House Judiciary Committee To Vote On Six Antitrust Bills

House Judiciary Committee To Vote On Six Antitrust Bills

June 18, 2021 at 11:52AM

The U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee will vote next week on a series of bipartisan antitrust bills regarding big technology companies like Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google, Reuters reported.

The six proposed bills aim to restore digital marketplace competition and rein in big technology platforms. Lawmakers will mark up any changes to the bills in committee and take a vote to determine if the package should go before the full House of Representatives.

Half of the proposed bills target conflicts of interest in technology companies and prohibit acquisitions of rivals by dominant platforms or mergers that expand or entrench market power. The fourth bill requires platform businesses to allow users to transfer their data to another company, even if it’s to a competitor.

The fifth bill ups the budgets of antitrust enforcers and would require more money from companies undergoing the biggest mergers. A sixth bill would ensure that state attorneys general can keep cases where they prefer instead of moving cases to the defendant’s preference.

“Breaking up the monopoly held by large multinational tech corporations represents one of the most daunting challenges facing our nation. For too long, large, oligarchical corporations have feasted on the data and personal information of millions of Americans,” Committee member Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-North Carolina) said in a press release last week 

The House Judiciary Committee approved a 450-page report in April that outlines its investigation into big platform companies that behave like monopolies. First issued last October, the report calls for major changes to antitrust law and details numerous instances when companies allegedly abused their power.

“Amazon, Apple, Google and Facebook each hold monopoly power over significant sectors of our economy. This monopoly moment must end, U.S. Rep. David Cicilline, D-R.I., said in a statement concerning the report. “Now that the Judiciary Committee has formally adopted our findings, I look forward to crafting legislation that addresses the significant concerns we have raised.