President Donald Trump has tapped a Justice Department veteran to vet mergers as assistant attorney general atop the Antitrust Division.
The White House signaled late Monday that it intended to nominate Makan Delrahim for the post.
Most recently he has been deputy assistant and deputy counsel to the President, joining in January from an L.A. law firm, where he had been partner.
The White House did not identify the firm, but according to OpenSecrets, which tracks the professional movements of government employees, it was Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, a firm whose clients have included Comcast, NCTA: The Television & Internet Association, and Dell, among many others.
Before that, during the George W. Bush Administration, Delrahim was deputy assistant attorney general for the Antitrust Division and the attorney general’s Task Force on Intellectual Property. He is also former chief counsel on the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Justice's Antitrust Division gets most of the media merger Hart-Scott-Rodino antitrust reviews, including its current review of the AT&T-Time Warner merger, which Trump, as a candidate, threatened to try and block as President. In the interim, the pro-business, anti-regulation Trump has come more to the fore, raising the odds that threat was more about his anger at the media in general than an anti-merger philosophy.
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