February 27

Rep. Pingree leads national drive to stop Comcast/Time Warner merger

She says the merger of Comcast and Time Warner makes her worry that consumers will pay higher prices and get fewer choices.

By Ray Routhier rrouthier@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

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Ritch said no other members of Maine’s congressional delegation are specifically involved with Pingree’s petition drive.

Scott Ogden, a spokesman for Sen. Angus King, said King is examining details of the merger and “is committed to preserving and expanding access to high-speed, affordable broadband, especially in rural areas of Maine.”

Ogden also said King “is inherently skeptical of large companies growing even larger, and in this particular situation, how that may impact competition, prices, and consumer services.”

Pingree is married to S. Donald Sussman, the majority share owner of MaineToday Media, which owns the Portland Press Herald, the Kennebec Journal and Morning Sentinel.

In the email she sent out Wednesday, she said “the proposed merger between Comcast and Time Warner would create the largest and most powerful cable and Internet empire in the United States. This would be a bad deal for consumers, leading to less competition and likely higher prices for subscribers.”

Pingree’s email includes a place for readers to click and add their names to the petition. The email carries a note at the bottom that it was paid for by Pingree’s campaign organization, Chellie Pingree for Congress. She used that website because she is not allowed to use congressional websites or email addresses for a petition drive, Ritch said.

Pingree has protested actions involving Time Warner in the past. In December, she wrote to Time Warner Cable CEO Glenn Britt, asking him to reconsider the company’s decision to drop the New England Cable Network. After pressure from viewers and other politicians, Time Warner decided to keep NECN in its lineup.

Ray Routhier can be contacted at 791-6454 or at:

rrouthier@pressherald.com

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