Donald Trump Jr. slammed “free market” defenses of big tech during a panel at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) yesterday, highlighting tech firms’ special privileges from the government.
“We were so trapped in the… ‘It’s free market, it’s not free market’ [argument],” said Trump Jr.
“Well, it’s not free market, because they’re getting so many benefits and protections from liability from the federal government that they cannot discriminate the way they have so flagrantly against conservatives and anyone on our side.”
Don Jr spoke on a panel alongside Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) and Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA). Sen. Hawley also attacked “free market” arguments against removing big tech’s legal privileges.
“I think it’s as simple as this,” said Sen. Hawley .”If Facebook and Twitter and Google, if they are not going to give conservatives the same treatment as liberals, if they’re going to discriminate on the basis of political speech then they shouldn’t be getting special deals from government.”
Sen. Hawley went on to describe the cozy relationship between liberal politicians and tech companies.
“When they’re in power, when the liberals are in power, they know that big tech will, on their own, suppress our voices. So it’s all about, for the left, this partnership. It’s a big government, big tech partnership, run by the liberals. That’s what they want.”
“You’ve got to end the special favors that big tech gets. Big tech has gotten big and powerful and strong because of the special deal that they’ve got from the federal government. Let’s not pretend that this has just been free market competition. Big tech has allied with big government.”
Sen. Hawley also said that users should have the right to sue platforms.
“If we get discriminated against, if you get suppressed on Twitter or Facebook, if Don gets suppressed on Twitter or Facebook or any of us, we ought to be able to sue them… Those are rights we should expect to have.”
Allum Bokhari is the senior technology correspondent at Breitbart News.