‘Bachelor’ lead Matt James and ex Rachael Kirkconnell are not back together: report

Former “Bachelor” lead Matt James and his ex-girlfriend Rachael Kirkconnell are not back together despite reportedly being spotted out together in Brooklyn, New York. 

A source told People magazine on Wednesday they are just friends. 

“They are not together. He supports her as a friend. He is not looking for a relationship,” the insider revealed. “Matt is focused on engaging in meaningful projects in the community at this time.”

James, 29, and Kirkconnell left Season 25 as a couple but broke up a few months later after racially insensitive photos surfaced of the 24-year-old graphic designer at an “Old South”-themed party in 2018. 

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She has since recognized her actions as racist, apologized, and promised to “learn how to be antiracist.”

In March, James — the dating show’s first Black male lead — made an appearance on The Bill Simmons Podcast and told the host, “I don’t think that anyone’s irredeemable,” in regards to Kirkconnell. 

Matt James and Rachael Kirkconnell broke up after racially insensitive photos surfaced online of her. 

Matt James and Rachael Kirkconnell broke up after racially insensitive photos surfaced online of her. 
(ABC/Craig Sjodin)

“And, I think that for Rachael, there’s a lot that we didn’t discuss that we probably should’ve talked about. I probably should’ve asked more clarifying questions. And I’m giving her that space to do that,” he admitted. 

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“The tough thing is having to explain to America why those pictures are problematic to me,” James said. “You hear people harping on forgiveness and I forgave her when she told me. That doesn’t mean I’m not disappointed and that I don’t want her to do better.”

The real estate broker said in 2021 he’s “working on myself. I’m not going to be dating.”

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James added, “I’m just solely focused on getting back into that meaningful work in the community and centering myself around projects that are going to elevate all the work that I’ve been working on doing in the city and special interest things that I appreciate outside of reality television.”