Biden chooses tech critic Lina Khan to lead FTC

The move could signal a more progressive agenda for the Federal Trade Commission.

Abrar Al-Heeti Technology Reporter
Abrar Al-Heeti is a technology reporter for CNET, with an interest in phones, streaming, internet trends, entertainment, pop culture and digital accessibility. She's also worked for CNET's video, culture and news teams. She graduated with bachelor's and master's degrees in journalism from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Though Illinois is home, she now loves San Francisco -- steep inclines and all.
Expertise Abrar has spent her career at CNET analyzing tech trends while also writing news, reviews and commentaries across mobile, streaming and online culture. Credentials
  • Named a Tech Media Trailblazer by the Consumer Technology Association in 2019, a winner of SPJ NorCal's Excellence in Journalism Awards in 2022 and has three times been a finalist in the LA Press Club's National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Awards.
Abrar Al-Heeti
Lina Khan

Lina Khan was confirmed by the Senate to be commissioner of the FTC on Tuesday.

Getty Images

President Joe Biden selected big tech critic Lina Khan, a Democrat, to serve as chair of the Federal Trade Commission on Tuesday, the agency said. Her swearing in came soon after the Senate confirmed Khan in a 69-28 vote to be a commissioner of the FTC, according to CNBC. 

"I look forward to working with my colleagues to protect the public from corporate abuse," Khan said in a statement.

Khan, 32, previously worked as an associate professor of law at Columbia Law School, and served as counsel to the US House Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commercial and Administrative Law, helping in the investigation of digital markets related to Google, Apple and other big tech companies.  

Tuesday's move could indicate Biden hopes the FTC takes on a more progressive agenda, CNBC notes. The president said in March he would nominate Khan to be an FTC commissioner

Khan will take over for FTC Acting Chairwoman Rebecca Kelly Slaughter, a Democrat. The FTC is comprised of five commissioners, of which no more than three can be from the same party. In her role, Khan will vote on enforcement issues involving competition and consumer protection. 

Khan tweeted, "I'm so grateful to the Senate for my confirmation. Congress created the FTC to safeguard fair competition and protect consumers, workers, and honest businesses from unfair & deceptive practices. I look forward to upholding this mission with vigor and serving the American public."