Comcast To Acquire Time Warner Cable

Purchase will add more influence to growing owner of NBC, MSNBC.

Comcast announced that they reached an agreement to purchase Time Warner Cable. The acquisition will combine the largest two cable providers, according to Feb. 12, New York Times article. The move will give Comcast, which already owns NBC Universal and MSNBC, even more influence, allowing it to expand into Time Warner controlled territories including New York and Los Angeles.

Robert Marcus, chairman and CEO of Time Warner Cable, and Brian Roberts, chairman and CEO of Comcast, appeared on "Squawk Box" on Comcast owned CNBC to discuss the merger and reassure customers that the merger would "speed up the technological innovation." The CEOs also said there would be "no overlap" between regions currently covered by Comcast and Time Warner, meaning that the merger wouldn't eliminate any competition.

Comcast already owns NBC, MSNBC and CNBC, and recently added liberal blogger Ezra Klein's new venture, through Vox Media, an online platform funded through their Comcast Ventures division.

Klein, who founded The Washington Post’s Wonk Blog (where policy geeks could write on “the most complex issues in Washington”), recently left the Post when the paper declined to back his project idea, which will purportedly cost $10 million. According to Klein, who announced the move to Vox Media on Jan. 26, his currently unnamed “Project X” will “create the single best resources for news consumers everywhere.”

Comcast knew exactly how liberal Klein was when they made the deal. He is already an MSNBC contributor and appeared on the network at least 90 times during 2013, including 21 times as a guest host. Backing is project fits in with Comcast’s liberal bent; it gave President Obama’s campaign $304,881 during the 2012 election cycle alone, more than three times what it gave to Mitt Romney’s campaign, according to the campaign finance site Open Secrets.

Comcast has had its fair share of self-inflicted controversy in the past year or so. The MRC called on Congress to investigate Comcast in 2012, after NBC News doctored audio from George Zimmerman’s 911 call to make him seem racist. MSNBC has also been plagued by internal problems, including the resignation of Martin Bashir, after he suggested on Nov. 15, 2013 that Sarah Palin should be forced to have someone defecate in her mouth. Comcast is also a major backer of the “Equality Forum” in Philadelphia, which claims to be the world’s largest “LGBT summit."

— Mike Ciandella is Research Analyst at the Media Research Center. Follow Mike Ciandella on Twitter.