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US: Review of T-Mobile-Sprint deal was ‘cursory,’ states say

 |  January 9, 2020

States suing to block T-Mobile’s merger with Sprint urged a judge not to defer to the Trump administration’s approval of the US$26.5 billion deal, as the Justice Department asked on the last day of a landmark antitrust trial, reported Bloomberg. 

The federal government isn’t a party to the lawsuit over the deal, but the Justice Department filed a “statement of interest” on December 20 claiming that states led by California and New York lacked national perspective on the benefits of combining the third and fourth biggest US wireless companies, particularly in regards to rural areas.

But the states stated in a filing Wednesday in Manhattan that while the government acted with “what appears to be only a cursory examination of the approval conditions,” they conducted a 15-month probe. The states also rejected the claim that they’re overlooking the needs of rural customers who’ve been promised faster access to 5G service as part of the deal.

“The Plaintiff States are home to some 19 million rural Americans—nearly a third of the national rural population,” the filing states. “Indeed, the total rural population in the Plaintiff States is more than 30% larger than the rural population in the States that joined the DOJ settlement.”

Full Content: Bloomberg

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