Trump’s unlikely allies in tech policy could include Eric Schmidt and Nancy Pelosi


Republican and Democratic consultants Juleanna Glover and Hilary Rosen floated both those names and more on the latest Recode Decode.

Some of U.S. President-elect Trump’s advisors, like former Breitbart editor and white supremacist ally Steve Bannon, have seemingly confirmed his critics’ worst fears. But running a country takes a lot of manpower, and the incoming commander in chief might find help in unlikely places, consultants say.

“He’s just going to be too incredibly powerful to limit the circles of advisory services that are available to him,” Republican consultant Juleanna Glover said on the latest episode of Recode Decode, hosted by Kara Swisher.

Glover was a prominent member of the GOP’s #NeverTrump movement, but said it’s important to give Trump “an open mind and as much advice and support as we possibly can.” She noted that although the media has reported on who is seen walking into Trump Tower in New York, the transition team may be specifically choosing who to invite through the front door.

“There is a back entrance, an underground arrival, at Trump Tower,” Glover said. “We are not seeing everybody they want us to see … I wouldn’t be surprised to see [Alphabet executive chairman] Eric Schmidt coming in. I think they’re taking meetings with everybody.”

She was joined on the podcast by Democratic consultant Hilary Rosen, who said Democrats in Congress will still have a major role to play in the new administration.

“There are going to be policy issues — they’re not going to be able to just reverse net neutrality without Democratic input,” Rosen said. “They’re not going to be able to push through work rules or encryption or other issues without Democrats in the Senate engaging on this.”

In addition, the economic populism that helped put Trump in the White House, both consultants agreed, isn’t going away. Rosen said that may drive him to work closer on tech policy with stalwart liberals like Nancy Pelosi and Elizabeth Warren than with leaders from his own party like Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell.

“Let’s face it: These jobs are not coming back, the ones Donald Trump promised would come back,” Rosen said. “So what’s going to substitute for them? Where is growth going to occur? The more the administration takes a hand off business, the more trouble Donald Trump is in when it comes to his re-elect.”

“I think he’s going to come out in an unexpected way on how to manage the displacement that’s going to occur as AI becomes more highly utilized across the country,” Glover said.

You can listen to Recode Decode in the audio player above, or subscribe on iTunes, Google Play Music, TuneIn and Stitcher.

If you like this show, you should also sample our other podcasts:

  • Recode Media with Peter Kafka features no-nonsense conversations with the smartest and most interesting people in the media world, with new episodes every Thursday. Use these links to subscribe on iTunes, Google Play Music, TuneIn and Stitcher.
  • Too Embarrassed to Ask, hosted by Kara Swisher and The Verge’s Lauren Goode, answers the tech questions sent in by our readers and listeners. You can hear new episodes every Friday on iTunes, Google Play Music, TuneIn and Stitcher.
  • And Recode Replay has all the audio from our live events, including the Code Conference, Code Media and the Code Commerce Series. Subscribe today on iTunes, Google Play Music, TuneIn and Stitcher.

If you like what we’re doing, please write a review on iTunes — and if you don’t, just tweet-strafe Kara.

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