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Facebook Wants ‘Biased’ FTC Chair Removed From Antitrust Hearing

Facebook has petitioned the Federal Trade Commission to recuse chair Lina Khan from the current antitrust action against the company, arguing her public position on Facebook suggests she has a predetermined position on the company regarding antitrust violation.

This follows a similar request from Amazon, who cited a paper she wrote for the Yale Law Journal, in which she argued “the current framework in antitrust—specifically its pegging competition to ‘consumer welfare,’ defined as short-term price effects—is unequipped to capture the architecture of market power in the modern economy.”

In a petition filed yesterday, Facebook cited many public statements, and numerous journal articles written by Khan, arguing they make her opinion on Facebook’s supposed violation of the antitrust laws clear.

“For the entirety of her professional career, chair Khan has consistently and very publicly concluded that Facebook is guilty of violating the antitrust laws,” Facebook wrote.

To have Khan disqualified, the company must demonstrate “a disinterested observer could determine” she had already “come to a factual and legal conclusion before any proceeding.”

 

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