Missouri Republican Sen. Josh Hawley, whose effort to derail the Electoral College certification of Joe Biden’s presidential victory helped incite the domestic terrorists who stormed the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, already is beginning to pay the price for his seditious scheme. Simon & Schuster on Thursday announced that it is canceling publication of his book.
The company said in a statement, “After witnessing the disturbing, deadly insurrection that took place on Wednesday in Washington, D.C., Simon & Schuster has decided to cancel publication of Senator Josh Hawley’s forthcoming book, THE TYRANNY OF BIG TECH. 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.”
The book deal was announced in late October, signed by Natasha Simons for the Simon & Schuster imprint, and intended for publication on June 22.
The picture of Hawley raising a fist, apparently in solidarity with the Donald Trump supporters who became rioters, was a powerful flashpoint. A chorus of complaints arose on social media on Thursday, no doubt fueled by an email campaign begun on Wednesday by Democratic political and communications staffer Celeste Pewter. She wrote, “Hey publishing community: Josh Hawley has a book coming out from @simonschuster. Boycott, protest, and let S&S know how you feel about them releasing a book from someone who’s stoking sedition and directly responsible for what’s unfolding today.”
Others expressed similar sentiments. Vox writer Constance Grady asked, “What responsibility does publishing bear for platforming and profiting off of incitements to violence?”