Merger Support Strong…Growing

Posted by: Jim Cicconi on May 31, 2011 at 5:44 pm

There’s a lot of activity at the FCC today as interested parties continue to weigh in on our merger with T-Mobile.  To be sure, the usual suspects opposing the transaction are working to create the impression their support is growing.  It’s not.  In fact, the opposite is true.  Today, we’ll begin to see evidence of the strong public support our merger has generated – and it is perhaps the broadest, deepest range of public interest support ever filed at the FCC in support of any transaction. 

Let’s keep in mind that the standard under which the FCC operates is whether a merger, in this case our merger with T-Mobile, is in the public interest.  The answer from elected officials and respected state and national organizations from every walk of life is a resounding yes.  

Perhaps no one understands the concept of the public interest better than the top elected official in each state.  And so far the governors of 14 states, ranging from Maine to Colorado, from Michigan to Louisiana, have filed in support of our deal.   So have a small but growing number of mayors representing cities from Topeka to Atlanta.  

No one is better attuned to the needs of workers or the importance of job creation than organized labor.  And so far the AFL-CIO and five major unions with a total membership of over 15 million workers have filed in support of our deal.  Support for the transaction is also coming from some of the most respected organizations in America, including iconic names like the NAACP and LULAC.  We have strong support from those representing people with disabilities and the disadvantaged.  Groups representing rural interests, including The National Grange, the Cattlemen’s Association, state chapters of the Farm Bureau, and the Rural Health Association are backing our deal.  The Sierra Club has publicly recognized the benefits of our transaction, and high tech industry leaders like Microsoft, Corning, and the Silicon Valley Leadership Group have all made clear their endorsements. 

The support I’ve noted is just the tip of the iceberg, and filings will continue throughout the reply comment period.  But as of this afternoon, there have been over 300 filings in support of the merger, and we expect many more as the public interest benefits of this transaction become even more widely recognized.  By any standard, this outpouring of support from respected organizations and elected officials is massive and unprecedented. 

In contrast, the opposition is unsurprising, underwhelming, and unpersuasive.  This is especially true of opposition from some of our wireless industry competitors who are confusing the public interest with their own particular corporate interest.  Even if combined with those few groups who routinely oppose every merger, this opposition pales in comparison with the scale of public interest support we are already starting to see… and which we have every reason to feel will continue to grow.

Comments (4)

This is a merger that I believe should be totally embraced. It’s a no brainer, take a look at the fact that AT&T employs more people and really understands how to grow and maintain a business. T-mobile’s current employs will only benefit from the merger. I must say, if other wireless carriers oppose the merger take a look at why. Is it because they will loose footing in the industry or is because they have realized the advances they are making are not going to be for the long haul? Either way it goes it will be a win – win for all parties involved.

Daniel L. Knight June 3, 2011 at 9:55 am

It’s going to be a lose for consumers though. For equal coverage through ATT it will cost me $980 more per year than what I currently pay with T-Mobile. Furthmore, my data connection right now on my 3g phone nearly doubles the speeds i’ve seen friends get on their 4g ATT phone, and I live in a large city, Los Angeles.

I hope to see ATT fail, like they did the last time they attempted a merger. ATT represents less choices, higher prices, and lower quality.

I for one don’t care if ATT takes over the entirety of the cellphone industry, you will never, NEVER get another dime of my money.

I’d like to know how the previous commenter think this merger is a benefit for T-Mobile employees. ATT hires most of its customer support over seas, while T-Mobile typically hires within the US. ATT isn’t going to want to fork over the bill for the US employees (they never do), so you can expect mass lay-offs and more expansion in foreign countries.

Andrew June 8, 2011 at 11:01 am

You will be able to keep your existing T-Mobile price plan post merger.

AT&T Blog Team June 10, 2011 at 10:38 am

Bad news for consumers and competition indeed. Ma Bell wants to create Ma Cell and set the wireless market back 30 years. They’ve already given us an 80′s makeover when the decision to breakup AT&T’s Ma Bell monopoly in 1984 was revisited during the 2000s letting AT&T reconstitute the monopoly over wire-line communications they had. Despite all their claims of it serving the public interest, giving consumers a new choice, allowing them to deliver better service etc they are just lying because they know they can’t win approval for the merger by telling the truth. The truth is the facts don’t add up. Unfortunately the government which is now bought and paid for by corporations more so than at any previous time in history may approve the mergers when they shouldn’t. It would be a complete disappointment and a historic mistake to allow AT&T’s mergers with T Mobil and Qualcomm. We need and want open and universal access. AT&T’s promises of delivering better service and giving consumers a new choice are empty rhetoric. Ma Bell wants to create Ma Cell to set consumers back 30 years.

Frankly AT&T should never have been allowed to even reconstitute the Ma Bell wire-line communications monopoly in the 2000s. Now they want Ma Cell also.

Maneesh Pangasa August 2, 2011 at 9:43 pm

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