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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

President Trump's outgoing antitrust chief Makan Delrahim on Tuesday endorsed a proposal from House Democrats that would put new limits on acquisitions by large companies, during comments made at a Duke University event.

Why it matters: Momentum is building for major antitrust reform, updating rules that were written for railroads instead of routers.

  • Democrats began agitating for it shortly after Trump took office. Some Republicans view it as a way to curb Big Tech's power. And Delrahim's words may help sway others GOP members who are on the fence.

The draft legislation cited by Delrahim would presume horizontal acquisitions by a company with more than a 50% market share in a defined market are anticompetitive, no matter the size of the acquired company.

  • Delrahim said: "The goal here is to create a bright-line rule for merging parties and for courts, allowing for better business planning by private parties and better litigation planning by federal antitrust enforcers."
  • He added that his endorsement was grounded in DOJ's experience with both the Visa/Plaid and Sabre/Farelogix situations.
  • Delrahim also proposed the creation of a public-private rulemaking body to focus on increasing competition among online platforms. Plus a pilot “specialized antitrust court,” to see if it could perform better than courts with generalist judges who lack deep antitrust and/or industry knowledge.

The bottom line: Washington, D.C. changes today, with a new President and a new Senate majority. But the evolution of antitrust law continues to point in the same direction.

Go deeper: Read Delrahim's full speech

Go deeper

Fortnite developer brings on its first lobbyists

An 11-year-old gamer plays Fortnite in South Pasadena, California, last April. Photo: Neilson Barnard/Getty Images

The company behind the wildly popular video game franchise Fortnite, which is suing Apple over alleged anti-competitive practices, hired its first lobbyists this month to “monitor” antitrust issues in Washington.

Why it matters: Epic Games’ case against Apple has potentially huge legal and financial stakes. The company’s decision to enlist K Street veterans with connections on both sides of the aisle indicates it is tuning into D.C., where both parties have railed against anti-competitive practices in the tech industry.

Dave Lawler, author of World
2 hours ago - World

Americans increasingly see China as an enemy

One in three Americans, and a majority of Republicans, now view China as an enemy of the United States, according to a new survey from Pew Research Center.

By the numbers: Just 9% of Americans consider China a "partner," while 55% see Beijing as a "competitor" and 34% as an "enemy."

Scoop: Leaked HHS docs spotlight Biden's child migrant dilemma

A group of undocumented immigrants walk toward a Customs and Border Patrol station after being apprehended. Photo: Sergio Flores/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Fresh internal documents from the Department of Health and Human Services show how quickly the number of child migrants crossing the border is overwhelming the administration's stretched resources.

Driving the news: In the week ending March 1, the Border Patrol referred to HHS custody an average of 321 children per day, according to documents obtained by Axios. That's up from a weekly average of 203 in late January and early February — and just 47 per day during the first week of January.