The Bachelor s Matt James Reacts to Controversy Surrounding Rachael Kirkconnells Social Media – Yahoo Entertainment

Matt James is speaking out about the controversy surrounding Bachelor contestant Rachael Kirkconnell.

Since the season 25 premiere of the ABC dating series, Bachelor Nation fans have criticized the graphic designer’s alleged past social media behavior. Additionally, a TikTok user, who claimed she went to high school Rachael, said she bullied her.

At this time, the 24-year-old star has yet to publicly comment the accusations made against her. However, it’s important to note that most Bachelor contestants are typically unable to address fan commentary while the show is still airing.

Following Monday night’s episode, Matt opened up about the online backlash the Georgia native has received in an interview with Entertainment Tonight.

“I have not spoken to anybody since the show ended, but I would say that you have to be really careful about what you are doing on social media,” he explained of the allegations on Feb. 2. “Rumors are dark and nasty and can ruin people’s lives. So I would give people the benefit of the doubt, and hopefully, she will have her time to speak on that.”

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“There’s a lot of stuff going around about the women that were involved in the show,” the 29-year-old athlete pointed out. “I would just give them a chance to kind of have their piece, whether that is someone who was gone night one or someone who went home last night.”

He added, “Everyone has a story, and I would just be receptive to that.”

The Bachelor star isn’t just talking the talk either. In last night’s episode on Feb. 1, Matt sent home several women, including a few that were described as bullies by fellow contestants.

Matt James, Rachael Kirkconnell, The BachelorMatt James, Rachael Kirkconnell, The Bachelor
Matt James, Rachael Kirkconnell, The Bachelor

But if Monday night’s episode was any indication, two things were made very clear: Matt isn’t tolerating any drama and Rachael is proving to be a frontrunner.

In fact, the duo had their first one-on-one date, in which the graphic designer enjoyed a shopping spree. When she teared up over her new Christian Louboutin heels, Matt was taken aback and looked even more smitten over her.

After dinner, Matt admitted that he could see himself falling in love with Rachael and proposing to her.

“I think that first group date is when she really caught my eye…,” Matt told ET of his instant attraction to Rachael. “This has been a steady progression… since the first week. It was a feeling I hadn’t felt, and… this is nothing that [producers are] telling me to say or do, it’s just, I felt it in the moment and I had never felt it before.”

Of course, it’s too early to tell who will win the reality TV personality’s heart. But if you need a refresher on which contestants are still in the running, E! News has you covered. Click here.

The Bachelor airs Mondays at 8 p.m. on ABC.

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Originally published February 2, 2021, 3:56 PM