Top House antitrust Republican forms ‘Freedom from Big Tech Caucus’

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Rep. Ken BuckKenneth (Ken) Robert BuckBipartisan group calls on Biden to clarify reasoning for Syria airstrikes Rep. Jordan releases Big Tech agenda Court ruling sets up ever more bruising fight over tech MORE (R-Colo.), the top Republican on the House Judiciary Antitrust Subcommittee, is forming a new “Freedom From Big Tech Caucus” along with a handful of other GOP lawmakers who supported antitrust bills advanced by the committee last month, the congressman announced Friday.

Rep. Lance GoodenLance GoodenCourt ruling sets up ever more bruising fight over tech Hillicon Valley: House targets tech giants with antitrust bills | Oversight chair presses JBS over payment to hackers | Trump spokesman to join tech company | YouTube suspends GOP senator House unveils antitrust package to rein in tech giants MORE (R-Texas) will serve as co-chairman of the caucus. Other founding members of the caucus include Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-N.C.), Rep. Burgess Owen (R-Utah), and Rep. Paul GosarPaul Anthony GosarJuan Williams: Republicans prefer Trump’s fantasies over truth and facts Sears, Kmart pull shirt calling Ashli Babbitt an ‘American Patriot’ Five big questions about the Jan. 6 select committee MORE (R-Ariz.). 

The caucus will aim to unite Republicans in Congress to “rein in Big Tech” through “legislation, education, and awareness.” 

The announcement outlines a focus on antitrust reform, including restoring “the free and dynamic digital economy,” promoting “competition and innovation,” and supporting small businesses. 

Additionally, the caucus said it will aim to protect privacy and data rights, protect children from harmful content online, and “end political censorship.” 

“Big Tech has abused its market power for decades, and Congress must act to hold these companies accountable and preserve the free market, promote competition and innovation, protect the freedom of speech, and foster a thriving digital economy,” Buck said in a statement. 

The formation of the caucus comes as rifts within the House GOP deepen amid the push to pass the six antitrust bills the Judiciary Committee advanced that aim to reform antitrust power and target tech giants. 

Ranking Member of the Judiciary Committee Jim JordanJames (Jim) Daniel JordanCheney reportedly told Jim Jordan ‘you f—— did this’ during Jan. 6 riot McCarthy, GOP face a delicate dance on Jan. 6 committee Hillicon Valley: Trump files lawsuit against Facebook, Twitter, and Google | New cyberattacks ramp up tensions with Russia | 36 states, DC sue Google alleging antitrust violations in app store MORE (Ohio) opposed the bills, and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyOn The Money: IRS funds snag infrastructure deal | Biden touts ‘transformative’ child tax credit payments | Powell’s uncertain future Corporate PACs resume donations to McCarthy after brief pause The Hill’s 12:30 Report – Presented by Facebook – Merkel visits the White House before stepping down MORE (Calif.) has also voiced criticism of the legislative package. 

Amid the backlash, Jordan last week unveiled his own strategy for taking on Big Tech companies. Jordan’s agenda differed from the bills put forward by the committee, notably by calling for the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to be stripped of its antitrust enforcement authority. 

Democrats face their own challenges on the bills, especially among a group of California lawmakers who have opposed the bills that target the companies based in their Bay Area districts.

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