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CNN’s John Harwood is out as new boss Chris Licht cleans house

John Harwood, the veteran White House correspondent for CNN, announced he is leaving the embattled cable network on Friday — the latest high-profile departure under new boss Chris Licht.

Harwood tweeted “personal news”, announcing “today’s my last day at CNN.”

The 65-year-old former editor-at-large for CNBC — whose resume includes stints as a reporter for The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal — tweeted he was “proud of the work” and that he was “lucky to serve the best in American media.”

“Look forward to figuring out what’s next,” Harwood tweeted.

Harwood’s exit comes weeks after CNN fired media reporter Brian Stelter and pulled the plug on his long-running media criticism show “Reliable Sources.”

Licht, who has been at the helm of CNN for a few months, has been given a mandate by his corporate bosses at Warner Bros. Discovery to steer the cable network away from opinionated-based programming and more toward hard news.

Harwood was a fierce critic of former President Donald Trump. Earlier this year, Harwood characterized the 45th president as “mentally unwell.”

After Stelter’s departure, The Daily Beast reported that Licht was looking to “blow up” the network’s “New Day” morning show.

Licht, who took over CNN after leaving his post as executive producer of Stephen Colbert’s Late-night show on CBS, has tasked Ryan Kadro, another former CBS hand, with leading the overhaul of the network’s morning lineup.

In May, Licht told an upfront presentation that CNN wanted to “reimagine” its morning show, though he gave no details.

Harwood announced his departure on Twitter on Friday.
Harwood announced his departure on Twitter on Friday.
Getty Images for Meet the Press

“New Day” is currently anchored by John Berman and Brianna Keilar.

Keilar caused a stir on social media on Thursday night when she criticized President Biden for a prime-time speech attacking Republicans while military personnel were clearly seen in the background.

“Whatever you think of this speech the military is supposed to be apolitical,” Keilar tweeted.

New CNN boss Chris Licht is overhauling the network.
New CNN boss Chris Licht is overhauling the network.
Evan Agostini/Invision/AP

“Positioning Marines in uniform behind President Biden for a political speech flies in the face of that. It’s wrong when Democrats do it. It’s wrong when Republicans do it.”

Keilar’s colleague, Jeff Zeleny, who is CNN’s chief national affairs correspondent, echoed her sentiment.

Last month, CNN fired media reporter and commentator Brian Stelter.
Last month, CNN fired media reporter and commentator Brian Stelter.

“There’s nothing unusual or wrong with a President delivering a political speech — it’s inherent in the job description — but doing it against a backdrop of two Marines standing at attention and the Marine Band is a break with White House traditions,” Zeleny tweeted.

Biden supporters on Twitter inundated the CNN stars’ accounts with criticism.

“You know CNNs transformation into Baby Fox News is officially complete when Brianna Keilar goes MAGA,” one “vote blue” supporter said.

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