Going there: Katie Couric opens up about her storied career, Matt Lauer, Sarah Palin, and more

After more than 40 years in broadcasting, Katie Couric has done it all. 

She’s co-hosted Today, hosted her own syndicated talk show, and was the first woman to solo anchor a network nightly news broadcast. Along the way, she’s interviewed everyone from Presidents to Brad Pitt. She even had a colonoscopy on live TV.

With so many stories to tell, Couric is topping the New York Times Bestsellers list with her new memoir "Going There," a "brutally honest" story of "a girl next door turned household name."

This week, Couric joins Elex Michaelson on "The Issue Is" to discuss the highs and lows of her time in media, navigating grief after losing her husband, her complicated relationship with former co-host Matt Lauer, her infamous interview with Sarah Palin, and much, much more.



COURIC’S CENTRAL TAKE: "I think for a lot of people, they are categorized, and somehow if you're funny, or friendly and outgoing, that you're perky, which I think, of course, was an adjective I got saddled with. I think it was sort of diminishing of my abilities and pretty sexist, probably too, because I don't think men are called perky... I've always felt comfortable with both of my sides, my "Katherine" side and my "Katie" side, but I think it was hard for other people to sometimes square those two aspects of my personality... I have this big, gummy, lopsided smile and I AM super outgoing and personable, I mean, that's just my personality, it always has been, but that shouldn't negate the fact that I'm also intelligent and think deeply about topics and can be as tough as as you can, Elex, when you're doing a big interview…"



COURIC’S CENTRAL TAKE: "It's very complicated, Elex, and I think that, you know, I really did appreciate Matt's friendship, but it was, you know, it was, I would say, it was a contained friendship. I write about that dinner we had and feeling closer to him that night than I had in a long time - now looking back on it, and as I write, it was clear that he was quite nervous about what was to come, and I was just pretty clueless about this other side of him. I hadn't been at NBC since 2006. I was not aware that he was involved in these relationships at work, I think he was extremely discreet, bordering on secretive. And so there was this side of Matt that I really didn't know existed… As I got more and more information as time went on, I started realizing how abhorrent his behavior was. I think probably he thinks that I should have reached out to him and supported him more privately, if not publicly, but it was really hard for me to square the incoming information, and as I got more information and read more and heard more, it was really hard for me to kind of be both supportive of him and supportive of the women that he had mistreated…"



COURIC’S CENTRAL TAKE: "That was the most difficult chapter to write because, I think because I always leaned on the side of hope, and always tried to say "we're going to figure this out, we're going to fix this," that it didn't give us space to properly say goodbye... I just really struggled with that, and I still struggle with that today, and I think you read that play out in the book. I think in retrospect, if we had gotten some help either from a social worker or a therapist or somebody to kind of how do you navigate when your whole life just falls apart?... It just was very, very difficult, I think, and I felt a lot of guilt about the way I handled it, and I think something we don't talk about as a culture, you know, we don't talk about death and mortality, and it's too scary for people, and I hope this opens up a conversation for people so maybe if they're facing a similar situation, they can navigate it better than I did…"



COURIC’S CENTRAL TAKE: "Nothing is more insulting, I think, than having someone who's unprepared. Then I think you want to really come up with questions that will elicit interesting answers.... Try to ask questions that will help us understand how people think, that aren't predictable, that will illuminate somebody, that will give them a chance to share something that they haven't shared before.... When you're doing an interview, the impulse is to jump in, especially if there's a lull in the action, and sometimes you just need to sit patiently and let someone talk…"


The Issue Is: with Elex Michaelson is California's only statewide political show. For showtimes and more information, go to TheIssueIsShow.com.