Nightly News | June 26, 2013
>>> as we said, new fallout in the ongoing saga involving paula deen . a former employee who is white, sued her for discrimination. in a deposition, deen admitted to using a racial slur . after a no-show, she sat down with matt lauer on "today." our report tonight from katy tur.
>> reporter: almost a week after she called in sick for her "today" show appearance, it was a contrite paula deen that sat down for an interview with matt lauer .
>> there were hurtful lies said about me.
>> reporter: the self-proclaimed queen of southern cooking tried to stir up damage control after admitting she used a racial slur in the past.
>> i'll ask you bluntly. are you a racist?
>> no. no i'm not.
>> so the fact that you were asked in that deposition whether you had used the "n" word on other occasions, probably, or of course are inaccurate?
>> no. i answered the question truthfully.
>> reporter: at her restaurant in savannah, her fans offered support.
>> i thought was a sincere apology.
>> we all say things that we don't mean.
>> reporter: deen's business is suffering. she has lost business with food network , home depot , smithfield foods , and walmart.
>> when you deal with a racial issue in this country, it makes sponsors very afraid, it makes businesses run.
>> reporter: also in jeopardy, her cookbooks many multiple restaurants, merchandise, and endorsement deals. experts say it's all at risk.
>> even if you don't care about food or paula deen , a great case study in how words can come back and haunt successful people.
>> i have apologized. i would never -- never, and i can truly say in my life, i have never with any intention hurt anybody on purpose. i is what i is. and i'm not changing.
>> reporter: katy tur, nbc news, new york.