There is anger within Television New Zealand at suspended Breakfast host Paul Henry.

One News this evening reported that some staff were unhappy with Mr Henry yesterday questioning if Governor-General Sir Anand Satyanand was "even a New Zealander" and encouraging Prime Minister John Key to choose someone who "looks and sounds more like a New Zealander this time".

TVNZ today suspended Mr Henry until October 18 for the incident.

He is being replaced on Breakfast by Rawdon Christie for the first week of the suspension, and veteran broadcaster Paul Holmes, who is himself no stranger to controversy for making allegedly racist comments, will be filling in for Mr Henry on this weekend's This Is Your Life.

Many viewers are also outraged, with TVNZ receiving a record 600 complaints about Mr Henry's comments.

And a demonstration this evening saw around 20 to 30 protestors rallying outside TVNZ's offices, calling for Henry's dismissal.

Meanwhile, Sir Anand told One News he has not heard from TVNZ but said there was no question he was a New Zealander.

"I'm a New Zealand-born New Zealander," said Sir Anand, who is in Delhi for the Commonwealth Games. "I'm informed that I was born at Bethany Hospital, 37 Dryden St, Grey Lynn and I don't need to add much to that," he said.

Earlier today, Prime Minister John Key said he supported TVNZ's suspension of Mr Henry.

"I said yesterday that it was up to TVNZ to take a course of action they thought was appropriate. They have done that by suspending Paul Henry and I think that is the right course of action," Mr Key told media in Warkworth, north of Auckland.

Asked if he put pressure on TVNZ to discipline Mr Henry, the Prime Minister said "I don't think that would be appropriate."

Asked if the suspension, effective from today until October 18, was long enough, Mr Key said: "I think TVNZ had to think about what was an appropriate course of action. I think they are sending a message and that message is quite clearly that Paul Henry was over the line.

"The right message is that all New Zealanders, irrelevant of their ethnicity, the colour of their skin or their religious beliefs, have an important role to play in New Zealand," said Mr Key.

"My view is if New Zealand is where your heart is, then that makes you a New Zealander."

Asked if he should have responded differently to Mr Henry's comments at the time, Mr Key said: "I was fairly taken aback when he made the commments. Quite frankly, I was not quite sure what i was hearing from him."

Mr Key wouldn't call the comments racist, instead saying: "I think they were totally inappropriate.

"What I said yesterday was that it is up to TVNZ and the BSA to make a call on what is an appropriate course of action.

"I'm not going to spend my life critiquing Paul Henry, because if I do I'm going to be doing that at every post-Cabinet press conference I hold.

"So at the end of the day, it's for TVNZ to determine what's appropriate for their staff and what is not appropriate."

Mr Key said he would continue to appear on Breakfast in his regular weekly spot.

"I do a lot of interviews with interviewers who do stupid things."

On Mr Henry's apology on air this morning, Mr Key said: "I do think it was sincere in so much that Paul Henry has done a lot of outrageous things in the last 24 months and this is the first time he has apologised, so I think he genuinely meant it.

"I suspect he had 24 hours to reflect on that, to realise what he said was pretty dumb."