Chris Harrison Breaks Silence On Bachelor Exit

Former "Bachelor" host Chris Harrison is breaking his silence following the news of his exit from "The Bachelor" franchise.

"I've had a truly incredible run as host of The Bachelor franchise and now I'm excited to start a new chapter," he said in an Instagram post on June 8. "I'm so grateful to Bachelor Nation for all of the memories we've made together. While my two-decade journey is wrapping up, the friendships I've made will last a lifetime," he continued.

Harrison announced he was "stepping aside" from his hosting duties following a controversial interview he had with former Bachelorette Rachel Lindsay in February. During the interview, he defended former "Bachelor" Season 25 contestant Rachael Kirkconnell's past racist actions, which included attending a 2018 antebellum-themed fraternity party at Georgia College & State University (per The Sun) while a student there. Following the explosive drama, Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe stepped in to host Katie Thurston's season of "The Bachelorette." Harrison's announcement comes the day after Katie's season premiered.

Following the news, which was originally reported by Deadline, both "Bachelor" fans and former contestants had mixed feelings about the situation. Keep scrolling to learn what they had to say.

The internet is split regarding Chris Harrison's official departure from The Bachelor

After whispers circulated that Chris Harrison was "in negotiations" with ABC to officially leave Bachelor Nation, Deadline reported on June 8 that his separation from the franchise that he led for two decades was complete. According to the publication, he was given an "eight-figure payoff" in return for his "promise to keep his mouth shut."

Prior to Harrison confirming the news himself, former Bachelor Colton Underwood posted on his Instagram Story in support of the disgraced host. "Grade A Human being," he wrote alongside a photo of Harrison. He continued, "Thank you for being a great friend, a stand up guy and a hell of a host. Can't wait to see what you do next!" "Bachelor in Paradise" star Dylan Barbour tweeted a simple, "8 figures good lord."

Once Harrison confirmed the news, his comment section on Instagram quickly filled with messages of support. "It will never be the same without you @chrisbharrison! Not sure I will be supporting the show. Time will tell," one skeptical fan wrote. Arie Luyendyk, Season 22 Bachelor, commented, "Love you brotha. On to bigger and better things," with a clapping hand emoji. However, some people celebrated Harrison's removal from the franchise. Meanwhile, others said his breakup from the franchise is going to cause "The Bachelor" to sink. 

At the time of this writing, there has been no word on who will officially replace Harrison as the face of Bachelor Nation. Only time will tell.