Donald Trump: Amazon has “a Huge Antitrust Problem”

2507355507_e0a8cff9d6_bNow that Trump is the presumptive GOP candidate for president, some pundits have said that he would tone down his rhetoric and start wooing the mainstream voters he had driven over into the Democrat's camp.

Judging by a recent interview where the candidate echoed his previous remarks about Amazon, that isn't going to happen.

Donald Trump said on Thursday that Amazon.com, the world's biggest online retailer, has "a huge antitrust problem."

In an interview on Fox News, Trump also said Amazon Chief Executive Jeff Bezos, who owns the Washington Post, is using the newspaper to influence politicians in Washington to help Amazon on taxes.

"This (Washington Post) is owned as a toy by Jeff Bezos, who controls Amazon. Amazon is getting away with murder tax-wise. He's using the Washington Post for power so that the politicians in Washington don't tax Amazon like they should be taxed," Trump said.

"He's using the Washington Post ... for political purposes to save Amazon in terms of taxes and in terms of antitrust," Trump said.

"He thinks I'll go after him for antitrust. Because he's got a huge antitrust problem because he's controlling so much, Amazon is controlling so much of what they are doing," Trump said.

Amazon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

(Reporting by Eric Beech; Editng by Simon Cameron-Moore)

image by MikeBlogs

23 Comments on Donald Trump: Amazon has “a Huge Antitrust Problem”

  1. What I am wondering is whether this is more hot air, a political ploy to get something out of Bezos/Amazon, or the foreshadowing of an actual attack on a political enemy.

    I can’t tell. Do you think Trump even knows which it is?

    • I think at this point, given his success in securing the Republican nomination, against all odds, and the increasing likelihood that he might even win a general election, it isn’t useful to keep thinking that Trump doesn’t know what he’s doing or that he’s all hot air.

      He is very good at aggressively attacking enemies, even in advance against potential enemies, and putting them off guard. The Washington Post have been very aggressive in attacking him for some time, almost daily there are articles dismissing him, challenging his facts, exposing past behavior.

      Whether he believes Amazon is in violation of anti-trust, attacking Bezos and the WP is a win/win. Either the WP starts to back off a bit, getting defensive, or he makes the case that everything they print is bias and should be ignored by his supporters. I think there’s clear strategy behind this. And the timing of it.

  2. Amazon does have tight control on the e-book market, but that in itself is likely not illegal since they are not abusing their control.
    Trump likes calling people villains to energize his base and Bezos/Amazon are decent targets.

  3. Lord deliver us from Donnie Dump! Amen!

  4. “Amazon is getting away with murder tax-wise.” This from a man who, when asked how much he pays in taxes, said “as little as possible.”

    • Ah, so that’s what it was. I hadn’t made the connection.

      Thanks!

      • Hardly the only negative article in the WaPo. They have at least dozen fact checking articles that say he’s making stuff up. And tons of commentary attacking him from both sides of the political spectrum. Liberals saying he’s racist and conservatives saying he’s not conservative.

        • Actually, what has him on the attack is they are researching a book on his entire past history, especially his shady real estate plays, to be released in the fall.
          (It will also be released as a 20-part(?) WP series in July.)

          He clearly expects the material to be damaging so he is trying to preemptively attack its credibility.

          Here’s some quotes from Woodward, who is heading the investigation:

          http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2016/05/13/trump-says-washington-post-owner-bezos-has-huge-antitrust-problem.html

          • Well, maybe they are planning even more. But as a WaPo subscriber, I can tell you, there have been multiple attacks on him every day since he started running. At a certain point, it seems like, enough already. They’ve had hit pieces on his wife, his kids, him on Howard Stern, his past business operations, his connections to shady characters in New York, his overseas businesses. They attacked him about the Taco Bowl, numerous attacks for saying the wrong thing about women, several attacks about him calling a female reporter “beautiful.” And a steady flow of editorials calling him a racist and continual attacks on all his political positions.

            If they think they can ramp it up and have a bigger impact, I think they’re kidding themselves. It’s all just a blur of attacks at this point.

            You might hate Trump’s style, but he’s smart to focus his attacks on a very specific things. Bush is low energy. Little Rubio. Lying Ted. Mexico will pay for the wall.

            There was a piece in the Post attacking Trump for not being “factual” in saying that Hillary brought up Obama’s citizenship issue first. The conclusion of the piece was that, yes, it was Hillary’s supporters who first brought it up, but there is no evidence to directly tie it to Hillary herself. Therefore, Trump is a liar. However, I came away from the piece with the conclusion that Trump was at least partially right, it started with the Clinton campaign attacking Obama and trying to make points by circulating pics of him in a turban (which was clearly a racist dogwhistle). And, if you think it’s possible Hillary might have been using others to get the message out, which seems plausible, Trump was more than half right. But the Post article presents it like very black and white that he’s a liar, while giving details that show it’s very much a gray thing. In the end, it’s probably best for Hillary that the whole subject disappears, she doesn’t come off looking good.

            If the WaPo plans more of the same, they’ll get Trump elected.

  5. Though of course he’s quite right. Part of Amazon’s success is based on massive tax dodging.

    • Yup.
      Instead of giving his company’s earnings to politicians for pork barrel vote buying (roads and bridges to nowhere,loans to favored companies that never get repayed, etc) Bezos spends the money growing the company and its employee base.

    • What major company isn’t tax dodging? I hear Apple, Bank of America, heck all the banks and major companies avoid paying taxes by keeping their money off shore.

      • So it’s alright to dodge paying your taxes then? Who needs schools, libraries and hospitals?

        • Hospitals are usually private, schools generally suck no matter how much money they get, and libraries are locally funded and squeezed no matter what.
          Corporate federal taxes more often go to pork barrel boondoggles than any of the above.

          • Okay. Let’s stop taxing corporations, destroy the middle-class and become a 3rd world country. *headslap*

          • Corporations are made up of people.
            Who are already taxed.
            So it is disingenuous to pretend that a corporation isn’t being taxed just because it reports no taxable profits.
            The entire government financing is totally broken and harping on one minor dysfunction is a waste of time.
            Want to focus on big time tax avoidance issues?
            How about the companies like Apple and Google, among many, that hoard foreign profits abroad instead of repatriation them for investment because of uncommonly high corporate tax rates?
            There’s easily a couple trillion bucks worth of tax avoidance right there.
            And that is without getting philosophical and asking why tax anybody at all.

    • Timothy Wilhoit // 14 May, 2016 at 7:42 am // Reply

      Amazon does no massive tax dodging. Trump is using the tax dodger slam as a reference to sales tax collection. Since Amazon doesn’t owe sales tax (the customer does) it’s not a tax dodge. They aren’t required to collect it in states where they have no physical presence. I don’t recall anyone calling NewEgg or LL Bean tax dodges when they don’t collect sales tax in the vast majority of states. There’s more money involved with Amazon’s sales and those states want a chunk of it. That’s the difference. I suspect Trump knows this but he really doesn’t care. It’s a handy stick to use on Jeff Bezos.

  6. The real problem here is that we have Trump talking about retaliating against Amazon because of the actions of an unrelated company whose only connection to Amazon is that the CEO of one also owns WaPo.

    That’s either petulance or some Putin-level malevolence, and not something we want in a president.

    • Oh, we’ve seen this kind of stuff before.
      Look into the origins of the Microsoft antitrust case.
      That particular lynching party was instigated by a big California campaign fund raiser picking up the phone and complaint to the beneficiary of said fund raising that MS was doing unto them what they did to everybody else.

      And the current administration has plenty of similar dealings, even if they aren’t openly renting outthe Lincoln bedroom.

      The White House has rarely if ever been a pristine example of virtue.
      Trump may be an offensively obnoxious jerk but he is merely different in degree and volume, not in kind. He is merely stating publicly what others have done in private.
      All presidencies have enemies lists.

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