Republican FTC Commissioner Maureen Ohlhausen is reportedly going to be named acting chair of the agency by Donald Trump in the near future. If given the job, here's what she could do, according to remarks at a conference today:

  • Direct staff to look for "substantial harm" when investigating industry practices — which would likely limit the number of cases brought by the agency.
  • Convene a workshop to revisit on the standards used by the agency when deciding when to intervene in with agency action.

What she probably couldn't do: Pull back on the agency's recent lawsuit against Qualcomm. Ohlhausen said she believed doing so would require a majority commission vote, and the only other commissioner who will be left after Chairwoman Edith Ramirez resigns in February voted for the lawsuit. Reminder: Trump needs to appoint two Republicans and one Democrat to complete the panel and restore Republican majority.

Net neutrality: Olhausen said Congress should consider getting rid of a legal exemption that prevents the FTC from bringing action against so-called "common carriers" in light of the FCC's recent net neutrality rules. (Currently, broadband providers are squarely in the FCC's jurisdiction.)

Privacy: She also said the FTC and FCC should work together and questioned whether separate privacy regimes for broadband providers and tech companies "continue to make sense."

Neither confirm nor deny: Ohlhausen isn't confirming reports suggesting that she'll head the FTC. "I have not met with President Trump," she said. "He's been busy with a lot of things, but I've certainly been talking with the transition team."

Go deeper

8 hours ago - Health

Fauci says if people won't wear masks, maybe it should be mandated

Anthony Fauci. Photo: Graeme Jennings- Pool/Getty Images

NIAID director Anthony Fauci told CNN on Friday evening that if "people are not wearing masks, then maybe we should be mandating it."

Why it matters: Fauci made the comments the same day the U.S. hit its highest daily COVID-19 case count since the pandemic began.

Harris to Black voters: Casting a ballot is about honoring your ancestors

Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris speaks at a "Get Out The Vote" rally at Morehouse College. Photo: Elijah Nouvelage/AFP via Getty Images

Sen. Kamala Harris appealed to Black voters in Georgia on Friday, urging them to "honor the ancestors" by casting ballots, and again calling President Trump a "racist."

Why it matters: The U.S. saw a significant decline in African-American voter turnout between 2012 and 2016, reaching its lowest point since 2000. Higher turnout among Black Americans this year could tip the balance in favor of Democrats in key battleground states, including Georgia.

Updated 9 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Fauci: Trump hasn't been to a COVID task force meeting in months.
  2. Sports: The youth sports exodus continues — Big Ten football is back.
  3. Health: U.S. hits highest daily COVID-19 case count since pandemic began —AstraZeneca to resume vaccine trial in U.S.How to help save 130,000 lives.
  4. Retail: Santa won't greet kids at Macy's this year.
  5. World: Spain and France exceed 1 million cases.