FINALLY: Congress Takes Steps to Rein in Big Tech’s Unchecked Power

June 24th, 2021 9:15 PM

Republicans and Democrats have largely agreed that Big Tech has too much power. Yet, despite some agreement, the debate has raged on as Congress tries to determine how to hold companies like Facebook, Amazon and Google accountable.

The House Judiciary Committee held a June 23 markup of six antitrust bills aimed at taking down Big Tech. Five of the six bills had some bipartisan support. Regardless, the first bill alone, the Merger Filing Fee Modernization Act of 2021, spurred three hours of debate as discussions over the antitrust proposals stretched into the next day.

The committee passed all six of the bills it considered after two days. The bills will all go to a vote before the full House. 

Democrats have largely pushed the antitrust proposals. “The bills that the committee will consider at today’s markup will pave the way for a stronger economy and a stronger democracy for the American people by reining in anticompetitive abuses of the most dominant firms online,” said Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-NY).

Some Republicans, in particular, have appeared eager to take down Big Tech’s massive market power. “Big Tech has abused its dominance in the marketplace to crush competitors, censor speech, and control how we see and understand the world,” Ranking Member of the House Judiciary Committee Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO) said in a statement. “Apple, Amazon, Facebook, and Google have prioritized power over innovation and harmed American businesses and consumers in the process. These companies have maintained monopoly power in the online marketplace by using a variety of anticompetitive behaviors to stifle competition.” 

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), however, raised several issues with the bills. Jordan and former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows acknowledged that Big Tech is “out to get conservatives,” but warned “the answer is not to marry Big Tech to Big Government,”

Jordan also called out the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which would gain greater power under the proposed legislation. “These bills give power to the FTC, the new commissioner we all know is radically left,” Jordan told The Federalist. “I don’t really think it breaks up big tech and I don’t think it gives a remedy to people who are censored.”

Whether or not Congress takes action against Big Tech, platforms like Google, Facebook and Amazon may soon face their own judgment days. The Department of Justice and two separate state coalitions, have filed antitrust lawsuits against Google. Washington, D.C. Attorney General Karl Racine has filed an antitrust lawsuit against Amazon. Additionally, the FTC and a coalition of 48 attorneys general have sued Facebook for its alleged anticompetitive practices.

Conservatives are under attack. Contact your representatives and demand that Big Tech be held to account to mirror the First Amendment while providing transparency, clarity on “hate speech” and equal footing for conservatives. If you have been censored, contact us at the Media Research Center contact form, and help us hold Big Tech accountable.