Tucker has returned to Fox News, and he is taking no prisoners.
Fox News host Tucker Carlson hammered Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) on an Tuesday for becoming one of the Senate’s most groveling shills for Big Tech after at one time opposing the Silicon Valley corporations that actively discriminate against the free speech of conservatives.
“Lee has questioned whether Congress should even bother with antitrust investigations of tech companies. Lee has introduced legislation that would make it harder for the government to block corporate mergers. Lee has complained about the E.U. imposing fines on Google for its behavior,” Carlson said on his eponymous TV program.
He connected the dots, showing that Lee has grown to be a Google apologist as the tech giant has opened up their pocketbooks toward Lee and ramped up their business in his home state of Utah.
“Starting in 2013, Google spent millions of dollars rolling out its high-speed Internet service, Google Fiber, in both Provo and Salt Lake City, Utah. In 2015, Google hosted a high-profile fundraiser for Lee at its Silicon Valley law firm. The fundraiser got a lot of attention, so Google backed out. But the fundraiser itself went ahead, and Lee received a sizable donation from Google’s political action committee,” Carlson noted.
“Ever since that fundraiser and the money he took, Lee’s interest in having the FTC investigate tech companies seems to have completely evaporated,” Carlson added.
He explained that Google hired Lee’s former senior counsel from the Senate Judiciary Committee and curried favor with neoliberal Washington D.C. think-tanks, the Heritage Foundation and American Enterprise Institute. This also helped curry Lee’s favor, as Google plays the conservative movement like a fiddle.
The careful message crafting that resulted from Google’s successful lobbying effort has become the doctrinaire line across much of the conservative movement. This is another example of the corrosive libertarianism that plagues GOP politics, according to Carlson.
“The message they pushed was that Google and other tech monopolies are really something conservatives ought to celebrate. These companies are triumphs of the free market. We should be grateful for them. And worrying about their growing power and the ways they use that power is somehow socialist and un-American,” Carlson said.
“Of course, Google itself is socialist and un-American, so the argument never really made sense. But Mike Lee bought it completely,” he added.
Carlson noted that Lee doesn’t just do the bidding of Google, but he also serves another Big Tech giant with dubious business practices: Facebook.
“When Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg came before Congress last year, he asked them only at the softest of softball questions. And a month later, Facebook announced it would build a $750 million data center in Utah. A coincidence? Maybe it is a coincidence, or maybe it’s every bit as corrupt as it seems,” Carlson said.
“We asked Senator Lee to come on tonight to explain what exactly happened. He declined. We’ll keep asking until he reconsiders,” he added.
Carlson’s full rant can be seen here:
It has been quite the fall from grace for Lee, who was once one of Google’s staunchest opponents in the Senate.
Gone are the days when conservatives could rely on tea party lawmakers to speak truth to power in the nation’s capitol. Lee’s Big Tech betrayal is more evidence of how even strong conservatives can get swallowed up by the swamp.