×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Google Pushes Back on Trump’s Claim of Bias in Promotion of State of the Union

WASHINGTON — Google has refuted President Donald Trump’s claim that the tech giant showed bias in the way that they promoted his State of the Union address versus his predecessor, President Barack Obama.

Trump tweeted a video earlier in the day with screenshots of Google homepage promotions for Obama’s State of the Union addresses in 2012, 2014, 2015, and 2016, but no promotion for Trump’s 2017 address to a joint session of Congress or his State of the Union speech this year.

A Google spokesperson, however, said they did highlight a livestream of the Trump speech on its homepage on Jan. 30.

“We have historically not promoted the first address to Congress by a new President, which is technically not a State of the Union address,” the spokesperson said in a statement. “As a result, we didn’t include a promotion on google.com for this address in either 2009 or 2017.”
Trump accompanied his tweet with the hashtag #stopthebias, as he tries to garner social media support for the idea that major tech platforms stifle conservative views. He again told reporters that he thinks that Google and Facebook treat reporters unfairly.
“You know what we want? Not regulation … fairness,” he said, according to a pool report.
Trump tweeted an attack at Google on Tuesday, claiming that its search results were “rigged” and that their actions should be “illegal.” His chief economic adviser, Larry Kudlow, told reporters later in the day that they would be taking a look at regulations.
Legal scholars say search functions are protected by the First Amendment, so it’s unclear what steps Trump could even take. His statement on Wednesday suggested that he was criticizing tech platforms in the same way that he has targeted the news media — attacks that date to the start of his presidential campaign.
Michael Beckerman, the president and CEO of the Internet Association, told CNBC on Wednesday that, “it’s clear that the platforms are not politically biased and certainly don’t have bias towards conservatives. If you look at the evidence and you look at how different candidates and campaigns and individuals have used all of these platforms other the last few years in particular, it’s been a great way for conservatives to get their voice out.”
Beckerman noted that he is a conservative and has spent years working on Republican campaigns.
“The political views of employees [do] not translate to the way the platforms operate and the experience that individuals across the country and around the world have on the platforms,” he said. “It’s certainly not in the business interests to pick one political party or one ideology over another. That’s not something that’s happening on the platforms.”

Popular on Variety

More Politics

  • Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's Burning Image Debate Ad

    ABC Runs Debate Ad Showing Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's Burning Image

    ABC aired an ad during Thursday’s Democratic debate that depicted a burning image of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and likened her politics to those that caused the Cambodian genocide. New Faces GOP funded the ad, which features Elizabeth Heng, a Republican who lost a bid for a Fresno-area congressional seat last year. Ocasio-Cortez responded on Twitter, [...]

  • Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris.

    ABC News' Democratic Debate Lacked Energy and Purpose

    At long last, former Vice President Joe Biden and Senator Elizabeth Warren were on the same stage. And the result was a long and fairly dull evening. After two Democratic Party debate stages in which the field of candidates had been bifurcated — splitting, in both cases, the perceived frontrunners from the establishment and insurgent [...]

  • Former Vice President Joe Biden responds

    Protesters Interrupt Joe Biden During Democratic Debate

    Protesters interrupted presidential candidate Joe Biden during Thursday’s democratic debate. The chants came nearly two and a half hours in as moderator George Stephanopoulos asked the former vice president about any professional setbacks he’s faced and how he recovered from them. “We’re going to clear the protesters,” Stephanopoulos said as the chants began. “We’re sorry.” [...]

  • Bernie Sanders, Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren,

    Dems Debate in Houston: Moderates Push Back on Medicare for All

    The third Democratic debate on Thursday was billed as the first showdown between the top contenders: Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Sen. Bernie Sanders. Biden did challenge the liberal senators on health care early in the debate, which was broadcast on ABC. He asked repeatedly how they would pay for their multi-trillion [...]

  • Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth WarrenSecond 2020

    How to Watch the Third Democratic Primary Debate

    The leading Democratic candidates will once again go head to head tonight in Houston, Tex. for the party’s third debate ahead of the primaries. The anticipated debate, which will include the 10 Democratic candidates currently leading in the polls, will kick off at 8 p.m. ET and will broadcast live on ABC and Univision. ABC [...]

  • Gen Z Climate Activism

    How Generation Z Is Embracing Bold Action in the Face of Climate Crisis

    Of all the dire forecasts she’s heard about the climate crisis, there is one that Arielle Martinez Cohen can’t get out of her mind. The report, from an Australian think tank, projected that if nothing is done, civilization could collapse by 2050. “I will be 49 in that year,” says the 17-year-old activist. “It makes [...]

  • Edward Norton Climate Change

    'Vote the Environment': Edward Norton on How to Be an Effective Climate Activist

    Edward Norton found activism at an early age. He also directs and stars in detective story “Motherless Brooklyn,” opening Nov. 1. Variety caught up with him as he prepared to hit the festival circuit with the adaptation of the Jonathan Lethem novel. Where did your interest in environmental issues spring from? All of the roots [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content