FCC chair meets with T-Mobile, Sprint CEOs

FCC chair meets with T-Mobile, Sprint CEOs
© Greg Nash

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai met with executives from T-Mobile and Sprint on Tuesday as the two companies pursue regulatory approval of their proposed $26 billion merger, an agency spokesman confirmed to The Hill.

T-Mobile CEO John Legere and Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure need to win approval from the FCC and the Justice Department in order to clear their deal.

According to Reuters, which first reported Tuesday’s meeting, Legere and Claure met with GOP Commissioner Michael O'Rielly and Democratic Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel last week. The two also met on Tuesday with Brendan Carr, another Republican commissioner.

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The FCC spokesman declined to provide any other details about Tuesday’s meeting. A Sprint spokeswoman said the company does not generally comment on Claure’s schedule. T-Mobile did not respond when asked for comment by The Hill.

The proposed deal is already coming under fire from critics, including a number of Democratic lawmakers, who argue that it would reduce competition in the wireless industry, driving up prices for consumers.

Legere and Claure have dismissed those theories, arguing that the merger is the only way for their firms to compete with Verizon and AT&T, especially as the companies work toward developing 5G networks.