AG Landry joins in Google investigation

Published 3:51 am Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Appearing on the steps of the United States Supreme Court, Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry announced Monday that he and 49 of his colleagues have launched an investigation of Google’s business practices in accordance with state and federal antitrust laws.

The bipartisan coalition of attorneys general plans to investigate Google’s overarching control of online advertising markets and search traffic that may have stifled competition, restricted access, and harmed consumers. Legal experts from Louisiana and the other states and territories will work in cooperation with federal authorities to assess competitive conditions for online services and ensure that Americans have access to free digital markets.

“The Internet was once a revolutionizing home for ideas, debate, and content — a place that could benefit countless Louisiana consumers and businesses,” Landry said. “However, Google’s dominance of online advertising and searching may have undermined the free market, harmed consumers, and stifled the free flow of thought and information.

“So I am proud to work with my fellow attorneys general, from across the political spectrum, to determine whether Google’s aggressive business practices are actually illegal. We will closely follow the facts discovered by this investigation 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.