Television host Megyn Kelly has invited Matt Lauer and the women accusing him of sexual harassment to appear on her show and talk about the incidents.
Kelly made the announcement during her portion of NBC’s Today show on Thursday, Nov. 30.
The invitation comes one day after Kelly publicly stated that news of Lauer’s firing from NBC for sexual misconduct in the workplace “hit close to home”, but that she sees the dismissal as a “sign of progress.”
“I, too, have known Matt for a long time. He has been a friend and kind and supportive to me and my transition to NBC News. I see the anguish on my colleagues’ faces. But when this happens, what we don’t see is the pain on the faces of those who’ve found the courage to come forward. And that is a terrifying thing to do,” Kelly said on her program on Wednesday, Nov. 29.
“We are in the middle of a sea change in this country,” Kelly continues, “in which women, who for years felt they had no choice but to simply deal with being harassed in the workplace are now starting to picture another reality.”
On Thursday’s episode of “Megyn Kelly Today,” NBC’s Stephanie Gosk revealed that there might be as many as eight female accusers.
“We have reached out to New York City Police; we have reached out to police departments in Long Island. We know of no open criminal investigation against Matt Lauer,” Gosk said. “Because they are anonymous, we don’t know if any of the people who spoke to ‘Variety’ also spoke to ‘The New York Times’. … We don’t know if any of them are the same women,” she added.
Matt Lauer admits there is 'enough truth' in the bombshell sexual assault allegations leveled against him https://t.co/5yumn66IYD
— Daily Mail US (@DailyMail) November 30, 2017
NBC denies that it received any complaints about Lauer until Monday.
“We can say unequivocally that, prior to Monday night, current NBC News management was never made aware of any complaints about Matt Lauer’s conduct,” a spokesperson for the network said.
Kelly also said on her program on Thursday that despite her network affiliation, she was determined to provide unbiased coverage.
“You don’t want to be getting that explicit about a colleague that you worked with 24 hours ago. These are pointed questions about NBC management, but that’s how we’re going to report it here for you at NBC.”
“That’s our commitment to you, to bring you the truth and to do a full and fair investigation of this story as it comes to us.”
Kelly then invited Lauer and his accusers to appear on the program.
“As hard as it is to report on one of our own colleagues, we remain committed to telling people’s stories if they choose to come forward,” said Kelly during Thursday’s episode. “The women in this case, too—the Matt Lauer case—are invited and welcome to do exactly that on this show. We have been that place in all the other cases, and we will be that place—as well as for the accused—on this hour.”
Megyn Kelly wants Matt Lauer and his victims to confess — but does NBC want that “transparency”? https://t.co/mWWcmFIvoE
— The Daily Beast (@thedailybeast) November 30, 2017
In a statement of his own, Lauer broke his silence on Thursday. “There are no words to express my sorrow and regret for the pain I have caused others by words and actions. To the people I have hurt I am truly sorry,” he said in a statement read by the “Today” show hosts.
“As I am writing this I realize the depth of the damage and disappointment I have left behind at home and at NBC. Some of what is being said about me is untrue or mischaracterized, but there is enough truth in these stories to make me feel embarrassed and ashamed. I regret that my shame is now shared by the people I cherish dearly,” he added.
Jack Phillips contributed to this report.
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