Justice Department Demands AT&T Sell CNN to Merge With Time-Warner
Barack Obama made a habit of weaponizing the government against his enemies, bringing a third world, banana republic style politics to the United States. The most blatant example of this was his use of the IRS to harass perfectly legal Tea Party groups.
Ten years ago, prior to his election, I would definitely have disagreed with the justice department’s actions here. But now, I can only sit back in satisfaction as the government is weaponized against the left in some small way. I’d have a lot more sympathy if any of them had protested ANYTHING Obama did, but they smugly assumed they would always control the government.
Until last week, AT&T’s pending $85.4 billion acquisition of Time Warner seemed destined to close by the end of the year. On Wednesday, however, tensions between the Justice Department and executives at the two companies spilled out into the open.
Now it seems possible that the Justice Department and AT&T will end up battling each other in court. The ongoing negotiations have also demonstrated how the Trump administration may regulate big-ticket mergers and acquisitions, representing the first major test for the government’s antitrust strategy.
A central component of the dispute, according to people from both companies and the Justice Department, is CNN — the network that Mr. Trump has frequently attacked as a purveyor of “fake news.”
Critics of the merger have described it as a sign that there is too much consolidation in the media and telecommunications industries. Even lawmakers who have otherwise been critical of Mr. Trump have offered support for the Justice Department’s continued review.
Senator Richard Blumenthal, Democrat of Connecticut, said on Twitter that the deal still needed a “thorough” and “exacting” review.
The government theoretically should not have any say in whether one company is allowed to buy another, but I just can’t bring myself to care too much. The only way the left is going to learn to stop weaponizing government is if it’s weaponized against them.