Author George Orwell's famous dystopian novel "1984" soared to the top of Amazon's best-seller list Tuesday night, just days after the inauguration of President Donald Trump.
The book, which was first published in 1949 and tells a story about facts being twisted and truths being suppressed in a cloud of "newspeak," has gained increased attention following senior Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway's use of the phrase "alternative facts" during an interview on NBC's "Meet the Press" Sunday to defend White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer.
Conway, challenged by host Chuck Todd about the size of Trump's inaugural crowd size, delivered the curious defense of her fellow Trump staffer over the weekend after Spicer said Saturday that the new president enjoyed "the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration — period."
"You're saying it's a falsehood. And they're giving — Sean Spicer, our press secretary — gave alternative facts," Conway told the NBC anchor.
Todd replied: "Alternative facts aren't facts, they are falsehoods."
On Monday, during the first official White House press briefing, Spicer retooled his original suggestion about audience size, telling reporters that he meant it was the largest crowd when combining the in-person and internet-based audiences.
But the claims didn't stop there. For months, Trump has been suggesting — with virtually no actual evidence — that millions of illegal immigrants voted in the presidential election. Now he's continuing to make that claim from the Oval Office.
Trump tweeted Wednesday morning that he is requesting an investigation into the matter.
I will be asking for a major investigation into VOTER FRAUD, including those registered to vote in two states, those who are illegal and....— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump) 1485346201.0
In his second press briefing, Spicer cited Tuesday a nonexistent 2008 Pew Research study on voter fraud that he claimed "showed 14 percent of people who have voted were not citizens" to back up the president's claim.
David Becker, the author of a 2012 Pew study on the same topic, said Tuesday that Spicer was likely referring to a debunked study from Old Dominion University, which, according to the Washington Post, has been criticized by many researchers.
Becker said there was no evidence of voter fraud found in his 2012 research.
As primary author of the report the Trump camp cited today, I can confirm that report made no findings re: voter fraud. /1— David Becker (@David Becker) 1480356978.0
As I've noted before, voting integrity better in this election than ever before. Zero evidence of fraud. https://t.co/BBS8NVcACB— David Becker (@David Becker) 1485267714.0
Though the classic novel does often enjoy a boost in sales at the start of each year, a spokesman for the book's publisher, Penguin, told CNN, this year's numbers have been noticeably higher.
Orwell's tale also received a noteworthy spike in 2013, following NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden's revelations that the intelligence community was collecting data about Americans' phone calls and internet communications.
In order to keep up with the renewed interest, Penguin has ordered 75,000 additional copies of "1984."