Amazon wants Trump to testify on 'order to screw Amazon' in Pentagon deal




  • In Business/Economy
  • 2020-02-10 17:02:46Z
  • By By David Shepardson and Nandita Bose
Amazon wants Trump to testify on
Amazon wants Trump to testify on 'order to screw Amazon' in Pentagon deal  

By David Shepardson and Nandita Bose

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Amazon Web Services said on Monday it was seeking to depose President Donald Trump and Defense Secretary Mark Esper in its lawsuit over whether the president was trying "to screw Amazon" when the Pentagon awarded a contract for cloud computing to rival Microsoft Corp. <MSFT.O>

The Amazon.com Inc <AMZN.O> unit alleged that Trump, who has publicly derided Amazon head Jeff Bezos and repeatedly criticized the company, exerted undue influence on the decision to deny it the $10 billion contract.

Known as the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure Cloud, or JEDI, the contract is intended to give the military better access to data and technology from remote locations.

In the lawsuit, Amazon said it seeks discovery "demonstrating exactly how President Trump's order to 'screw Amazon' was carried out during the decision making process."

Without this, "the Court cannot objectively and fully evaluate AWS's credible and well-grounded allegations about bias and bad faith," the lawsuit said.

Bezos also owns the Washington Post, whose coverage has been critical of Trump.

Along with Trump and Esper, Amazon seeks to depose former Defense Secretary James Mattis, Pentagon chief information officer Dana Deasy and four other procurement officials, court records show.

An Amazon spokesperson said that "President Trump has repeatedly demonstrated his willingness to use his position as President and Commander in Chief to interfere with government functions - including federal procurements - to advance his personal agenda.

"The question is whether the President of the United States should be allowed to use the budget of the DoD to pursue his own personal and political ends," the spokesperson added.

The lawsuit also says Amazon's protest against the decision occurs against the background of impeachment, "which is grounded in the President's repeated refusal to separate his personal interests from the national interest." President Trump has been acquitted on impeachment charges by the Republican-controlled Senate.

The lawsuit also mentions other instances of alleged interference from Trump.

For example, his alleged interference in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' award of a $400 million border wall contract to Fisher Industries in December 2019 and a report that Trump intervened in the General Services Administration's solicitation of bids to move the FBI's headquarters to a new campus in the suburbs.

The current FBI offices are near a Washington hotel owned by Trump's company.

The Pentagon did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The White House declined to comment.

Last month, Amazon filed a motion in court to delay the Department of Defense deal with Microsoft until a court rules on its protest of the contract award.

The procurement process has been delayed by legal complaints and conflict of interest allegations. Esper has denied there was bias and said the Pentagon made its choice fairly and freely without external influence.


(Reporting by David Shepardson and Nandita Bose in Washington; Additional reporting by Mike Stone and Lisa Lambert; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama, David Gregorio and Dan Grebler)

COMMENTS

More Related News

Acting Navy secretary is out after bungled firing of USS Theodore Roosevelt
Acting Navy secretary is out after bungled firing of USS Theodore Roosevelt's captain

Acting Secretary of the Navy Thomas Modly, who had lambasted Capt. Brett Crozier for his letter about a coronavirus-stricken warship, submitted his resignation, sources said.

How a Ship
How a Ship's Coronavirus Outbreak Became a Moral Crisis for the Military

WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump's acting Navy secretary, in a profanity-laced reprimand delivered Monday, criticized sailors aboard the stricken aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt for cheering their captain, who was removed after he appealed for help as the coronavirus spread throughout the

Trade Adviser Warned White House in January of Risks of a Pandemic
Trade Adviser Warned White House in January of Risks of a Pandemic

A top White House adviser starkly warned Trump administration officials in late January that the coronavirus crisis could cost the United States trillions of dollars and put millions of Americans at risk of illness or death.The warning, written in a memo by Peter Navarro, President Donald Trump's

He Led a Top Navy Ship. Now He Sits in Quarantine, Fired and Infected.
He Led a Top Navy Ship. Now He Sits in Quarantine, Fired and Infected.
  • World
  • 2020-04-06 12:09:25Z

WASHINGTON -- For days, he fended off fears that the contagion would spread unchecked through his crew. Then last week, the captain of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt, who had appealed to his superiors for help, was fired.By Sunday, friends said, he had come down with the coronavirus himself.The military has long adhered to a rigid chain of command and tolerated no dissent expressed outside official channels. Capt. Brett Crozier, the skipper of the aircraft carrier, knew he was up against those imperatives when he asked for help for nearly 5,000 crew members trapped in a petri dish of a warship in the middle of a pandemic.But colleagues say the mistake that could cost Crozier...

Trump Urges Coronavirus Patients to Take Unproven Drug
Trump Urges Coronavirus Patients to Take Unproven Drug

President Donald Trump said on Saturday that the federal government was placing millions of doses of a malaria drug in the federal stockpile of emergency medical supplies to make it available for coronavirus patients, even though the drug has not been approved for COVID-19 treatment and his top coronavirus

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Comments

Top News: Economy