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Interstate Commerce Commission

The Interstate Commerce Act of 1887 created the Interstate Commerce Commission. Members of the commission were appointed by the President with the consent of the Senate. This was the first of the so-called Fourth Branch[?] agencies. Its aim was to regulate surface transportation (initially railroads, later trucking[?]), to ensure fair prices and regulate other aspects of the conduct of common carriers.

The Interstate Commerce Commission is often cited as a classic example in which an agency intended to protect consumers is "captured" by the industry that it intended to regulate. The Commission was accused of acting in the interests of the trucking industry by causing prices to be set at artificially high levels and by using regulation to prevent new entrants from competing.

It was replaced by the Surface Transportation Board[?] in 1995, after losing much of its strength due to deregulation.

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