Not here today.
Definitely gone tomorrow?
As previously reported, Billy Bush has been temporarily suspended from his job as co-host of the third hour of The Today Show.
This decision was reportedly made on Sunday by Noah Oppenheim, the executive in charge of the NBC morning show, who wrote the following:
"I know we've all been deeply troubled by the revelations of the past 48 hours.
"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."
The tape in question, of course, is footage from 2005 that was obtained and released online last Friday by The Washington Post.
It features Donald Trump and Bush aboard an Access Hollywood bus, unaware they are wearing live microphones, on their way to the set of Days of Our Lives.
As they approach actress Arianne Zucker, Bush is heard on the tape saying this to Trump:
"Sheesh, your girl's hot as sh-t. In the purple."
Bush then adds:
"Yes! The Donald has scored."
Bush's comments came on the heels of Trump telling him that a "star" is permitted to do anything with a woman, such as "grab" them by the "pussy."
It's all very disgusting and gross and just... lame. Who talks like either of the idiots on THIS TAPE?
In light of the scandal, sources tell People Magazine that Bush may never return to his post at The Today Show.
According to the insider, Bush “hasn’t really endeared himself to the rest of the cast and crew... so they’re fine with him leaving, if that’s what the decision is."
Bush had another embarrassing incident this summer when he defended Ryan Lochte, despite the swimmer very clearly having lied about getting robbed at gunpoint in Brazil.
"Ever since Lochte, a lot of people have thought that he was a liability anyway,” says the People insider of Bush, expounding:
“Tamron [Hall] doesn’t like him and they have always been uncomfortable around each other. Al [Roker] doesn’t speak to him, like at all. There is no love lost there.
"Matt [Lauer] is okay with him, not friends, but okay. He doesn’t have much of a relationship with Savannah [Guthrie]. So it won’t be a loss to any of them personally if he doesn’t come back."
Early in today's broadcast of the morning program, Savannah Guthrie addressed the awkward situation on set.
"We want to note one other thing. Pending further review of the matter, NBC News has suspended Billy Bush as the host of Today's third hour for his role in that conversation with Donald Trump," she said on air.
The question facing producers now is whether or not Bush can ever be seen again as professional, or as a neutral journalist.
It's unclear how that can possibly be the case.
“The network and producers are going to have to decide if he’s such a liability that they have to take stronger action,” says the source. “Does anyone tune in to Today to watch Billy? Probably not really. So if he leaves, it’s not a big deal.”
Seriously, Mario Lopez is just sitting at home, Today, waiting for your call.
Not long after the scandalous video hit the Internet last week, Bush released an apology that reads as follows:
"Obviously I’m embarrassed and ashamed. 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."
That's all he could really say, given the situation.
But will it be too little, too late?