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Facebook, like Amazon, asks for FTC's Khan to be removed from antitrust litigation against company

Facebook, like Amazon, asks for FTC's Khan to be removed from antitrust litigation against company

Khan has a lengthy history of urging the federal government to go after Big Tech companies
Facebook on Wednesday filed a petition asking Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chair Lina Khan to remove herself from involvement with the commission's pending litigation against the social media giant.

Khan, a staunch antitrust advocate, has a lengthy history of urging the federal government to go after Big Tech companies and regulate their power.

"Chair Khan has consistently made well-documented statements about Facebook and antitrust matters that would lead any reasonable observer to conclude that she has prejudged the Facebook antitrust case brought by the FTC" in 2020, a Facebook spokesperson told FOX Business in a statement.

The FTC did not comment on the petition. The commission's lawsuit calls for the company’s acquisitions of Instagram and WhatsApp to be unwound.

The petition includes numerous examples of Khan expressing concern that Facebook may have been in violation of antitrust laws, and Facebook argues that her past statements, academic writings and other reports suggest that she will not be an impartial FTC chair.

It also noted that Khan worked for the Open Markets Institute, which says on its website that it "pioneered analysis of how Google, Amazon and Facebook wield [monopoly] power in ways that threaten democracy and individual liberty," for about seven years.

The tech giant said Khan's "repeated and consistent public claims that Facebook is culpable for antitrust violations, would lead any disinterested observer to conclude that she has prejudged Facebook’s alleged antitrust liability," the petition reads.

"Facebook respectfully requests that Chair Khan recuse herself from any decisions regarding the Commission’s pending litigation against Facebook," the filing states.

Amazon, too, submitted a June petition against Khan, saying she should have nothing to do with any antitrust investigations against the company, arguing she cannot be impartial given her years of accusing the company of alleged violations.

The FTC also did not comment on Amazon's petition.
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