State Supreme Court Justice James J. Fitzgerald III wondered how Pennsylvania differed from other states and federal regulators that have approved a merger between telecommunications companies Verizon and MCI.

The answer given by Joseph Witmer, assistant counsel for the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission — which gave a green light to the January 2006 merger before a court challenge ensued — was blunt during Supreme Court oral arguments in Popowsky v. Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission on Oct. 16 in Philadelphia.

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