Reuters reports that on Friday, the Department of Justice filed a motion to prevent AT&T from arguing that the government’s decision to prevent the acquisition was based in politics. President Donald Trump has publicly criticized the deal and made one of Time Warner’s assets, CNN, a key point of contention.
The agency sued to block the deal in November. AT&T claims that a combination with Time Warner is a vertical integration — between two businesses from distinct categories — and that such deals have historically not been able to be blocked in courts.
A trial is set to begin in March.