Fifty states and territories attorneys general announced on Monday that they’ve launched an antitrust investigation against Google.
The effort will be led by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and includes both Democratic and Republican attorneys general. California and Alabama are currently not publicly involved in the effort.
The investigation will look into Google’s “control of online advertising markets and search traffic that may have led to anticompetitive behavior that harms consumers,” according to a statement from Paxton’s office.
“There is nothing wrong with a business becoming the biggest game in town if it does so through free market competition,” Paxton said in a news release, adding: “But we have seen evidence that Google’s business practices may have undermined consumer choice, stifled innovation, violated users’ privacy, and put Google in control of the flow and dissemination of online information. We intend to closely follow the facts we discover in this case and proceed as necessary.”
The investigation was announced at a press conference on the steps of the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., according to the Washington Post.
The state-level investigation comes on the heels of the Justice Department saying in July that it was also looking at how “market-leading online platforms have achieved market power and are engaging in practices that have reduced competition, stifled innovation, or otherwise harmed consumers.”