Matt Lauer, the popular morning anchor of "Today" for two decades, has been fired by NBC News after a sexual misconduct allegation came to light. On Wednesday, NBC News Chairman Andrew Lack wrote a memo to employees about Lauer’s termination.
“On Monday night, we received a detailed complaint from a colleague about inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace by Matt Lauer,” the memo stated, adding that the allegations demonstrated a "clear violation of our company's standards.”
The accuser was not named.
“Our highest priority is to create a workplace environment where everyone feels safe and protected, and to ensure that any actions that run counter to our core values are met with consequences, no matter who the offender,” Lack stated.
The memo stated that while the complaint marks the first against Lauer, it may not actually be the first incident, The New York Times reported. NBC stated they were presented with a reason to believe that it was not an isolated incident.
Lauer’s co-host, Savannah Guthrie, announced the shocking news on Wednesday’s episode of “Today.”
Guthrie said, “All we can say is we are heartbroken; I’m heartbroken.”
She appeared to be on the brink of tears, and she explained she was struggling to make sense of the allegations.
"How do you reconcile your love for someone with the revelation that they have behaved badly and I don't know the answer to that," she said. "But I do know that this reckoning, that so many organizations have been going through, is important, it's long overdue and it must result in workplaces where all women — all people — feel safe and respected."
NBC News anchor Willie Geist, who hosts the “Today” show’s Sunday program, revealed on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” that he was shocked.
"Matt Lauer is the most powerful person at NBC News, arguably,” Geist said.
Lauer himself has not publicly commented on the allegations yet.
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