Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren hit back at Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg after he complained that her presidency would pose an “existential” threat to his company.
Zuckerberg said in a leaked audio clip from a meeting with employees in July obtained by The Verge that the prospect of a Warren presidency would “suck.”
"You have someone like Elizabeth Warren who thinks that the right answer is to break up the companies ... if she gets elected president, then I would bet that we will have a legal challenge, and I would bet that we will win the legal challenge,” he said. “And does that still suck for us? Yeah. I mean, I don’t want to have a major lawsuit against our own government. ... But look, at the end of the day, if someone’s going to try to threaten something that existential, you go to the mat and you fight.”
"It's just that breaking up these companies, whether it's Facebook or Google or Amazon, is not actually going to solve the issues,” he added. “And, you know, it doesn't make election interference less likely. It makes it more likely because now the companies can't coordinate and work together."
Zuck confirmed audio:
Zuckerberg confirmed the audio’s authenticity in a Facebook post.
“Every week I do a Q&A at Facebook where employees get to ask me anything and I share openly what I'm thinking on all kinds of projects and issues,” he wrote. “The transcript from one of my Q&As a few months ago just got published online -- and even though it was meant to be internal rather than public, now that it's out there, you can check it out if you're interested in seeing an unfiltered version of what I'm thinking and telling employees on a bunch of topics like social responsibility, breaking up tech companies, Libra, neural computing interfaces, and doing the right thing over the long term.”
Warren hits back:
Warren responded to the leaked remarks on Twitter.
"What would really 'suck' is if we don't fix a corrupt system that lets giant companies like Facebook engage in illegal anticompetitive practices, stomp on consumer privacy rights, and repeatedly fumble their responsibility to protect our democracy," she wrote.