WATCH: CNBC Anchor THROWS DOWN With Winklevoss Twins Over Robinhood, Accuses Them of Trying to ‘Whip Up Something Populist’


Billionaire twins Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss engaged in a fiery confrontation with CNBC anchor Jon Fortt over trading platforms that have prohibited traders from purchasing certain stocks.

The exchange began with Tyler Winklevoss opining on the decision by companies including Robinhood to ban traders from buying shares of companies including GameStop and AMC Entertainment. “I think if anyone thinks this is about just one stock or two stocks, they’re mistaken,” he said. “I think it’s a systemic issue. … in the thread of our country and its fragility in what’s happening in the inequality, and frankly the hypocrisy of the political leaders who say you can’t open your business and run your business and make a living in the pandemic. We won’t pass a stimulus bill on time. And oh, by the way, now you can’t trade. What’s the next thing they’re going to control and say you can’t do?”

Fortt erupted in response. “Wait a minute, wait a minute, wait a minute,” he said, cutting Winklevoss off. “Who is saying all of those things? That sounds like an attempt at whipping up something populist.”

The question provoked the group to enter an extended conversation about whether any politicians had called for trading to end. Some regulators — such as Massachusetts Commonwealth Secretary William Galvin have called for action to that effect, though it isn’t clear any elected officials have done so to date. Neither Fortt nor the twins mentioned those regulators, and none were able to name elected officials, which prompted the three to enter into a prolonged exchange.

“Have you tried outdoor dining in Manhattan in January?” Cameron Winklevoss said. “Yeah, but what politician is telling people they can’t trade?” Fortt fulminated. “Name them! Who are they? What are you talking about?”

“We don’t know what the regulators are leaning on — the different platforms,” Tyler Winklevoss said.

“Well, if you don’t know, then don’t say you know!” Fortt shot back. “I know it’s convenient during these times when people are emotional to blame the authorities for all these things, but what are you talking about? Who’s shutting down trading?”

The exchange continued for a few more moments, leading Tyler Winklevoss to ask Fortt if he had asked Robinhood whether pressure had been exerted on the company. “I don’t have Robinhood on!” Fortt protested. “I have you on. I’m actually analyzing what you’re saying.”

Winklevoss replied, “OK, you haven’t done your job today.” Fortt lamented, “If I haven’t done my job, you’re implying I’m wasting my time talking to you.”

The Securities and Exchange Commission said Wednesday that it was “working” with its fellow regulators “to assess the situation” with respect this week’s surge in stock prices for several companies.

Watch above via CNBC.

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