Billy Bush Negotiating Exit From NBC’s “Today” Show After Lewd Tape

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Four days after the explosive Donald J. Trump “Access Hollywood” tape was made public, Billy Bush is negotiating his exit from NBC.

Mr. Bush and NBC are working out the terms of his departure from “Today,” which may come in the next few days, according to two people briefed on the plans.

It would be a swift fall for Mr. Bush after a brief tenure as a host in the 9 a.m. hour of the show. He joined “Today” this summer.

In the videotape from 2005, which was filmed during the taping of an “Access Hollywood” segment, Mr. Bush laughs and goads Mr. Trump as he speaks about women in vulgar and lewd terms, claiming he tried to have sex with the woman who was then Mr. Bush’s co-host.

Mr. Bush, 44, apologized on Friday evening, and throughout the weekend NBC officials maintained they had no plans to discipline him. As late as Sunday morning, the plan was for Mr. Bush go on “Today” on Monday and address the controversy, saying something along the lines of the statement he released on Friday, in which he said he was “ashamed.’’

But the backlash was significant. Mr. Bush’s Facebook page was deluged with thousands of angry comments. Two women that Mr. Bush and Mr. Trump discussed in the tape — the former “Access Hollywood” host Nancy O’Dell and the “Days of Our Lives” actress Arianne Zucker — released statements over the weekend expressing their disappointment.

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SOURCE: NY Times, John Koblin

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