NBC Execs Are Sending Billy Bush ‘On A Break’ Following The Release Of His Lewd Discussion With Trump

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump surprised many by apologizing for his remarks in leaked audio from a 2005 interview with Billy Bush for Access Hollywood. The real estate mogul, reality TV star, and now would-be leader of the free world brushed off his extremely offensive and misogynistic comments about grabbing women by their genitalia as “locker room talk” before issuing a rare mea culpa. Bush, on the other hand, perhaps sensing the impending doom facing his career, was much humbler in his own apology — claiming to be “embarrassed and ashamed.”

Bush also subtly nudged Trump under the bus — “I was younger, less mature, and acted foolishly in playing along” — but the damage is done. Amazingly, though, the damage seems much more significant for Bush than it is for Trump, even as polls indicate that voters don’t believe the GOP candidate respects women. Bush, as expected, has been suspended by NBC:

“I know we’ve all been deeply troubled by the revelations of the past 48 hours,” Noah Oppenheim, senior vice president in charge of “Today,” said in a memo to staffers. “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.” (Via the Los Angeles Times)

As you can see in the above clip, Al Roker joined Tamron Hall in announcing the news on Monday morning’s edition of Today, as Roker had been scheduled to take the week off. On Saturday, NBC officials said that Bush wouldn’t be suspended or fired, but this reversal seems indicative of the magnitude of outrage. Still, it’s hard not to notice that some organizations take this kind of outrage a little more seriously than others.