American Airlines and US Airways already have said they will suffer if a Justice Department move to block their planned merger is successful. Now Miami-Dade County’s mayor is saying Miami International Airport would also be a loser.
Mayor Carlos Gimenez held a press conference Wednesday at MIA with Aviation Director Emilio González to urge the U.S. Department of Justice to reconsider its opposition to the merger. The department filed an antitrust lawsuit last week to block the plan to create the world’s largest airline, and American’s anticipated exit from bankruptcy has been put on hold.
“From our vantage point, the anticipated merger of two of our nation’s legacy carriers would have an undeniably positive effect on our community: more jobs for our residents, new routes and greater access for locals and visitors to take advantage of, and increased opportunities for commercial activity via an expanded network,” Gimenez wrote in a letter sent Tuesday to Attorney General Eric Holder.
Gimenez also called for Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi to reverse course; Florida joined the federal suit along with five other states and Washington, D.C.
A spokeswoman for Bondi released a statement that said: “Our office, along with the Department of Justice, spoke with the Miami-Dade Aviation Department about the merger on April 4, 2013. This lawsuit is a bipartisan effort by a group of states and the DOJ working together to protect consumers.”