August 31, 2011: Markey Statement on DOJ Action on AT&T - T-Mobile Merger
Congressman Has Been Leading Voice Opposing Deal
WASHINGTON (August 31, 2011) – Rep. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), one of the leading voices opposing the proposed AT&T – T-Mobile merger, issued the following statement on the announcement that the Department of Justice has filed a complaint against the deal:
“The Justice Department’s decision to take action to block AT&T’s purchase of T-Mobile is a victory for competition, consumers and choice. We should be protecting American consumers holding their cell phones, not just telecommunications titans holding stock in the companies.
“The merger would reduce the number of national wireless companies from four down to three, sending the mobile marketplace into a telecommunications time machine back to 1993. That would be an historic mistake.
“Back then, two companies had all of the licenses, and the cost of calls put cell phones out of reach for most Americans. That’s why Congress moved over 200 megahertz of spectrum for the creation of a third, fourth, fifth and sixth license in 1993. As a result, we had an incredible breakthrough - moving from 50 cents a minute to under 10 cents a minute for mobile phone calls in only a few years. All of the companies, including the two incumbents, had to go digital. Innovation was unleashed. Then by 1996, we had moved from the cell phone ‘brick’ to the BlackBerry – an incredible transformation.
“It is innovation, investment in new technology and paranoia-driven Darwinian competition that ultimately leads to the changes that help consumers and competition. Today’s decision by the Justice Department promotes these values, benefiting consumers and our economy.”
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