New York State Attorney General Letita James

Steve Burns/WCBS 880

New York, 9 Other States File Lawsuit To Block Sprint, T-Mobile Merger

June 11, 2019 - 5:02 pm

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — New York State Attorney General Letita James is leading a lawsuit coming from several states looking to block a proposed mega-merger in the cell phone world.

As WCBS 880’s Steve Burns reported, it would be a union between the third and fourth largest wireless service providers in the United States.

“The deal is bad for consumers, it's bad for innovation, it's bad for workers,” James said of the potential merger.

She, along with her counterparts in nine other states, have filed a lawsuit to block the union of Sprint and T-Mobile.

James says that after a decade of following wireless bills, this would move progress in the opposite direction.

In recent years, intense competition spurred in particular by T-Mobile and Sprint, has meant declining prices and increased coverage for consumers. Potentially merging the two has officials worrying that prices will once again soar and coverage will decline.

Still, the merger won the support of the Federal Communications Commission's chairman Ajit Pai, who noted the company has made commitments to expand wireless coverage in rural areas.

James says Sprint and T-Mobile are not to be trusted and noted that the companies have not said what they will plan to do if they combined assets.

“Nothing in this proposed merger would expedite the building of new towers and or a 5G network,” she said.

The Trump administration has made building out a 5G network a priority, as it looks to get ahead of China.