Following the unrest in the capitol on Wednesday, Simon & Schuster has announced that it will no longer be publishing Senator Josh Hawley’s upcoming book, The Tyranny of Big Tech. In a statement released on Thursday, the publisher stated that they have made the decision that they will be pulling his book deal.
The book was expected to launch later this June, well after the election had already taken place. However, after the events in the state capitol on Wednesday the 6th, S&S has since changed their stance on providing a platform for the controversial senator after his role in objecting to the ratification of the 2020 election results.
The senator replied with a statement later in the day, calling the action “Orwellian” and describing Simon and Schuster as a “woke mob,” and threatening to take the publishing house to court.
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) January 7, 2021
Authors on twitter were quick to point out that his contract allows the deal to be terminated at any time, and that book deals aren’t among the freedoms granted in the first amendment. A few authors quipped with variations of “This isn’t Orwellian; Orwell was published!”
Being cancelled so late in the process and already having undergone much of the publication process, with even preorders already placed on the S&S site, it’s quite likely that Hawley will continue to look for another house that will see his manuscript published.
However, it’s clear that Simon & Schuster is seeking to distance themselves from the senator, stating that they “cannot support Senator Hawley” even describing his role as “a dangerous threat to democracy” in their statement.
“As a publisher it will always be our mission to amplify a variety of voices and viewpoints,” the statement concluded. While the publishing house is no stranger to controversial book deals from contentious authors, it is apparent that this is where they draw the line.