Apr 11, 2019

Podcast: Republicans vs. social media

Dan and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) discuss allegations of political bias against social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, which was the subject yesterday of a Capitol Hill hearing that Cruz chaired.

  • Cruz highlights several anecdotes of arguable bias, but acknowledges that he doesn't have statistical evidence of bias.
  • He and fellow Republicans want data from the platforms in order to validate or invalidate claims of political bias, including the number and partisan breakdown of blocked posts from elected office-holders.
  • Cruz didn't specifically answer if he thinks big tech companies like Amazon and Facebook should be broken up, saying his recent retweet of Elizabeth Warren was more about speech protection.
  • But he did say in yesterday's hearing that today's big tech companies are larger than were Standard Oil or AT&T when they were broken up.
  • Perhaps most importantly, Cruz said he was willing to accept blame for Texas Tech's loss on Monday night, so long as he gets credit when Texas teams win.

Go deeper

Trump's opportunity to use Bernie as an economic scapegoat

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photos: Zach Gibson/Stringer, The Washington Post/Getty Contributor

Bernie Sanders is poised to become an economic scapegoat for both the White House and Corporate America, assuming that Sanders comes through Super Tuesday unscathed.

The big picture: If the U.S. economy remains strong, President Trump and CEOs will claim credit (as they've been doing for three years). If it turns sour, they'll blame Bernie (even though it's a largely baseless charge).

Why big banks are breaking up with some fossil fuels

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

JPMorgan Chase is the latest financial giant to unveil new climate commitments, and like its peers, it is hard to disentangle how much is motivated by pressure, conscience or making a virtue of necessity.

Why it matters: The move comes as grassroots and shareholder activists are targeting the financial sector's fossil energy finance, especially amid federal inaction on climate.

Trump acknowledges lists of disloyal government officials to oust

Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump on Monday acknowledged the existence of assembled lists of government officials that his administration plans to oust and replace with trusted pro-Trump people, which were first reported by Axios' Jonathan Swan.

What he's saying: “I don’t think it's a big problem. I don’t think it's very many people,” Trump said during a press conference in India, adding he wants “people who are good for the country, loyal to the country.”