CNN’s Don Lemon abruptly ended the last segment of his show Friday night after one commentator continued to refer to a story as “fake news.”
Lemon was moderating a discussion of President Donald Trump’s frequent trips away from the White House, and the costs to taxpayers they incur. Paris Dennard, a former staffer in the George W. Bush administration and now a political analyst and commentator, called the story “fake news”
“The President is not breaking any laws, and he’s not doing anything,” Dennard said.
Lemon stopped him. “Fake news is when you put out a story to intentionally deceive someone and you know that it is wrong.” He added: “This story that we’re doing right now is not to intentionally deceive anyone. We are simply talking about the cost to keep a President safe.”
“Please stop it with that stupid talking point, that it is a fake news story,” Lemon said. “If you don’t want to participate in the news stories on this network, then don’t come on and participate. But don’t call them fake because you don’t agree with them. Go on.”
“Don, this is a fake news story, in my opinion,” Dennard responded, “because the underlying assumption is that— ”
“Okay, Paris, thank you very much everyone,” Lemon interrupted, ending the segment. “Thanks everyone, thanks for watching. Have a great weekend. Goodnight, all.”
Watch the exchange below:
Correction: The headline of this post previously stated that Lemon ended his show early. In fact, Lemon cut off his guest a few seconds after 11:56 p.m. ET, within the normal window.