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The Great Smoky Mountain Journal

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Posted: Sunday, January 21, 2018 07:25 PM

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OPED: Matt Lauer's Firing By NBC Not Shocking To Those Who Knew What Was Going On Including FNC's Melissa Francis

Matt Lauer's firing by NBC News came as a shock to many, but not to Fox Business Network host Melissa Francis, who says she knew of issues at NBC, where she used to work.

"These people exist at every network," she said, reiterating a point she made in TV interviews in April when she was asked repeatedly about Bill O'Reilly's firing by Fox News.

The number of women claiming Lauer was sexually inappropriate has grown to "as many as eight," with one woman accusing Lauer of sexual assaulting her in his office in 2001.

The woman, who was married and in her 40s at the time, alleges that Lauer summoned her into his office and locked the door from a button at his desk.

The New York Times reported:

The woman said Mr. Lauer asked her to unbutton her blouse, which she did. She said the anchor then stepped out from behind his desk, pulled down her pants, bent her over a chair and had intercourse with her. At some point, she said, she passed out with her pants pulled halfway down. She woke up on the floor of his office, and Mr. Lauer had his assistant take her to a nurse.
Francis, who worked at CNBC before coming to FBN, said when she was at NBC she knew of colleagues who were victims of sexual abuse.

She said one female colleague came to her in tears about an incident, but didn't want to notify management because she doubted any action would be taken and feared a negative impact on her career in the industry.

"There were others who were assaulted and who were harassed," she told Tucker Carlson, adding that the alleged perpetrators are still at NBC or are now at other networks.

"It's not an NBC problem, it's not a Fox problem, it's a worldwide problem. ... It's not about any political persuasion," said Francis.