Everywhere you turn these days, there’s chatter about government regulation of Facebook. But President Donald Trump reportedly has another tech giant in his crosshairs: Amazon.
Jonathan Swan at Axios reports this morning, citing an unnamed source, that Trump is “obsessed with Amazon.” And not because the 45th president loves to pick up new golf clubs on the online retailer.
In a story titled “Trump hates Amazon, not Facebook,” Swan reports that Trump is looking at ways to use antitrust law to attack the online retailer and cloud technology powerhouse, in part because of a belief that Amazon is destroying brick-and-mortar retailers.
“He’s wondered aloud if there may be any way to go after Amazon with antitrust or competition law,” a source tells Axios. The site says the president “would love to clip CEO Jeff Bezos’ wings” but doesn’t have a plan for making that happen.
Trump has also reportedly questioned Amazon’s relationship with the U.S. Postal Service, citing a “free ride” even though aides have told the president that Amazon drives a lot of revenue to the government agency.
UPDATE: The White House tells Reuters that there are no new regulatory measures being put in place against Amazon, though the administration is always looking at various options. Amazon’s stock fell more than four percent on Wednesday, down to $1,431 per share.
The latest Axios report is part of a bigger narrative sweeping D.C. in which politicians are turning against massive West Coast technology companies in what has been described as a “techlash.” Amazon boasts a market value of about $700 billion, and Bezos is now the richest person in the world.
Trump’s anti-Amazon stance is not new.
Bezos has been the subject of Trump’s Twitter tirades over the years, with the president often attacking the Bezos-owned Washington Post.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 25, 2017
One other interesting tidbit from Swan’s reporting is that President Trump rarely mentions Facebook, in part because he believes the entire Russian meddling story is fake news. He also likes the social networking platform as a vehicle for telling his story directly to voters.
Amazon declined comment on the Axios report when contacted by GeekWire. The company’s stock fell more than 4 percent on Wednesday.