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Katie Couric Says She Has 'No Relationship' with Matt Lauer Today, Calls His Behavior 'Disgusting'

·4 min read
Katie Couric Says She Has 'No Relationship' with Matt Lauer Today, Calls His Behavior 'Disgusting'

Katie Couric is continuing to reflect on her relationship with her former Today co-host Matt Lauer and the sexual harassment allegations against him.

In PEOPLE's cover story last week, Couric, 64, opened up about feeling "shocked" when she learned of the allegations, calling his behavior "grossly inappropriate" and "callous." She also addressed the scandal in her recent memoir, Going There.

During an appearance on Today Tuesday morning, the longtime journalist said that when she heard about the allegations against Lauer, it was "really, really hard and it took me a long time to process what was going on."

"The side of Matt I knew was the side of Matt I think you all knew. He was kind, generous, considerate, a good colleague," she said. "As I got more information and learned more about what was going on behind the scenes. And then I did some of my own reporting, talked to people, tried to excavate what had been going on. It was really devastating and also disgusting."

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"I think what I realized is that there was a side of Matt I never really knew. 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," Couric continued, adding that they have "no relationship" today.

RELATED: Katie Couric Stands by New Memoir on Today: 'I Wanted to Share the Messy Parts' of My Life

Lauer, 63, was fired by NBC in November 2017 after a former network employee, later identified as Brooke Nevils, reported that he sexually harassed her. Several other women came forward with similar accusations shortly thereafter.

Nevils went public to Ronan Farrow for his 2019 book Catch and Kill: Lies, Spies, and a Conspiracy to Protect Predators. To Farrow, Nevils alleged that Lauer raped her in his hotel room at the 2014 Sochi Olympics, where she was working for NBC's Meredith Vieira. Lauer has said all of his encounters were consensual.

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When talking to People (the TV shows!)'s Kay Adams, Couric reiterated that she does not speak to Lauer.

"We got to the point where everything had just deteriorated my level of trust in him, my knowledge of things that had been going on, my actual reporting on what had transpired for my own process," she said.

"I think he probably feels like I wasn't there for him and I feel like what he did was unconscionable. So I think it was really hard for us to meet under those circumstances," she added.

Katie Couric and Matt Lauer
Katie Couric and Matt Lauer

James Devaney/WireImage Matt Lauer and Katie Couric

RELATED: Katie Couric on Being 'Shocked' by Matt Lauer's Behavior: 'It Just Seemed So Callous'

As for whether she would ever reconnect with her on-air partner of nine years, Couric said she's unsure.

"I sort of doubt it," she said. "But I hope that he's reconciled his behavior. He seems like he's very defiant about it. So I don't know. I really don't. That's unknowable at this point."

Couric noted that she "had no idea" about his alleged behavior at the time.

"In terms of the kind of things that he was accused of and what he got fired for it, I had no idea. I had no idea," she said. "I think that he was very secretive and compartmentalized about this behavior."

She said that TV news in the 90s "was a pretty permissive culture," adding that she hopes the #MeToo movement has helped change that.

"When there's a permissive culture, I think that's when more serious transgressions can also take place," Couric said. "So I'm really happy that we've had this reckoning and that we understand power dynamics — we understand that a consensual relationship is not necessarily consensual at all when there is a power differential. I hope the environment has changed dramatically for women and for diversity in general because I think that's really important."

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