CNN host Don Lemon could be heard telling Democratic presidential hopeful Cory Booker (N.J.) "nice job" as their town hall cut to commercial on Wednesday night.
Booker wrapped up an answer to a question about his opposition to the Electoral College and called for higher voter turnout, saying it made democracy better.
"Cynical Republicans are trying to make it harder and harder for people to vote, especially African Americans," Booker said. "The cure for these anti-democratic problems is not to surrender to cynicism about the system. It's to get up, get involved, get engaged, and let's change it together."
"I can see that you're warmed up. You've been out on the campaign trail," Lemon said, telling viewers they would be back with Booker after the break.
"Nice job. Nice job," Lemon could be heard telling Booker as the camera panned away, shaking his hand.
CNN anchors and reporters have hosted a series of town halls for Democratic presidential candidates in the early stages of the 2020 cycle. Lemon moderated Booker's in Orangeburg, S.C., and the tone was friendly from the outset; Lemon hugged Booker when he came on-stage and his first question was about Booker being a vegan.
— Steve Guest (@SteveGuest) March 28, 2019
Lemon hosts CNN Tonight with Don Lemon on weeknights, but his show blends the roles of liberal commentator and news anchor. He has accused President Donald Trump of wanting to start a civil war, defended the radical left-wing group Antifa from criticism by saying not all organizations are perfect, and gushed over Speaker Nancy Pelosi—"oh my gosh, Nancy Pelosi is a boss," he intoned after her Oval Office meeting with Trump last year.
It's not the only friendship Booker enjoys in the media. He is also close with CBS This Morning co-host Gayle King, who once had to deny on the air that the pair were romantically involved.
Charlie Rose asked in the middle of an interview in 2012 about what Gayle King and Cory Booker "hanging out" until midnight one night meant, King laughed and said "no boinking has occurred." pic.twitter.com/ObnmLRurkH
— David Rutz (@DavidRutz) February 4, 2019