DENVER (CBS4) – A Denver radio talk show host says he was fired from a conservative station in the middle of his show. Craig Silverman says he believes it was because he was criticizing President Donald Trump, but KNUS Radio has a different story, and said Silverman was not fired.
On Sunday night Brian Taylor, the Regional Vice President and General Manager of Salem Media Group, held a press conference with other radio hosts about the situation.
“No one was fired,” Taylor explained. “Actually Craig is an independent contractor, and that agreement still remains in effect.”
For years, attorney Craig Silverman had a Saturday radio show on KNUS in Denver. However, on Saturday Silverman said he was pulled off air during his show.
“I never expected it to end this way,” said Silverman. “And to do it in the manner that they did it, shutting off my mic. Replacing the sound. Program director comes in and says ‘You’re done.’ Are you kidding me?”
Silverman told CBS4 he announced on-air that he thought he might be let go eventually, because he wanted to be a commentator about the president’s impeachment inquiry on other media channels. He added that he thinks talking about that topic on his show fast-tracked his dismissal. He also went on CNN to discuss the situation over the weekend.
“Does it have to do with Donald Trump? I think so,” Silverman said. “I wanted to talk about the impeachment inquiry and a lot of these facts are very damning against Donald Trump.”
Taylor said that was not the case.
“Our hosts have the freedom to express their opinions on current events based on their own personal convictions,” Taylor explained. “This goes for all of our hosts, including Mr. Silverman. Any suggestion to the contrary is simply untrue.”
Taylor said Silverman was never fired, and the issue was about him speaking on other media channels. He added that Silverman is an independent contractor, and can speak for other media, but they had simply asked him not to.
“We asked Craig to not appear there because we consider him an important part of our team and we prefer that he not work for a competitor,” Taylor explained. “He decided it was important to work across town, and so on his program on Saturday, he announced that. And that’s what prompted our decision to take him off air.”
“I had every right under my contract to do so,” Silverman disputed.
KNUS has currently removed information about Silverman’s show and previous podcasts from their website until they can have a conversation with him.
“I’d look forward to Craig continuing his program here,” Taylor said. “I just would rather it not be in a contentious form like this.”
Taylor said they have reached out to Silverman, but have not been able to talk with him about the situation.