California and Alabama are the only two states that aren't participating in the giant antitrust investigation of Google, and neither is really saying why (GOOGL, FB)

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra speaks about President Trump's proposal to weaken national greenhouse gas emission and fuel efficiency regulations, at a media conference in Los Angeles, California, U.S. August 2, 2018.

  • Only two states aren’t a part of the joint antitrust
    investigation into Google
    California and Alabama.
  • The attorneys general of those two states didn’t offer much of
    an explanation for declining to join the inquiry, which was
    announced Monday.
  • California Attorney General Xavier
    has talked tough on tech in the past and has
    established a reputation for taking on powerful figures, filing
    dozens of suits against the Trump
  • But he’s also accepted significant campaign contributions from
    Google, which is headquartered in his state.
  • Visit
    Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Only two state attorneys general aren’t taking part in the

multi-state antitrust investigation of Google
and one of them
just happens to be the head of law enforcement in the company’s
home state.

Xavier Becerra and Steve Marshall, the attorneys general of
California and Alabama, respectively, are the only two holdouts in
the joint state investigation of the two tech companies. It’s
unclear why neither is taking part in the investigation, and
neither offered much of an explanation.

“California remains deeply concerned and committed to fighting
anticompetitive behavior,” a representative of the California
Attorney General’s Office said in an emailed statement. “Regarding
this investigation or any other, to protect the integrity of
potential and ongoing investigations, we cannot provide

Press representatives for Marshall, meanwhile, did not
immediately respond to calls seeking comment.

The attorneys general of the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico,
and 48 states announced Monday they are investigating Google’s
advertising practices and whether the search giant has harmed
competitors. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is leading the joint

Read this:
50 state attorneys general have launched a formal probe into
whether Google has engaged in anti-competitive practices in its ads

Becerra and Marshall would seem to have little in common other
than being attorneys general of their respective states and
declining to take part in the joint investigation. Becerra is a
Democrat in an urban, deep-blue state whose Silicon Valley region
is the epicenter of the tech industry. Marshall, meanwhile, is a
Republican in one of the reddest, most rural states in the

Becerra has faced off with Trump and talked tough on tech

Becerra has gotten a reputation for being willing to challenge
powerful figures. Since he became attorney general in 2017,

his office has sued the Trump administration at least 56 times
according to the San Francisco Chronicle, challenging it on
everything from immigration policy to the environment.

He’s also talked tough on tech. Earlier this year, he called on
his state’s legislature
to strengthen the California Consumer Privacy Act
, which is due
to take effect next year. Becerra pressed legislators to give
consumers more rights to sue companies over breaches of their
private information and violations of the act.

At an event in San Francisco in March sponsored by The
Washington Post, Becerra
talked about needing to hold tech companies accountable
their actions, and for states to take the lead in reining them

“Now, it’s time to treat the industry as an adult,” Becerra said
at the event. “You have to act like an adult and you have to
understand there are consequences that adults face when they don’t
do things the right way.”

Google has been one of the top contributors to Becerra’s recent
campaigns. The company
contributed $10,200 to his 2016 re-election campaign
as a
member of the US House of Representatives, making it his eight
largest contributor in that campaign cycle, according to
OpenSecrets. The search giant
contributed $7,300 to his campaign for attorney general last
, according to data from the California Secretary of
State’s office.

Becerra’s lack of participation in the Google investigation drew
condemnation from the other side of the political aisle.

“Attorney General Becerra’s refusal to join the bipartisan
investigation into the tech giants is embarrassing,” California
Assemblyman Jordan Cunningham, a Republican, said in an emailed
statement. “California deserves to be at the table.”

The states’ probe of Google is one of numerous antitrust
investigations going on against the big tech companies either in
the US or overseas. Facebook, Amazon, and Apple have also drawn
scrutiny from competition regulators.

Got a tip about Google or another tech company?
Contact this reporter via email at,
message him on Twitter @troywolv, or send him a secure
message through Signal at 415.515.5594. You can also
contact Business Insider securely via SecureDrop

SEE ALSO: Here’s
why the failed attempt to break up Microsoft will make or break the
crackdown on Facebook, Amazon, and Google, according to 2 top
lawyers in the Microsoft case

Join the conversation about this story »

I cleaned my entire apartment with 4 of Amazon’s highest-rated
cleaning robots, but I could’ve done a much better job

Source: FS – All Tech News
California and Alabama are the only two states that aren't participating in the giant antitrust investigation of Google, and neither is really saying why (GOOGL, FB)