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by Vault Law Editors | July 26, 2009


The Paper of Record concedes it’s a slow news day by running, top right above the fold, a look at the latest doings of the DOJ’s Antitrust Division.   

Interesting reading for legal news geeks nonetheless: the  efforts of Obama’s top trustbuster, Christine Varney, a former Hogan & Hartson partner and Clinton-era FTC commissioner, to ‘rein in a host of major industries’ are reportedly so aggressive that she is getting pushback from within the administration.  (The phone call is coming from inside the house?  Well, the leaks are coming from inside the White House!) 

Among the industries in Varney’s crosshairs: telecoms, airlines, railroads (!?), and –at the special request of Vermont’s Bernie Sanders—those BigMilk nogoodniks.

The article also has some vague details about what or who the DOJ is not going after:

[In connection to the] White House effort to overhaul financial regulation, officials weighed but rejected a significant antitrust role as a way to reduce the size of large companies considered too big to be allowed to fail.

Meaning, the DOJ was considering breaking up some banks, but then decided against.  Or, alternatively, the DOJ was considering a more expansive definition of ‘too big to fail,’ but then bagged it.    Or something else entirely; Hard to say, move along.

                   -posted by brian


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