This article is written from a Democratic point of view.
Former Washington Journalist
Contributor on The Bipartisan Press
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Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s proposal to split up many technology industry giants found support from an unexpected source: a conservative analyst at Fox News.
The senator from Massachusetts, who is among a dozen or so Democrats competing for the Democratic nomination for president, has said huge online companies like Amazon, Facebook and Google are operating as monopolies and need to be broken up so that other companies once again can compete.
“So Amazon, Google, they own a platform which is pretty cool. Where everybody comes to buy and sell or to do the searches. And at the same time, they own a bunch of businesses that are competing with all those folks who are coming, say, to Amazon in order to sell their goods,” Warren said during a recent segment on MSNBC. “And they don’t just compete straight up. They compete by being able to keep all of the information from every one of those companies. And then decide, ‘Oh, I’m going after you and you and I know how much to charge and I know what kind of volume to expect.’
“It’s a little like being an umpire in baseball and owning a team. My view is you can do one, be an umpire, or the other, own a team. But you don’t get to do both at the same time,” she added.
Warren’s proposal is interesting, as she has long been involved in consumer protection. In the past, however, it’s largely been in the area of banks and financial services. It was Warren who played a pivotal role in creating the new federal agency, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
Warren’s tech antitrust plan came up for debate during a recent segment of Fox News, where it found an unexpected defender in Pete Hegseth, conservative commentator.
“I’m going to defend Elizabeth Warren. I’m serious,” Hegseth said. “… I actually agree with her argument. I don’t think you are ending these tech companies breaking them up and become anticompetitive crowding out the little guy. She is saying at some point in America the government does have a role to make sure that small business has an opportunity to compete. It’s actually a very compelling argument.”