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Rachel Lindsay thinks Chris Harrison stepping aside from 'Bachelor' was 'right decision'

Feb. 16 (UPI) -- Rachel Lindsay thinks it was the "right decision" for The Bachelor host Chris Harrison to temporarily step aside from the show.

Lindsay, who became the first Black Bachelorette in The Bachelorette Season 13, reacted Monday on Extra to Harrison stepping away from the franchise after apologizing for "speaking in a way that perpetuates racism."

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Harrison faced backlash after defending The Bachelor Season 25 contestant Rachael Kirkconnell in an interview with Lindsay on Extra last week following reports that Kirkconnell once attended an antebellum plantation-themed formal and liked racist social media posts.

Harrison apologized for his remarks in a statement Feb. 10. Following further criticism, Harrison said Saturday that he is "stepping aside for a period of time" from the Bachelor franchise.

On Monday, Extra host Billy Bush asked Lindsay for her thoughts on Harrison stepping aside and his future with the Bachelor franchise.

"Where do we go from here as a franchise? It's kind of hard to say," Lindsay said. "Chris has stepped aside, which I think is the right decision, because like you said, he needs to get educated on a profound and productive level, to use his words."

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"I think he needs to understand what was done, what was wrong in what he said in that interview," she added. "He needs time. He needs to step away to do that."

Lindsay said she's waiting "to see what happens" in regard to Harrison's future with the franchise.

"I don't want to play into things too quick to judge someone," she said. "Am I disappointed? Absolutely. Do I agree with what happened in that interview? No. But at the same time, he has taken the steps to not issue one, but two, apologies. Let's see what happens from there."

Lindsay said she was "stunned" to see Harrison make his remarks publicly during their interview.

"Like Chris referenced in that interview, we have had these conversations, so I wasn't shocked at the content of what he was saying," she said. "It was just more of the fact that he was saying it in public, where other people can hear what you think."

Kirkconnell apologized for her "offensive and racist actions" in a statement Feb. 11.

The Bachelor is in its 25th season on ABC and stars Matt James, the show's first Black Bachelor.

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