The FCC has taken a first step toward rejecting AT&T’s proposed takeover of its wireless competitor T-Mobile. The FCC chairman has sent a proposed order to his colleagues to refer the merger to an administrative law judge for a procedure that would require AT&T to prove the merger was in the public interest.
The following statement can be attributed to CCIA Vice President Cathy Sloan:
“We applaud the FCC chairman for deciding to designate this proposed AT&T transaction for a hearing. We recognize there are a host of issues raised by the merger in which the FCC has both the expertise and jurisdiction including the effective use of spectrum, the availability of affordable broadband and employment issues. These are not the purview of the Justice Department, which is focused on the antitrust issues raised by AT&T’s proposed takeover of T-Mobile.
“Occupy protesters everywhere should take heart that one of the most politically well-connected corporations does not always get whatever it wants from the U.S. government. There are limits. Antitrust authorities and telecommunications policymakers, supported by active public interest groups, are on the job and looking out for the mobile broadband needs of American consumers and small businesses.”