Free Press Action Fund: Shuler Letter Repeats AT&T's Falsehoods

Letter from AT&T-backed legislators pushes for a settlement that skirts antitrust law
Contact Info: 

Jenn Ettinger, 202-265-1490 x 35

WASHINGTON -- Today Rep. Heath Shuler (D-N.C.) sent a letter to President Barack Obama urging the president to seek a settlement to the Department of Justice's antitrust lawsuit to block the $39 billion merger between AT&T and T-Mobile. The letter was co-signed by 16 House Democrats and relies on several claims about the merger that have been disproved, including assertions that it will create jobs and lead to greater investment in wireless network infrastructure.

Free Press Action Fund Research Director S. Derek Turner made the following statement:

"This AT&T-pushed letter contains all of the company's tired and discredited talking points and rests on AT&T's twin lies -- that its T-Mobile takeover would increase investment and jobs, both claims refuted by mountains of contrary evidence.

"Surely these members can't believe that a letter repeating long-debunked talking points would cause the Department of Justice to reverse course and ignore the evidence behind its lawsuit. Such shameless pandering to giant corporate backers like AT&T is what gives Americans so little faith in Congress. These officials are putting corporate loyalty above the truth, and their constituents’ best interests.

"And the truth here is clear, as proudly announced by AT&T to its investors: This merger will reduce total wireless market investment by more than $10 billion over the next six years. The merger's so-called synergies will translate into nearly 20,000 lost jobs. Moreover, this is a textbook antitrust case that would destroy competition and stifle innovation. AT&T can't hide that reality, no matter how many members of Congress blindly sign on to the company's bogus claims."

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