When Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) appeared Friday morning on The View, he mostly fielded questions about his experience during the violent insurrection by Trump supporters at the U.S. Capitol two days earlier and what it means for the future of American democracy. Then it was Meghan McCain’s turn.
“Senator Murphy, I want to pivot to another news story,” McCain said before turning to the news that Simon & Schuster will no longer publish a book by Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) following his role in the efforts to overturn the election and, in turn, incite the riot.
“Are you comfortable with a public square where your colleagues, U.S. senators espousing their views, are silenced by the publishing of the media?” she asked. “Because I’m concerned this is just going to create more division.”
“Well, I mean, nobody’s robbing Josh Hawley of his First Amendment rights,” Murphy replied with a shrug. “He can go and speak on the Senate floor, he can go and speak on a street corner. Nobody’s locking him up for saying what he thinks, for leading an insurrection against the federal government.”
Hawley himself responded to the news by accusing the “woke mob” of making a “direct assault” on his First Amendment rights and vowed to “fight this cancel culture with everything I have.”
Given that Simon & Schuster is a “private company” that has made the decision that publishing Hawley’s book would “hurt their business,” he said that his colleague has to “accept the consequences of engaging in such outrageous behavior as riling up people to march on the United States Capitol, and so if that means that you can’t make money off of a book, then so be it.”
“Josh Hawley can still give all the speeches he wants, but he doesn’t get to make millions of dollars from private companies if he’s doing things that make him incredibly unpopular,” Murphy concluded.
As McCain tried to press him further on the issue, her co-host Joy Behar tried to end the segment, saying, “Alright, thank you so much, we’re out of time.” Plowing forward, McCain lamented the “anger and division” on both sides of the aisle and asked Murphy if he thinks Hawley should resign.
“I mean, listen, that’s up to him and the people of Missouri,” Murphy said, diplomatically. “I just think he needs to change his behavior very quickly.”