Vote on Amy Klobuchar’s Antitrust Pet Project Right Down to the Wire
Within the month, Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) will likely put Senator Amy Klobuchar’s (D-Minn.) radical antitrust pet project, the American Innovation and Online Choice Act (S. 2992), on the Senate floor. One might expect to see peace and tranquility within the Senate surrounding this vote based on some recent reporting that has suggested that this bill has bipartisan consensus and is “poised to score a major win” for the left. The reality is exactly the opposite.
Liberal activists who want to weaponize antitrust law in service of their woke social agenda have stepped up their lobbying efforts to sway undecided senators before the vote. Bloomberg reported last night that, “Progressive tech advocacy group Fight for the Future began a crowdfunding campaign Monday to pay for billboard ads targeting two Democrats — Senators Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire and Michael Bennet of Colorado.” Their strategy is to use their vast funds to exert public pressure on undecided senators just before they hit the campaign trail for their reelection this November. They are actively creating a toxic and false narrative that if the senators fail to pass the legislation, they are “shilling for Big Tech.”
This bad faith narrative comes despite concerns from economists, such as Obama Administration National Economic Council Director Larry Summers, that the legislation could “easily” have inflationary effects. Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) recently came out against AICOA citing national security concerns as well as the negative jobs impact on his constituents. Voters are approaching this election season more concerned about the rising prices of goods than any other issue, including antitrust policy, this election cycle. It would be reasonable that senators coming up for reelection would want to focus more on issues that could assuage inflation as opposed to pursuing policies with the potential for increasing inflationary pressures. In this case, the senators would not be “shilling for Big Tech,” but rather focusing on the needs and wants of their constituents.
For a progressive lobbying group to turn against senators from their own party in such an aggressive manner indicates their desperation to pass the bill before the August recess. Their desperation is actually the only thing reasonable about their strategy. Given the likelihood that Democrats will lose the House and Senate in the upcoming midterm election, they may not get the opportunity to pass such a radical piece of legislation for a long time. Republicans must hold the line and prevent Democrats from taking advantage of their narrow window to pass such a bill that would damage our economy and massively increase the size and scope of government.