President Joe Biden announced this week that he is nominating Jonathan Kanter to head the U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ)'s antitrust division. Kanter's appointment furthers the growing push by regulators to break up big-tech.
Kanter is a well-known name among progressives, an antitrust lawyer with a great deal of experience against large tech firms. In particular, Kanter has spent much of his professional career assisting firms against one another in antitrust suits, having assisted Microsoft
"Jonathan Kanter is a distinguished antitrust lawyer with over 20 years of experience. Throughout his career, Kanter has also been a leading advocate and expert in the effort to promote strong and meaningful antitrust enforcement and competition policy," The White House said of Kanter in a release.
Biden's step will likely receive a warm reception from fellow Democrats. However, Kanter's appointment is also drawing positive feedback from members of the Republic party. GOP Senator Mike Lee of Utah commented that he was encouraged by Kanter's professional background.
Kanter's appointment definitely falls in line with the trend of cabinet picks we've seen so far out of the Biden administration. Earlier in the year, the President nominated progressive favorites Gary Gensler and Rohit Chopra to the U.S. Securities Exchange Commision (SEC) and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) heads, respectively. Gensler, a former Obama-era veteran with an uncompromising stance towards regulation, was confirmed as the SEC chair in April.
With antitrust probes and actions picking up worldwide, Kanter's appointment will likely only be another step towards a wave of stricter regulation. Ultimately, however, the federal government appears to be more focused on breaking up large tech firms to reduce the daunting market shares that many possess.