Klobuchar Introduces Bill to Strengthen Antitrust Enforcement

March 10, 2020 Media

Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) on Tuesday introduced legislation that would strengthen the ability of antitrust enforcement agencies to go after industry giants.

The Anticompetitive Exclusionary Conduct Prevention (AECP) Act, co-sponsored by Sens. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), would amend the 1914 Clayton Antitrust Act.

It would shift the burden of proof in the hundred-year-old law so that companies with a market share over 50 percent, or “significant market power,” have to prove that exclusionary conduct does not cause “an appreciable risk of harming competition.”


Sarah Miller, the executive director of the newly formed American Economic Liberties Project, said in a statement the bill is insufficient in the face of the scale of monopolies in tech.

“The bill is riddled with loopholes, like creating vague standards that corporations’ well-heeled lawyers will exploit. Congress needs to make clear rules, not give vague instructions to judges to determine when a monopolist is acting improperly,” Miller said.

“By relying on vague terms like “risk of harming competition,” open-ended standards for identifying law-breaking like “the totality of the circumstances,” and “baseless or even bad faith,” the Anticompetitive Exclusionary Conduct Prevention Act talks big and accomplishes little.”