version of the atonement by country star Morgan Wallen. Yet Lemon is back on the air after a few days while Wallen spent months working with the black community while being blacklisted from radio, award shows, being dropped by his label, and more.

Despite his attrition and donations and time spent in rehab, CNN continued to cover Morgan Wallen negatively a year later. Even going a step farther to associate country music (and its fans) with racism and slavery.

I appreciate the opportunity to be back on @CNNThisMorning today. 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.

— Don Lemon (@donlemon) February 22, 2023

RELATED: Late Comedian Robin Williams Warned Us About ‘Rambling’ Joe Biden – ‘WTF?’ (VIDEO)

CNN Gives Don Lemon Training Over Cancellation

Yet, for Lemon’s transgression against women (albeit a white Republican woman), he receives a mild wrist slap and brief timeout.

CNN Business reports that CNN’s chief executive Chris Licht emailed employees saying, “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. It is important to me that CNN balances accountability with … fostering a culture in which people can own, learn and grow from their mistakes.”

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Lemon, who at 56 is just five years older than Haley, had not been seen on CNN since saying Haley is no longer in her “prime” last Thursday.

Licht had indicated that Lemon would be returning to his regularly scheduled programming Wednesday.

Given the countless celebrities we’ve seen lambasted and blacklisted for less, this is a shining example from the liberal’s playbook. Rules for thee not me.

RELATED: Nikki Haley Slaps Down ‘Sexist Middle-Aged CNN Anchor’ Don Lemon After He Says Women in Their 50s Are Past Their Prime

Don Lemon’s Sexist Comments

“Nikki Haley isn’t in her prime, sorry. A woman is considered to be in their prime in 20s and 30s and maybe 40s.”

When pressed by his CNN co-host Poppy Harlow if he meant “prime” for childbearing or president, Lemon doubled down. ”

“Google it,” he said.

Don Lemon says Nikki Haley isn’t in her prime as a politician because she’s not in her 20’s, 30’s or 40’s. Holy shit. She’s only 51! Biden’s 80! This may be the dumbest thing ever said on CNN. And I love that he cited Google as his source:

— Clay Travis (@ClayTravis) February 16, 2023

Lemon later tweeted a Mea culpa that neither used the words “I am sorry” nor addressed Nikki Haly directly.

“The reference I made to a woman’s ‘prime’ this morning was inartful and irrelevant, as colleagues and loved ones have pointed out, and I regret it. A woman’s age doesn’t define her either personally or professionally. I have countless women in my life who prove that every day.”

The reference I made to a woman’s “prime” this morning was inartful and irrelevant, as colleagues and loved ones have pointed out, and I regret it. A woman’s age doesn’t define her either personally or professionally. I have countless women in my life who prove that every day.

— Don Lemon (@donlemon) February 16, 2023

Haley clearly did NOT accept Lemon’s apology as she absolutely smoked the CNN anchor in response.

To be clear, I am NOT calling for competency tests for Sexist middle-aged CNN anchors; only for people who make our laws and are 75+.

— Nikki Haley (@NikkiHaley) February 16, 2023

RELATED: Nikki Haley: Older Politicians Should Undergo Cognitive Tests

Don Lemon Critical of Nikki Haley Yet Praises President Biden

Pretty amazing that Don Lemon will condemn Nikki Haley for being 51 while making every excuse in the book for 80-year-old Joe Biden. 

Don Lemon in disbelief over ‘disconnect’ between Dem Party and leaders on Biden: ‘The people love him’ #FoxNews

— Bo Snerdley (@BoSnerdley) February 8, 2023

Haley had recently suggested that older lawmakers should undergo cognitive testing without specifying anyone in particular.

While Lemon might have perceived this as an attack on his buddy Biden, the facts speak for themselves.

According to Fox News, Biden “averaged just under half a gaffe per workday” in January alone.

NEW! @NikkiHaley tells me Joe Biden’s mental state, “makes everyone nervous.” She calls for mental health screening of all older politicians. “Let’s face it: we’ve got a lot of people in leadership positions that are old. And that’s not being disrespectful. That’s a fact.”

— David Brody (@DBrodyReports) November 4, 2021

The frequency at which the aging President misspeaks, appears confused, and demonstrates unsure footing continues to draw concerns about his age and health from experts.

But, according to Don Lemon, “people love him.” And apparently that’s all that matter when it comes to Biden – not Haley.

For a minute there, Americans actually wondered if bringing in “turnaround expert” Chris Licht to replace Jeff Zucker could turn things around for CNN.

The answer is NO. Things are not better. In fact, CNN recently suffered its worst ratings in nearly a decade. 

There’s a reason that Gutfeld smoked CNN and MSNBC. Network execs (and their Democrat supporters) would do well to take note.

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