Mobile, Sprint chiefs to defend deal on Capitol Hill, again

GettyImages-Sprint T mobile merger

John Legere explains why T-Mobile execs stayed so many nights at Trump

T-Mobile CEO John Legere testifies during a hearing before the Communications and Technology Subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee February 13, 2019 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.

Sprint, the United States subsidiary of Japan's Softbank Group, and T-Mobile are waiting for USA regulators to approve the 26 billion dollar deal.

Meanwhile, the proposed T-Mobile-Sprint merger recently gained some opposition in the form of more than 30 House Democrats who urged FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and DOJ Antitrust Division head Makan Delrahim to reject the deal.

Democrat Representative Tony Cárdenas who ran a letter campaign seeking to know the companies' commitment to Lifeline expressed happiness with T-Mobile's pledge.

The issue of the hotel stays flared up nearly immediately as Rep. Hank Johnson, D-Ga., opened the questioning by challenging Legere on the decision to stay at Trump's hotel.

The Washington Post was first to report on T-Mobile's spending at the Trump hotel.

"There is reason to look at this question of what happened at the Trump hotels because it has been clear from quite a bit of reporting that ..." The Post later reported that the nine executives spent 52 nights at the hotel after the announcement and spent a total of $195,000 at the Trump hotel over the past 10 months out of a total of $1.4 million in corporate hotel spending throughout the time period. Jayapal pointed to a Twitter argument Legere got into with Trump over the quality of a hotel stay in 2015.

On Tuesday, Jayapal said the issue of the hotel stays was significant because of allegations that Trump may have interfered in the antitrust review of another deal, AT&T's purchase of Time Warner.

"I'm anxious about these issues because I'm focused on the interest of my constituents and what I know matters in people's lives", he said. US officials have been trying to dissuade allies from using the Chinese technology giant's equipment in their networks over possible spying concerns, and T-Mobile on Tuesday said it did not use the company's gear.

T-Mobile and Sprint have framed their merger as a vital step toward building a competitive, next-generation 5G network. China has made it a priority to win the 5G race.

Another half a year later, when it seemed the proposal wasn't going anywhere as regulatory reviews were being put on hold and critics of the deal began receiving more media attention amid a lack of other meaningful updates, T-Mobile did a 180 on the subject of FWA, proclaiming it's now planning to build the best 5G broadband alternative in the country, disrupting its larger rivals without having to invest enormous sums into new cable infrastructure, which is something that previously kept the level of competition in the segment low across the country.

Sprint and T-Mobile, according to a report from the California Public Advocates office, largely serves lower-income wireless customers.

Some opponents insist that the deal will result in higher prices. "He owned all the capacity, but he was still a monopolist".

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