Don Lemon to Receive $24.5 Million Exit Package from CNN

Former CNN prime-time host Don Lemon is set to receive approximately $24.5 million as part of a deal with the mainstream news outlet nearly a year after his dismissal, reports the New York Post.

The amount Lemon is poised to receive mirrors what he would have earned had CNN honored the remaining three years of his contract. Lemon’s tenure with the network came to an end in April 2023 amidst allegations of misogyny and other misconduct.

Expressing dismay over the lack of direct communication regarding his termination, Lemon voiced his frustration on social media. “I am stunned after 17 years at CNN I would have thought that someone in management would have the decency to tell me directly,” Lemon wrote.

“At no time was I ever given any indication that I would not be able to continue to do the work I have loved at the network,” he continued, suggesting larger issues at play within the organization.

While CNN asserted that Lemon had the opportunity to meet with management, reports indicate that he declined.

However, Lemon’s departure from CNN does not mark the end of his career. In early January, Elon Musk’s X platform announced Lemon as the host of an exclusive show, “The Don Lemon Show,” available solely on the social media platform. Other notable figures securing exclusive shows on the platform include Tulsi Gabbard and sports commentator Jim Rome.

“We’re delighted to announce a new content partnership with Don Lemon for his new project, The Don Lemon Show,” X posted, detailing the format of Lemon’s forthcoming program.

One pivotal incident reportedly contributing to Lemon’s exit from CNN involved his commentary on presidential candidate Nikki Haley, suggesting she was no longer “in her prime.” This remark drew criticism from his co-hosts and became a point of contention.

Reflecting on his departure, Lemon hinted at a disconnect with CNN’s strategic direction. “CNN, the strategy and their content and the direction they wanted to go in, I was not a part of that,” Lemon remarked during a conversation with Kara Swisher.

“They did not want me to be a part of that,” he added, underscoring his perception of CNN’s evolving trajectory.