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Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images

Bill Gates told Axios that he doesn't really understand the calls by some presidential candidates to break up Big Tech.

What he's saying: "It's unclear to me what benefit you want to gain," he told Axios' Amy Harder and Ben Geman on Monday in an interview, following his appearance at the Economic Club in Washington, D.C. "If your problem is bullying or privacy, does splitting companies apart — you have to really think of what the problem is."

  • Gates knows a thing or two about antitrust regulation, having endured the Justice Department's effort to break up the company during the 1990s as well as additional enforcement actions by regulators in Europe.
  • Meanwhile, earlier in the day, Gates told the audience at the Economic Club that Microsoft's big misstep was not managing to be what Android became in mobile — the open, widely adopted alternative to Apple.

My thought bubble: It's not like Microsoft didn't try, both before and after the iPhone, to land a place powering the smartphone.

Go deeper: The case for breaking up Big Tech

Go deeper

Biden says presidency "will be determined" by outcome of spending plans

President Biden walks with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi after addressing the House Democratic caucus on Thursday. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

President Biden told the House Democratic caucus Thursday "my presidency will be determined" by the votes he wants in the next week on his $1.75 trillion social safety net expansion and $1.2 trillion infrastructure package.

Driving the news: Biden made the comment, according to a source in the room, as he tried to rally support for the $1.75 trillion package. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi acted immediately, calling for a vote on the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill later in the day.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
35 mins ago - Energy & Environment

China declines to speed emissions cuts in new UN pledge

A view of the skyscrapers in the haze in Shanghai, China, in December 2020. Photo: Feature China/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

Chinese leaders are sticking with a prior target to bring the country's carbon emissions to a peak before 2030, according to documents filed with the United Nations Thursday under the Paris climate agreement.

Why it matters: The new documents come just days ahead of the UN climate summit (COP26) in Glasgow. China is by far the world's largest greenhouse gas emitter, and its emissions path is key to whether the temperature-limiting goals of the Paris agreement can remain within reach.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Biden lays out $1.75 trillion "framework" before Europe departure

President Biden in Kearny, N.J., on Oct. 25. Photo: Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images

President Biden announced Thursday a "framework" for $1.75 trillion in social program and climate change spending after failing in prior efforts to win over his fellow Democrats on a much broader and costlier package.

Why it matters: Biden is gambling that by proclaiming the broad contours of the proposal, which he immediately began selling in a meeting with House Democrats before jetting off to Europe, progressives will vote for his $1.2 trillion infrastructure plan if and when House Speaker Nancy Pelosi brings it to the floor.