Amy Robach, T.J. Holmes out at ABC News
By Matt Collins Article may include affiliate links
Amy Robach and T.J. Holmes, the popular anchors of ABC News’ “Good Morning America” spinoff have reportedly signed exit deals with the network after a workplace scandal over a relationship between the two became public in December 2022.
The deals call for both Robach and Holmes, who haven’t been on air since a few days after the scandal broke, to exit the network.
The pair had been co-anchoring “GMA3: What You Need to Know.” Robach, meanwhile, also anchored “20/20” alongside David Muir.
The scandal started after news broke of the couple’s relationship, which had reportedly been going on for some time before it became public.
The network initially allowed the pair to remain on-air because it did not appear they had broken any workplace policies by apparently not disclosing the relationship to executives.
Normally Disney, ABC’s parent, requires workplace relationships to be disclosed if one person in the relationship is subordinate to the other, among other requirements. As co-anchors of “GMA3” it appeared that Robach and Holmes were essentially on the same level.
ABC took them off the air shortly after, however, and began an internal investigation.
Reports then emerged that Holmes had allegedly had intimate relationships with other co-workers, including at least one junior staffer.
ABC and Holmes have not commented on those allegations.There have been no reports of Robach engaging in other workplace relationships.
Both Holmes and Robach remain married to other people, though both had separated from their respective spouses by the time their relationship became public.
Divorce proceedings continue for both.
Reports earlier in January 2023 indicated the lawyers were hard at work on exit agreements for both anchors.
Proceedings reportedly got heated when Robach was accused of keeping liquor in her dressing room, which is against Disney policy. However, Robach’s team reportedly shot back saying that at least some of the bottles were gifts from ABC executives. ABC also brought up an incident where they reportedly said Robach appeared on-air drunk, something she reportedly denied, saying she was sleep deprived at the time.
The terms of the agreement, including any financial aspects, were not disclosed.
It is typical for these agreements to include at least a partial payout for any time remaining on the talents’ contract as well as strict confidentiality terms.
In some cases there are also restrictive non-compete clauses that can prevent the talent from immediately starting to appear on-air for another outlet within the immediate months following an exit.
Some TV news anchors who were involved in scandals involving alleged workplace relationships have managed to rebuild their careers, though many have not been able to find work again. Most notably is former “Today” anchor Matt Lauer, though he was accused of significant sexual misconduct. Lauer denies the allegations and said all sexual contact was consensual.
As anchors of a network news program who had been at the network for some time, it’s likely both Robach and Holmes were being well compensated — likely in the lower seven figure range. As such, their exit deals could include substantial payouts, depending on how much time was left on their contracts.
ABC also made no mention of the additional accusations against Holmes and if his exit agreement was affected by this. It has also not publicly announced any results of potential investigations into those claims.
ABC said it has not made a decision on who will replace the pair on “GMA3” but continues to broadcast the show under the same name and format with a rotating cast of fill-ins.
Gio Benitez, Stephanie Ramos, Rhiannon Ally and DeMarco Morgan have been some of the more regular ones, making them perhaps some of the likely candidates.
ABC executives may ned to decide whether they want to let the scandal die down before announcing new anchors or do so as soon as possible. An official replacement process would include opening talks with the prospective new co-anchors agents to negotiate terms of a contract.
“GMA3” aired midday or early afternoons, depending on the market and was designed as a “third hour” of “GMA” even though it did not air consecutively with the show’s first two hours.
Originally it replaced “GMA Day,” later known as “Strahan & Sara” and “Strahan, Sara and Keke,” which had more of a talk show-style format, including a studio audience.
b the COVID-19 pandemic started hitting New York in March 2020, the network stopped having studio audiences and switched the show over to the title “Pandemic: What You Need to Know,” and devoting an entire hour to pandemic coverage.
Dr. Jennifer Ashton joined Robach at the time to provide medical analysis and continued to appear on the show as a quasi-third anchor after Holmes signed on.
Meanwhile, some have noted that Robach may have gotten the short of the deal here, assuming the additional accusations against Holmes are true, which has not been verified. Although no one is denying she engaged in a workplace relationship and probably should have reported it executives just to be safe, there haven’t been additional reports of any misconduct on her end with the exception of the claims ABC made that apparently have logical explanations.
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