Last month, Katie Couric said she wasn’t ready to talk about the numerous sexual-harassment allegations against Matt Lauer, only offering an Instagram comment, of all things, to say she was “incredibly” upset at what transpired at Today. Processing her thoughts in the weeks to come, Couric is now ready to discuss the disturbing fall of her former NBC co-anchor. “The whole thing has been very painful for me,” Couric told People in a statement. “The accounts I’ve read and heard have been disturbing, distressing and disorienting and it’s completely unacceptable that any woman at the Today show experienced this kind of treatment.”
Couric stressed that throughout her revered Today career, she was wholly unaware of any misconduct on Lauer’s end: “I had no idea this was going on during my tenure or after I left. I think I speak for many of my former colleagues when I say this was not the Matt we knew. Matt was a kind and generous colleague who treated me with respect.” It was Lauer’s sunny “America’s dad” reputation, in fact, that prompted Couric to joke about him pinching her ass on Watch What Happens Live, because “it was completely contrary to our brother-sister relationship.”
Still, the entire situation is “very upsetting” to Couric, and although she’s still unsure how to fully process Lauer’s actions, she’s optimistic about the future of Today. “I really admire the way Savannah [Guthrie] and Hoda [Kotb] and the entire Today show staff have handled a very difficult situation,” she concludes. Girl power, indeed.