NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 02: Journalists Katie Couric (L) and Matt Lauer attend the Tenth Annual UNICEF Snowflake Ball at Cipriani Wall Stree on December 2, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images for UNICEF)
Joy Johnston, Cox Media Group National Content Desk
Katie Couric shared her opinions about Matt Lauer's firing from the "Today" show in an exclusive People interview published Saturday.
Couric's opinion on the controversy was sought last month immediately after the bombshell sexual harassment and assault allegations against Lauer were made public, but at the time, Couric said that while the news was "incredibly upsetting," she wasn't ready to talk about it.
Couric, 61, and Lauer hosted the "Today" show together for 15 years.
Couric told People that the allegations have been painful for her to learn, and that she had no idea such activity was going on during her "Today" tenure. Couric said that she and Lauer had a "brother-sister" relationship and that he treated her with respect. She also addressed a 2012 clip of her on Andy Cohen's late-night show when she said Lauer pinched her on the buttocks a lot. Couric told People the comment was a joke.
Couric called the allegations made against her former co-host "disturbing, distressing and disorienting” and said such behavior is “completely unacceptable.”