On July 3, President Biden announced nominees Andrew Ferguson and Melissa Holyoak to the Federal Trade Commission, filling two Republican vacancies.
Ferguson has served as the Solicitor General of Virginia since February 2022, overseeing the state’s appellate litigation, including at the Supreme Court and federal courts of appeals. He served as counsel for Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), and most recently, Mitch McConnell (R-KY). Ferguson spent several years in private practice after clerking for Judge Karen Henderson on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and for Justice Clarence Thomas on the US Supreme Court. Ferguson earned his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Virginia.
Holyoak has served as Solicitor General of Utah since September 2020, managing appellate litigation as well as the antitrust and data privacy divisions. She has experience litigating consumer protection matters. As President and General Counsel of Hamilton Lincoln Law Institute, she represented consumers and shareholders against abusive class action settlements and regulatory overreach. Holyoak also worked at the Competitive Enterprise Institute and the Center for Class Action Fairness. Holyoak earned her undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Utah.
Since the end of March, the FTC has had two vacant Republican commissioner seats. The most recent Republican Commissioners, Noah Phillips and Christine Wilson, resigned from their positions this past year, with Commissioner Wilson executing a “noisy exit” in protest of what she claimed were politically motivated actions of FTC Chair Lina Khan. The Republicans in the Senate will likely support these nominations quickly to establish balance at the FTC. Even with a full slate of Republican Commissioners, Democrats will still control the Commission and there will likely be little change to the FTC’s progressive agenda or goals. The new Commissioners will, however, provide a Republican presence, voice, and viewpoint on the Commission.