AT&T, Comcast to take turn before Congress


AT&T Corp. CEO C. Michael Armstrong and Comcast Corp. president Brian Roberts will defend their merger before the Senate Antitrust Subcommittee, chaired by Sen. Herb Kohl (D-Wis.),Tuesday afternoon.

Kohl's committee did not go easy on the last merger to come before his panel
-- EchoStar Communications Corp. and Hughes Electronics Corp.

Groups are lining up to oppose Comcast's $58 billion bid to acquire AT&T
Broadband, with the Consumer Federation of America and the Computer &
Communications Industry Association teaming up against it on the grounds that it
will be bad for consumers.

Competitor BellSouth Corp. threw in its pre-hearing two cents,
with vice president of governmental affairs Herschel Abbott saying:
"BellSouth believes that so long as the disparity of regulatory treatment
between companies like AT&T-Comcast and BellSouth continues, it is not in
the public interest to approve the merger."