Attorney General Paxton Leads 50 Attorneys General in Google Antitrust Investigation

Chris Fox
September 09, 2019 - 6:19 pm
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton

© Courtney Sacco/Caller-Times,

DALLAS (1080 KRLD) - Attorney General Ken Paxton Monday announced that Texas is leading 50 attorneys general in a multistate, bipartisan investigation of tech giant Google’s business practices in accordance with state and federal antitrust laws.

The coalition includes attorneys general from 48 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.

The bipartisan coalition announced plans to investigate Google’s control of online advertising markets and search traffic that may have led to anticompetitive behavior that harms consumers.

Legal experts from each state will work in cooperation with Federal authorities to assess competitive conditions for online services and ensure that Americans have access to free digital markets.

“Now, more than ever, information is power, and the most important source of information in Americans’ day-to-day lives is the internet. When most Americans think of the internet, they no doubt think of Google,” said Attorney General Paxton. “There is nothing wrong with a business becoming the biggest game in town if it does so through free-market competition, but we have seen evidence that Google’s business practices may have undermined consumer choice, stifled innovation, violated users’ privacy, and put Google in control
of the flow and dissemination of online information. We intend to closely follow the facts we discover in this case and proceed as necessary.”

Past investigations of Google uncovered violations ranging from advertising illegal drugs in the United States to now three antitrust actions brought by the European Commission.

None of these previous investigations, however, fully address the source of Google’s sustained market power and the ability to engage in serial and repeated business practices with the intention to protect and maintain that power.