Amazon blames Donald Trump's personal vendetta against Jeff Bezos as reason for losing Pentagon's $10 billion JEDI contract
Reuters; Associated Press
- Amazon recently lost out to Microsoft on a $10 billion cloud-computing contract for the Department of Defense.
- Amazon has challenged the decision on the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) contract, alleging in court that President Donald Trump's bias against Amazon played a role in the decision.
- In documents made public Monday, Amazon said that Trump led "repeated public and behind-the-scenes attacks" to ensure Amazon didn't get the contract in order to harm CEO Jeff Bezos, his "perceived political enemy."
- Trump has not hid his dislike for Amazon: He's blamed the company for "getting away with murder on tax" and accused Bezos of using the publication he owns, The Washington Post, as a "lobbyist weapon."
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Amazon is blaming Donald Trump's "repeated public and behind-the-scenes attacks" against the company and its CEO, Jeff Bezos, as the reason as why its cloud unit wasn't given a much-anticipated $10 billion contract with the US government.
Amazon is currently challenging the Department of Defense's decision to award the coveted Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) contract, a $10 billion deal to help move sensitive data to a cloud server, to Microsoft. In a federal complaint made public on Monday, Amazon alleges that President Trump influenced the Pentagon's decision to serve his "own personal and political ends" and harm Bezos, Trump's "perceived political enemy."
Amazon's cloud unit, Amazon Web Services, has been considered a leader in the cloud industry, and its loss of the Pentagon deal came as a surprise. Instead, the JEDI contract was awarded on October 25 to Microsoft, a decision that experts dubbed "a huge feather in the cap for Microsoft" and a "black eye for Amazon and Bezos" in interviews with Business Insider.
However, Amazon was quick to challenge the Department of Defense's decision, and filed a complaint in the US Court of Federal Claims in November. Amazon's complaints were spurred by reports that Trump wanted to "scuttle" the bidding process for JEDI, and from a forthcoming book that alleges Trump ordered former Defense Secretary James Mattis to "screw Amazon" out of the deal last year.
Trump has not been quiet about his dislike of Bezos. Since his 2016 presidential campaign, Trump has repeatedly heaped blame on Amazon for its effect on brick-and-mortar retailers and the US Postal Service, and for "getting away with murder on tax." Additionally, Trump has also. without evidence, accused the Amazon CEO of using The Washington Post, which is owned by Bezos, as a "lobbyist weapon" for the company.
Multiple sources told Vanity Fair in 2018 that Trump has been "obsessed" with Bezos, and has been looking for ways to "f--k with" the Amazon CEO.
"The question is whether the President of the United States should be allowed to use the budget of DoD to pursue his own personal and political ends," Amazon says in the filing made public on Monday. "Basic justice requires re-evaluation of proposals and a new award decision."
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