FCC Requests Hearing on AT&T/T-Mobile Deal, Ma Bell Not Happy

Ryan Whitwam

FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski has thrown up another roadblock in the path of AT&T’s plan to get its hand on T-Mobile USA. The FCC Chair voiced concerns over the proposed merger back around the time the DOJ filed a lawsuit seeking to block the deal. Now Genachowski has requested official hearings to take place should that suit fail to stop the merger. AT&T’s legal counsel got a little snippy upon hearing the news.

“The FCC’s action today is disappointing,” AT&T’s statement began. “It is yet another example of a government agency acting to prevent billions in new investment and the creation of many thousands of new jobs at a time when the US economy desperately needs both. At this time, we are reviewing all options.” The FCC’s position is that the deal is likely to result in a reduction in competition as the top tier carrier consumes a value brand. Many other groups also contend that the deal is likely to kill jobs, not create them as AT&T eliminates redundancy.

Should the DOJ fail in its bid to stop the merger, the FCC hearing will allow both sides of the issue to be heard. But under the current FCC leadership, things are looking more and more hopeless for AT&T. Do you think the deal will go through?

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