Ridding the Law of Outdated Statutory Exemptions to Antitrust Law: A Proposal for Reform

Antitrust law is designed to be an overarching check against anticompetitive conduct that harms the free market system. Almost as soon as the first antitrust laws were enacted in the United States, however, industry groups began lobbying Congress for exemptions from these laws. Most of the statutory exemptions created over the last one hundred years remain in place, despite widespread changes in economic theory, market structures, and overall antitrust law. Today, some exemptions are merely irrelevant, while others actively harm society by transferring wealth to private individuals and hampering beneficial competition. This Note proposes a fourpart legislative solution to rid the law of stale or harmful exemptions while preserving those that respect the bedrock principles of antitrust law.