Google CEO Squirms as Jim Jordan Grills Him Over 2016 Latino Turnout Efforts
On Tuesday, Google CEO Sundar Pichai struggled to respond to Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio)'s persistent questions about an email from Google's former head of multicultural marketing, Eliana Murillo, reporting that the company attempted to push out the Latino vote "in key states" during the 2016 election. Murillo's email, reported by Fox News's Tucker Carlson, essentially admitted that Google had given Hillary Clinton an in-kind donation during that key election.
"You said, 'I lead this company without political bias and work to ensure that our products operate that way,'" Jordan began, quoting Pichai's testimony from minutes before. "Eliana Murillo is Google's head of multicultural marketing. Does Miss Murillo do good work?"
To this first, very simple question, Pichai began his squirming responses. "I'm not directly familiar" with Murillo's work, he said.
"You praised her work the day after the 2016 election," Jordan shot back. "In a four-page email she wrote about her work with the Latino vote, she said, 'Even Sundar gave our effort a shout-out.' Is she referring to you there?"
Pichai admitted Murillo was referring to him, but he suggested she was referring to a translation issue, not anything relating to the Latino vote.
The congressman went on to quote the email further. "She said this, 'We pushed to get out the Latino vote with our features.' A few lines down in her email she qualified that sentence, and she said: 'We pushed to get out the Latino vote with our features in key states.' And she specifically cites the states Florida and Nevada."
"Near the end of her email, in a similar sentence, she says 'we supported partners like Voto Latino to pay for rides to the polls in key states.'" Jordan quoted. Then he turned to the CEO, "Is it fair to say the "we" in both sentences, Mr. Pichai, refers to Google?"
The CEO dodged the question. "Congressman, we are very concerned over allegations like that. Our team looked into it..."
Jordan cut him off. "I'm not asking you that question. I'm asking, is it fair to say that the 'we' in both sentences refers to the company Google?"
"As Google, we wouldn't participate in any partisan efforts in any civic process, I don't think so," Pichai responded.
Jordan continued to press him on getting out the Latino vote. "They were getting that done by, according to Miss Marillo, your head of multicultural marketing, by altering your features or configuring your features in such a way and for paying for rides for people to get to the polls. Is that an accurate reading? Is that fair to say what those sentences are talking about?"