Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer told a collection of Democratic donors on Tuesday that a closely watched bipartisan antitrust bill to rein in Big Tech doesn’t have the votes to pass.
That puts the chief Senate Democrat at odds with Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), who are both pushing the legislation and have claimed for months that they have the 60 votes needed to get it through the Senate.
Schumer (D-NY) was asked about the bill during an evening question-and-answer session with donors at swanky Capitol Hill eatery Bistro Bis. He responded by saying that the bill was a “high priority” but doesn’t have the votes to pass.
Schumer’s comments were first reported by Bloomberg.
The bill, called the American Choice and Innovation Online Act, would bar companies from “self-preferencing” their own products in search results.
For example, Amazon wouldn’t be allowed to give “Amazon Basics” products a leg up over third-party items, while Google would be barred from giving “Google Flights” priority over rivals like Expedia and Kayak.
Schumer spokesperson Angelo Roefaro told The Post that the bill is a “high priority” for Schumer and that the majority leader “supports the bill and is working with Senator Klobuchar to get the votes.”
While 60 senators have not yet come out in support of the bill, many Capitol Hill insiders say the bill would nonetheless pass if Schumer brings it up for a vote, The Post reported on Sunday.
In the words of one senior GOP Senate aide, Klobuchar and Grassley both have a “chicken and egg problem” in which senators don’t want to publicly support the bill unless they know