States vow to continue pursuit of Microsoft if DOJ quits

With all the controversy swirling about the Microsoft antitrust trial since Judge Jackson released his findings of facts late last week, the 19 states that are allied with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) said they would continue the fight if the DOJ ever begged off. The cause for this announcement was speculation that a steady series of appeals could drag the case into the next presidential administration, which might result in a change of policy, causing the DOJ to drop its case. Should this happen, the states promise, they would pursue Microsoft all the way to the Supreme Court if need be.

"If \[the DOJ\] abandons the case, then it's pretty clear what would happen: the 19 states would continue it," said Tom Miller, the Attorney General for Iowa. Miller is also the lead representative for the states in the combined lawsuit.

Such a pledge by the states, of course, only strengthens the possibility that Microsoft will settle the case. Representatives from Microsoft and the DOJ acknowledged this weekend that the two sides are continuing to pursue a settlement but would offer no further elaboration

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