Paula Deen Just Bailed on Matt Lauer, Y’all
Paula Deen reportedly bailed on a scheduled interview with TODAY’s Matt Lauer early Friday morning as controversy continues to build over her admitted use of racial slurs in the past.
“We had planned to have an exclusive live interview with Paula Deen this morning. She finds herself in a very difficult situation,” Lauer said early on in the broadcast.
We spoke several times with her people yesterday and then I spoke with Paula yesterday afternoon. We arranged an interview this morning. We agreed there would be no restrictions to that interview, only that it would be an open and candid exchange. She told me at one point … ‘I don’t know how to be anything but honest.’ I said, ‘Fine.’ She got on a plane, arrived in New York City last night. And then we started to hear from her people that she’s exhausted.
It was at this point in which co-anchor Savannah Guthrie asked Lauer if someone from the show has been in touch with her this morning.
“We have not,” he said. “She has not called us at all this morning. Her publicity person and I spoke a little while ago. [They] simply said, ‘[We] believe she is in the hotel.’ But she has not confirmed anything other than that she is not here.”
About an hour ago, Lauer added on his Twitter:
Hoping to get more info on the Paula Deen situation soon. Very confusing.
In May 19 deposition, filed Monday in U.S. District Court, Deen admitted to using the N-word at various times in her life.
The deposition is part of a discrimination lawsuit filed last year by Lisa Jackson, a former manager of Uncle Bubba’s Seafood and Oyster House, who claims she was sexually harassed and worked in an environment filled with innuendo and racial slurs.
Deen and her brother, Bubba Hiers, own the restaurant.