NBC News executives are on their heels again as new questions arise about how the network handled allegations of sexual misconduct against Matt Lauer. One puzzling question, however, is how Jeff Zucker, Lauer's longtime chief and current CNN president, has avoided this. Similar criticisms.
Andy Lack, chairman of NBC News, and his deputy, Noah Oppenheim, are reportedly shivering in their suits, while Zucker denies any knowledge of Lauers violations and is still sitting on top of the liberal CNN.
Those who began their career with the Peacock Network rose from the NBC researcher to the president and CEO of NBC Universal. Incidentally, he was executive producer of "Today" when Lauer was hired in 1
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In 2001, Sugar was president of NBC Entertainment. In that role, he resumed supervision of Lauer, then NBC's biggest star, and was frequently in touch with him on important matters related to Today.
A former employee of NBC News with a knowledge of Zucker's relationship with Lauer feels the two shared a unique bond.
"They are very close friends. Jeff even fried Matt at the Friars Club, where he joked about Matt's marital problems, "NBC News former employee told Fox News. "At NBC, [Zucker] was the only person who could tell Matt to shut up."
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When roasting in 2008, Zucker made some lewd remarks about Lauer.
"It's just good to see Matt up here and not under my desk," said Zucker from the podium, according to a media executive present. "I do not want to say that Matt is germicidal, but he's the only one I know who uses Purell both before and after masturbating."
When Lauer was abruptly fired by NBC for sexual misconduct nine years later, Zucker At the Business Insiders' Ignition conference, the message said it was "incredibly disturbing" and "heartbreaking."
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"I've known Matt for 25 years, and I did not know him," Sugar even claimed at the time To whisper.
At that time, the former CNN chief correspondent at the White House and USC Annenberg journalist Jessica Yellin said Zuckers utterances missed the point.
"This speaks to a problem with culture and leadership in the workplace," Yellin wrote in a devastating Twitter thread. "Creating a job where women feel they can not report harassment is not relieving."
Zucker's comments at the conference reflected the later results of a controversial internal review initiated by NBC News to determine who knew of Lauer's alleged wrongdoing. Despite the demand for an external company, Lack insisted on continuing the investigation internally. NBC's General Counsel, Kim Harris, finally stated that her colleagues did not even notice Lauer's alleged behavior.
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" One complaint came from a former employee, who said that Mr. Lauer did this, summoned her to his office in 2001, locked the door and sexually assaulted her, "the New York Times reported." She told the Times that she fainted and had to be taken to a nurse. "
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The CNN boss and Lauer are apparently still Friends and the reports said the presenter of the fallen morning show, along with Don Lemon and Chris Cuomo, attended Sugar's birthday party with a magical theme earlier this year.
The New York Post, which reported for the first time that a "relaxed" Lauer had attended the party, followed a report that Zucker was forced to shoot down rumors that Lauer would revive his career at CNN.
"Some employees began to lash out that Matt Lauer would suddenly return from the dead and Hudson Yards would show up in CNN's shiny Manhattan office," a CNN insider from the Post said in May.
The insider added that "some senior female employees would refuse to work with him," but CNN's women were not placed in that position. Zucker told worried employees that "there is absolutely no truth in the reports that Matt is coming to CNN," the Post said.
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According to reports, Lauer is not working for CNN shortly, but Zucker's network gave his old buddy a glimpse into the prime scandal of the failed anchor at prime time.
Ronan Farrow's upcoming "Catch and Kill" contains a controversial claim that Lauer raped an ABC colleague during the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, Japan. While NBC considered Bombshell's claim important enough to cover its own Nightly News and Today, Zucker's CNN completely ignored the prime-time story.
"Anderson Cooper 360," "Cuomo Prime Time," "CNN Tonight," and "White House in Crisis," did not mention Lauer on Wednesday, as evidenced by a review of the Fox News transcripts.
CNN did not immediately respond to a request for comment.