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FTC Chair Khan Returns to the Hill for a Reality Check

WASHINGTON—This morning, Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chair Lina Khan will testify before the House Judiciary Committee after using her tenure so far to pursue baseless lawsuits, waste taxpayer dollars, increase the FTC’s power over the entire U.S. economy, drive out Republican commissioners and undermine the once widely-respected agency. 

Lawmakers should hold her to account. Khan has been using the power of an independent government agency to pursue a radical, progressive vision for America. 

“Chair Khan is frustrated because she is bound by American antitrust law, which requires her to use facts and evidence, rather than her own ideology about how the U.S. economy should operate. There are now many allegations of her inappropriately using her position as Chair during her tenure at the FTC and ignoring her ethics responsibilities,” said NetChoice Vice President & General Counsel Carl Szabo. “Congress must stress to Khan that her position is to protect American consumers. Through this investigation and the power of the purse, accountability must be restored to this runaway FTC.”

There are many examples of Khan abusing her office at the FTC, including:

  • Misleading Congress during hearings under oath on whether she received advice from ethics officers to recuse herself in the FTC’s lawsuit against Meta/Within, counter to a recent Bloomberg report
  • Using “agency deliberative privilege” to hide documents in legal discovery that would have been crucial to Meta’s defense when trying to force the company to divest from WhatsApp and Instagram.
  • Likely violating federal record-keeping law by destroying documents requested by the House Judiciary Committee. 
  • Setting aside decades of legal rulings around the agency’s procedure to significantly—and likely unconstitutionallybroaden the scope of the FTC’s power. 
  • Announced a broad “rulemaking” around labor contracts, which covers around ⅕ of employment in the U.S. and likely isn’t constitutionally sound. 
  • Suppressing any internal dissent from FTC staff through gag orders.
  • Allowing “zombie votes” from departed commissioners to push her agenda through instead of convincing her current colleagues to vote for her position.
  • Altering merger guidelines to make it more expensive for companies, especially undermining small business growth. 
  • Frivolously bringing doomed-to-fail lawsuits that waste significant taxpayer dollars and agency resources. 
  • Failing to protect Americans, to the tune of $8.8 billion in fraud losses in 2022. 

Here, you can find NetChoice’s recent releases on the FTC:

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