NBC fired Matt Lauer from the Today show in November over allegations of sexual misconduct that go back decades, a decision that has done wonders for the daily news broadcast’s ratings and resulted in a well-deserved promotion for Hoda Kotb. Now, Lauer’s longtime Today co-host Katie Couric—who left the show in 2006—is discussing the allegations against Lauer for the first time.
This comes from an interview Couric gave with People, during which she explained that she “had no idea” any of the things Lauer has been accused of were going on while she was at Today, adding “I think I speak for many of my former colleagues when I say this was not the Matt we knew.” Because of that, she says the revelations and accusations have been “very painful” for her, especially given the “brother-sister relationship” she believes they had. Couric says that closeness is also why she joked on Andy Cohen’s Watch What Happens Live a few years ago that Lauer “pinches me on the ass a lot”—since the possibility of that seemed so unlikely to her at the time.
Couric also highlighted the work of Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb, saying she admires how “the entire Today show staff have handled a very difficult situation.”