Policy

Reps.: Add MASN to Adelphia Merger Conditions

7/05/2006 10:06 AM Eastern

Three Washington, D.C.-area House members want to throw Mid-Atlantic Sports Network into the Adelphia Communications merger-condition mix.

AP reported that Reps. Tom Davis (R-Va. and chairman of the Government Reform Committee), James Moran (D-Va.) and Albert Wynn (D-Md.) asked the Federal Communications Commission Wednesday to make Comcast’s and Time Warner Inc.’s proposed merger with Adelphia contingent on Comcast entering binding arbitration to settle its dispute with Mid-Atlantic Sports Network over the airing of Washington Nationals Major League Baseball games.

Comcast has refused to carry the regional sports network -- which controls the rights to most Nationals games -- due to a dispute with Baltimore Orioles owner Peter Angelos over television rights to MLB’s Orioles and control of the region's sports-programming market, according to AP.

The league helped Angelos to create MASN as compensation for having a competing franchise 35 miles from its home market, according to AP, which added that Angelos plans to move Orioles telecasts to the RSN next season after the team’s deal with Comcast SportsNet expires. Comcast claimed that its contract was improperly terminated.

March