Trump says Google, Amazon, and Facebook may be ‘very antitrust’ but stops short of calling for a breakup of the firms

President Donald Trump.

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President Donald Trump.
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Drew Angerer/Getty Images

  • President Donald Trump said in an interview with Bloomberg on Thursday that Google, Amazon, and Facebook could represent a “very antitrust situation.”
  • Trump has lobbed repeated attacks at Google in recent days over what he perceives as liberal bias in the company’s search engine.
  • He stopped short, however, of saying the tech companies should be broken up.

President Donald Trump told Bloomberg on Thursday that the tech giants Google, Amazon, and Facebook could represent a “very antitrust situation.”

Toward the end of a week in which Trump repeatedly accused Google of liberal bias, the president raised monopoly questions about the firm and its peers.

“As you know, many people think it is a very antitrust situation, the three of them,” the president told Bloomberg. Antitrust laws are meant to prevent companies from abusing their power to make the market less competitive.

Trump did not go so far as to suggest the companies be broken up. “I won’t comment on the breaking up, of whether it’s that or Amazon or Facebook,” he said.

Defending the president’s attack on Google to a CNN reporter on Wednesday, Trump’s former White House chief strategist, Steve Bannon, said tech companies should be broken up.

It would be up to the Federal Trade Commission or the Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division to decide whether to bring federal antitrust proceedings against the tech firms. Antitrust experts have said the two are unlikely to act based on political pressure, with one saying the two had zero desire to “become puppets of elected officials.”

It is far from the first time Trump has targeted Amazon, previously calling it a “no-tax monopoly” that abuses its relationship with the US Postal Service. In April, an anonymous source told the news website Axios that Trump was “obsessed” with the company.

During his conversation with Bloomberg, Trump continued to voice his displeasure at Google’s search results. He said “conservatives have been treated very unfairly” and added: “I tell you there are some moments where we say, ‘Wow that really is bad, what they’re doing.'”