AP NEWS

Joe Biden says he’s open to breaking up Facebook

May 14, 2019

Former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. said it’s worth taking a look at breaking up Facebook, in the wake of a recent missive from one of the social media company’s co-founders that it has become dangerously powerful and unwieldy.

Mr. Biden told The Associated Press that dismantling large technology companies including Facebook “is something we should take a really hard look at.”

His comments echoed those of Sen. Kamala D. Harris, a rival for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.

They came after co-founder Chris Hughes recently took to the pages of The New York Times to argue that the power of Facebook head Mark Zuckerberg is “unprecedented and un-American.”

Sen. Elizabeth Warren has been arguably the most aggressive among the 2020 presidential contenders in calling to break up major tech giants like Facebook, Google and Amazon.

Mr. Biden didn’t explicitly endorse Ms. Warren’s proposal but said she “has a very strong case to be made” for cracking down on tech giants.

Sen. Cory A. Booker said corporate consolidation is a problem and that his Justice Department would hold companies accountable on that front.

“But I don’t think that a president should be running around, pointing at companies and saying breaking them up without any kind of process here,” he said on ABC’s “This Week.” “That sounds more like a Donald Trump thing to say, I’m going to break up you guys.”

Mr. Booker immediately denied comparing Ms. Warren to Mr. Trump, calling her “a friend.”

“Let her discuss and debate her positions,” Mr. Booker said. “I’m telling you right now, we do not need a president that is going to use their own personal beliefs and tell you which companies we should break up.”