Donald Trump’s 2005 interview with then “Access Hollywood” reporter, Billy Bush, caught the reporter on video and audio agreeing with many of Trumps vulgar statements. It didn’t exactly reflect well on him or NBC.
Bush, now a co-host of the “Today Show,” has been suspended and there is talk of making the suspension indefinite, and as a result, Bush is circling a lawyer wagon around him. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Bush would have been fired from “Access Hollywood” if he didn’t go along with Trump’s sexual comments.
“If Billy had been passive or responded ‘Shut the f— up’ to Trump, Billy would have been out of a job the next day,” litigator Marshall Grossman explained. Bush was an employee of NBC Universal at the time and Grossman explains that he wasn’t in a position to fire back against another NBC star like Trump.
Grossman joined Bush’s legal team this week and is best known for representing Steven Spielberg and Clint Eastwood in legal matters before.
Bush is currently in negotiations with NBC over the terms of his exit from the network and earns approximately $3 million a year. Bush is also on record talking about his conversation with Trump as far back as August while covering the Olympics. However, NBC higher-ups like chairman Andy Lack and Today Show Senior Vice President Noah Oppenheim didn’t have any knowledge of the tape before it was released.
“NBC News did exactly what you would expect from a great news organization,” an NBC spokesperson said in a statement after the tape was released. “As soon as we saw the tape and made the assessment it was undoubtedly newsworthy, we moved quickly and deliberately to get it published and to do so in the most responsible way.”
At the same time, Bush is coming under fire from Trump’s supporters, claiming he was the source of the leak. Buzz Feed writer Anne Helen Peterson tweeted that Trump supporters believe that Bush is the source of the leak. Bush is a cousin of Jeb Bush, who Trump notoriously bullied through the Republican primaries. Distant relative and former President George H. W. Bush and his wife Barbara have both denounced Trump and indicated that they will not be supporting their party’s nominee this year.
Trump’s next 100 days will dictate whether he can be re-elected or not — here’s why
According to CNN pollster-in-residence Harry Enten, Donald Trump's next 100 days -- which could include an impeachment trial in the Senate -- will hold the key to whether he will remain president in 2020.
As Eten explains in a column for CNN, "His [Trump's] approval rating has been consistently low during his first term. Yet his supporters could always point out that approval ratings before an election year have not historically been correlated with reelection success. But by mid-March of an election year, approval ratings, though, become more predictive. Presidents with low approval ratings in mid-March of an election year tend to lose, while those with strong approval ratings tend to win in blowouts and those with middling approval ratings usually win by small margins."
After Trump: No free pass for Republicans — they own this nightmare
With the impeachment inquiry leveling up this month as public hearings begin, and with an election that might actually be the end of Donald Trump now less than a year away, the campaign to let Trump's Republican allies — even the most villainous offenders — move on and pretend this never happened is already underway.
This article first appeared in Salon.
Sadly, the clearest articulation of the let-bygones-be-bygones mentality has come from a Democrat — unsurprisingly, former Vice President Joe Biden.Biden, who is still, somehow, the frontrunner in Democratic primary polling, spoke at a chi-chi fundraiser on Wednesday, and dropped this pearl of wisdom: "With Donald Trump out of the way, you’re going to see a number of my Republican colleagues have an epiphany."
As climate crisis-fueled fires rage, fears grow of an ‘uninhabitable’ California
As activist Bill McKibben put it, "We've simply got to slow down the climate crisis."
With wildfires raging across California on Wednesday—and with portions of the state living under an unprecedented "Extreme Red Flag Warning" issued by the National Weather Service due to the severe conditions—some climate experts are openly wondering if this kind of harrowing "new normal" brought on by the climate crisis could make vast regions of the country entirely uninhabitable.