The “Warren Court” and the Antitrust Laws: of Economics, Populism, and Cynicism

No one could quarrel with the simple assertion that the so-called “Warren Court” has had a significant, if indeed not extraordinary, impact on the development of the antitrust laws. It could hardly have been otherwise. The fifteen years since 1953 represent virtually one-fourth of the total history of the Clayton and Federal Trade Commission Acts, and one fifth of the time which has elapsed since passage of the Sherman Act. Every Supreme Court decision under the 1950 amendments to section 7 of the Clayton Act, the so-called antimerger law, has come after the accession of Chief Justice Warren to the bench.