Simon & Schuster decided to drop the publication of a forthcoming book by Missouri
Sen. Josh Hawley
following what the book publisher called the “deadly insurrection” that took place at the Capitol Wednesday.
Sen. Hawley’s book, “The Tyranny of Big Tech,” had been scheduled to go on sale this June.
In a statement Thursday, the publisher, a unit of
said: “We did not come to this decision lightly. As a publisher it will always be our mission to amplify a variety of voices and viewpoints: at the same time we take seriously our larger public responsibility as citizens, and cannot support Senator Hawley after his role in what became a dangerous threat to our democracy and freedom.”
A call to Sen. Hawley’s office wasn’t returned. Sen. Hawley’s literary agent couldn’t be reached for comment.
On Twitter, Sen. Hawley called Simon & Schuster’s decision “Orwellian” and “a direct assault on the First Amendment,” saying his work representing his constituents was redefined by the publisher as sedition.
“I will fight this cancel culture with everything I have,” he wrote. “We’ll see you in court.”
Sen. Hawley last week became the first senator to say he would object to the results of the 2020 presidential election. By law, an objection requires the backing of at least one House member and one senator, triggering a debate and vote on whether to disqualify a state’s electoral results. Congress formally certified the results earlier Thursday, but the process was interrupted by a mob that stormed the U.S. Capitol in a riot that resulted in several deaths—including a Capitol Police officer—dozens of arrests and police injuries.
Together with many House Republicans, Sen. Hawley challenged Pennsylvania’s electoral votes, an effort that was defeated 92-7 in the Senate and 282-138 in the House.
In its online catalog, Simon & Schuster described Sen. Hawley’s book as championing the idea that “big tech companies—
—represent the gravest threat to American liberty since the monopolies of the Gilded Age, and proposes a democratic, hopeful path forward.”
Sen. Hawley has been a frequent critic of tech companies, particularly regarding how they police content. In October, when Facebook Inc. and
moved to limit the sharing of New York Post articles about
Sen. Hawley wrote a letter to Facebook Chief Executive
in which he said, “The seemingly selective nature of this public intervention suggests partiality on the part of Facebook.”
Sen. Hawley earlier authored “Theodore Roosevelt: Preacher of Righteousness,” which was published in 2008 by Yale University Press.
Simon & Schuster in 2020 published a number of highly successful political titles including
Mary L. Trump’s
memoir “Too Much and Never Enough,”
“Live Free or Die” and former national security adviser
“The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir,” among others.
In late November, ViacomCBS agreed to sell Simon & Schuster to German media giant Bertelsmann SE for almost $2.18 billion, pending regulatory approval.
Write to Jeffrey A. Trachtenberg at [email protected]
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