(RepublicanInformer.com)- Antitrust advocates are blaming New York Senator Chuck Schumer for the Federal Trade Commission’s approval of the $10 billion merger of Amazon and MGM two weeks ago.
Right now, the FTC remains deadlocked with 2 Democrat and 2 Republican commissioners as Biden’s nominee for FTC commissioner, Alvaro Bedoya’s confirmation vote had not been pushed to the full Senate by Senator Schumer in time to have him vote on the Amazon-MGM merger.
The Senate Commerce Committee vote on Bedoya’s confirmation was split 14-14 last year. In the event of a tie in the committee, Schumer can hold a procedural vote in the full Senate to move the nominee out of the committee to a full Senate vote. But that procedural vote wasn’t held until March 30.
Antitrust advocates believe Schumer could’ve moved Bedoya’s confirmation forward late last year. But instead, he chose to drag his feet. Some suspect Schumer’s delay may have something to do with the fact that his daughter Jessica is a registered lobbyist at Amazon.
An antitrust advocate told the New York Post that most assumed that if Bedoya was confirmed before the merger deadline, the merger would’ve been blocked by the FTC. And the guy who could have made sure Bedoya was confirmed before the deadline was Chuck Schumer.
A spokesman for Schumer’s office told the Post that the Majority Leader didn’t delay Bedoya’s confirmation vote. Angelo Roefaro told the Post in a statement that Schumer has a “track record of placing pro-consumer watchdogs in key regulatory positions.” Roefaro reiterated the New York Senator’s support for “stringent anti-trust review,” adding that Schumer is at the forefront of regulating big business and protecting consumers.
Schumer is responsible for bringing antitrust bills aimed at cracking down on Big Tech to a vote. Some antitrust advocates, however, note that Schumer has previously said he is “sympathetic” to big tech. Coincidentally, his other daughter, Alison, works at Facebook as a product marketing manager. Advocates believe Schumer’s familial connections to tech companies have created a conflict of interest.
Jeff Hauser, the founder and director of the Revolving Door Project said Schumer’s familial ties to big tech are a cause for concern. He said a judge presiding over a case involving Facebook would have to recuse himself if his child worked at Facebook.