Republican President Donald Trump and Democrat candidate Joe Biden don’t agree on many issues, Jon Swartz writes for MarketWatch, “but they do share a wariness toward Big Tech that should maintain or even escalate antitrust scrutiny of the largest U.S. tech companies no matter who wins on Nov. 3.”
In the middle of antitrust investigations into four of the most prominent companies in the world — Alphabet Inc.’s Google, Facebook Inc., Amazon.com Inc., and Apple Inc. — both Trump and Biden have stopped short of calling for companies to be broken up. But their animus toward an industry that has grown to be distrusted by many Americans reflects a golden rule in politics: Run against the corporate boogeyman.
The Trump administration has threatened broad regulatory actions against internet companies for what the president and other Republicans claim is anticonservative bias, while maintaining antitrust investigations of Google and Facebook, and fighting in the courts for bans on Chinese-owned apps such as TikTok and WeChat.
Trump’s Justice Department is reportedly close to filing a lawsuit against Google’s search and advertising business before the election that likely would spill over into the next administration. The Federal Trade Commission, meanwhile, is preparing a possible lawsuit against Facebook by the end of the year over unspecified antitrust violations. The FTC continues its probe of Amazon, while the status of the Justice Department’s investigation of Apple remains unclear.
Biden, who was vice president during the Silicon Valley-friendly administration of President Barack Obama, has been critical of Big Tech’s market power. He supports stringent antitrust oversight and online privacy rules, but leans heavily toward forcing social-media companies to better police their sites against false information… A policy task force Biden created with Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., recommends breaking up companies for anticompetitive behavior, but only “as a last resort.”
MacDailyNews Note: A rundown of where Trump and Biden stand on antitrust, social media, and other tech issues is in the full article here.