NORTHWEST ASIAN WEEKLY
The fourth Democratic debate took place on Oct. 15 in Westerville, Ohio and Andrew Yang took a swipe at Microsoft when engaging in a conversation about breaking up Big Tech.
Yang, who has worked as a tech entrepreneur, referenced Bing while answering a question about the proper level of oversight for tech companies.
“We need to be realistic that [enabling] competition doesn’t solve all the problems,” he said. “It’s not like any of us wants to use the fourth best navigation app… There’s a reason why no one is using Bing today… Sorry, Microsoft. It’s true.”
Yang’s comments sent Microsoft’s public relations team scrambling to draft a response.
The following morning, Microsoft’s advertising team tweeted, calling Yang’s attention to a May Bloomberg article praising Bing’s healthy revenue growth in recent years.
Yang’s universal basic income (UBI) got an unusual amount of attention on the debate stage.
Yang—who’s long said that if he becomes president, the government will send a check for $1,000 per month ($12,000 annually) to every American adult—argued that we need a UBI because of impending automation-induced job loss.
He framed his proposal as a “positive vision in response to the Fourth Industrial Revolution,” a term for the ways AI, robotics, and emerging technologies are changing life and work.
He also said we need UBI because it’ll recognize the value of caregiving work and “the work of people like my wife, who’s at home with our two boys, one of whom is autistic.”
Fellow presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard embraced it as well.
“I agree with my friend Andrew Yang,” said the congressman from Hawaii. “I think universal basic income is a good idea to help provide that security so that people can have the freedom to make the kinds of choices that they want to see.”
Elizabeth Warren capped off the debate with more speaking time than any other candidate— approximately 23 minutes, 11 seconds. Joe Biden spoke for about 16 minutes; Amy Klobuchar, Bernie Sanders, Beto O’ Rourke, and Pete Buttigieg all spoke for about 13 minutes; Kamala Harris spoke for 12 minutes, 28 seconds; and Cory Booker spoke for 11 minutes, 50 seconds.
The remaining four candidates got under 10 minutes of speaking time. Andrew Yang spoke for nearly nine minutes, and Julian Castro and Tulsi Gabbard clocked in at about 8 minutes, 30 seconds. Tom Steyer trailed the pack with 7 minutes, 15 seconds.
Yang has already qualified for the fifth presidential primary debate on Nov. 20, which will be hosted by MSNBC and The Washington Post.
He joins Biden, Booker, Buttigieg, Harris, Sanders, Steyer, and Warren as the candidates who have already qualified for the November debate—accounting for eight of the 12 candidates who were in the most recent debate.