Causing further concerns for the Big Tech companies, two US senators have introduced bipartisan legislation that seeks to make it harder for Amazon.com and other tech giants to make acquisitions.
According to the office of Senator Amy Klobuchar, a Democrat who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee’s antitrust panel, the lawmaker along with Republican Tom Cotton has introduced a bill targeting such companies as Alphabet’s Google and Facebook.
The bill would make it easier for the government to stop deals it believes break antitrust law by requiring the companies to prove to a judge that the deals are good for competition, and therefore legal.
Earlier a similar bill, introduced by Democratic Representative Hakeem Jeffries and others, has been approved in the House of Representatives Judiciary Committee and awaits a vote by the full House.
Traditionally it is up to the government in antitrust enforcement to show a particular transaction would cause prices to rise or is illegal for other reasons. “We’re increasingly seeing companies choose to buy their rivals rather than compete,” Klobuchar said in a statement.
“This bipartisan legislation will put an end to those anticompetitive acquisitions by making it more difficult for dominant digital platforms to eliminate their competitors and enhance the platform’s market power.”
The Bill introduced by Klobuchar in October would bar Big Tech platforms from favouring their products and services. Other bills introduced to seek to rein in the outsized market power of tech firms, including industry leaders like Apple.