Despite some major criticism over the last year, it looks like Today's Matt Lauer isn't going anywhere. The veteran anchor recently signed a new contract extending his time on the show until 2018. Lauer's new contract not only extended his time, but it did so at a reported $20 million.
Lauer took a big hit after he moderated the first presidential election earlier in 2016. Many believe that he did not do his part to question the candidates on issues that really mattered. What's more, he was criticized for not pushing Donald Trump on his statements about the Iraq way, as well as spending too much time talking about Hillary Clinton's email scandal, as opposed to other issues.
But despite his failures at the debate, Lauer has been successful driving Today closer to its major competitor, Good Morning America. During his 20 years as a co-anchor on the show, Today has beaten out the competition in the demographics that matter the most to advertisers – the 25-54 age range. This is great news for the show and for NBC in general.
The decision to keep Lauer on longer could also have been influenced by the recent firing of anchor Billy Bush, who many thought was a shoe-in for Lauer's position. Thanks to a leaked tape of Bush and Trump speaking rather negatively about women, the show decided to cut Bush. There is also the issue of current co-host Savannah Guthrie leaving for maternity leave shortly. It's hard to have a show with no hosts.
Congratulations to Lauer on his extended contract. By the end of his run, he will have been co-anchor for an astounding 22 years.