At Least 14 Attorneys General Now Oppose Satellite Merger

If the deal is approved the FCC should require Sirius and XM to lease a portion of their spectrum, they say.
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The chief legal advisers to four more states — Maryland, Connecticut, Ohio and Washington — have urged FCC Chairman Martin to block the satellite radio merger.

The attorneys general say the anticompetitive results of such a deal would be higher prices and diminished quality of service. The letter is similar to an earlier missive signed by 10 state AGs.

Maryland Attorney General Doug Gansler, Connecticut’s Richard Blumenthal, Ohio’s Marc Dann and Washington state’s Rob McKenna suggest that if the deal is approved, the FCC should require Sirius and XM to lease a portion of their spectrum, along with the capability of broadcasting from their satellites, to a third entity.

The satcasters should offer the commission proof that they have such a signed lease prior to any merger approval, the AGs believe.

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Congress to Probe Satellite Merger

A new congressional antitrust task force will hold a hearing next week on the proposed merger of radio subscription companies XM and Sirius, according to a statement from House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers, D-Mich.