Amazon is pressing for Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chairwoman Lina Khan to recuse herself from antitrust cases before the agency.
Khan, who was named chair by President Joe Biden earlier this month after she was confirmed to the agency by the Senate, is an outspoken critic of big tech. She has also written about the retail giant and antitrust in a Yale Law Journal article.
In a 25-page petition to the FTC, Amazon argued that under Khan’s leadership the agency would not “be a neutral and impartial evaluator of the evidence developed in any antitrust investigation against Amazon.”
“Given her long track record of detailed pronouncements about Amazon, and her repeated proclamations that Amazon has violated the antitrust laws, a reasonable observer would conclude that she no longer can consider the company’s antitrust defenses with an open mind,” Amazon’s lawyers wrote.
The move by Amazon was taken by many to be an attempt to push back as the Biden administration moves toward antitrust cases against tech companies like Amazon, which involves itself in web hosting, surveillance technology, and much more.
“So: #Amazon is trying to force @FTC Chair Lina Khan to step aside from investigations. Why? Because she actually *studied* Amazon and *published* a highly-cited *academic* paper on Amazon. Folks. This is not even funny. It’s bullying,” one Twitter user wrote.
A spokesperson for the FTC declined to comment to the New York Times.