Fox News terminates ‘The Five’ co-host Bob Beckel

Fox News Channel is parting ways – again – with Bob Beckel, the co-host of its primetime program, "The Five."

"Bob Beckel was terminated today for making an insensitive remark to an African-American employee," the network said in a statement.

The dismissal opens – or perhaps closes – another chapter in an off-and-on relationship Beckel has had with the 21st Century Fox-owned cable-news outlet over the years. Beckel, a longtime political consultant as well as a former campaign manager for Democratic presidential candidate Walter Mondale, joined Fox News in 2000, and had a years-long tenure on "The Five" when it aired in the late afternoon. Indeed, he was one of the program's original co-hosts.

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Bob Beckel on 'The Five'
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Bob Beckel on 'The Five'
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 17: Bob Beckel Rejoins 'The Five' at FOX Studios on January 17, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 17: Bob Beckel Rejoins 'The Five' at FOX Studios on January 17, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 26: TV personality Alex Trebek (3rd R) and hosts of 'The Five' (L-R) Kimberly Guilfoyle, Bob Beckel, Eric Bolling, Dana Perino and Greg Gutfeld attend FOX News' 'The Five' at FOX Studios on February 26, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 26: TV personality Alex Trebek (3rd R) and hosts of 'The Five' (L-R) Kimberly Guilfoyle, Bob Beckel, Eric Bolling, Dana Perino and Greg Gutfeld attend FOX News' 'The Five' at FOX Studios on February 26, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 26: TV personality Alex Trebek (R) and hosts of 'The Five' (L-R) Bob Beckel and Eric Bolling attend FOX News' 'The Five' at FOX Studios on February 26, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 26: TV personality Alex Trebek (3rd R) and hosts of 'The Five' (L-R) Bob Beckel, Eric Bolling, Dana Perino and Greg Gutfeld attend FOX News' 'The Five' at FOX Studios on February 26, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 26: TV personality Alex Trebek (3rd R) and hosts of 'The Five' (L-R) Kimberly Guilfoyle, Bob Beckel, Eric Bolling, Dana Perino and Greg Gutfeld attend FOX News' 'The Five' at FOX Studios on February 26, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 26: TV personality Alex Trebek (R) and hosts of 'The Five' (L-R) Bob Beckel and Eric Bolling attend FOX News' 'The Five' at FOX Studios on February 26, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - OCTOBER 06: Sean Hannity and Bob Beckel during the FOX News 'Hannity with Sean Hannity' 15th anniversary show at Olympic Centennial Park on October 6, 2011 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Chris McKay/Getty Images)
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He departed in 2015 while recuperating from back surgery in a split that was seen as less an amicable. "We tried to work with Bob for months, but we couldn't hold 'The Five' hostage to one man's personal issues," said Bill Shine, who was then the network's executive vice president of programming, in a statement at the time. "He took tremendous advantage of our generosity, empathy and goodwill and we simply came to the end of the road with him."

But Beckel returned to Fox News in 2017 after doing a stint at CNN, and was greeted with open arms. "Bob was missed by many fans of 'The Five' and we're happy to welcome him back to the show," said Rupert Murdoch, executive chairman of Fox News Channel and its corporate parent, 21st Century Fox, in a prepared statement, in January.

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Net worths of Fox News anchors
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Net worths of Fox News anchors

Bill O’Reilly Net Worth: $85 Million

Serving as the controversial host of “The O’Reilly Factor” since 1996 has proven extremely lucrative for Bill O’Reilly, as he earns a salary of $20 million per year. The long-running series can largely be credited for Bill O’Reilly’s net worth of $85 million. Prior to joining Fox News, he was the very first host of syndicated news magazine “Inside Edition” in 1989. Also an accomplished writer, O’Reilly pens a syndicated weekly column and is the author of several best-selling books.

(Photo by: Lloyd Bishop/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)

Sean Hannity Net Worth: $80 Million

Sean Hannity, one of the most popular Fox News anchors, has hosted “Hannity” since 2009. Previously the host of “Hannity & Colmes,” he has been with the network since 1996. Also a New York Times best-selling author and a radio host, “The Sean Hannity Show” is syndicated to more than 500 markets and has a listenership of 13.5 million. Sean Hannity’s net worth is $80 million.

(Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)

Brit Hume Net Worth: $4 Million

Fox News senior political analyst Brit Hume’s net worth is $4 million. A regular presence on “The O’Reilly Factor” and “Fox News Sunday,” Hume hosted the series “America’s Election HQ” in 2016. He also previously hosted “Special Report with Brit Hume,” before passing the torch to Bret Baier. Prior to joining the rank of Fox News personalities in 1996, he was part of the ABC News team for 23 years — which included a stint as chief White House correspondent from 1989 through 1996. An award-winning broadcast journalist, Hume’s coverage of the Gulf War in 1991 landed him an Emmy.

Don’t Miss: 30 Richest Emmy Award Winners of All Time

(Photo by Michael Williamson/The Washington Post/Getty Images)

Tucker Carlson Net Worth: $8 Million

One of the newer Fox News anchors, Tucker Carlson joined the network in 2009. In 2016, he scored his own show, “Tucker Carlson Tonight” — a promotion from the “Fox and Friends Weekend” co-hosting gig he’d helmed since 2012. Prior to accepting a job with Fox News, he hosted the MSNBC series “Tucker” and the PBS series “Tucker Carlson: Unfiltered.” Tucker Carlson’s net worth is $8 million.

(Photo by Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Shepard Smith Net Worth: $25 Million

Shepard Smith’s net worth is $25 million — largely due to his $10 million annual salary from Fox News. Chief news anchor and managing editor of the breaking news division, Smith has been with the network since 1996. Also one of the on-air Fox News personalities, he’s hosted “Shepard Smith Reporting” since 2013. Before joining the Fox News Channel, Smith was a Fox News Edge correspondent, based in Los Angeles.

(Photo by Robin Marchant/Getty Images)

Chris Wallace Net Worth: $6 Million

A 50-year broadcast industry veteran, Chris Wallace has been one of the Fox News anchors since 2003. He’s hosted “Fox News Sunday” since 2006 and along with Bret Baier and Megyn Kelly, moderated the first GOP presidential debate of the 2016 election cycle. Previously employed by ABC News and NBC, he was the chief White House correspondent for the latter network from 1982 to 1989. A celebrated broadcast journalist, Wallace has won a slew of major awards during his career, including three Emmys and a Peabody Award. Chris Wallace’s net worth is $6 million and he earns $1 million per year for hosting “Fox News Sunday.”

REUTERS/Joe Raedle/Pool

Martha MacCallum Net Worth: $8 Million

Martha MacCallum has been with Fox News since 2004. As the co-anchor of “America’s Newsroom,” MacCallum earns an annual salary of $700,000. Previously, she was with NBC from 1997 to 2003, where she co-anchored “Morning Call” and anchored CNBC’s “Checkpoint.” Martha MacCallum’s net worth is $8 million.

(Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images for DirecTV)

Bill Hemmer Net Worth: $3 Million

Bill Hemmer’s net worth is $3 million. He earns $400,000 per year as co-anchor of “America’s Newsroom,” alongside Martha MacCallum. Part of the FOX News team since 2005, Hemmer was previously employed by CNN. While employed by the network, he co-anchored “American Morning” and anchored “CNN Live Today” and “CNN Tonight.”

(Photo by Nancy Ostertag/Getty Images)

Bret Baier Net Worth: $16 Million

Bret Baier is the Fox News chief political anchor and anchor of “Special Report with Bret Baier.” A long-time staffer, he’s been with the network since 1998, when he became the first reporter in the station’s Atlanta bureau. Helming the top-rated cable news show in its timeslot is clearly a lucrative gig, as he earns a salary of $7 million per year. In total, Bret Baier’s net worth is $16 million.

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Net worth figures are indicative of assets versus liabilities. All net worth and salary figures are according to CelebrityNetWorth.com unless otherwise noted.

(photo by Andre Chung for The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Megyn Kelly Net Worth: $15 Million

One of the most high-profile Fox News personalities, Megyn Kelly became a national superstar during the 2016 presidential election. Previously the host of “America Live,” she’s hosted “The Kelly File” since 2013. In January, she announced a move to rival network NBC at the end of her contract, to host a daily daytime show and a Sunday news program. The value of Kelly’s NBC contract hasn’t been publicly revealed, but Forbes reported she was seeking a salary of more than $20 million for her next contract — which makes her $6 million annual payday from FOX seem paltry by comparison. Currently, Megyn Kelly’s net worth is $15 million, but this will almost definitely increase after her move to NBC.

(Photo by Noam Galai/WireImage)
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Further details of the current controversy could not be immediately learned.

Fox News' internal culture has been under intense scrutiny in recent weeks. Several current and former employees have filed a racial discrimination lawsuit against Fox News in State Supreme Court in the Bronx, adding to a wave of litigation set against the network. The network has set in place a new human-resources chief and hired female executives to fill an open chief financial officer slot as well as its head of ad sales.

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