"Our critics are wrong about the impact on jobs." T-Mobile CEO John Legere on Wednesday argued before a House panel that his bid to buy Sprint will create jobs -- pushing back against unions, consumer advocates and presidential hopefuls, who say the proposed merger would hurt workers and competition, and raise consumer prices.
"Our opponents are wrong when they claim the merger will lead to higher prices.
New T-Mobile will have the capital, the scale and the network to supercharge competition, unleashing significant benefits for consumers, that includes keeping prices low." But a policy attorney at the consumer group Public Knowledge wasn't having it.
"The companies insist that this merger is about competing with cable companies.
Don't buy it.
We've heard this before." Avoiding a potential partisan confrontation, the senior lawmakers on the panel did not ask Legere about recent revelations that he and other T-Mobile executives have ben frequent guests a President Trump's hotel in Washington D.C.
Ethics watchdogs suggested it may have been a way of "currying favor" with the Trump administration.
The $26 billion deal to tie up the No.
3 and No.
4 U.S. wireless carriers was struck in April.
It's received national security clearance, but still needs approval from the Department of Justice and the FCC.
This week, eight Democratic senators and independent senator Bernie Sanders urged those government agencies to reject the deal, saying it's likely to raise monthly wireless bills, cause job losses and undermine innovation.
The group included confirmed 2020 candidates Amy Klobuchar, Kirsten Gillibrand, Elizabeth Warren and Cory Booker.
Legere pushed back against those lawmakers' objections.
He also pledged to create 5G without using networking equipment from Chinese telecomm giants Huawei or ZTE, companies distrusted by U.S. national security experts.