California, Maryland, New Jersey, and North Carolina joined the lawsuit of the United States Department of Justice against the proposed acquisition of Spirit Airlines by JetBlue.
The decision was announced on March 31, 2023, by the DOJ.
“We look forward to litigating this important case alongside our state law enforcement partners to stop JetBlue from eliminating its rival, Spirit,” said Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Doha Mekki. “Today we welcome the States of California, Maryland, New Jersey, and North Carolina, who join the complaint to protect the benefits of competition in the airline industry on behalf of their residents.”
The DOJ, together with the Attorneys General of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the State of New York, and the District of Columbia, filed the lawsuit on March 7, 2023. The DOJ argued that the transaction, worth $3.8 billion, would eliminate competition.
“As our complaint alleges, the merger of JetBlue and Spirit would result in higher fares and fewer choices for tens of millions of travelers, with the greatest impact felt by those who rely on what are known as ultra-low-cost carriers in order to fly,” argued Attorney General Merrick Garland at the time.