Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Has Bezos Become More Powerful in D.C. Than Trump? -- Vanity Fair

Final paragraphs:
"In a larger sense, the JEDI contract represents the growing clout that technology companies are wielding in Washington—and how they are increasingly wiring the swamp for their own benefit. Amazon has spent $67 million on lobbying since 2000—including more this year than Citigroup, JP Morgan Chase, and Wells Fargo combined. Its Washington office employs more than 100 lobbyists, including 68 so-called “revolvers”—officials who have moved from government employment to the private sector. The company also employs many former officials with insider connections, including Scott Renda, who worked for the Office of Management and Budget’s cloud computing division, and Anne Rung, who served as the government’s chief acquisition officer.

If you think the JEDI contract is big, consider this: Last year, working for Bezos, Rung helped pass the so-called Amazon amendment, a provision buried in a defense authorization bill that will establish Amazon as the go-to portal for every online purchase the government makes—some $53 billion every year. President Trump may enjoy firing off incendiary tweets attacking Amazon. But Bezos is quietly finding new ways to bolster his empire with billions in federal tax dollars. And the Pentagon, it appears, is helping him do it."
Has Bezos Become More Powerful in D.C. Than Trump? -- Vanity Fair

No comments: