Harrison concluded: "While my two-decade journey is wrapping up, the friendships I’ve made will last a lifetime."
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The photos in question showed Kirkconnell at a plantation-themed party in 2018 and dressed as a Native American. She was also accused of "liking" photos with the Confederate flag in them. Her controversial social media activity was brought to light while season 25 was airing.
During their sit down, Harrison said Bachelor Nation should offer the 24-year-old contestant a "little grace, a little understanding, a little compassion," following her offensive social media posts. After his defensive attitude sparked widespread criticism, Harrison apologized for his commentary and announced he would temporarily be stepping back as host to get educated.
In light of the drama, Bachelor producers have been looking for a full-time replacement for Harrison. In the meantime, Emmanuel Acho took over as host for James' After The Final Rose special; former bachelorettes Tayshia Adams and Kaitlyn Bristowe are also the hosts for season 17 of The Bachelorette.
In addition, David Spade was recently named one of the temporary hosts for the summer season of Bachelor in Paradise.
And while Harrison may be sad to be leaving the reality dating show behind, he is reportedly walking away with a whopping paycheck. Hours before Harrison shared his statement to Instagram on Tuesday, June 8, OK! reported that he was set to receive a huge payout if he agreed to step back from the franchise and keep quiet following his departure.