New York State Attorney General Letitia James next to a letter signed by 32 other attorneys general supporting the House antitrust bills.

lev radin/Shutterstock (Licensed) ag.ny.gov (Fair Use)

32 state attorneys general call on Congress to rein in big tech

The states said they were 'very supportive' of the package of bills.

 

Andrew Wyrich

Tech

Published Sep 22, 2021   Updated Sep 22, 2021, 9:56 am CDT

A bipartisan group of attorneys general from 32 states is urging Congress to pass a package of several antitrust bills that would impact big tech companies.

In June, the House Judiciary Committee passed six antitrust bills that have received support from numerous public interest groups. Several of the bills are aimed at companies like Apple, Google, Amazon, and Facebook.

The bills include: the American Innovation and Choice Online Act, the Ending Platform Monopolies Act, the Platform Competition and Opportunity Act, the Augmenting Compatibility and Competition by Enabling Service Switching (ACCESS) Act, the Merger Filing Fee Modernization Act, and the State Antitrust Enforcement Venue Act.

In a letter to leadership in both the House of Representatives and the Senate, the attorneys general said they were “very supportive” of the antitrust bills “given changes in technology, decreased competition in important sectors, and undue judicial skepticism toward robust enforcement.”

“As the antitrust bills move forward from the House Committee on the Judiciary for consideration by the full House of Representatives and, eventually, the Senate, we encourage Congress to continue making improvements to these important measures,” the letter reads. “These include provisions to further enhance consumer protections from unlawful and irresponsible mergers and business practices as well as necessary improvements to ensure that competition and innovation are not stifled.”

In a statement, New York Attorney General Letitia James, who led the effort from the attorneys general, said antitrust laws have “remained stagnant.”

“Congress must pass this package of antitrust bills and give us the tools necessary to ensure competition remains strong across New York and the rest of the nation. Competition yields innovation, competitive pricing, higher quality, and consumer choice, and that is exactly what we are fighting to protect,” James said in a statement.

The states that signed onto the letter included a range of states like New York, California, Illinois, Utah, North Dakota, Tennessee, and others.

Earlier this month, a group of more than 50 organizations also urged Congress to pass the bills, noting that “America has a monopoly problem” and that the package of bills would be a “major step forward in restoring competitive markets and unlocking the potential of Americans to grow successful business and build an economy that is more prosperous, equitable, and innovative.”


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*First Published: Sep 22, 2021, 9:07 am CDT