AT&T Is Buying Off Everyone From Gay Groups To Teachers To Support Its T-Mobile Merger

Photo: Associated Press

Several liberal advocacy groups with no clear stake in the proposed merger between AT&T and T-Mobile have come out in favour of the deal after receiving tens of thousands of dollars of donations from the companies in recent years.Eliza Krigman at Politico reports that the NAACP, the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), and the National Education Association have all announced support for the merger. Each of the groups denies any connection between the corporate donations and their backing of the deal.

After the Columbia Urban League received a $25,000 grant from AT&T in 2009, its CEO bent over backwards in a note to the FCC explaining the group’s interest in the proposed merger with T-Mobile.

“In our work, we are often witness to the obstacles minority Americans face when trying to access mobile broadband and its associated benefits. This deal would help extricate the barriers keeping our members from attaining these benefits, working towards the end of the digital divide.”

The National Education Association—recipient of a $75,000 grant from AT&T—said of the proposed merger: “America’s students will be among the biggest winners.”

William Barber of the NAACP claimed the group is uniquely immune to the temptation to support corporations that provide the group with financial support.

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.