American Airlines CEO, Fla. Attorney General Pam Bondi meet and chat about AA-US Airways merger
There may be a lawsuit between them, but American Airlines CEO Tom Horton and Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi still managed a meeting Friday that both described as "productive."
Florida, five other states and Washington, D.C. joined an antitrust suit filed by the U.S. Department of Justice in August seeking to block the merger of American and US Airways. Miami International Airport is a main hub for American, which is one of the largest private employers in Miami-Dade County.
When the suit was filed, Bondi called the proposed merger "anti-competitive and harmful to consumers."
But Friday, she said in a statement that she and Horton "are both hopeful that we will reach a timely resolution to benefit the residents of Miami and all Floridians and travelers to Florida. We look forward to a thriving American Airlines that not only keeps but will create many jobs in our great state.”
Horton echoed her words, saying the two discussed "the benefits that the proposed merger of American and US Airways would bring to our customer and communities as well as our people all across the two companies."
He added: "I’m hopeful that a resolution can be reached in the near future.”
Bloomberg reported earlier this week that the airlines are in "exploratory talks" with the U.S. government about settling the lawsuit. Already, one state that had signed on to the initial complaint -- Texas -- has dropped out.
- Miami Herald staff writer Hannah Sampson (hsampson@MiamiHerald.com)