Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb were left near tears on Wednesday as they discussed the ‘shocking and appalling’ rape allegations aimed at their former colleague Matt Lauer.
The ex-Today Show host had his contract with NBC terminated in November 2017 amid allegations of inappropriate sexual behaviour towards a colleague.
A new book by Ronan Farrow – seen by Variety – reveals that the colleague was Brooke Nevils and discusses further details that led to his firing, including accusations that Lauer raped Nevils at the 2014 Sochi Olympics.
‘This is shocking and appalling and I honestly don’t know what to say about it,’ said Savannah, who worked with Lauer on the morning breakfast show.
‘I want to say I know it wasn’t easy for Brooke to come forward then and it’s not easy now, and we support her and any women who come forward with claims. It’s very hard for all of us at NBC and the Today Show and it’s very very, very difficult.’
Hoda, who replaced Lauer full time, added: ‘I am looking at you and having a weird moment. We were sitting here like this two years ago and truth be told, Savannah and I had a little prayer upstairs to sort out what we were going to do.
‘It’s like you know someone for 12 years, you know them inside and out then all a sudden a door opens up and it’s a part of them you didn’t know.’
She continued: ‘We don’t know all the facts but there are no allegations of an affair but allegations of a crime, and that’s shocking for all of us here who have sat with Matt for many, many years, so we will continue to process this part of this horrific story and our thoughts are with Brooke.
‘It’s not easy what she did to come forward.’
Savannah concluded: ‘I think I speak for all of us when I say we are disturbed to our core.’
Lauer said in a statement that Nevils’ claims are ‘categorically false’ and that she ‘ignores the facts and defies common sense’.
In April 2018, Matt claimed he’d tried to ‘protect’ his family from ’embarrassment’ by staying silent at the time of allegations of sexual misconduct.
The presenter admitted he had ‘acted inappropriately’, but he also insisted that many of the allegations made against him were ‘absolutely false’.