Coalition wants another hearing on Comcast-NBCU merger

The groups express concern that other distributors may feel the need to purchase the remaining large content providers in order to compete with Comcast and avoid having to purchase programming from them. They also fear increased prices and discrimination against independent programmers that compete with NBC and Comcast content.

"Comcast’s incentives to undermine the ability of independent programmers to fairly compete will reduce diversity in media and limit consumer choice. The myriad complaints at the FCC against Comcast on this issue should leave no doubt as to the likelihood of such danger," the letter states.

They also note that Comcast would have a dominant position in many major metropolitan areas — including Washington — if the deal were to be approved. In those markets Comcast would own the dominant cable and broadband provider in addition to the local NBC station, the local Telemundo station and the regional sports network with exclusive rights to hometown sports.

Update: Comcast spokesperson Sena Fitzmaurice sent the following statement in response:

“There have already been an unprecedented number of public hearings on this transaction, six Congressional hearings, an FCC public forum, and one of the longest public comment periods in Commission history. Most of these opponents have opposed the transaction since the day it was announced over nine months ago and are only seeking to further delay the review process. Congress, the FCC and DOJ should reject the delaying tactics of this group driven by a few special business interests, and the review process should continue without interruption. We continue to believe this transaction will close by year-end.”