State AGs need to ‘step up’ for rule of law, NY enforcer says

30 March 2017. By Can Celik.

State attorneys general need to "step up" as enforcers during the Trump presidency, New York's top antitrust enforcer said on Thursday.

"We are in a world where state attorneys general need to step up for the rule of law and strong competition policy," Beau Buffier, chief of the antitrust bureau of the New York Attorney General's Office, said at a conference in Washington, DC.*

Buffier, who was speaking in a personal capacity, said his office decided that antitrust enforcement "should very much remain a priority" after President Donald Trump met with the CEOs of companies with "very significant mergers" pending before the Department of Justice and various state agencies.

Buffier said his colleagues were "concerned as an office" that a protectionist, anti-free trade agenda could create more market power and less competition in domestic markets.

Explaining the new interest in state merger enforcement, Buffier said "we can't wait until we see" what actions the new leadership takes "in case we do need to step up and fill the void."

*American Bar Association Antitrust Law 2017 Spring Meeting. Washington, DC. March 29-31, 2017.

	Eliot Gao