Sen. Josh Hawley warned The Washington Post against suppressing him Tuesday as the Missouri Republican sat for a 30-minute video interview with the newspaper that was carried live on the internet.
Cat Zakrzewski, a tech reporter for The Washington Post who conducted the interview, was quick to note the publication was providing a platform for the senator, not silencing him as he suggested.
“Don’t try to censor, cancel and silence me here,” Mr. Hawley told the interviewer.
“Senator, we’re hosting you,” she replied swiftly.
The exchange occurred hardly five minutes into the interview as Mr. Hawley defended having opposed the certification of electoral college votes cast by Pennsylvania in the November presidential race.
Critics of Mr. Hawley were accordingly quick to slam the senator on social media, including some who accused the Republican of attempting to paint himself the victim of so-called “cancel culture.”
“The effort Republicans like [Mr. Hawley] put into portraying themselves as victims of ‘censorship’ and ‘cancel culture’ drastically outweighs the effort they put into actually helping their constituents,” Rep. Jimmy Gomez, California Democrat, tweeted.
Others criticized The Post, meanwhile, for providing a platform to Mr. Hawley in spite of the senator having led the charge against certifying the results of the 2020 presidential election on Jan. 6.
“I don’t know whether to be more embarrassed for snowflake Josh Hawley claiming he’s being silenced while on a live broadcast, or the Washington Post for providing him a platform to plug his book after January 6th,” said Sawyer Hackett, a senior adviser to 2020 Democratic presidential hopeful Julian Castro.
Mr. Hawley was the first senator to oppose certifying votes confirming the outcome of the election during a joint session of Congress later disrupted by mobs of supporters of former President Trump.
Congress eventually recognized that Mr. Trump, a Republican, had been defeated by President Biden, a Democrat, albeit several hours after violent rioters had seized the U.S. Capitol.
• Andrew Blake can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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