Cohen and co-host Anderson Cooper were banned from drinking during the 2022 show after the 'Watch What Happens Live' host made offensive comments on air the year prior
Last year, CNN banned Cohen, 55, and fellow New Year's Eve Live co-host Anderson Cooper from drinking while filming the special.
“What a bungle,” Cohen put it simply.
Cohen and Cooper — who are known to be a dynamic duo of sorts, even having their own live tour called AC2 — have a history of making viewers laugh on New Year's Eve. That, in large part, is admittedly due to Cohen’s drinking habits as the night goes on, he said.
“People want to see me make Anderson giggle, and they love to see him do shots,” Cohen told Stern, explaining he and Cooper, 56 — who are going on 7 years of hosting the special together — were forced to get creative this year and drink pickle juice on the air to keep themselves and viewers entertained.
“We did everything we could to get around [the alcohol ban], but it was just a stupid move," he added.
Stern, 69, went on to ask if Cohen thought former CNN Chairman and CEO Chris Licht — who was fired after his brief and tumultuous 13-month stint in the position — was “the wrong guy for the job,” given the bad experience the Bravo executive had on CNN last year.
“I don’t know the answer to that... I guess, because it didn’t work out,” Cohen responded.
He added: “I didn’t really care. I just wanted to drink on New Year’s Eve, and I just want Anderson to be happy.”
He went on to say that part of him wishes Licht stuck around at the network so he could reverse the ban after seeing how it went in 2022. “It was my hope that had he remained, that maybe we could’ve said to him, ‘Listen, this clearly did not work out last year, so let’s revisit this issue.’”
The alcohol ban came after Cohen joked he was “overserved” in the 2021 special. Cohen drunkenly called ABC's Dick Clark’s New Years Rockin’ Eve performers “a group of losers” and threw insults at N.Y.C. Mayor Bill de Blasio, who left the role at the start of the new year.
"Watching Mayor de Blasio do his victory lap dance after four years of the crappiest term as the mayor of New York [City]," Cohen told the camera.
As he spoke, Cooper attempted to interject by saying, "Don't go on a rant" as well as "This is how you want to start the new year?"
But Cohen persisted. "The only thing Democrats and Republicans can agree on is what a horrible mayor he has been," he said. "So, sayonara, sucka!"
A stunned Cooper stared at his co-host and twice uttered, "Wow." A giggle could be heard from behind the camera.
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Despite everything, Cohen previously told Stern that he "won't be shamed" for his on-camera drinking.
"I won't be shamed for it, I had a blast, Anderson has a blast. We left and we were like 'That was fun, what a fun New Year's Eve.' No apologies for my drinking on New Year's Eve, none," Cohen said, although he expressed regret for his comments about ABC's New Year's show.
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