Rupert Murdoch Called AT&T's CEO Twice About CNN Sale

12 November, 2017, 01:54 | Author: Laverne Higgins
  • Rupert Murdoch Called AT&T's CEO Twice About CNN Sale

"That was made by a man who's actually a very respected person - a very, very respected person".

Justice Department staff have reportedly recommended that AT&T sell either its DirecTV unit or Time Warner's Turner Broadcasting unit - which includes CNN - to gain antitrust approval of the merger.

When running for the presidency, Donald Trump said, "AT&T is buying Time Warner and thus CNN, a deal that we will not approve in my administration because it is too much concentration of power in the hands of too few".

Delrahim has said he prefers "structural" changes to a deal, like selling off assets, rather than having the government monitor a company's promises to abide by certain conditions, as was done with Comcast. Then he added: "I do feel you should have as many news outlets as you can - especially since so many are fake".

Trump's comments have provoked concern that he may improperly influence the US Department of Justice to block the deal.

Monday, the DOJ advised the companies that it would not sign off on the merger unless they agree to divest the merged company of CNN, which the president regularly condemns as a supposed purveyor of what he calls "fake news".

Veterans Day deals and freebies
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One White House official told the Journal that Kushner supposedly "didn't intend the comment to be taken seriously, and was simply trying to make a point".

Rupert Murdoch is said to be interested in buying CNN.

Forcing a sale of CNN could harm the news network, if a buyer doesn't have the same deep pockets as AT&T and Time Warner to support newsgathering.

The head of the DOJ's antitrust division denied that the White House is involved in the transaction.

Delrahim said he had not had any contact with the White House or the attorney general on the matter, speaking at an event at the USC Gould School of Law in Los Angeles later in the day. He said the company had been ready to go to court the day the deal was announced.

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