Washington, D.C.— America faces a problem of rising market concentration across the economy. Robust competition is the foundation of economic liberty, opportunity, and broadly shared prosperity in America. Yet competition doesn’t happen by accident: Experience teaches us that government has a vital role to play in reining in corporate power and securing open, competitive markets. Together with its tax cuts, deregulation, and attacks on worker power, the Trump administration has ushered in an era of monopoly power, throwing fuel on the fire of decadeslong attacks in the courts, agencies, and academia on the foundations of antitrust enforcement.
On Tuesday, March 5, 2019, the Center for American Progress Action Fund will host Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and the Hon. Robert Reich for a conversation on the state of competition in the U.S. economy and its implications in society. They will discuss several pieces of legislation to modernize antitrust enforcement, including Sen. Klobuchar’s Merger Enforcement Improvement Act and the Consolidation Prevention and Competition Promotion Act. Sen. Klobuchar serves on the Senate Committee on the Judiciary and is a ranking member of the Subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition Policy and Consumer Rights. Reich is a former secretary of labor under President Bill Clinton.
The evidence of competitive harm to America’s economy has been growing and is only worsening. From Big Tech, to Big Pharma, to Big Agriculture, the trends are clear. Corporate profits have risen while investment has decreased. Fewer firms are entering markets. Productivity growth has slowed, and wage growth continues to be weak. Ultimately, countering corporate consolidation is about more than just dollars and cents. It also has enormous implications for economic opportunity and democracy. Dominant firms can abuse their market power to ice out rising competitors. And concentrated economic power entrenches political powers that are anathema to the interests of working families in a broadly shared middle class.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Senate Judiciary Committee
Hon. Robert Reich, Carmel P. Friesen Professor of Public Policy, Goldman School of Public Policy, University of California, Berkeley; former U.S. Secretary of Labor
Neera Tanden, CEO, Center for American Progress Action Fund
Tuesday, March 5, 2019, at 9:00 a.m. ET
Center for American Progress Action Fund
1333 H Street NW
Washington, D.C. 20005
For more information or to speak with an expert, contact Allison Preiss at gro.noitcassergorpnacirema@1ssierpa or 202.478.6331.