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FCC Commissioner Refuses to Vote on AT&T-BellSouth Merger Deal

6:00 am on December 20, 2006 | Category: Business, Regulation, Telecom Services


The largest telecommunications merger in U.S. history will likely be back on the regulatory negotiation table in the coming weeks after Republican FCC commissioner, Robert M. McDowell, declined to vote on the merger.

McDowell was initially unable to participate because he had previously represented a trade group opposed to the AT&T-BellSouth merger. He has since been given legal clearance to cast a ballot, but announced on Monday that he will be declining to do so.

This leaves the remaining four commissioners in a 2-2 deadlock, with two Democrats refusing to endorse the deal until certain compromises have been made, including assurances on the issue of net neutrality.

The $84 billion merger has already been approved by the U.S. Department of Justice and regional regulators in 18 states, leaving the FCC as its final hurdle.

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    1. I’m not sure why the dems are so resolute on adding net neutrality seeing as at&t has not actually done anything that would violate its nature and since it is a public policy issue and not an issue for only one company. You would think they would want to tie the hands behind the back of not only at&t but all isp’s on this issue if it’s that important to them. Sad to see bad politics getting in the way of good american businesses.

      Comment by Chris — December 20, 2006 #

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