A mere three days after being ousted from the Donald Trump campaign, former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski has been hired as a political commentator for CNN. The network considered the hiring a coup, as Lewandowski has first-hand experience running a surprisingly successful presidential campaign.
The move is not without its critics, however. Lewandowski’s reputation for being hostile to journalists (ahem, Michelle Fields) brings baggage to the network.
Many also worry that Lewandowski is still tied to Trump. He signed a non-disclosure agreement in leaving the campaign, and that agreement likely included a “non-disparagement clause,” which blocks his ability to criticize Trump publicly.
Lewandowski spoke on Thursday night in his first appearance as a CNN commentator. When anchor Erin Burnett asked about whether or not he signed such a clause, he declined to answer. “I’m a guy who calls balls and strikes. I’m going to tell it like it is…. There is nothing that’s going to stop me from telling the truth, in my opinion.”
He later added, “Trump is the only person who’s going to save this country for my children.”
CNN has also come under fire for the anti-Christian comments of contributor Sally Kohn. More than 800 people signed a petition asking the network to fire her, after she blamed the shooting in Orlando, Fla., on conservative Christians for creating an environment of “hate.”
Fields, who reportedly felt “vindicated” by Lewandowski’s firing, has not yet spoken publicly about CNN hiring him. She did retweet this message about it, however.
— Rosie Gray (@RosieGray) June 23, 2016
Don’t expect the bad blood between them to go away any time soon.
See the video of Lewandowski’s first CNN interview on the next page.