Senate committee advances Klobuchar’s legislation to ‘rein in Big Tech’

Klobuchar said there has been no "meaningful" legislation addressing the internet’s influence on the American economy in several decades.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar speaks with attendees at the 2020 Iowa State Education Association Legislative Conference. (Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

Sen. Amy Klobuchar appeared on Fox News’ Special Report Thursday night, primarily to promote an antitrust bill aimed at reforming laws that govern Big Tech and increasing competition.

A bipartisan U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee voted 16-6 Thursday to advance the legislation — The American Innovation and Choice Online Act — as bipartisan lawmakers seek to curtail the power and influence of Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, and others.

In short, the bill would prevent companies from “unfairly preferencing their own products and services” on their platforms while prohibiting “specific forms of conduct that are harmful to small businesses, entrepreneurs, and consumers.”

The Minnesota senator says proponents come from “all different ideologies” and rattled off various Democrats and Republicans. All Democrats from the committee supported the measure — although California Democrats Dianne Feinstein and Alex Padilla initially opposed it — while five Republicans joined.

“We believe you need to have fair competition,” Klobuchar told host Bret Baier.

Asked if her efforts will work, Klobuchar responded, “I have faith,” then added, “16 senators stood up to a multi-million dollar lobbying campaign” from Silicon Valley giants and their surrogates.

Klobuchar said there has been no “meaningful” legislation addressing the internet’s influence on the American economy in several decades.

The bill — which only has a few months to move forward, since midterm elections are approaching — is opposed by many free market-oriented groups that argue it limits choice and could cause more harm than good.

Considering she returned earlier this week from a delegation trip to Ukraine, Baier also asked Klobuchar to follow up on President Joe Biden’s controversial Wednesday comments on a potential Russian incursion into its neighbor.

“If you’re betting on divides in Congress on this, don’t bet on that, Vladimir Putin, because we believe strongly there must be swift and certain sanctions if there is an invasion,” the senator explained.

Asked about ongoing struggles during the president’s first year, Klobuchar called Biden “a good man” and rehashed how she believes he inherited a pandemic, got vaccines out, and helped “stabilize the economy” before moving to “his number one priority” of a bipartisan infrastructure bill.

Despite admitting to children being shuffled in and out of schools in large districts, workforce shortages, and more chaos the past 12 months, Klobuchar claimed, “I do see, as we say in Duluth, the lighthouse on the horizon.”

Finally asked by Baier about Biden’s accommodation of the far left and their incendiary rhetoric alienating moderate senators, Klobuchar deflected.

“I think he’s ready to work with everyone,” she quipped, before pivoting to her concerns like rural childcare and long-term care for seniors.