Is the GOP Gaming the New York Times Best-Seller Lists? - 2020-10-29

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F0.png Is the GOP Gaming the New York Times Best-Seller Lists? October 29, 2020, Keziah Weir, Vanity Fair

In November 2019, Donald Trump Jr.'s book Triggered debuted at the top of the New York Times hardcover nonfiction best-seller list. A week later, the paper's books desk released a report that a nearly $100,000 bulk purchase of the book by the RNC had contributed to the ranking.

Trump Jr. wasn't the first in his family to discover the joy of bulk sales—three decades earlier, as the New Republic reported in 2017, his dad encouraged owners of Trump properties to buy thousands of copies of The Art of the Deal, helping it ride the list for 48 weeks. Since then, dozens of nonfiction books each year—including by politicians like Mitt Romney, Herman Cain, and Sarah Palin—have appeared on the list with an assist from bulk buys. Many of those authors used campaign funds to finance the purchases, which the FEC allows as long as the author doesn't keep the royalties.

In 2020, 17 books on the New York Times hardcover nonfiction best-seller list have scored their spots by dint of bulk buys. All but two have been written by Trumpworld superstars: Trump Jr.; founder of Turning Point USA Charlie Kirk; Glenn Beck; conservative commentator Dave Rubin; Fox News host Pete Hegseth; Dinesh D'Souza; Newt Gingrich; Freedom Center founder David Horowitz; Ben Shapiro; Sean Hannity; Sarah Huckabee Sanders; Candace Owens; Jeanine Pirro; the American Conservative editor Rod Dreher; and Ted Cruz. Of these 15, nine appeared on the list for three weeks or less. (The two outliers aren't Democratic polemicals; they are the memoirs Live in Love, by Lauren Akins, who is married to country musician Thomas Rhett, and Incomparable, by twin WWE fighters Brie and Nikki Bella.)

Wikipedia cite:
{{cite news | first = Keziah | last = Weir | title = Is the GOP Gaming the New York Times Best-Seller Lists? | url = https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2020/10/is-the-gop-gaming-the-new-york-times-bestseller-lists | work = Vanity Fair | date = October 29, 2020 | accessdate = June 22, 2021 }}