Department of Justice
Justice Department Settles with T-Mobile and Sprint in Their Proposed Merger by Requiring a Package of Divestitures to Dish
The Department of Justice announced that it and the Attorneys General for five states reached a settlement with T-Mobile and Sprint regarding their proposed merger. The settlement requires a substantial divestiture package in order to enable a viable facilities-based competitor to enter the market. Further, the settlement will facilitate the expeditious deployment of multiple high-quality 5G networks for the benefit of American consumers and entrepreneurs.
In America we want institutions that make our democracy strong—that seems like a no brainer. So as one line of thinking goes, antitrust enforcers should step beyond consumer welfare and think about what would be good or bad for our democracy, or for values like the free speech the First Amendment protects. The suggestion is that perhaps enforcers should broaden the consumer welfare lens to think about effects on democracy or expression. I’d like to focus my remarks today on two responses to that suggestion.
The Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission issued new Vertical Merger Guidelines that outline how the federal antitrust agencies evaluate the likely competitive impact of mergers and whether those mergers comply with US antitrust law.
The Department of Justice released a set of reform proposals to update the outdated immunity for online platforms under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act of 1996. Responding to bipartisan concerns about the scope of 230 immunity, the department identified a set of concrete reform proposals to provide stronger incentives for online platforms to address illicit material on their services while continuing to foster innovation and free speech.
Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim of the Justice Department's Antitrust Division announced the appointment of Alexander Okuliar to serve as a Deputy Assistant Attorney General. He will be responsible for civil merger and conduct investigations and litigation. Alex’s 20-year career has taken him through tours at both federal antitrust agencies and the private sector.