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August 31, 2011
1:50 PM

CONTACT: Free Press

Jenn Ettinger, 202-265-1490 x 35

Free Press Applauds Justice Department Blocking Anti-competitive AT&T/T-Mobile Merger

Challenge is welcome news for consumers, competition and innovation

WASHINGTON - August 31 - Today, the U.S. Department of Justice filed suit in federal court to block the proposed $39 billion merger between AT&T and T-Mobile. In announcing the suit, Deputy Assistant Attorney General Sharis Pozen said, "Anyway you look at it, this deal is anti-competitive."

In reviewing the evidence, in what Pozen described as an "exhaustive investigation," the Justice Department concluded  removing a low-cost, innovative wireless carrier from a market that is already dominated by two major players would result in less competition and innovation and higher prices for consumers.

Free Press President and CEO Craig Aaron made the following statement:

"Blocking this merger is a major victory for the public interest. The Justice Department clearly based their decision on the facts, and, as Free Press has argued from the start, the overwhelming evidence shows that this merger would lead to higher prices, few choices for consumers, and massive job cuts."

"It's encouraging to see the federal regulators have not been snowed by AT&T's promises and bluster.  Its smoke-and-mirrors effort was a good front for a while, but when you get down to the facts of the matter, this was a bad idea from the start, and no amount of corporate spin overcome that reality.

"AT&T has already invested untold millions in lobbying and campaign contributions, and it is going to play every card in the deck to try to get this merger done. Free Press and our network of 500,000 activists will continue to oppose it. But we hope instead AT&T will drop this disastrous deal and invest in expanding its network and improving its woeful customer service."


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