Democrat-led House panel to seek breakup of big tech, GOP lawmaker says

A Dem-led House antitrust subcommittee has been investigating competition in the tech sector for over a year

A Democrat-led House antitrust subcommittee will propose to break up Silicon Valley’s tech giants after a yearlong investigation into competition in the technology sector, a Republican member of the subcommittee said.

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Rep. Ken Buck, R-Colo., wrote in a draft memo obtained by Politico and Bloomberg that while he agrees with Rep. David Cicilline, D-R.I., that antitrust enforcement agencies need more resources, some of the Democrats’ proposals “are non-starters for conservatives.”

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"We agree that antitrust enforcement agencies need additional resources and tools to provide proper oversight," Buck wrote. "However, these potential changes need not be dramatic to be effective."

The probe has investigated Amazon, Google, Facebook and Apple.

The Democrats’ proposal would, for example, prevent Google from owning both the world’s biggest search engine and YouTube, while Amazon wouldn’t be able to sell its own products on its marketplace, according to Bloomberg.

Buck told Politico in a statement Monday that he agrees with Cicilline that tech giants have acted in an anti-competitive manner and that the next phase is to work on solutions.

Democrats have proposed legislation to force structural separation for tech companies. The legislation was likened to the Depression-era Glass-Steagall law, which separated commercial and investment banking, Bloomberg reported.

The final report, which was expected to have been released as early as Tuesday, was delayed Monday after Republicans offered to negotiate on parts of it, a committee aide told Politico.

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It wasn’t immediately clear whether any Republicans on the subcommittee would agree to Buck’s recommendations.