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Republican Sen. Josh Hawley, shown during a Judiciary Committee hearing on May 1, has called for greater FTC oversight of tech companies. Photo: AP
Policy Facebook

‘Upside-Down’ World: Facebook Debate Divides Republicans

By
Ashley Gold
 |  May 13, 2019 7:00 AM PDT
Photo: Republican Sen. Josh Hawley, shown during a Judiciary Committee hearing on May 1, has called for greater FTC oversight of tech companies. Photo: AP

Federal regulators’ negotiations with Facebook over how severe a penalty the social media company should face for privacy violations has shaken the political status quo. Democratic and Republican lawmakers, who these days find little to agree on, have teamed up to demand tough consequences for Facebook. Typically reticent Federal Trade commissioners have been hinting at their divisions publicly.

And within the Republican Party, there is a sharp divide over how aggressively regulators should attempt to rein in tech companies. Some Republicans in the House and Senate have been increasingly vocal about wanting more oversight of big tech firms. A few have even said that executives like Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg should be held personally liable for the actions of the company.

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