AT&T’s bid to purchase T-Mobile for $39 billion is now facing more opposition. The US Department of Justice had filed an antitrust complaint in late August, seeking to block the merger, and now seven states have joined in on the effort. The original parties were set to submit a joint plan today with a settlement hearing scheduled for September 21.
The DOJ filed an amended legal complaint in a Washington D.C. federal court today, indicating that the state attorneys general from California, Illinois, Massachusetts, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Washington have now signed up for the case.
“We have had an excellent working relationship with a number of state attorneys general and they have provided invaluable assistance throughout our investigation,” said the DOJ in a written statement. “We are pleased that these states have joined the department in its lawsuit.”
In response, AT&T has issued a statement saying that it’s not unusual for states to participate in reviewing mergers or court filings, and emphasized that 11 state attorneys general and hundreds of other local, state and federal officials publicly support the merger. The carrier has been seeking to expedite the court proceedings, aiming to resolve matters through a settlement with the DOJ.