Matt Lauer made headlines today, November 29th, after being fired from NBC over allegations of sexual misconduct in the workplace. And while many are shocked, a look back shows that Lauer has behaved questionably toward women in the past to varying degrees. In fact, in her recent memoir, What Happened, Hillary Clinton wrote she was “ticked off” at Lauer for his line of questioning at the Commander-in-Chief Forum before the 2016 election.
In the book, Clinton noted that Lauer focussed intently on her private email server, repeatedly returning to the topic even after it had been thoroughly discussed — all while throwing relatively easy questions Donald Trump’s way.
Clinton wasn’t the only one disappointed by Lauer’s line of questioning. All in all, Lauer spent one-third of Clinton’s allotted 30 minutes questioning her about her emails, which meant she had little time to discuss complex issues like terrorism or the economy.
Critics also pointed out that Lauer continually interrupted Clinton, but not Trump.
Some also noted that Lauer failed to fact-check Trump’s claim that he had always opposed the war in Iraq — which would have been a relatively easy point to tackle. Twitter users expressed frustration with Lauer’s performance, accusing him of sloppy journalism.
While we will never know how much Lauer’s line of questioning in this forum affected the outcome of the presidential election, it serves as a reminder that women in politics are still subjected to unfair biases, and perhaps even indicates that Lauer was himself biased against a female candidate — a theory that holds weight in light of recent allegations.