Throughout his controversial run for the White House, Donald Trump has maintained an unusual relationship with NBC and its on-air talent.
Back in the early aughts, the network helped the GOP candidate maintain his household name status with The Apprentice.
But shortly after his presidential campaign kicked off in June of 2015, NBC severed ties with Trump in response to the real estate mogul’s outrageous statements about immigrants from Mexico.
It seemed as though Trump and NBC would remain at odds for the remainder of this election season, but in the past few weeks, the relationship between the real estate mogul and the struggling network took an odd turn.
First, Today anchor Matt Lauer was accused of displaying a pro-Trump bias during September’s Commander-in-Chief Forum.
Shortly thereafter, Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon was widely criticized for helping to humanize Trump in a jocular interview loaded with softball questions.
Not long after that, NBC Nightly News anchor and debate moderator Lester Holt took serious flak for allowing Trump to interrupt Hillary Clinton and generally run rough-shod over the evening’s format during the candidate’s first head-to-head debate.
Many believed that NBC was guilty of overcompensating, so as not to appear at odds with a candidate who was never expected to become a major party nominee, and whom the network butted heads with early in his primary run.
Then, last week, one of the biggest bombshells of this election year dropped in the form of footage in which Trump appears to boast about acts of sexual assault.
Once again, NBC was directly involved.
The shocking video (seen below) featured Trump bragging about groping and harassing women in a conversation with Access Hollywood host Billy Bush, while on the set of the long-running soap opera Days of Our Lives.