Chris, 49, and ABC confirmed in separate statements on June 8 that Chris will no longer host The Bachelor franchise following his racism controversy involving Bachelor Nation's Rachel Lindsay and Rachael Kirkconnell earlier this year.
"I think the show is going to regret letting him go. I do," Peter, who starred onThe Bachelor's 24th season in 2020, toldEntertainment Tonight.
Chris initially announced in February he'd be temporarily stepping aside from his The Bachelor hosting duties to educate himself after he made racially-ignorant remarks in an Extra interview with Rachel, who starred as The Bachelorette's first Black leading lady on Season 13.
In the Extra interview, Chris had defended Matt James' girlfriend Rachael -- the winner of The Bachelor's 25th season -- as she faced backlash for her racially-insensitive actions in the last several years.
Chris had criticized "the woke police" and asked for "grace" and "compassion" for Rachael when offensive photos resurfaced, including pictures of Rachael attending an antebellum-plantation themed "Old South" fraternity party at Georgia College & State University in 2018.
"Nobody's perfect. That's a understatement, right? Obviously, could his delivery have been a little different with comments he had made? Absolutely, 100 percent," Peter, 29, acknowledged.
"But I think, if anything, the show is going to miss him. I think they do. I think ratings, I mean, those don't lie. They're kind of already showing that."
Chris previously issued three public apologies for his offense and owned his mistakes, but it became increasingly more clear the father of two would not return as host when Good Morning America co-host Michael Strahan called Chris' TV apology "nothing more than a surface response" and Katie Thurston refused to star on The Bachelorette's seventeenth season if Chris remained the host.
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Chris' attorney, Los Angeles-based and high-profile entertainment litigator Bryan J. Freedman, therefore threatened a heavy lawsuit and to expose The Bachelor's well-kept secrets over the last 20 years unless his client was satisfactorily compensated.
Chris reportedly would have made a similar paycheck had he continued to host The Bachelor franchise for just two more years, given his salary was around $5 million per year.
Peter told ET that he's been texting back and forth with Chris ever since hisThe Bachelor departure and the situation is just "sad to see."
"I think the world of Chris. I've had nothing but great memories with him... Actually, I can't say all great because I've been through some sh-tty times with him as well. But I guess you could say he's been there for me in a lot of those moments," Peter shared.
"It's tough to sit back and watch from the outside and see how everything kind of transpired."
Peter reiterated how it's "sad" for everyone involved "to have it end the way it did with him having been such a prominent role in that franchise, and really, I think, being the biggest reason why it grew to be as big as it has become."
"I get why Sean's doing that. I'm not necessarily boycotting the franchise. I still am just a fan of the show. I've been a fan for years... but it's tough," Peter explained.
"I hate that there's just so much sh-t going on with the franchise. So many people are unhappy and [there is] just so much division."
"At the end of the day, I feel like the show... was created to kind of be the exact opposite thing of that; [to] bring people together, let people live, [allow] everyone that watches it to live vicariously through this awesome platform of watching love happen," Peter elaborated.
"I just want to get back to that. That's what matters... It's sad that you have so many different people butting heads like crazy now. It's tough."
Peter added that he doesn't think drama in Bachelor Nation is going to help the franchise.
"I think they're doing a great job. No one's ever going to replace Chris Harrison, that's obvious. You kind of can't when he's been so cemented in that role," Peter said.
"But yeah, I think what it does offer is a cool, unique twist. It's different, obviously. The whole women supporting women type-thing going on there is great. Obviously they're going to be able to offer a perspective that Chris couldn't offer a female lead, the Bachelorette."
"I've always thought that Nick would be a great host for the show. I just do. I mean, I think he's got maybe some type of Chris-type wittiness," Peter reasoned with ET.
"He's just such a smart dude... I've thought that for years, actually... even before anything happened with Chris. But I think he'd be good."
And Peter said of Ben, "I think Ben would be a really good host for the show, a huge fan favorite."
While neither of Peter's picks for a new host are men of color, he pointed out that inclusion of all races on the show is "so important" and he'd like to see "more diversity and more minorities in a lead role" on the show going forward.
"Obviously there has been an issue with diversity in the franchise. I think we've taken some steps. You can't knock that. That's a great thing. We [have] got to keep using that momentum moving forward," Peter concluded.