Two local antitrust lawyers on different sides of the presidential election are getting ready to square off in a D.C. Bar debate. James Rill, a partner at Howrey, will address Sen. John McCain’s antitrust positions. William Kolasky, a partner with Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr, will do the same for Sen. Barack Obama.
In McCain’s corner, Rill, a more than 40-year veteran of practicing antitrust, competition, and merger law, served as assistant attorney general of the Antitrust Division at the Department of Justice. In Obama’s corner, Kolasky has served as the deputy assistant attorney general in the Antitrust Division from 2001 to 2002 and has published more than 40 articles on antitrust law.
Both lawyers will speak about how McCain and Obama would address a range of antitrust issues, including immunities and exemptions from antitrust enforcement, merger enforcement policies, and vertical restraints. McCain’s antitrust policy has been hard to predict, according to some experts in this Reuters article, though according to a press release on his Web site, McCain has said, “I'm a strong supporter of our antitrust laws and I believe they should be vigorously enforced.” For his part, Obama, according to his official Web site, has expressed an interest in increasing review of merger activity and enhancing antitrust authorities’ competition advocacy programs.
Dan Resnikoff, a senior D.C. assistant attorney general, will moderate the event, which will be held on Sept. 24 at the George Washington University Law School.