Imagine being Billy Bush. Imagine being a full-grown man who goes by the name of “Billy.” Imagine being born into one of America’s most prominent families, landing a cush job with help from your privileged upbringing, and getting canned because your employers found out your brain is filled with nothing but Easter grass patted into the shape of some boobs.
Then. Imagine getting a $10 million settlement for your trouble, to be delivered to your gummy Bush hands in a lump sum.
It has been one week since a leaked Access Hollywood tape revealed Trump and Bush yuckin’ it up about violating women, and the blowback has been swift and rightfully brutal. Bush might not be running for president, but his employers at NBC were less than impressed with his role in the exchange, and promptly announced that he’d be suspended from his job at Today.
Bush is fighting back, having secured the services of lawyer Marshall Grossman, who argued that his client was just doing his job by guffawing along with Old Hairplug as he gleefully recounted grabbing women by the genitals. “If Billy had been passive or responded ‘Shut the f— up’ to Trump, Billy would have been out of a job the next day,” Grossman told The Hollywood Reporter.
According to Page Six, negotiations are still being ironed out—the number currently being bandied about the internet is $10 million, though Grossman insists a deal hasn’t been reached. From CNN Money:
Grossman said on Saturday, “The negotiations are productive in moving the parties away from litigation to resolution. Obviously there is more to be done before all of the terms of an agreement are reached and documented.”
The tabloid adds that Bush will likely not be extended the same “soft landing” enjoyed by other fallen anchors like Brian Williams. In fact, Bush’s office has reportedly already been ordered cleared out, with all “traces of him” to be scrubbed away.
Bush’s contract was reportedly worth more than $3 million per year for the next three years. The complexities of television are such that even if the settlement is slightly less—say, $9 million—he’ll still make out with much more than he deserves.
Understandably, others at the network are ripshit. From CNN:
“Everyone is so mad that he’s getting paid,” a high-ranking “Today” show staffer said. But the morning show is a profit engine, and “he’s another person paid to go away to keep the train moving.”
Getting paid $10 million just to go away? This is already Trump’s America.