Carrie Ann Inaba Shoots Down Kim Zolciak Returning to DWTS: “It Would Be Unfair”

Carrie Ann Inaba and Kim Zolciak
DWTS judge Carrie Ann Inaba (here wearing Maryam Shahbazi earrings) shot down Kim Zolciak's petition to rejoin the cast.  Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic; Charles Sykes/Bravo

Kim Zolciak shouldn’t expect rave reviews from Carrie Ann Inaba anytime soon. The Dancing With the Stars judge, 47, gave her two cents on the Don’t Be Tardy matriarch’s petition to rejoin the ABC show after getting eliminated on Monday, Sept. 28, when she was unable to compete because of health problems. 

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“Well, I’ve always loved somebody who doesn’t give up, okay? I think that that’s a wonderful spirit to have,” Inaba told Us Weekly at PETA’s 35th Anniversary Gala on Wednesday, Sept. 30. “You should never give up. However, I also like rules, and our rules say that she has to be out. I think that it would be unfair for the other competitors if she came back because she did not compete, and it’s like she got a week to rest.” 

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Zolciak, 37, was unable to perform on the competition series after she suffered a series of mini-strokes that landed her in the hospital last week. She and her dance pro, Tony Dovolani, were subsequently eliminated from the show. 

kim and tony
Kim Zolciak and Tony Dovolani on Dancing With the Stars Adam Taylor/ABC

But the mother of six isn’t ready to give up, and even posted a petition to Instagram begging fans to bring her back. 

“I was cleared to dance on Friday when I was discharged from the hospital, so Saturday morning I was up rehearsing not even 12 hrs after. I had no restrictions BUT flying until today,” she wrote. “Yes the timing sucked but ultimately my health is first. I wanted to dance here in ATL via satellite last night I can dance I just couldn’t fly. I’m forever grateful for my dance partner @tonydovolani who has always supported me and All Of you my amazing fans!!!!!!!! Regardless I’ll be dancing my ass off at the finale.”

While talking to Us on Wednesday, Inaba added, “Our show is tough, so having a week to rest could make a huge difference in the future for competitions. So, I kind of think that it’s okay the way it is and I wish her well, though, and I’m very glad to hear that she’s doing well health-wise.”

Former dance pro Kym Johnson also weighed in on Zolciak’s elimination at PETA’s event, adding, “It’s unfortunate what happened with Kim. That’s never happened before! It was quite surprising. But you know, that’s the rules and unfortunately for Tony, he’s also out, but her health comes first and I guess she’s got to take care of that.”

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