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How Deregulation Saved the U.S. Rail Industry | The Staggers Rail Act

Very soon, we'll celebrate the 40-year anniversary of freight rail deregulation in the United States. The Staggers Rail Act brought the rail industry in America back from the brink of total demise. Passed by a bipartisan coalition in Congress and signed into law by President Jimmy Carter, this historic legislation eliminated needless meddling by the government in railroad rate setting and innovation. These regulations had caused crumbling infrastructure, high prices, and bankrupt railroads.

Like we've learned with so many of the successful efforts by the Trump administration to cut regulatory red tape, the Staggers Act helped the rail industry innovate and get back on track. This anniversary gives us time to reflect on the power of the free market and what can happen when the government steps out of the way.