Ex-Trump Adviser Page Tells AT&T Judge He Opposes Oligopoly

(Bloomberg) -- Carter Page, a former foreign policy adviser to then-candidate Donald Trump, is angry about AT&T Inc.’s acquisition of Time Warner Inc. and wants to be heard -- in court.

Page railed against the $85.4 billion deal in court papers filed Tuesday in federal court in Washington, arguing it would only aid the growing "U.S. telecommunications-media oligopoly and their illegal de facto joint venture marketing partners in the U.S. government propaganda network."

He also accused the U.S. government of meddling in last year’s presidential election, victimizing both the president and him. Page is managing partner of the New York investment advisory firm Global Energy Capital LLC. He’s come under scrutiny by investigators as Special Counsel Robert Mueller probes Russian involvement in the vote.

The U.S. Justice Department last month sued to block Time Warner’s acquisition by AT&T, claiming the combination would harm consumers. The deal would build on media concentration from the 2011 Comcast-NBC tie-up and Verizon Communications Inc.’s acquisition of Yahoo, Page said.

"AT&T’s acceptance into this exclusive club would likely inflict further damage," he said.

Page’s ire at Verizon stems at least in part from a Yahoo news article last year reporting that U.S. intelligence officials were investigating whether he met with Russians closely tied to the Kremlin to discuss the lifting of American sanctions against that country. Calling the report untrue, Page later sued Yahoo parent Oath Inc. and the U.S. government -- which repeated the allegations in a Radio Free Europe broadcast -- for defamation.

He asked U.S. District Judge Richard Leon, who’s presiding over the AT&T lawsuit, to accept his friend-of-the-court brief arguing the deal should be disallowed, stating he can give the court "unique and useful information and perspective."

The U.S. Justice Department said in a filing Tuesday in response to Page’s request that its antitrust division generally doesn’t oppose amicus briefs but noted that the submission doesn’t appear “meaningfully relevant” to the issues before the judge.

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