Is there room for Farage and Neil? Guto Harri talks about Andrew Neils GB News future

Guto Harri takes the knee on GB News as he slams racism

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Guto sparked a huge backlash among GB News viewers earlier this month after he responded to the racist remarks made towards members of the English football team following the Euros final by taking the knee as a gesture of support. Just hours later, GB News, which is run by broadcaster Andrew Neil, condemned the 55-year-old’s actions and he was suspended. Speaking on the Stories of Our Time podcast on Thursday, Guto questioned Andrew’s presence on the show.

He was asked if he thinks the 72-year-old would return to the channel. He was on various shows for a few weeks after GB News was launched, but then took a holiday and has not yet returned.

“I don’t know,” Guto replied. “It’s a question for him in the end – is that set big enough for Nigel Farage and for Andrew Neil?

“They both represent pretty different things.” When asked if he’d be surprised if Andrew didn’t come back, Guto commented: “Well, I’d find it hard to leave my beautiful place in the South of France if I had one, in the sunshine, to return to Paddington to be the sort of warm up act to Nigel Farage.”

A Twitter storm erupted following Guto’s gesture, with viewers threatening to boycott the channel.

Guto described the reaction as “a tsunami of hate”.

He said he was “relaxed” about the response by GB News for him to take some time off until he saw the official statement that had been released.

“Because they basically said that I had been taken off air for breaching editorial standards,” Guto explained.

“Now for somebody who spent decades in broadcasting and 18 years full time at the BBC under immense scrutiny I think I know the editorial rule book that applies in most newsrooms pretty much inside out.”

He said he had tried to get the “bizarre” statement amended, but he was “ignored”.

“Far from combatting cancel culture, what they’ve ended up doing is replicating it on the right,” he stated.

Since his dismissal, former UKIP leader Nigel Farage has joined GB News, and Guto described this move as adding “insult to injury.”

“[He was] gloating in all his glory,” Guto continued. One of the first things Farage said was that he wouldn’t be “taking the knee for anyone”.

The former politician now has a regular spot on the channel. GB News labels itself as “anti woke” and a place where people can say the unsayable.

Before each match, the England football team all take the knee as a mark of support with the Black Lives Matter movement.

After the Euros final earlier this month, players such as Marcus Rashford were hit with racially abusive comments on social media for missing a penalty.

While taking the knee on air, Guto said he was ding it because he now “gets” the statement.

He said: “I can see and I tended to be one of those people that thought do we really have to do this at every football match, can’t we just enjoy whatever sport we’re in too?

“But having seen over the past few days just how close to the surface, just how deep-rooted, just how hideously ugly racism among some England fans is, I totally get why this squad throughout thought we have to say, day in, day out, that racism is not on.

“And I actually with the benefit of hindsight, I may have underestimated how close to the surface the racism still is, I actually get it.”

GB News begins with The Great British Breakfast daily at 6am.

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