Antitrust Laws Needed to Maintain Integrity

By Fears, Ronda | THE JOURNAL RECORD, June 21, 1989 | Go to article overview

Antitrust Laws Needed to Maintain Integrity


Fears, Ronda, THE JOURNAL RECORD


The suggestion of abandoning the antitrust laws in Oklahoma to attract industry is simply not right, Oklahoma Attorney General Robert H. Henry said Tuesday.

Abiding by laws may be likened to the mouthwash commercial which touts "The taste you love to hate," but it is essential to maintaining integrity, he said.

Henry made the remark referring to criticism from U.S. Rep. Jim Inhoff, D-Okla., on the attorney general's handling of Oklahoma City's attempt to get American Airlines to locate a proposed maintenance facility at Will Rogers World Airport.

American announced June 7 it would locate the new $250 million center, which is expected to have about 4,500 employees, in Fort Worth rather than Oklahoma City following a round of legislative tax incentive packages offered by Oklahoma and Texas lawmakers.

Inhoff accused Henry of jeopardizing Oklahoma's stake in the bidding process by sending letters to the U.S. Department of Justice on the possible merger of reservation systems for American and Delta.

Henry said the letter was signed by Texas Attorney General Jim Mattox as well as several other legal officials from other states. He added that American was aware of the inquiry into antitrust laws, and was in agreement with seeking verification.

"We must not depart from the law," he said.

If the law is wrong, we should work to change the law, he said. Henry is chairman of a non-government advisory commission that is drafting revisions to the Oklahoma Constitution.

Henry said the revisions, similiar in part to recommendations made by a commission in 1949, would eliminate obsolete laws and revise standards that are anti-corporation.

When asked the likelihood of support for constitutional revision, Henry said now seems to be the best time for support. However, he speculated initiative petitions would launch the measures to a public vote rather than the Legislature. …

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