Senator Ted Cruz criticizes US agency’s collaboration with EU on Big Tech rules

Read about Senator Ted Cruz's criticism of the US agency's collaboration with the EU on Big Tech rules. Learn about the concerns raised regarding US sovereignty and competitiveness. Find out about the incoming EU rules and their potential impact on American companies.

In a letter addressed to Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chairwoman Lina Khan, U.S. Senator Ted Cruz expressed his concerns regarding the agency’s collaboration with European Union (EU) officials to develop regulations aimed at restraining Big Tech companies. The conservative Texas lawmaker criticized the FTC for what he deemed as “collusion” with foreign governments, suggesting that such actions undermine U.S. sovereignty and Congress’s jurisdiction in lawmaking. Cruz also argued that this collaboration could potentially harm the competitiveness of American firms and adversely affect the investments of millions of Americans. The letter comes at a time when major tech companies like Meta, X (formerly Twitter), and TikTok are facing the implementation of the EU’s Digital Services Act and Digital Market Act, which impose strict content-moderation rules and label certain companies as “gatekeepers” to prevent market abuse. Cruz demanded detailed information on the FTC’s involvement and expenses in collaborating with EU officials, along with inquiries about the Commission’s San Francisco office and the interactions between FTC and EU counterparts.

Senator Ted Cruz criticizes US agency’s collaboration with EU on Big Tech rules

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In recent years, there has been a growing concern about the power and influence of Big Tech companies, particularly those based in the United States. The European Union (EU) has been at the forefront of efforts to regulate these tech giants and ensure fair competition in the digital market. The EU’s regulatory push has raised questions about the collaboration between US agencies and their European counterparts, with Senator Ted Cruz being a vocal critic of such collaboration.

Cruz’s criticism of FTC collaboration with EU

Senator Ted Cruz, a Republican from Texas, has expressed his concerns about the collaboration between the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and European Commission officials regarding the regulation of Big Tech companies. In a letter addressed to FTC Chairwoman Lina Khan, Cruz raised questions about the FTC’s involvement in discussions with the EU on regulations that could impact US-based companies. He accused the FTC of colluding with foreign governments and betraying the interests of American businesses.

Impact on US sovereignty and competitiveness

Cruz’s criticism is rooted in the belief that the FTC’s collaboration with the EU undermines US sovereignty and the constitutional lawmaking authority of Congress. He argues that by aiding the EU in its efforts to regulate Big Tech companies, the FTC is compromising the competitiveness of US firms. Cruz further emphasizes the potential harm to the savings of American investors who hold stock in these companies through pension plans, as regulations could negatively impact their value.

Incoming EU rules for Big Tech companies

The EU has proposed two major regulatory initiatives aimed at addressing the dominance of Big Tech companies: the Digital Services Act (DSA) and the Digital Market Act (DMA).

Digital Services Act (DSA)

The DSA introduces compliance requirements for tech giants and imposes steep fines for non-compliance. It also includes content-moderation rules, which were adopted in 2022. These rules are intended to ensure the removal of illegal content, hate speech, and misinformation from online platforms.

Digital Market Act (DMA)

The DMA identifies certain companies as “gatekeepers” based on their market dominance in core digital services. Companies like Apple, Meta (formerly known as Facebook), Alphabet (Google’s parent company), Amazon, and Microsoft have notified their platform services to the EU as potential gatekeepers. The DMA aims to prevent the abuse of market dominance by these gatekeepers and imposes specific obligations and restrictions on their operations.

Discrimination against US companies

Cruz argues that the DMA and DSA discriminate against US companies by imposing mandatory compliance costs. He believes that these regulations unfairly target American firms and put them at a competitive disadvantage. Cruz asserts that the regulations should be evaluated for their objective impact on US companies and the potential negative consequences they may face.

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Information sought by Cruz

In his letter to FTC Chairwoman Lina Khan, Cruz requested detailed information regarding the FTC’s collaboration with the EU. Specifically, Cruz sought information on the number of FTC officials who have been sent to Europe since June 2021, their titles and roles, and monthly expenses incurred by these officials. Cruz also inquired about the Commission’s office in San Francisco and the interactions between FTC officials and their EU counterparts there.

Response from EU officials and Rep. James Comer

Following Cruz’s criticism, EU officials, including Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton, defended the EU’s regulatory efforts and rejected accusations of targeting US-based companies. Commissioner Breton emphasized that the rules apply to all companies, regardless of their geographic location. Additionally, Representative James Comer, the chairman of the House Oversight Committee, called for communications between the FTC and the EU Commission on the DMA to be shared with Congress, further highlighting the interest and scrutiny from US government officials.

In summary, Senator Ted Cruz’s criticism of the FTC’s collaboration with the EU on Big Tech rules centers around concerns regarding US sovereignty, competitive disadvantage, and potential harm to American investors. The incoming EU rules, DSA and DMA, have triggered debates about discrimination against US companies and the effects on the global digital market. Cruz’s request for information regarding the FTC’s collaboration and the response from EU officials and Representative James Comer indicate the significance of this issue in the regulatory landscape.

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