Amazon's Bezos Blasts Donald Trump
Amazon.com Founder and CEO Jeff Bezos has publicly spoken out against Republican U.S. presidential nominee Donald Trump in the past. He did so again a couple of weeks ago at Vanity Fair's 2016 New Establishment Summit in San Francisco, where Bezos was honored for his role in innovation. Bezos took aim at Trump's handling of the media, and views the candidate's behavior as a potential threat to our country's democracy. "To try and chill the media and threaten retribution and retaliation, which is what he’s done in a number of cases, it just isn’t appropriate,” Bezos said. “We have freedom of speech in this country, it’s written into the Constitution. There are a bunch of nations that have written constitutions that they don’t pay any attention to. It's inappropriate for a presidential candidate to erode that around the edges. They should be trying to burnish it instead of eroding it.”
Total Retail's Take: Bezos has a unique relationship with Trump: Bezos owns The Washington Post, and Bezos and Trump clashed earlier this year after Trump banned news organizations, including the Post, from access to his news conferences and campaign events. However, this is the first time I can remember the head of a major retail company publicly expressing an opinion on the presidential nominees. It will be interesting to see if others follow suit, and how the election — and the weeks leading up to and after it — impact the retail industry, as a whole.