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Lemon Missing from CNN Lineup Day After Forcing Co-Host to Storm Off Set

CNN appears to be falling apart at the seams.

These days, you’d be hard pressed to find any media observer who would tell you that things are going just fine over at CNN.  In fact, from the outside looking in, the network appears to be on the fast-track toward extinction.

Not only are they losing the ratings war, (and badly), to Fox News, but the last couple of years have brought the network an in ordinate amount of scandal and shame.

After replacing the controversy-riddled former head of the network Andrew Zucker with Chris Licht, the new chief started making some rather profound changes – including one that saw prime-time anchor Don Lemon unceremoniously demoted to the token male figure on a new CNN morning show.

And now it appears as though Lemon may not be cut out for that either.

Don Lemon was conspicuously absent from “CNN This Morning” on Friday just 24 hours after he put his foot in his mouth with a sexist comment about 51-year-old Nikki Haley being “not in her prime” — prompting co-host Poppy Harlow to walk off the set.

Friday morning’s awkward broadcast started with a short clip featuring Harlow — who is on location in Salt Lake City, where she is covering NBA All-Star weekend festivities — interviewing TNT’s star basketball commentators Charles Barkley, Shaquille O’Neal and Kenny Smith.

The camera then panned to co-host Kaitlan Collins, who was seated next to Audie Cornish, the former National Public Radio journalist who was sitting in for the 56-year-old Lemon.

Co-host Collins was rather icy with her explanation of Lemon’s absence.

“Don has the day off,” Collins said at the top of the broadcast, failing to elaborate on Lemon’s absence — much less mentioning Thursday’s disastrous blowup — as she introduced Cornish.

This brash behavior is becoming rather common with Don Lemon these days, as rumors regarding the tension on the morning program’s set continue to mount.


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