Simon & Schuster drops book by US senator who backed baseless election fraud allegations

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NEW YORK – A book planned by Senator Josh Hawley, who opposed the victory of US President-elect Joe Biden and supported baseless claims that the election was stolen, has been canceled by its publisher at the following the uprising on Capitol Hill by a host of pro-Trump supporters, a move the Missouri Republican called “Orwellian” and vowed to fight in court.
In a statement Thursday, Simon & Schuster announced that “After witnessing the disturbing and deadly insurgency that took place in Washington, DC on Wednesday, Simon & Schuster has decided to cancel the publication of Senator Josh Hawley’s upcoming book , ‘The tyranny of big technology. ‘

“We did not take this decision lightly,” added the editor. “As publisher, our mission will always be to amplify a variety of voices and viewpoints: at the same time, we take seriously our broader public responsibility as citizens and cannot support Senator Hawley afterwards. its role in what has become a dangerous threat to our democracy. and freedom. ”

Thousands of Trump supporters had gathered in Washington on Wednesday to protest Congressional official certification of Biden’s victory and many ended up breaking into the Capitol and occupying it for hours, delaying the process early Thursday morning. A widely viewed photo, taken before the occupation, shows Hawley raising a fist in solidarity with the crowd.

Hawley has often been cited as a possible future presidential candidate, and his book, due out in June, was a forum for a favorite topic – the undue power of Google, Facebook and other internet giants. Shortly after the release of his book was announced, Hawley tweeted and tagged his comments directly to Simon & Schuster, indicating that he was being unfairly censored and punished: “I was representing my constituents, leading a Senate debate on the issue. integrity of voters, which they have now decided to redefine as sedition. ”

“It couldn’t be more Orwellian… Let me be clear, this is not just a contract dispute. It’s a direct attack on the First Amendment… I’m going to fight this culture of cancellation with everything I have. We’ll see you in court. ”

Simon & Schuster quickly issued another statement: “We are confident that we are fully acting within our contractual rights” to cancel the book.

Simon & Schuster has had numerous clashes with Trump and his supporters over the past few years. He called off a deal with far-right writer and commentator Milo Yiannopoulos and released several anti-Trump bestsellers, including his niece Mary Trump’s “Too Much and Never Enough” and “The Room Where It Happened” ‘Former National Security Advisor John Bolton.

New York publishers had previously expressed their suspicion of a post-presidential brief from Trump, of which “Crippled America” ​​was published by a Simon & Schuster printing house in 2015, and this week’s events make it a deal with them much more unlikely. A spokesperson for Simon & Schuster declined to comment on whether the publisher would be interested in a new Trump book. Messages left with Penguin Random House, publisher of Trump’s bestseller “The Art of the Deal,” and HarperCollins Publishers were not immediately returned.

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