‘There is tension there’: editors fire for signing Trump officials


After the 2020 election, these ideals were tested in unprecedented ways.

“There is a tension there – on the one hand, I have always believed, and I still strongly believe, that we need to release major voices that are at the center of the national conversation, that we agree with them or not ”. said Adrian Zackheim, president and publisher of two Penguin Random House prints, including Sentinel, which is geared towards conservative books. “On the other hand, we have to beware of public figures who have become associated with blatant lies.”

At the same time, conservative publishers and some literary agents say there is a huge demand for books from right-wing voices, especially now that Republicans are out of power, and publishers are showing they are. eager to work with politicians they see as an acceptable mainstream. preservatives. Politico reported that William P. Barr, Trump’s former attorney general, sold a book on his role to the Department of Justice. Sentinel acquired a book from Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett, whose appointment by Mr. Trump last year sparked an uproar on the left. Ms Conway’s book will be published by Threshold, a Simon & Schuster imprint focused on conservative titles, though someone familiar with him said it would be more of a memoir than a standard political book. .

Simon & Schuster declined to comment.

The company released several political blockbusters last year, including “Too Much and Never Enough” by Mary L. Trump and “The Room Where It Happened” by John R. Bolton. This year has been more complicated.

In January, Simon & Schuster abandoned plans to publish Mr Hawley’s book after criticizing his efforts to overturn the election and accused of helping to incite the January 6 riot on Capitol Hill. by Post Hill Press, a small publisher in Tennessee, by one of the police officers involved in the raid that killed Breonna Taylor.

The petition written by staff at Simon & Schuster, which circulated on social media last week, demanded that the company cancel Mr. Pence’s books, no longer sign former Trump officials, and end its deal. distribution with Post Hill Press. Jonathan Karp, chief executive of Simon & Schuster, wrote a letter to the company saying it would not take these steps.

“We come to work every day to publish, not to cancel,” wrote Mr. Karp, “which is the most extreme decision a publisher can make, and which goes against the very core of our mission to publish a diversity of voices and points of view. “

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