CNN Benches Don Lemon For Monday As Network Realizes He's Unemployable

Don Lemon will not appear Monday morning on CNN. Fox News Digital reports CNN has benched the host as it mulls his future at the network.

Last week, Lemon mansplained to his female co-hosts that women over 50 are no longer in prime condition while discussing Nikki Haley running for president as a 51-year-old woman.

The commentary supposedly offended female staffers as well as his boss. CEO Chris Licht opened his daily 9 a.m. editorial call Friday by rebuking Lemon’s segment.

“ remarks were upsetting, unacceptable and unfair to his co-hosts, and ultimately a huge distraction to the great work of this organization,” Licht told staff, according to a recording of the call which The New York Times obtained.

Thereby the network decided sometime over the weekend to bench Lemon amid the backlash to his comments.

Sunday afternoon, CNN sent staffers an updated schedule for Monday. The change noted that Sara Sidner would take Lemon's place alongside Poppy Harlow and Kaitlan Collins on  "CNN This Morning."

In short, CNN will put forth an improved morning program Monday. And Sidner isn't a skilled broadcaster...

Perhaps Licht plans to use Lemon's remarks about women as a means to fire him. Firing a gay black man is no simple task. But dismissing him in the name of fighting sexism would ease some of the inevitable racial backlash.

Lemon gave Licht an out by offending feminists.

Lemon's comments were lazy. He cited Google as his source. The segment oozed hypocrisy. The dud would be at the forefront of calling for a conservative host's ousting had they referred to women over 50 as used goods.

Still, CNN pays Lemon for his opinions -- as cringe and uninformed as they often are.

So, CNN should not fire him for his opinion on when women are in their prime. That should not be the focus. Instead, CNN should fire him for his contributions to the rest of the dilemmas at the network.

Hosts should not be able to scold colleagues and belittle them in front of staffers. In December, Lemon berated Kaitlan Collins for talking more than he liked during a segment they shared.

Mistreating a co-worker creates a toxic working environment, diminishing the ability of employees to perform at their best.

It was not Lemon's job to scold Collins. Or his role to decide how often she can speak on a show she co-hosts.

But more fireable than even Lemon's diva tendencies is his success, his lack of success that is.

Only viewers despise Lemon to the degree his colleagues do. Only Lemon's pal Bomani Jones is draining ratings harder than he.

Don Lemon hosted the lowest-rated cable news show in primetime (among Fox News, MSNBC, and CNN) before his demotion last fall. Post-demotion, he derailed CNN's morning show to lows not seen in a decade.

His struggles in the morning have rippled up the entire lineup. He tanks the channel so low during the morning hours that subsequent CNN hosts are unable to dig the network out of the hole.

CNN as a whole recently set a nine-year low with Demoted Don as the first face viewers see to start the day.

A face far from appealing in the early hours, he has:

See, punchable.

Don Lemon has a cheer captain, "Mean Girls" attitude with a downside that far outstrips his upside.

In fact, employing him is without upside. But that was the case for years.

Ultimately, the Book of Chris Lict's reign at CNN begins with the Chapter of Don Lemon. Undoubtedly, Lict hopes to keep said chapter among his shortest.

Written by
Bobby Burack is a writer for OutKick where he reports and analyzes the latest topics in media, culture, sports, and politics.. Burack has become a prominent voice in media and has been featured on several shows across OutKick and industry related podcasts and radio stations.