GB News has suspended a third presenter as the fallout over misogynistic comments made on the channel continues.
The Rev Calvin Robinson has been taken off air after he posted comments on social media supporting Dan Wootton, who had already been suspended along with the former actor Laurence Fox.
Rev Robinson, a deacon in the Free Church of England, said Wootton was being targeted by “careerist ambitious” people “who are currently gunning for his job”.
He also took aim at GB News bosses, saying they were “afraid of Ofcom, afraid of the woke mob and afraid they’re going to run out of money unless they manage to sort this advertising problem out”.
Three hours after posting the message on X, formerly Twitter, he announced: “I have been suspended from GB News.”
Wootton and Fox were suspended earlier in the week after Fox made comments about a female journalist while he was a guest on Dan Wootton Tonight.
He said of Ava Evans, who works for the Politics Joe website, “Who would want to shag that?”
Fox has since issued an apology to Ms Evans for his “demeaning” comments but said he expected to be sacked.
Wootton was suspended for allowing Fox to make the comments unchallenged and for failing to apologise to viewers and Ms Evans on air.
Rev Robinson said of the decision to suspend Wootton: “These people are worse than the woke mob because these vultures are giving the mob ammunition and essentially escalating the channel’s demise.
“GB News is more than a job - it’s certainly more than a chance to be on the telly - it is a mission. An opportunity to shift the dial in public discourse. To have the conversations the shills on other channels cannot or will not have. We must do all we can to avoid GB News becoming just another MSM outlet. Which it will, if we let it.”
On Friday morning, Angelos Frangopoulos, the chief executive of GB News, said he was “appalled” by Fox’s remarks, which prompted 7,300 complaints to the broadcasting regulator Ofcom.
Mr Frangopoulos told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “That should not have happened. The way it was handled was also not the way it should have happened.
“I was appalled by those comments, they are not in keeping with the values with us as a business and obviously we took action immediately.”
He issued a personal apology to Ms Evans, adding: “They (the comments) did not reflect what we believe is appropriate conversation as a media company, as a part of the national conversation, it really is an apology, it was just really inappropriate.”
He said GB News has a “process to follow” but he expects the internal investigation to be “resolved very quickly”.
On Friday evening, Fox accused GB News of putting him through a “show trial” after completing his internal disciplinary hearing.
Fox posted on X, formerly Twitter:
Just completed my @GBNEWS show trial.
I mean disciplinary hearing.
I think the rules are that I can’t speak freely about it.
Which is totally on brand.
For the home of free speech.
— Laurence Fox (@LozzaFox) September 29, 2023
He also reprised the phrase that had got him into trouble.
He said: “Remember. It’s OK to encourage acid attacks on Nigel Farage. It’s OK to wish Boris Johnson died of Covid. It’s OK to want white people dead. As long as it’s on the BBC or the propaganda media.
“It’s not OK to not want to shag someone. We must protect the ‘broadcast ecology’ for Adam Boulton at all costs.”
His last comment referred to a debate on the BBC’s Newsnight programme on which Sky News political pundit Adam Boulton said GB News is “trying to bust broadcast ecology” and the former immigration minister Caroline Nokes said GB News should be shut down.
Sir Paul Marshall, joint owner of GB News, is working with the investment bank Moelis on a bid to buy Telegraph Media Group, which is currently for sale.
Rev Robinson, who posed with Fox for a selfie on social media on Friday, has written in the past for The Daily Telegraph.
In a message to staff on Friday night, Alan McCormick, chairman of GB News, said: “Amidst all the success the channel has earned, mistakes of course get made. Presenters are human, too. Ill-considered comments do not reflect our values, nor do they define us, unless we fail to acknowledge and address them. We are a learning organisation, if not yet a perfect one.
“To be clear, GB News is not a place that tolerates personally denigrating comments or insults, and we never have been.”