Tuesday, March 22, 2011

AT&T's Lessons on Lobbying

"Since the need's too uncertain to time it,
One must keep at the pump so to prime it;
Thus largesse we have spread
To the Blue and the Red
For an easier anti-trust climate."    

AT&T's announced $39 billion acquisition of rival T-Mobile USA would combine the second- and fourth-largest US mobile providers, setting the stage for a potential confrontation with the regulators who would have to approve the transaction.  Fortunately for AT&T, as the top contributor to members of Congress for the last generation, they may find a receptive audience.  So, for example, their $15 million in annual contributions to Republicans and Democrats may weigh against the fact that the proposed merger would leave 3 out of 4 US mobile users in the hands of two carriers.

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