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O'Rielly Votes to Approve AT&T/DirecTV Merger

Commissioner Michael O'Rielly said Thursday he had voted to approve the proposed $48.5 billion AT&T/DirecTV merger.

The chairman circulated the order earlier this week, so he is on board as well. The deal will almost certainly secure at least the needed three votes.

"After reading the Order as prepared by Commission staff, reviewing the voluminous record in the proceeding, and listening to interested parties, I voted the item this afternoon," said O'Rielly. "To be clear, this process shouldn’t have taken this long, and we shouldn’t have been so cavalier with the Commission’s merger review 'shot clock,' but at least we have arrived at this final stage."

The order applies various conditions on the deal, including on buildouts and interconnection and online content. O'Rielly did not weigh in on those, saying he would release a more "substantive statement" as soon as fellow commissioners had voted the item.