Google CEO Denies Interest In Government JobBy: WebProNews Staff - October 22, 2008
Google CEO Eric Schmidt has been on the campaign trail stumping for Barack Obama, virtually formalizing his “informal campaign advisor” role, a suddenly very public endorsement that fueled speculation about a possible cabinet position, specifically Obama’s proposed tech czar.
But Schmidt says he’s not interested. “I’ll put an ‘N’ and an ‘O’ and circle around it, if that would be helpful,” CBS News quotes Schmidt as saying. He has a multinational corporation to run. Of course, Obama, like so many others before him, once wasn’t interested in running for President. Sometimes being asked makes all the difference.
That leaves fellow Googler Vint Cerf, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, and Amazon founder Jeff Bezos on the US CTO (tech czar) short list.
After denying his interest in government work, Schmidt gave a fairly muted endorsement of Obama, saying he was the best choice, but “nobody’s perfect.”
If that cabinet spot were available, it’s likely not anymore, huh? That’s kind of like saying, "You’re pretty, for a fat girl."
Cerf seems like the obvious choice for tech czar now, assuming Obama’s elected. Often called the Father of the Internet, Cerf publicly endorsed Obama via YouTube last week because of the candidate’s support for Net Neutrality. The tech czar would be in charge of implementing Obama’s 21st century technology plan, which includes creating a more transparent government via the Web, open networks, and expanding broadband access.
Critics worry, though, that a Googler’s presence in the upper echelon’s of government would unfairly favor the search company, which has been subject of a DOJ antitrust investigation, and has been aggressive in lobbying various FCC decisions regarding wireless spectrum, white spaces, and of course, Net Neutrality.
Who should be worried the most by Googlers in the White House: the telecommunications industry, which desires precisely the opposite of what Google wants. That may be why Verizon and AT&T were falling over each other to install emergency temporary cellular towers at John McCain’s Sedona ranch upon Cindy McCain’s request.