Comcast CEO Brian Roberts, who has donated money to President Obama’s campaigns in the past and has played golf with him, is pushing for a merger with Time Warner, and his company has ghostwritten emails in support.
As the Federal Communications Commission and the Department of Justice decide whether the merger between Comcast and Time Warner will result in anti-competitive practices, such as raising the fees for services, emails are being sent by politicians in support of the proposed merger. What emerges, however, that the authors of these emails are from Comcast staff, according to the Verge.
In August, Comcast sent a sample letter to Mayor Jere Wood of Roswell, Georgia. Although it was marked as a draft, an identical letter was sent from Wood to the FCC, praising the virtues of Comcast, and making it sound as if the letter were written by someone outside of the company, with quotes like “What has impressed me even more is the company’s deep interest in further technological development to benefit its many subscribers.”
With the debate about net neutrality getting hot, and President Obama classifying internet service as a utility, Brian Roberts has seen a powerful political ally turned potential adversary. Before Comcast announced its $45 billion potential merger with Time Warner, a senior Justice Department antitrust official was invited to a party, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Brian Roberts was born to a Jewish family in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. His mother, Suzanne Fleisher, was an actress and his father Ralph was a playwright.