Katie Couric says she has “no relationship” with Matt Lauer, her former ‘Today’ co-anchor who was fired in 2017 for inappropriate sexual behavior.
She spoke out on her former show Tuesday to promote the release of her new memoir, “Going There.” In an interview with current ‘Today’ host Savannah Guthrie, Couric said the scandal took her a “long time to process” because she didn’t know that side of Lauer.
As I got more information and learned what was going on behind the scenes, it was really upsetting and disturbing,” she said, adding that it was “really devastating, but also disgusting.”
Couric admitted in the “Today” interview that there was a side of Lauer that she “never really knew,” and she tried to understand why he was so “abusive to other women.” The book also contains text messages between Couric and Lauer that showed how their relationship “devolved and ultimately deteriorated.”
We have no relationship,” Couric stated. She and Lauer anchored the NBC morning show together for nearly a decade before she left in 2006 to host “CBS Evening News.”
In 2017, Lauer said he was “truly sorry” for the pain he has caused. Last year, he denied a rape allegation brought to light by author Ronan Farrow. Lauer could not immediately be reached for comment.
Speaking to Savannah Guthrie on Tuesday, Couric said she and Lauer are no longer in contact following the 2017 sexual abuse scandal that led to his firing. “There was a side of Matt I never really knew.”
Katie Couric and Matt Lauer spent nine years together as co-anchors on TODAY, but Lauer’s firing in 2017 for inappropriate sexual conduct led to the end of their relationship, Couric told TODAY on Tuesday.
“We have no relationship,” Couric, speaking about Lauer, told Savannah Guthrie in a wide-ranging interview about Couric’s upcoming memoir, “Going There.”
Couric said she did her own reporting after hearing of the allegations of sexual harassment and abuses of power against her former colleague and discovered “there was a side of Matt I never really knew.”
“As I got more information and learned what was going on behind the scenes, it was really upsetting and disturbing,” she said. “It was really devastating, but also disgusting.
“I think what I realized is that there was a side of Matt I never really knew, and I tried to understand why he behaved the way he he did, and why he was so reckless and callous, and honestly abusive to other women.”
Couric insisted the attacks have “been wildly misrepresented” — except for those against Lauer, who’d been her TV partner there for nine years.
She fully ripped into him after earlier being accused of being too soft and defensive when her then-beloved pal started getting accused of sexual misconduct, leading to him getting booted in November 2017.
She complained Tuesday that it had been “really, really hard” when the disturbing accusations emerged, admitting she initially found them too hard to believe.
“It took me a long time to process what was going on, because the side of Matt I knew was the man I think you all knew: He was kind and generous and considerate, a good colleague,” she recalled.
What I realized is there was the side of Matt I never really knew. And I tried to understand why he behaved the way he did — and why he was so reckless and callous and honestly abusive to other women,” she said.
Now the two “have no relationship,” she insisted.
Despite savaging Lauer for his behavior, Couric in part blamed sexism in the TV world on the “very permissive environment in the ’90s,” saying, “I think permissive environments often result in serious transgressions.”