US President Joe Biden appointed lawyer and Google critic Jonathan Kanter as head of the Justice Department’s antitrust department on Tuesday in the latest sign that the White House is on the verge of rein in the world’s largest corporations, especially Big Tech.
Progressive supporters of tougher antitrust laws have pushed for the candidacy of Kanter, who recently founded his own law firm, Kanter Law Group LLP, which bills itself as an “antitrust boutique.”
White House named Kanter is “a leading advocate and expert in promoting strong and meaningful antitrust laws and competition policy.”
He has spent years representing competitors of Alphabet Google, which the Justice Department sued last year alleging it violated antitrust laws by trying to restrict competitors.
The Biden administration previously selected two progressive antitrust authorities with technical expertise – Tim Wu for the National Economic Council and Lina Khan for the position of Commissioner for the Federal Trade Commission.
Sarah Miller, executive director of the American Economic Freedoms Project, said Kanter “has put forward many of the most successful legal arguments for major antitrust investigations against large technologies.”
Kanter declined to comment on the nomination.
If approved by the Senate, Kanter, who previously worked for Paul, Weiss, Rifkind Wharton & Garrison LLP and two other major law firms, will take over the reins of the Justice Department’s antitrust division amid calls for more general enforcement, with particular critics from Google, Facebook , Amazon and Apple.
The tech giants have been under investigation for nearly two years, and the US House of Representatives commission released a report in October that said they used “killer acquisitions” to fend off competitors, charged exorbitant fees and forced small businesses to enter “tough” contracts. the name of the profit.
The companies categorically denied any wrongdoing.
The Canter Department of Justice’s Antitrust Office will play a key role in implementing Biden’s executive order to promote competition in the US economy. In addition to suing Google, the Justice Department is also investigating Apple.
The FTC shares antitrust compliance work with the Department of Justice.
© Thomson Reuters 2021