Yesterday during his testimony before a Senate committee Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg responded to questioning from Senator Ted Cruz about political bias at his company by acknowledging that it is headquartered in the Silicon Valley, in California, which is a very left leaning area.
Today Zuckerberg testified before a House committee, and among his interrogators was North Dakota Congressman Kevin Cramer who suggested that the tech icon ought to address liberal bias at his company by building in the middle of the country.
Like maybe in North Dakota.
“Let me suggest that you look someplace perhaps in the middle of the North American continent for some people,” Cramer said. “Maybe your next investment of capital could be in someplace like Bismarck, North Dakota, or Williston where you have visited, where people tend to be pretty common sense. Probably, perhaps even more diverse than Facebook.”
Cramer was referring to Zuckerberg’s visit to the North Dakota oil patch back in July of last year.
Here’s the video. Zuckerberg responded by pointing out that the majority of the people engaged in Facebook’s content review are located outside of Silicon Valley:
Cramer also questioned Zuckerberg about Facebook’s role in the opiod crisis and the issue of net neutrality.
In related news North Dakota’s Democrats – who have been unleashing a steady barrage of negative press releases about Cramer – blasted the congressman for changing his Facebook banner picture during the hearing.
I reached out to Cramer about the jab. “This attack is one of the most petty political maneuvers I have seen in a long time. It illustrates just how desperate Sen. Heitkamp and the Democrats have become,” he told me. “I spent five hours in the hearing today, asked tough questions and had a good exchange with Mr. Zuckerberg. Anyone who watched the hearings saw just how engaged I and the entire committee was in this serious matter. Heidi must feel she can’t run on her record, as she and her cohorts have resorted to repeated cheap politics in place of meaningful policy debate.”
That’s just how nasty this election season is going to be. Heitkamp and the Democrats have imported a bunch of national activists from far left groups like Media Matters and American Bridge for this election cycle – Heitkamp’s campaign communication director, as one example, is a Media Matters veteran – and what North Dakotans are going to be treated for are the sort of nasty, ugly rhetoric that permeates national politics these days.