A recent WSJ story (paywall), reported that “tensions [at the FTC] spilled over publicly last week when one of the FTC’s two Republican commissioners, Christine Wilson, gave a speech at an American Bar Association conference in which she said the commission’s current leadership “has sidelined and disdained our staff.”  As a result of this comment, Chair Lina Khan “sent out a commission-wide internal memo to address ‘commentary about the environment at the agency,’ saying she cared deeply about the FTC’s mission and the staff.”  The memo said, “I know that there are still many relationships and bridges to build, and I am eager to do so as we chart this path forward together.”

The article cited Wayne State University law professor Stephen Calkins who said that  “Mr. Calkins said Ms. Khan’s task is the mirror image of the early Reagan administration, when then-Chairman Jim Miller came in with a conservative vision for the agency that ‘was a U-turn from the past, and yet he managed to keep the staff involved and energized.’”  The WSJ piece added that “[i]nternal relationships also suffered when Ms. Khan’s team imposed new restrictions on the ability of staffers to participate in certain legal conferences and events, people familiar with the matter said. Her office finalized new guidelines last week, emphasizing the importance of avoiding events that include companies and corporate defense lawyers who are involved in FTC enforcement matters.”