Tech

Google Lost Big On Its Clinton Bet

REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/File Photo

Alex Pfeiffer White House Correspondent

Google worked hard to get Hillary Clinton elected, both by working directly with her campaign and through donations from prominent employees. But her humiliating loss leaves the company one of the biggest losers of the election.

Eric Schmidt, executive chairman of Google’s parent company Alphabet Inc., worked directly with the Clinton campaign and wanted to be its “head outside advisor,” according to Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta. Schmidt backed a start-up called The Groundwork which was involved in Hillary’s data operation and the Clinton campaign spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on The Groundwork.

Besides The Groundwork, WikiLeaks emails revealed that a team ran by Schmidt helped set up the back-end to Clinton’s site, fundraising and collecting emails, and that Schmidt gave her advice about where to set up her office and how to recruit tech workers.

Large sums of money also flowed from Google to Clinton’s campaign committee; Alphabet Inc. was the second largest donor. Google was heavily invested in President Barack Obama’s elections in 2008 and 2012. They were a top ten donor in both those cycles, and Schmidt was involved in Obama’s transition team.

The Intercept reported that Google representatives attended on average more than one White House meeting a week from the beginning of Obama’s presidency to October 2015. The same report showed that between the time Obama took office and April 2016 almost 250 individuals have moved between Google employment and White House employment.

It is yet to be seen if the Trump presidency will negatively effect Google, but Trump is strongly against net neutrality, the idea that internet service providers shouldn’t be able to discriminate against certain users and applications. Google supports. net neutrality.