Attorneys General File Lawsuit to Block T-Mobile/Sprint Merger

June 13, 2019 by Elin Johnson

WASHINGTON – The Attorneys General from ten states including New York and California filed a lawsuit this week to stop the proposed merger between telecommunications companies T-Mobile and Sprint.

In a federal complaint filed in New York on Tuesday, the attorneys general allege any merger between two of the four largest mobile service providers in the nation would drive up the cost of cellphone services and deny consumers of competition in the market.

T-Mobile and Sprint had hoped to have their merger approved by July. Now those approvals will likely be significantly delayed.

“When it comes to corporate power, bigger isn’t always better,” said New York Attorney General Letitia James, whose office is taking the lead in the litigation.

“The T-Mobile and Sprint merger would not only cause irreparable harm to mobile subscribers nationwide by cutting access to affordable, reliable wireless service for millions of Americans, but would particularly affect lower-income and minority communities here in New York and in urban areas across the country,” she said.

James went on to call the proposed hookup between the two mobile service providers “the sort of consumer-harming, job-killing megamerger our antitrust laws were designed to prevent.”

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra added that while T-Mobile and Sprint are promising faster, better, and cheaper service for their customers with this merger, “the evidence weighs against it.”

In addition to New York and California, the other states that have joined the lawsuit are Colorado, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Maryland, Michigan, Mississippi, Virginia, and Wisconsin. All of the attorneys general involved are Democrats.

The two companies have been the subject of merger rumor since at least 2014, when Sprint floated a reported $20 billion bid to buy T-Mobile. That bid went nowhere, but talks resumed briefly last year, ending last November without a deal. Then in April, The Wall Street Journal reported that the two companies were once again back at the negotiating table.

Both companies have since framed discussions of the deal around the notion that it will pave the way for the U.S. to expand its 5G network.

They’ve said their goals were to bring high-speed internet access to rural areas, and to invest in 5G technology.

But the attorneys general contend T-Mobile has yet to produce any plans to put new cell towers in rural areas not already served by either company.

The attorneys general also argue this deal would cost customers of T-Mobile and Sprint around $4.5 billion each year.

The average cost of mobile services has fallen over the last decade by about 28 percent, according to the U.S. Labor Department. The consumption of mobile data has risen rapidly. On average, a typical U.S. household spends $1,100 on cell phone services each year.

The big four service providers are Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint, with T-Mobile and Sprint taking up the third and fourth spot, respectively. T-Mobile has 79 million subscribers while Sprint has 54 million.

Litigation

The Trump Election Lawsuit Chronicles
2020 Elections
The Trump Election Lawsuit Chronicles
November 24, 2020
by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON - Getting a formal concession, finally, might all come down to this. The 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of appeals on Monday granted a request from President Donald Trump's campaign to consider, on an expedited basis, an appeal of a mere facet of a federal judge's... Read More

Judge: DHS Head Didn't Have Authority to Suspend DACA
Immigration
Judge: DHS Head Didn't Have Authority to Suspend DACA

NEW YORK (AP) — A federal judge in New York ruled Saturday that Acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf assumed his position unlawfully, a determination that invalidated Wolf's suspension of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which shields young people from deportation. “DHS... Read More

Michigan Officials Debunk Trump Dead Voter Claim
State News
Michigan Officials Debunk Trump Dead Voter Claim

DETROIT — President Donald Trump's campaign filed a second lawsuit in Michigan on Tuesday seeking to stop the state's canvassing and certification of ballots, but the state's chief elections official and attorney general defended the election results. The Trump campaign filed the case in federal court, where the campaign is alleging... Read More

Trump's Challenge to the 2020 Vote: A State-By-State Guide
Litigation
Trump's Challenge to the 2020 Vote: A State-By-State Guide

President Donald Trump's challenge to the 2020 election results runs through six battleground states, five of which he won in 2016. This time around, Democrat Joe Biden has five-digit vote leads in all six states with some counting continuing, including three where he leads by more than 35,000 votes in... Read More

Republican AGs File Amicus Brief in Pennsylvania Mail-In Ballot Case
2020 Elections
Republican AGs File Amicus Brief in Pennsylvania Mail-In Ballot Case
November 10, 2020
by Reece Nations

WASHINGTON -- Republican Attorneys General from 10 states have filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court in the latest legal action in the case to contend the counting of certain mail-in ballots in Pennsylvania. In the brief, the AGs argue the United States Supreme Court... Read More

Trump Launches a Legal Barrage in An Effort to Block a Biden Victory
Litigation
Trump Launches a Legal Barrage in An Effort to Block a Biden Victory

WASHINGTON — Facing a fast-shrinking path to a second term, President Donald Trump baselessly accused his opponents of fraud Wednesday as he launched an aggressive legal effort to reverse or stop vote counts in four battleground states that could clinch the race for Joe Biden. Filing four lawsuits and joining... Read More

News From The Well
scroll top