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Trump vows to block $118b merger

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump says he will block any merger between ATT and Time Warner. Picture: AP

US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has promised to foil a proposed deal for ATT Inc to buy Time Warner Inc if he wins the November 8 election, arguing it’s an example of a “power structure” rigged against him and voters.

The deal possibly worth more than $US90 billion ($118 billion) could be announced as soon as Monday, the source told AFP, confirming a report in The Wall Street Journal.

ATT is the second-largest US wireless carrier and third-largest cable TV provider in the United States, while Time Warner controls a valuable stable of entertainment content suppliers, including Warner Bros. film and TV studios, the HBO television production group, cable news giant CNN, and the TNT and TBS cable channels.

ATamp;T and Time Warner are close to a deal, reports suggest. Picture: AFP

ATT and Time Warner are close to a deal, reports suggest. Picture: AFPSource:AFP

A deal could likely price Time Warner at $US110 per share, or around $US90 million, the person said.

Trump overnight listed his policy plans for the first 100 days of his presidency in a campaign speech in historic Gettysburg, Pennsylvania

He added a new threat to his repeated criticisms of US media companies, which he says cover his campaign unfairly to help Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.

“They’re trying desperately to suppress my vote and the voice of the American people,” he told supporters in his speech.

“As an example of the power structure I’m fighting, ATT is buying Time Warner and thus CNN, a deal we will not approve in my administration because it’s too much concentration of power in the hands of too few,” Trump said.

He also said he would look at “breaking” up Comcast’s acquisition of NBC Universal in 2013.

“Deals like this destroy democracy,” he said.

Although Trump, a wealthy New York businessman, described these plans at least in part as a response to his belief such organisations had treated him unfairly, he argued that less wealthy voters had even greater cause to worry.

“When a simple phone call placed with the biggest newspapers or television networks gets them wall to wall coverage with virtually no fact-checking whatsoever, here is why this is relevant to you,” he said. “If they can fight somebody like me who has unlimited resources to fight back, just look at what they could do to you, your jobs, your security, your education, your health care.”

Trump is trailing Mrs Clinton in most polls — although he has narrowed the gap according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll released on Friday.

Mrs Clinton maintained her commanding lead in the race to win the Electoral College, however, and claim the US presidency, a Reuters/Ipsos States of the Nation project poll released on Saturday showed.