AA/US Airlines Merger Antitrust Lawsuit: What Now? - Charter Flight Group

AA/US Airlines Merger Antitrust Lawsuit: What Now?


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AA/US Airlines Merger Antitrust Lawsuit: What Now?


Oh, yeah, the federal government has been shut down. That excuse didn’t fly with a judge on Tuesday denying the Department of Justice’s request for a delay in their antitrust lawsuit against American Airlines with US Airlines. The Department of Justice said that the government shutdown would hinder their ability to prepare for trial, which is scheduled in November.

English: The sign indicating the headquarters ...
English: The sign indicating the headquarters of AMR Corporation, American Airlines, and American Eagle Airlines – The photograph faces away from the actual headquarters building Español: La sede del AMR Corporation, American Airlines, y American Eagle Airlines (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

US District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly stated that the lawsuit already delayed the merger and that American Airlines needs to resolve the lawsuit in order to complete the bankruptcy reorganization.  The merger was weeks away from closing when the government stepped in with a lawsuit to block on August 13 of this year. “Postponing the trial would delay the necessary speedy disposition of this matter. It is essential that the Department of Justice attorneys continue to litigate this case.” Basically, she said to “deal with it”.

This was good news to Tom Horton, who is the CEO of AMR Corporation, the parent company of American Airlines. He stated that they will be ready for trial come November. Horton made the comments after a news conference where the Texas attorney general pulled out of the lawsuit, possibly weakening the suit, and the government’s position in the suit.

Politics seems to be running amok, causing a weakening of the government’s case, and bolstering the Texas attorney general’s bid for the 2014 governor’s race. You can be sure politics had something to play in the antitrust lawsuit to begin with. Politics also have caused the government to be shut down. It is heartening to see a Federal judge who is able to see through the government’s whining, and allow justice to hopefully prevail in this matter.

Of course, lest we forget, all Federal Courts are in their last week of operation unless Congress moves to avert a total shutdown. Although the deadline for that is October 17, 2013, Federal Court funds expire a few days short of that. What will happen at that point to the legal situation with American Airlines is anyone’s guess.

Funny how things work out.

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