Matt Lauer reportedly thinks enough time has gone by for no one to care any longer that he's an (alleged) rapist and (alleged) serial sexual harasser.
The disgraced former Today Show host is (allegedly) plotting his return to television.
Lauer, of course, was fired by NBC in November after allegations from an ex-Today staffer surfaced in which she accused Lauer of acting in a very inappropriate manner toward her.
At the time, NBC News Chairman Andrew Lack said he and his fellow executives didn't hesitate to make this decision... largely because they had reason to believe Lauer had acted in a very inappropriate manner on many occasions.
Toward many ex and current staffers.
This is what Lack said upon canning the long-time anchor:
On Monday night, we received a detailed complaint from a colleague about inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace by Matt Lauer. It represented, after serious review, a clear violation of our company’s standards.
As a result, we’ve decided to terminate his employment.
While it is the first complaint about his behavior in the over twenty years he’s been at NBC News, we were also presented with reason to believe this may not have been an isolated incident.
Since this development, numerous other reports have detailed a handful of Lauer's supposedly heinous actions; from gifting interns with sex toys... to carrying on an affair with a subordinate... to, in one case, flat-out raping someone.
We can't say for certain which of these accusations are legitimate and which are inaccurate.
But it's been widely accepted by nearly everyone at this point that Matt Lauer is a rather terrible and egotistical human being who frequently abused his power at NBC.
Whatever, though, Lauer thinks these days!
That was, like, seven months ago!
"Matt and his people think if enough time passes, he will be forgiven,” a source tells Radar Online, adding:
"He believes the only thing he’s guilty of was engaging in a consensual affair in the office.
"His view is that he was unfairly caught up in the rash of #MeToo abusers and did nothing that merited getting fired."
We'd LOVE to see Lauer make this argument in public.
For the first few months after he got fired, Lauer basically lived in exile, hanging out around his house in Long Island and staying far out of the spotlight.
More recently, however, he's been spotted around NBC’s Rockefeller Center studios in Manhattan, probably just to passive aggressively remind folks in the business that he still exists.
Although this same update claims that Lauer is also being actively aggressive.
“Matt’s been meeting with loads of his former producers, including Deborah Kosofsky - and Don Nash, who was also fired by the show,” an insider tells Radar.
After Hoda Kotb was announced as Lauer's permanent replacement, ratings for Today soared.
But they have since leveled off and the show is once again getting beat each week by Good Morning America.
“Matt believes those numbers should be more than enough to convince the network to bring him back,” the source said, concluding ominously:
"Matt is certain he can work his way back to the top anchor spot in time. He is convinced he’ll be back on TV by the end of the year!"
We'd say this sounds crazy, but have you seen who is in the White House?
Anything is possible.