Senate votes to discharge Bedoya FTC nomination, paving the way for Senate confirmation vote
ICYMI: On Tuesday, Senator spoke on Senate floor following Leader Schumer’s motion to move Alvaro Bedoya’s nomination forward
Leader Schumer: “I hope anyone who cares about inflation and rising prices and collusion and all kinds of manipulation of those prices…. should be voting for the motion to discharge the nomination. Once again, the senator from Washington has led the way on this issue. I salute her.”
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, the U.S. Senate voted to discharge Alvaro Bedoya’s nomination to be a Commissioner of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) out of the Senate Commerce Committee, allowing a confirmation vote to be scheduled. U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., Chair of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, spoke on the Senate floor urging her colleagues to support the motion to ensure the FTC can protect consumers.
“The FTC is the security guard for America's consumers,” Sen. Cantwell said. “The FTC needs to be able to protect all Americans, and to accomplish that, we need to have a Commission that is not deadlocked but has somebody like Mr. Bedoya who can help us move ahead on these issues.”
“I want to thank the senator for her leadership on this issue,” leader Schumer said. “We all know we've seen prices go way up, and we also all suspect a lot is due to different gouging and manipulations. The FTC is about the best agency to look for this. But without Mr. Bedoya, the chair and members are handicapped in moving that forward. This is a really important motion to discharge. I hope anyone who cares about inflation and rising prices and collusion and all kinds of manipulation of those prices to prevent those from coming back down should be voting for the motion to discharge the nomination. Once again, the senator from Washington has led the way on this issue. I salute her.”
The Commission is responsible for protecting consumers and competition by preventing anticompetitive, deceptive, and unfair business practices. The FTC helps protect consumers from many everyday issues from online fraud scams, rising prices at the gas pump, high cost of drug prices, and protecting children’s privacy online.
If confirmed, Bedoya would be the fifth commissioner of the FTC, completing the Commission with 5 members. Cantwell explained how without Mr. Bedoya’s key tie-breaking vote, the FTC will remain deadlocked and unable to advance key priorities.
Sen. Cantwell said, “the FTC has the legal authority to act, but needs a majority of Commissioners to take decisive action to fully use that authority.”
Cantwell said Bedoya has earned bipartisan support and the current Republican FTC Commissioners recognize his expertise and willingness to reach across the aisle to find common ground and solutions that work for the American people.
“I encourage my colleagues to support him. That is why he is supported by the current Republican FTC Commissioners,” Sen. Cantwell said. “They also support his nomination. They say they recognize his willingness and expertise and ability to reach across the aisle and find common ground on solutions that work for people. It’s that skill set that we're looking for at the FTC to help hard-working Americans get a fair shake in the marketplace, whether at the pharmacy, gas pump or online.”
Alvaro Bedoya is the Founding Director of the Center on Privacy & Technology at Georgetown Law, where he is also a Visiting Professor of Law. Before founding the Center, Alvaro served as Chief Counsel of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Privacy, Technology and the Law, where he conducted oversight on mobile location privacy and biometrics, drafted bipartisan legislation to protect victims of sexual assault, and drafted portions of the bipartisan NSA reform law, the USA FREEDOM Act. A naturalized citizen born in Peru and raised in upstate New York, Alvaro graduated summa cum laude from Harvard College and holds a J.D. from Yale Law School.
Earlier this month, Mr. Bedoya’s vote in the Commerce Committee tied 14-14, requiring a motion to discharge from the Majority Leader in order to be placed on the Senate calendar.