It’s official: There will be no tomorrow at Today for Billy Bush.
NBC confirmed in a statement to employees on Monday that the network has formally parted ways with the embattled co-host for his role in the Donald Trump tape scandal. According to unconfirmed reports, Bush will receive an exit package worth $10 million.
“Billy Bush will be leaving the Today show’s 9 am hour, effective today,” the statement read. “While he was a new member of the Today team, he was a valued colleague and longtime member of the broader NBC family. We wish him success as he goes forward.”
Bush released a statement of his own that said: “I am deeply grateful for the conversations I’ve had with my daughters, and for all of the support from family, friends and colleagues. I look forward to what lies ahead.”
Last Sunday, NBC announced that Bush had been indefinitely suspended from his gig co-hosting Today‘s 9 am hour after he was heard engaging in a lewd conversation with Trump in an unearthed 2005 tape. “I know we’ve all been deeply troubled by the revelations of the past 48 hours,” Today‘s senior VP Noah Oppenheim wrote in an internal memo to the staff. “Let me be clear — there is simply no excuse for Billy’s language and behavior on that tape. NBC has decided to suspend Billy, pending further review of this matter.”
Immediately following the tape’s release earlier this month, Bush released a statement expressing remorse for his conduct. “Obviously I’m embarrassed and ashamed,” he said. “It’s no excuse, but this happened eleven years ago – I was younger, less mature, and acted foolishly in playing along. I’m very sorry.”
Bush’s stormy departure marks the end of his long relationship with NBC, one that began in 2001 when he joined Access Hollywood as a correspondent. He was promoted to primary anchor three years later, and he remained in that post until this past August, when he joined Today.
Did Billy Bush deserve to be fired from the Today show? And where will he land next? Hit the comments and share your thoughts.