Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) added a new plan to her 2020 presidential bid today by revealing a plan to break up big tech companies, specifically targeting Google, Facebook, and Amazon.
“America’s biggest tech companies are controlling more and more of our digital lives,” Warren tweeted Friday morning. “And they’re using their size and power to make it harder for the next tech entrepreneur with the next big idea to break through and compete with them — meaning less options for us.”
We’ve got to call it out. And we’ve got to do something about it. So today, I’m proposing a new plan to #BreakUpBigTech companies, restore competition, and make sure these corporations don’t get so powerful that they undermine our democracy.
— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) March 8, 2019
“Today’s big tech companies have too much power — too much power over our economy, our society, and our democracy,” Warren wrote in a Medium blog post outlining her plan.
“They’ve bulldozed competition, used our private information for profit, and tilted the playing field against everyone else. And in the process, they have hurt small businesses and stifled innovation.”
Warren plans to create a separate business category for companies with an annual global revenue of $25 billion or more to “offer to the public an online marketplace, an exchange, or a platform for connecting third parties.”
This rule specifically affects Google and Amazon, who would be in violation of the proposed legislation and would need to split some of their operations.
Warren also promised to look into splitting recent tech mergers, such as Facebook buying Instagram and WhatsApp, with existing anti-trust laws.
The Massachusetts senator promised this wouldn’t change experiences for consumers:
“Here’s what will change: Small businesses would have a fair shot to sell their products on Amazon without the fear of Amazon pushing them out of business. Google couldn’t smother competitors by demoting their products on Google Search. Facebook would face real pressure from Instagram and WhatsApp to improve the user experience and protect our privacy. Tech entrepreneurs would have a fighting chance to compete against the tech giants.”
Democratic lawmakers have lately honed in on regulating tech giants. House Democrats introduced a bill on Wednesday that would reinstate net neutrality rules.
But Warren’s call to break up big tech companies, and specifically targeting three major ones, makes her an outlier even in her own party and an outlier in the 2020 Democratic presidential race so far.