The hosts of The View were more than a little displeased on Tuesday over Don Lemon’s sudden termination by CNN, with Sunny Hostin specifically making a point that Lemon “loves women” and is not a misogynist.
Shortly after Tucker Carlson’s stunning ouster from Fox News was announced on Monday, Lemon revealed that he had been fired from CNN after 17 years. While Lemon claimed nobody at the network told him directly, CNN management disputed that claim. As Confider reported on Monday evening, Lemon’s fate had been sealed for a while due to in behavior on and off the air, and he’d actually been preparing for his pending departure for weeks.
While the women of The View were overjoyed at the news of Carlson’s demise, going so far as to perform the wave and serenade the far-right nationalist host with “Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye,” they ran interference for Lemon on Tuesday. In particular, Hostin felt that reports of Lemon’s “diva-like behavior” and his sexist on-air actions were overblown.
“I know that I’m biased here, because Don is my friend. He’s been my friend for 20 years,” the former CNN legal analyst said. “Our offices were directly across from each other for most of that time that I worked [at CNN]. I don’t believe, in my experience with him, that he’s a misogynist. I think he loves women. He loves his mother. He loves his sister. He loves me.”
Adding that Lemon also loves the other hosts of The View, Hostin said she was “stunned” over the ex-CNN star’s firing and that she hates “that people are comparing Tucker’s firing with Don’s firing,” calling it a “false equivalency.”
Hostin continued: “And just to put a button on it, Don, yes, said some things that were sexist and I think ageist. He apologized for them and received formal training. He spoke to us about all of this.”
After Lemon sparked a political scandal by claiming GOP presidential candidate Nikki Haley was past her “prime” because she’s no longer in her “twenties and thirties,” he was briefly pulled from the air before CNN boss Chris Licht said Lemon agreed to undergo “formal training.”
Liberal co-host Joy Behar, meanwhile, joked that colleague Sara Haines once stayed at Lemon’s house and that “he loves her” before also running cover for the disgraced CNN host.
“He’s been on the air for a long time fighting bigotry, whereas Tucker has been fomenting bigotry. So there’s a big difference there. Yes, he did say some dumb things,” Behar declared, prompting Hostin to reiterate that Lemon “apologized” for his remarks.
“I only know him personally. I don’t know what he does when he’s with his co-workers,” Behar responded.
“Well, I do! Because I was a co-worker,” Hostin asserted.
Haines noted that perhaps the writing was on the wall when new management took over CNN and Lemon was shifted from primetime to mornings, stating that “a lot of people were surprised that Don would be staying” amid the veteran host’s missteps. “In a way, this was coming down the pike for a while,” she added.
Co-host Whoopi Goldberg, meanwhile, also seemed to give Lemon the benefit of the doubt while wondering why CNN recently paired with female co-hosts if they were worried about his behavior.
“I will say this. If you’re concerned that somebody is a misogynist, why would you put them with two women to do a show if you feel that way, if you feel that concerned?” Goldberg rhetorically asked. “So for me, it seemed odd when they gave him that show. I thought, well, this seems a little strange. You know, I’ve known Don forever. I didn’t work with him. We’re just friends.”