During Wednesday’s House hearing with the CEOs of four Big Tech companies, Rep. Greg Steube (R-FL) used his five minutes of questioning time to ask Google CEO Sundar Pichai to troubleshoot his dad’s Gmail account.
After suggesting there was a nefarious anti-conservative conspiracy afoot because he was once unable to find a far-right blog via Google search a few months ago, Steube alleged Google’s email service was biased against Republicans. Claiming that “all of a sudden” his campaign’s emails were showing up in his constituents’ “spam folders,” Steube asked Pichai if he could provide “some clarification,” adding that he hasn’t heard about this happening to Democrats.
Pichai attempted to explain individual email account settings to Steube, prompting the congressman to interject when the Google chief said the “primary tab” is for friends and family. “Well, it was my father who is not receiving now my campaign emails. So clearly that familial thing you’re talking about didn’t apply to my emails,” Steube exclaimed, conflating his personal emails with his political campaign’s.
Steube’s time expired shortly after that. Rep. Val Demmings (D-FL), who followed the Republican lawmaker, noted that she and other Democrats have also heard complaints from constituents that their campaign emails are going into junk folders.