The U.S. Justice Department wants to suspend proceedings in its lawsuit seeking to block the proposed merger of AMR Corp. (AAMRQ) and US Airways Group Inc. because of the federal government shutdown.
The Justice Department asked the judge overseeing the lawsuit to stay the case until Congress restores funding, saying its attorneys are “generally prohibited” from working except in “very limited circumstances,” according to a filing today in federal court in Washington.
“This is creating difficulties for the department to perform the functions necessary to support its litigation efforts and, accordingly, the department’s policy is to seek a stay in all pending civil litigation,” it said.
The airlines oppose the proposed stay, the Justice Department said in its filing. The U.S. sued the airlines in August, saying the proposed merger would reduce competition. Trial is scheduled to begin on Nov. 25. A hearing in the case is set for today.
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