Perhaps not all mergers between corporate giants are the same in the eyes of the president — so long as they're patronizing his businesses.
In the wake of Monday's report that President Trump asked Gary Cohn, the former director of the National Economic Council, and former White House Chief of Staff John Kelly to pressure the Department of Justice to block AT&T from purchasing Time Warner, The Washington Post reported that executives from T-Mobile have increased their patronage of Trump's Washington hotel since the company announced its own merger with Sprint in April of last year, which is currently under review from the DOJ.
T-Mobile openly acknowledged the spending uptick in a response to questions from Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), who raised the possibility that the company was attempting to "curry favor" with the president. They pointed out the "high profile" nature of the executives' stay.
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Before the merger, only two top officials from T-Mobile had stayed in the hotel — for one night each in August 2017. But since the deal with Sprint, executives have stayed there for a total of 52 nights, spending nearly $200,000 in the process, though that amounts to just 14 percent of total corporate spending on Washington-area hotels during that time period.
T-Mobile CEO John Legere penned a separate letter to Warren and Jayapal, arguing that the stays "were not intended to shift Trump administration policy."
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