“One final note that I have for you because this is personally important to me to address this,” Lemon said trying to repair the damage he caused with on-air mockery of Trump and his supporters.
He failed with this weak kind of apology: “Anyone, ask anyone who knows me, they’ll tell you, I don’t believe in belittling people.”
“Belittling anyone for who they are, for what they believe, or where they’re from. During an interview on Saturday night, one of my guests said something that made me laugh.”
“And while in the moment I found the joke humorous, and I didn’t catch everything that was said. Just to make this perfectly clear — I was laughing at the joke and not at any group of people.”
From Fox News:
The panel, which originally aired on Saturday night during special live coverage of the impeachment trial, featured CNN anchor Don Lemon, New York Times columnist and CNN contributor Wajahat Ali, and ex-GOP strategist Rick Wilson discussing the heated exchange Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had with an NPR reporter, in which he allegedly challenged the journalist to point out Ukraine on a blank map.
Wilson used the topic to mock President Trump as well as his supporters.
“[Pompeo] also knows deep within his heart that Donald Trump couldn’t find Ukraine on a map if you had the letter U and a picture of an actual physical crane next to it,” Wilson began, causing Lemon to chuckle. “He knows that this is, you know, an administration defined by ignorance of the world. And so that’s partly him playing to the base and playing to their audience. You know, the credulous boomer rube demo that backs Donald Trump.”
As Lemon began crying with tears of laughter, Wilson went on to depict what he thought a typical Trump supporter sounded like.
“‘Donald Trump’s the smart one — any y’all elitists are dumb!’” Wilson said with a heavy southern accent.
“‘You elitists with your geography and your maps- and your spelling!’” Ali chimed in during the mockery.
“‘Your math and your reading!’” Wilson added. “‘All those lines on the map!’”
The CNN anchor almost lost his breath from laughing, wiping tears from his eyes with a tissue.
“That was good,” Lemon reacted. “That was a good one. I needed that.”
"I was laughing at the joke and not at any group of people."@DonLemon tries to distance himself from the mocking of @realDonaldTrump supporters Saturday night while he was hosting @TheRickWilson and @WajahatAli.— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) January 29, 2020
Lemon claims he "didn't catch everything that was said." pic.twitter.com/AQaWpGG4Mv
Don Lemon, the dumbest man on television (with terrible ratings!). https://t.co/iQXCc7lvCt— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 28, 2020