CNN host Don Lemon found himself in hot water on Thursday after comments he made regarding Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley.
When discussing President Joe Biden’s age ahead of the 2024 presidential election, as well as Haley, who called for a rule requiring politicians over the age of 75 to take “mental competency tests,” Lemon said Haley was no longer in her “prime.”
“This whole talk about age makes me uncomfortable. I think it’s the wrong road to go down. She says people, you know, politicians are something if not in their prime. Nikki Haley isn’t in her prime, sorry. A woman is considered to be in their prime in 20s and 30s and maybe 40s,” Lemon said during “CNN This Morning” on Thursday.
CNN’S DON LEMON ROASTED AS ‘SEXIST’ FOR SAYING NIKKI HALEY PAST HER ‘PRIME’
Lemon later expressed regret for his comments, taking to Twitter to explain himself.
“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,” Lemon wrote. “A woman’s age doesn’t define her either personally or professionally. I have countless women in my life who prove that every day.”
That’s when NBA Hall of Famer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar chimed in, backing Lemon following his post.
“Don – we know your heart was in the right place,” Abdul-Jabbar wrote. “I think you were referencing women being in their prime during their ‘reproductive years.’
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“Women are always in their ‘prime’ because in my opinion, they get stronger, more courageous and more beautiful as they get older.”
When pressed by co-host Poppy Harlow on what he meant by “prime,” Lemon said he got his information from Google.
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“It depends, just like ‘prime,’ if you look it up. If you Google, ‘when is a woman in her prime,’ it’ll say 20s, 30s and 40s,” Lemon responded. “I’m not saying I agree with that. I think she has to be careful about saying that, you know, politicians aren’t in their prime.”
Fox News’ Hanna Panreck contributed to this report.