Group urges Democrats to reverse support of AT&T/T-Mobile merger


The Democrats, led by Rep. G.K. ButterfieldGeorge (G.K.) Kenneth ButterfieldHouse poised to hand impeachment articles to Senate Democrat makes case for impeachment in Spanish during House floor debate Democrats likely to gain seats under new North Carolina maps MORE (N.C.), voiced their support for the deal in a June 24 letter. They cited as key to their support AT&Ts plan to deploy 4G wireless broadband to more than 97 percent of the country if the deal is approved.

But according to Free Press, information that AT&T accidentally released last week undermines the companys claim that it needs to buy T-Mobile to expand broadband access.

Documents unintentionally posted on the Federal Communications Commissions website revealed it would cost AT&T $3.8 billion to expand its 4G coverage to 97 percent of the country — far less than the $39 billion cost of acquiring T-Mobile.

The numbers don’t add up,” Free Press Political Director Joel Kelsey wrote in a letter to the lawmakers. It’s clear that AT&T is willing to pay a hefty premium to kill the competition.

Kelsey argued the deal would create a duopoly, with AT&T and Verizon controlling most of the wireless market. He claimed it would reduce consumer choice, lead to higher monthly bills and destroy jobs.  

An AT&T spokeswoman said the leaked documents were consistent with AT&T’s previous statements.

“Once again, Free Press is twisting words and misrepresenting facts, she said. “Simply put, AT&T would not be able to deliver 4G LTE to 55 million more Americans without this merger.