PLF's Sandefur testifies to House Small Biz Committee on barriers to economic liberty

March 26, 2014 | By TIMOTHY SANDEFUR

UpdateYou can watch the video of the testimony here.

I’ll be testifying today before the House Committee on Small Business about occupational licensing laws and how they violate the right to earn a living. Among other things, I’ll be talking about Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity laws, and our recent victories challenging such laws in Missouri and Kentucky.

You can read my written testimony here. In it, I explain how occupational licensing laws restrict economic opportunity for entrepreneurs, frequently for no corresponding public benefit, but solely to privilege established firms against fair competition. I also explain how Congress could act to provide stronger protection for what is America’s most neglected civil right: the right of economic liberty. Congress could enact new civil rights legislation to provide stronger protection against the violation of this right (which, after all, is commonly at the hands of state officials), and it could bar states from giving antitrust immunity to licensing bodies that are, after all, only able to create cartels because they can exploit state power.