Feb 9, 2017

Jeff Bezos doesn't think he'll become president

Tech leaders with any proximity to politics or Washington are increasingly being floated in the media as possible candidates for public office, and you can now add Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos to that list. But that's not a career path he says he's interested in. Billboard got this answer when it asked him if he harbored political dreams:

"No. I love my life. I love being an inventor."

Asked a follow-up question about whether there might one day be a "President Bezos," he responded with "Oh, no. I don't think so."

The context: Bezos has become more of a figure in Washington thanks to his ownership of the city's newspaper. He recently bought a home there, as Billboard notes, and Amazon has been growing its lobbying operation. Bezos has also occasionally tangled with Donald Trump — and attended the meeting the then president-elect convened with tech leaders. But plenty of tech execs with no obvious interest in running for office are still involved in politics.

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President Trump is going all-in on pushing for a rapid, robust return to normal life, creating a visual, visceral contrast with Joe Biden and other Democrats who are more reticent to rip the masks off.

The state of play: Business friends have been urging Trump from the beginning to keep the lockdowns short. He's listening more and more.

Tech's long hot summer of antitrust

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Google, Facebook and other tech giants face a summer of regulatory grilling as long-running investigations into potential anticompetitive practices likely come to a head.

The big picture: Probes into the power of Big Tech launched by federal and state authorities are turning a year old, and observers expect action in the form of formal lawsuits and potentially damning reports — even as the companies have become a lifeline for Americans during the pandemic lockdown.

Palantir CEO hits Silicon Valley "monoculture," may leave California

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The state of play: "We haven't picked a place yet, but it's going to be closer to the East Coast than the West Coast. ... If I had to guess, I would guess something like Colorado."