Exclusive: Biden administration considers creating White House antitrust czar – sources

Tray Ling

By Diane Bartz, Nandita Bose FILE PHOTO: U.S. President-elect Joe Biden arrives to speak during an event at Major Joseph R. “Beau” Biden III National Guard/Reserve Center at New Castle County Airport in New Castle, Delaware, U.S. January 19, 2021. REUTERS/Tom Brenner/File Photo WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The incoming administration of […]

FILE PHOTO: U.S. President-elect Joe Biden arrives to speak during an event at Major Joseph R. “Beau” Biden III National Guard/Reserve Center at New Castle County Airport in New Castle, Delaware, U.S. January 19, 2021. REUTERS/Tom Brenner/File Photo

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The incoming administration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden is considering creating a White House position focused on competition policy and issues relating to antitrust, two sources familiar with internal deliberations said.

The idea remains under consideration and the Biden White House may not ultimately make the move, one of the sources said.

“It is yet to be determined if this will be more of a coordinator kind of a role or if this person will really sit at the White House,” said another source. The role could focus on moving information back and forth between agencies and coordinating, the source added.

Antitrust enforcement has emerged as an issue the Biden transition team has been watching closely, especially with the rise of Big Tech platforms, which provide free or inexpensive services to consumers while suspected of breaking the law to crush smaller rivals.

A spokesman for the transition did not immediately comment on the topic.

On Saturday, Reuters reported that two former Obama administration officials had emerged as Biden’s front-runners for the top antitrust job at the Department of Justice.

The Justice Department and Federal Trade Commission, which share the work of antitrust enforcement, have been investigating the Big Tech platforms, Alphabet’s Google, Facebook, Amazon and Apple. The Justice Department sued Google and the FTC sued Facebook while investigations are ongoing into Amazon and Apple.

Reporting by Diane Bartz and Nandita Bose; Editing by Chris Reese and David Gregorio

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