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WATCH: Matt Lauer grills Bill O'Reilly about sexual harassment allegations in recent interview

Wednesday morning began with a bombshell announcement from NBC as they revealed that Matt Lauer was fired amid sexual misconduct allegations. In September, Lauer scored a coveted interview with Bill O’Reilly just after the Fox News star’s fall from fame amid similar allegations.

>> Watch the interview here

In the interview, Lauer took a tough line of questioning with O’Reilly, repeatedly asking about the sexual harassment accusations against him. At one point, he asked O’Reilly point blank, “Did you ever send a lewd text or email to another employee at Fox News?” Moments later, he followed up by asking O’Reilly about Fox making financial settlements with women accusing the host of sexual harassment.

>> Geraldo Rivera apologizes after tweeting defense of Matt Lauer

The interview continued in a tense vein; when Lauer asked O’Reilly if he had done any “soul searching,” the former Fox News icon replied, “My conscience is clear.” O’Reilly insisted that the decision to let him go from the network was purely a business move and blamed left-wing groups like Media Matters for his downfall. He went on to say, “This was a hit job, a political and financial hit job.”

>> Matt Lauer fired over allegations of inappropriate workplace behavior

At the time, the "Today" host was praised for not giving O’Reilly any easy questions, but the Washington PostMashable and other news outlets pointed out Wednesday that the interview looks a lot different now given the allegations against Lauer.

>> Read more trending news

Read more here.

Geraldo Rivera apologizes after tweeting defense of Matt Lauer

Following Matt Lauer’s bombshell firing Wednesday from NBC amid sexual misconduct allegations, a well-known Fox News host came to his defense.

>> Matt Lauer fired over allegations of inappropriate workplace behavior

“Sad about @MLauer great guy, highly skilled & empathetic w guests & a real gentleman to my family & me,” Geraldo Rivera tweeted later that afternoon. “News is a flirty business & it seems like current epidemic of #SexHarassmentAllegations may be criminalizing courtship & conflating it w predation.”

>> See the tweet here

After receiving backlash for the tweet, Rivera went on to defend his comments.

>>  Here's what to do if you are sexually harassed at work

“A jerk’s a jerk in dating. #SexHarassment should be confined to situations where superior imposes himself on subordinate who feels unable to complain because of power of perp or feared consequences to victim’s employment. Shouldn’t be used to get even w bad bosses or hated ex’s,” he wrote in one before continuing, “Heard well-regarded women in media today suggesting morning shows go to an all-female format. That should be as unacceptably retro as the other way around.”

Rivera then outlined the requirements he believes sexual harassment allegations should meet before they’re taken seriously.

>> Matt Lauer firing has people wondering what Tamron Hall, Ann Curry are up to

“#SexHarassment allegations should require: 1-made in a timely fashion-say w/n 5 yrs. 2-some contemporaneous corroboration, like witnesses, electronic or written communications. W $ settlements in multi-millions slight chance exists some victims are motivated by more than justice,” he tweeted and then added, “This issue is so red hot right now there is no room for any thought or opinion but hang em high. If News wasn’t (formerly) a flirty biz then how do we explain so many newsroom courtships that have led to happy marriages?”

Following uproar surrounding Rivera’s tweets, Fox News released the following statement:

Late Wednesday, Rivera apologized for his comments.

>> Matt Lauer fired: A timeline of his career

"Reaction to my tweets today on #sexharassment makes clear I didn't sufficiently explain that this is a horrendous problem long hidden," he wrote, calling harassers "deviants who deserve what is coming to them."

>> Read more trending news

He continued: "Often victims are too frightened to come forward in a timely fashion. I humbly apologize."

>> See the apology here

Read more here.

– The Cox Media Group National Content Desk contributed to this report.

President Trump gloats after Matt Lauer fired

It’s a somber day on “The Today Show” for Matt Lauer’s shocked co-hosts after he was abruptly terminated after more than 20 years over allegations of inappropriate sexual conduct – but President Donald Trump is taking to Twitter commenting on it.

Official reports have specified few details.

>> Read more trending news

“On Monday night, we received a detailed complaint from a colleague about inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace by Matt Lauer. As a result, we’ve decided to terminate his employment,” the show said in a statement.

MORE: What we know about the ex-Atlanta woman who tried to plant fake Roy Moore tip

The interview Matt Lauer conducted with Ryan Lochte after Olympic antics

Will #MeToo movement lead to lasting change?

Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb took their usual spots with nothing like their usual lighthearted banter.

“Right now we do not know more than what I just shared with you,” Guthrie said after she read the entire statement. “I’m heartbroken.”

Her voice sounding shaky, Guthrie said she felt for both Lauer, her longtime friend and colleague, and the person who lodged the complaint.

Trump was less nuanced in his response:

Twitter reacts to Matt Lauer firing: Trump rejoices, colleagues dismayed

Posted Wednesday, November 29, 2017 by RODNEY HO/rho@ajc.com on his AJC Radio & TV Talk blog

While sexual misconduct crosses party lines, reaction to news of Matt Lauer’s firing over “inappropriate sexual behavior” became political almost from the moment the news came out this morning, starting from the top.

At 7:16 a.m., Donald Trump tweeted with: “Wow, Matt Lauer was just fired from NBC for “inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace.” But when will the top executives at NBC & Comcast be fired for putting out so much Fake News. Check out Andy Lack’s past!”

>> Read more trending news 

Lack is NBC News chairman and Comcast owns NBC.

Ana Navarro, a contributor for CNN, ABC and Telemundo, wrote on Twitter that Trump is still president despite multiple sexual allegations against him while plenty of others have lost their jobs:

Variety reporter Elizabeth Wagmeister wrote on Twitter that she and Ramin Setoodeh have been working on a story about “far ranging accusations” against Lauer from multiple women for months. “The power of journalism has never been more evident with this cultural change,” she wrote, acknowledging how quickly men in multiple industries have lost their jobs soon after such accusations became public, starting with former movie mogul Harvey Weinstein last month.

And Keith Whitney, a reporter who had been based in Atlanta, posted on Twitter that rumors about Lauer have been floating around for a decade.

And while tabloids don’t always get it right, InTouch Weekly wrote about Lauer’s possible firing on its cover a few weeks ago:

At 9 a.m., Lauer’s former colleague Megyn Kelly said this: “Matt has been kind and supportive to me in my transition to NBC News. I see the anguish on my colleagues’ faces. But what we don’t see, is the pain on the faces of those who had the courage to come forward.”

Billy Bush hospitalized after being hit on the head with a golf ball

Former “Today” anchor Billy Bush is recovering after reportedly being hit on the head by a golf ball.

>> Read more trending news

Bush was briefly hospitalized in Los Angeles following the accident and documented the entire ordeal for fans on Instagram. He even posed for a few selfies with Ceders-Sinai Medical Center employees. It is unclear if he had to spend a night in the hospital or was released after he received care.

“FORE!! Thanks nurse Katrina, jovi, Jenn, Mercy @cedarssinai for the bed, the care, the ice,” he wrote alongside a series of photos. “I think I dodged a bullet…but sadly not a golf ball. Scan is clear, let the jokes begin #putmedownforpar.”

>> See the post here

Bush was let go from “Today” in October 2016 after infamous tapes of the anchor with then-presidential candidate Donald Trump surfaced from a 2005 taping of “Access Hollywood.”

Following Bush’s departure, Matt Lauer addressed viewers during a taping of “Today.”

“NBC News announced last night that Billy Bush would be leaving the ‘Today’ show effective immediately, noting that he was a valued colleague and longtime member of the broader NBC family,” Lauer said at the time. “A statement Billy released separately last night read in part, ‘I look forward toward what lies ahead.’ Of course, all of us here at ‘Today’ wish Billy the very best.”

(H/T TMZ)

Soul Train Awards 2017: Complete winners list

Bruno Mars won big at the 2017 Soul Train Awards, taking home five awards. Check out the full list of winners from the show, which aired Sunday night on BET:

>> PHOTOS: Soul Train Awards 2017 red carpet

>> PHOTOS: Soul Train Awards 2017 show

  • Don Cornelius Legend Award: Toni Braxton
  • Lady of Soul Award: SWV
  • Best New Artist: SZA
  • Best R&B/Soul Male Artist: Bruno Mars
  • Best R&B/Soul Female Artist: SZA
  • Soul Train Certified Award: Bell Biv Devoe, Ledisi
  • Video of the Year: Bruno Mars, "24k Magic"
  • Best Gospel/Inspirational Award: Lecrae
  • Album/Mixtape of the Year: Bruno Mars, "24k Magic"
  • Rhythm & Bars Award: Cardi B, "Bodak Yellow"
  • Song of the Year: Bruno Mars, "That's What I Like"
  • The Ashford & Simpson Songwriter's Award: Troy L. John, Solange Knowles and Raphael Saadiq, "Cranes in the Sky"
  • Best Dance Performance: Bruno Mars, "24k Magic"
  • Best Collaboration: DJ Khaled, "Wild Thoughts (feat. Rihanna and Bryson Tiller) in the Sky"

>> Read more trending news

Photos: Soul Train Awards 2017 show

Check out some memorable moments from the 2017 Soul Train Awards. The show, filmed Nov. 5, aired Nov. 26 on BET.

Photos: Soul Train Awards 2017 red carpet

Check out some of the most memorable looks from the 2017 Soul Train Awards red carpet. The show, filmed Nov. 5, aired Nov. 26 on BET.

WATCH: Rance Howard appeared alongside son Ron in these 'Andy Griffith Show' clips

Decades before he died Saturday at age 89, Rance Howard made appearances alongside his son, Ron Howard, on the iconic "Andy Griffith Show.”

>> Rance Howard, father of director Ron Howard, dead at 89

In one memorable scene, a young Ron Howard, starring as Opie Taylor, walked into the Mayberry sheriff’s office to find his real-life dad sitting across from him. In a blooper from the familiar scene from “A Black Day for Mayberry,” Opie enters the office and asks Barney about Paul, who Barney says “stepped out.” But off to the sideline sit the “T” Men, one of whom is played by Rance Howard.

>> Watch the clip here

>> PHOTOS: Notable deaths 2017

In another scene from episode “Barney and the Governor,” Rance Howard makes another appearance on his son’s show as a chauffeur, who parks the governor’s car near a “No Parking” sign. Barney is eventually goaded into writing the governor a parking ticket. He hands over the ticket to Rance Howard, who smiles, gets back into the car and drives away.

>> Watch the clip here

>> Read more trending news 

Ron Howard announced his father's death Saturday via a statement on Twitter, writing, “Clint & I have been blessed to be Rance Howard’s sons. Today he passed at 89. He stood especially tall 4 his ability to balance ambition w/great personal integrity. A depression-era farm boy, his passion for acting changed the course of our family history. We love & miss U Dad.”

>> See the tweet here

In addition to his two sons, Rance Howard, whose wife, Judy, died in January, is survived by granddaughters Bryce Dallas Howard and Paige Howard.

Tom Baker to make cameo appearance in lost 'Doctor Who' episode

Tom Baker, who starred in “Doctor Who” from 1974 to 1981, is returning to the BBC’s cult television series in a cameo role in a completed version of an episode that was never finished, the New Musical Express reported.

>> Read more trending news

Baker, 83, will appear in “Shada,” an episode that was left unfinished 38 years ago. Baker starred as the fourth Doctor in the long-running series.

Baker said the Doctor character “probably never left me.”

“That’s why I can’t say away from it, it was a lovely time of my life,” he told the BBC.

“Shada” is available to buy as a digital download and is set for release on DVD and Blu-ray on Dec. 4, the New Musical Express reported.

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