The Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee voted 14-14 on Alvaro Bedoya’s nomination to the Federal Trade Commission.
Despite the committee deadlock, the nomination could still head to the Senate floor, where Democrats and Republicans each hold 50 seats, with Vice President
It remains to be seen when the Senate might vote on Bedoya as Congress approaches its year-end break.
Committee chair Sen.
Bedoya, a Georgetown University Law Center professor, is likely to bring a focus on privacy and civil rights to the five-member FTC, based on his past focus on issues including bias in facial recognition technology and surveillance of American immigrants.
During his nomination hearing, Bedoya advocated for greater scrutiny of facial recognition’s privacy impacts. Companies such as
If confirmed as a FTC commissioner, Bedoya plans to prioritize privacy protections for children online, according to written responses to questions from the Senate Commerce Committee.
“As a parent, I am deeply concerned with kids’ and teenagers’ ability to navigate the internet and tech platforms,” Bedoya wrote. “This strikes me as one of the most urgent issues facing Congress and the commission, and if confirmed, this would be a top priority for me.”
In his responses, Bedoya called for an investigation into the issue of addictive technologies and a study on “information asymmetries” that he said leave parents in the dark about potential harms of technology on their children.