A day after Amazon announced it would be pulling out of a deal to set up a headquarters in New York amid pressure from politicians, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio went on the offensive, slamming those elected officials and the company.
In November, the online retail giant announced that it has chosen two locations for its new HQ2 project, one in Long Island City, and a second in Virginia. However, they began getting cold feet last week and officially pulled out of the project on Thursday, Feb. 14, announcing that they will not be looking for a new city to set up shop.
The Amazon announcement came as a shock to many, with some business officials in the Hudson Valley claiming it sent “shockwaves” through the region. The failed deal is expected to cost New York between 25,000 and 40,000 potentially well-paying jobs.
One of the most vocal protesters about bringing Amazon to Queens was outspoken freshman Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who opposed the proposed $3 billion incentive package that was offered by the state.
Following Amazon’s announcement, the Congresswoman took to Twitter to tout the sudden shift in plans.
“This deal wasn’t a simple tax break. It was $3 BILLION dollars. When the community wanted to negotiate, Amazon said ‘all or nothing.’ They bailed when they didn’t get 100 percent of what they wanted,” she said. “Amazon was not coming to my Congressional district, had no concentrated outreach to us that I’m aware of, yet (with) no effort I defeated the richest man in the world?”
On WNYC radio on Friday, de Blasio confirmed that the deal was dead and then went to town by slamming the politicians that helped sabotage the deal.
“I came up watching the mistakes of progressives of the past, unfortunately, what happened in this city when it almost went to bankruptcy in the 1970s," he said. "I saw all the times progressives did not show people effective governance and all the times progressives made the kinds of mistakes that alienated working people,” he said.
“Working people are very smart and very discerning. They want jobs, they want revenue, they want the kinds of things that government can do for them. They understand they have to be paid for.”
The New York City mayor wasn’t done there, taking Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos to task as well.
“Here’s Bezos and here’s Amazon, the definition of 1 percent,” De Blasio said. “Look how little regard there was for everyday people. And it just dispels the notion that these big corporations are willing to be good citizens and good neighbors.”
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