DOJ's antitrust chief Delrahim Promotes 'AT&T/Time Warner Doctrine' in Mexico

Department of Justice antitrust chief Makan Delrahim put an exclamation point on what might now be called the AT&T/Time Warner Doctrine given the confluence of that case with Delrahim's emphasis on spin-offs versus conditions in vertical mergers: "If a structural remedy isn’t available, then, except in the rarest of circumstances, we will seek to block an illegal merger."

In seeking to block the AT&T/Time Warner merger, Makan has said that it was because structural remedies (asset divestitures) not behavioral remedies like program access and oversight conditions were necessary. He preached the necessity of that approach. "Behavioral remedies present three main problems, he said. "The first is that they are inherently regulatory, which is to say that they substitute central decision making for the preferred free market. The second reason is closely related to the first: The Antitrust Division is a law enforcer and, even where regulation is appropriate, it is not equipped to be the ongoing regulator. The third reason that behavior decrees are problematic is that they are merely temporary fixes for an ongoing problem."

DOJ's antitrust chief Delrahim Promotes 'AT&T/Time Warner Doctrine' in Mexico Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim Delivers Remarks at the Federal Telecommunications Institute's Conference (DOJ)