Don Lemon Says Democrats Must Stop 'Virtue Signaling,' Not About 'Who's More Woke'

CNN's Don Lemon has said Democrats need to act more like Republicans in terms of knowing how to win elections, instead of being more concerned about "who's more woke" than the next person.

Lemon made the remarks on Monday night while discussing former president Barack Obama's recent CNN interview.

Lemon told coanchor Chris Cuomo that "the more people see" of Obama "the better," suggesting people have been asking for clarification about some of the decisions he made during his time in the White House. Lemon noted Obama had "conflicts and roadblocks" that others did not have because he was the country's first Black president.

"There will be some criticism that he should have done more and he should have known better, that Republicans didn't want to work with him, and this should be a lesson for Joe Biden," Lemon added.

Cuomo then said that Obama's interview showed the former president can see what is wrong with "the state of play" within the Democrat Party today but "doesn't prescribe a solution," which Cuomo suggests is a common problem.

The Democrats struggle to pass legislation such as getting 60 votes to block a filibuster, Cuomo said, because the party is an "open hand" and "splayed." In contrast, the GOP are a "fist" that are "coming at you as one because they play to win."

Cuomo added that he does not believe the Democrats currently understand "how to win" in this political environment.

In a lengthy reply, Lemon said: "I've been saying that for a long time and getting criticized for it, even from Democrats who are currently in power and not happy.

"I just think if you're looking at just the raw politics of it, which I have said — Republicans are better. It doesn't mean they're better people... but they're better at the politicking, they're better at sticking together.

"Republicans fall in line. Democrats don't. That was part of what the former president said. Democrats many times have these purity tests about everything and they're holier than thou about many things. And you can't have that," Lemon added.

"The first rule of politics that Democrats need to figure out is that it's about winning. It's not about winning arguments, it's about winning elections. It's not about being who's more woke than the next person. It's about winning, and when you win, that's when you get your policies."

'Stop all the virtue signaling and win'

Lemon goes to suggest that Democrats are more concerned about "who's more on their side" when they should be more "cunning" like the Republicans.

"They need to focus more on winning elections, rather than winning arguments," he added. "Stop all the virtue signaling and win. That's it. As simple as that."

don lemon woke
CNN Anchor Don Lemon attends Apple TV+'s "The Morning Show" world premiere at David Geffen Hall on October 28, 2019 in New York City. Roy Rochlin/WireImage/Getty Images