Reps fire another salvo at XM/Sirius


Bart Stupak (D-MI) and Steve LaTourette (R-OH) have become the latest to object to the proposal to merge satellite audio services Sirius and XM. The grounds for opposing the merger, however, are pretty much the same as those others are citing. In a nutshell, why should the government sanction formation of a monopoly?

The duo sent a letter to FCC Chairman Kevin Martin and Assistant Attorney General Thomas Barnett. After noting the unique spot the DARS companies occupy on the entertainment spectrum, the duo noted, "With no viable competition in the national market, a combined XM-Sirius satellite radio monopoly could easily raise prices without losing existing subscribers. Even the promised price caps would provide only temporary protection to consumers, and are an acknowledgement themselves of the monopoly power resulting from the merger."