Under new FTC Chair Lina Khan, the century-old regulatory agency long accustomed to blessing corporate mergers is veering back to its original trustbusting mission. | Saul Loeb-Pool/Getty Images
By LEAH NYLEN
09/29/2021 04:31 AM EDT
Updated: 09/29/2021 07:18 PM EDT
In July, the CEO of the biotech giant Illumina flew to D.C., checked into a hotel room off M Street and tried to conduct a routine piece of business: Persuading the Federal Trade Commission to let his company buy a cancer startup.
But nobody from the FTC would meet with him.
In the Obama and Trump eras, a pilgrimage to Washington was a tried-and-true strategy for CEOs seeking to resolve antitrust logjams — often yielding a flurry of meetings between commissioners and companies like Google, T-Mobile and Apple. But as Illumina’s Francis deSouza learned, that was a different FTC.
Under new FTC Chair Lina Khan, the century-old regulatory agency long accustomed to blessing corporate mergers is veering back to its original trustbusting mission and becoming markedly less friendly to the businesses it regulates. The shift has inspired cheers from her fellow progressives while unsettling many GOP lawmakers, the agency’s two Republican commissioners and even some longtime FTC employees, according to interviews with more than 20 FTC employees, commission alumni and people on Capitol Hill.
The 32-year-old law professor’s most prominent target is the tech industry, whose biggest players swelled to behemoth size on the...
Read Full Story: https://www.politico.com/news/2021/09/29/lina-khan-war-monopolies-514581
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