A new report about the controversial tape of a 2005 conversation between Billy Bush and Donald Trump has one NBC senior VP fired up.
According to PEOPLE, NBC might have considered doctoring the footage before it’s release.
“They could have released the tape and edited him out,” a source claimed. “That was the plan — they were trying to approve it and then someone leaked it. That’s what ‘Access Hollywood’ eventually did and they played it […] but it was already out.”
The source continued, “If they wanted to protect him, they could have edited it out, which they did on the final ‘Access’ piece that aired on Friday, but they left it in when it was leaked.”
Charles Ornstein, a journalist for ProPublica tweeted the PEOPLE article on Tuesday and caught some attention.
“NBC planned to edit Billy Bush out of the Trump footage before releasing it, @people reports. WOW,” Ornstein wrote.
A chief spokesman at NBC News Mark Kornblau retweeted Ornstein and denied the report.
“NOT true of @NBCNews — no way, no how that would have happened,” Kornblau wrote.
Ornstein questioned Kornblau’s denial and he responded again denying the claims.
“PEOPLE report is 100% false. No chance that tape would ever have been edited by @NBCNews. Period,” he said, adding the Twitter handle of the former Business Editor of Mashable, Heidi Moore, who also criticized NBC for possibly editing the footage.
David Folkenflick, a corespondent for NPR quoted Kornblau and clarified comments on Twitter, writing, “revised to clarify: NBC News chief spokesman @MarkKornblau says news devision would not have excirsed Billy Bush from Trump tapes coverage.”
Korblau also responded to claims that NBC News “sat on the tape.”
“Nobody at @NBCNews sat on the tape. We reported it quickly and responsibly,” he wrote.
Meanwhile, social media users are speculating that Bush will be let go from “TODAY” once and for all.
One Twitter user tweeted a photo of the digital billboard outside of 30 Rock in New York City as evidence that he may be gone for good.
“Billy Bush already wiped off the digital billboards outside of 30 ROCK,” Mark Graham wrote.
Folkenflik retweeted Graham’s photo and added, “An NBC source tells me Billy Bush’s departure a matter of days. Visible (if suggestive) evidence from @unclegrambo.”