Matt Lauer's public popularity may be in the dumps, but he still has at least one ally on "Today": Kathie Lee Gifford.
The co-host of "Today's" boozy fourth hour recently attempted to show support for the embattled Lauer by circulating a letter expressing kind words and staff love, according to a report in the New York Daily News.
The letter, which Gifford had planned to publish as a full-page ad in USA Today before Lauer put a stop to it, was filled with signatures of "Today" staffers, including Al Roker, Hoda Kotb and Savannah Guthrie. The list stretched on for seven pages. But not among the names, according to the Daily News, was Ann Curry's.
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Curry, who was ousted from the plum co-host role last summer, remains with NBC News, but has only appeared on-air a handful of times since her teary-eyed departure from the "Today" couch. Many have pinned the blame on Curry's awkward transition on Lauer, whose reported discomfort working with her helped contribute to her demotion.
"Today" has been in the ratings doldrums of late, with the once mighty NBC morning show now regularly coming in second behind ABC's "Good Morning America."
The letter read: "We the people of the 'Today' show who work side by side, day by day, year in and year out with Matt Lauer are tired of unfounded and unrelenting stories by faceless characters regarding his character and reputation. No one has coerced us to sign this. With our signatures we stand in support of our colleague and friend."
Though Lauer politely asked Gifford not to publish the letter, he's not above poking fun at himself in public. At a broadcasting event earlier this month, Lauer joked that he was now less popular than polio. ALSO: Matt Lauer jokes that he's less popular than polio
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