Politics

Don Lemon on Protesters Harassing Ted Cruz: ‘That’s What He Signed up for’

CNN anchor Don Lemon discussed protesters chasing Sen. Ted Cruz (R., Texas) out of a Washington, D.C. restaurant, saying it is "what he signed up for."

Cruz and his wife, Heidi, were harassed by protesters at a D.C. restaurant Monday night. Chanting "We believe survivors," the anti-Kavanaugh protesters surrounded their table and forced them to leave. The couple later returned and ate their dinner.

"I don't like it, but it is one reason I’m not a public official, that I’m not running for office. In a way I think it goes with the territory. I don't like that they were blocking his wife, but that's what he signed up for," Lemon said on "Cuomo Prime Time" Tuesday, according to The Daily Wire.

"As a strict constitutionalist, which Ted Cruz is, he knows it is protected under the First Amendment. I don’t like it. I wouldn’t want it to happen to me. I don’t like it happening to his wife. But that’s what he signed up for. That's part of the deal," Lemon continued.

Fellow anchor Chris Cuomo pushed back, saying, "I don’t know that that's what he signed up for, but that may be what the price is for being in public service, that there's a different standard for him."

"Is it right that they do it this way?" Cuomo continued. "What did they achieve by doing it this way? Do you think they changed Ted Cruz's mind? Did they raise awareness to something that was positive, or did they raise awareness to something that makes their effort look bad?"

Lemon repeated that he did not like what happened, but added, "If you run for office and you propose policies that are detrimental to people, as Americans you have the right to tell your public officials that you don't like it."

Lemon was content to treat harassment at a private place of business as a free speech issue, but the management at the restaurant, Fiola, said in a statement that it called the police. The restaurant happily accommodated the Cruz family.

The video of the protesters made headlines, however, as many on the left celebrated Cruz being prevented from enjoying a dinner out with his wife.