By KYW tech editor Ian Bush

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Reports this afternoon say Comcast, the Philadelphia-based cable television behemoth, is scuttling its proposed mega-merger with Time Warner Cable.

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After developments this week in Washington, it would have been an uphill climb to say the least for the $45-billion takeover bid by Comcast to be approved by federal regulators.

Bloomberg News is citing “people with knowledge of the matter” in its report that Comcast is “planning to walk away” from the deal.

Just this week, executives with both companies sat down with US Justice Department lawyers in their first meeting since announcing the proposed merger more than a year ago.

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Officials have been looking into whether the deal would violate antitrust laws and prevent competition.

Comcast and Time Warner Cable have always argued that it wouldn’t, because they don’t overlap in any market.   But many of those opposed to the merger said they were troubled that the combined companies would control more than half of the country’s broadband Internet market, especially with more and more of the cable business migrating from television to data.

A Comcast spokesman would not immediately confirm nor comment on the Bloomberg report.


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