Poppy Harlow out at CNN

CNN anchor Poppy Harlow is exiting the cable network after 16 years, she announced in a memo to staffers April 26, 2024.

Harlow was most recently co-anchor of the previous iteration of “CNN This Morning” alongside Phil Mattingly, who was named chief domestic correspondent and anchor in February 2024, following CNN’s decision to drop the current format of “This Morning” in February 2024.

When CNN announced it would stop production on the current version of “This Morning” and reuse the name on an expanded version of “Early Start” leading into the “CNN Newsroom” morning edition, it indicated it hoped to find new roles for both Harlow and Mattingly.

Harlow was reportedly offered a new position within CNN but turned it down. It is not clear what that offer may have entailed, though it’s likely it wasn’t as prominent of a role given that the network’s schedule was recently revamped and it appears to have settled into giving the new lineup and talent a shot.

“I have been inspired by you and learned so much from you, who are (and will remain) dear friends. I grew up here: as a journalist and as a person. I was allowed to stumble, to falter, and then to try again with the support and care of this CNN family. This place has shaped me as a leader, taught me resilience, shown me the value of perspective and how to make hard decisions,” Harlow wrote on X.

Harlow did not reveal what her plans are for the future or if she has secured another position in TV.

Harlow is essentially the last victim of yet another attempt to revamp the network’s morning lineup.

In November 2022, then CEO-Chris Licht introduced the network’s new morning show, replacing “New Day,” a project of previous CEO Jeff Zucker.

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He named Harlow, Don Lemon and Kaitlin Collins as co-anchors of the show, replacing Brianna Keilar and John Berman, who were not held over from “New Day.”

Berman and Keilar have since been re-assigned to “CNN News Central.”

The “This Morning” team was short-lived. 

Lemon was fired in April 2023 after a series of controversies both on-air and behind-the-scenes. 

Collins left the show in May 2023 when she moved to the network’s 9 p.m. hour and “The Source with Kaitlin Collins.” This left Harlow as the last remaining anchor, typically appearing next to a rotating cast of guest co-anchors.

In August 2023, Mattingly, who had been the network’s chief White House correspondent, was named co-anchor of “CNN This Morning,” officially signaling the show would be going with a two-anchor format.

That didn’t last long either — in February 2023, new CEO Mark Thompson announced a schedule shakeup that resulted in “CNN This Morning” being canceled. The name was then reassigned to that expanded version “Early Start” with Kasie Hunt.

When Harlow-Mattingly version of “This Morning” was shut down, this mean that none of CNN’s morning programming would have editorial teams based in New York. Instead, editorial functions would be handled remotely from the network’s world headquarters in Atlanta.

Harlow’s exit comes as the network attempts to reshape itself under Thompson. 

Meanwhile, a former anchor, Brooke Baldwin, who left in 2021, was recently in the news when she spoke out about her exit. CNN also recently announced that its limited series, “King Charles” would end as planned.