Sen. Bernie Sanders, a 2020 presidential candidate, has voiced his support in breaking up Facebook, according to reports, something fellow candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren has called for as well.
Sanders shared his thoughts with Politico, and when asked if he supports Warren’s proposal for antitrust actions against Facebook, he responded, “The answer is yes of course.”
“We have a monopolistic — an increasingly monopolistic society where you have a handful of very large corporations having much too much power over consumers,” Sanders said.
His comments come on the heels of a much publicized New York Times op-ed piece by Facebook Co-Founder Chris Hughes (who no longer works for the social media giant) also calling for the breakup of Facebook.
“The government must hold Mark accountable. For too long, lawmakers have marveled at Facebook’s explosive growth and overlooked their responsibility to ensure that Americans are protected and markets are competitive. Any day now, the Federal Trade Commission is expected to impose a $5 billion fine on the company, but that is not enough; nor is Facebook’s offer to appoint some kind of privacy czar,” Hughes wrote.
“After Mark’s congressional testimony last year, there should have been calls for him to truly reckon with his mistakes. Instead the legislators who questioned him were derided as too old and out of touch to understand how tech works. That’s the impression Mark wanted Americans to have, because it means little will change.”
Earlier this year, Warren unveiled a proposal to direct government regulators to force Facebook to spin off Instagram and WhatsApp, its two largest acquisitions in the past few years.
Other candidates have also spoken on the issue. Sen. Kamala Harris said we “have to seriously take a look at” breaking up Facebook. Former Vice President Joe Biden said that breaking up the company was “something we should take a really hard look at,” but that it was “premature” to support the measure fully.