Friday on CNN’s “OutFront,” Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) reacted to Amazon’s decision to pull out of an agreement to build its second headquarters in New York City.
The decision was heralded by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), but Maloney questioned that opposition.
Partial transcript as follows:
BURNETT: I want to ask you about another big story tonight, Amazon, abruptly canceling plans to build, it would be a massive headquarters in New York. People like your colleague Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez have been celebrating this. You’ve seen this from some several progressives. She said, “Today was the day a group of dedicated everyday New Yorkers defeated Amazon’s corporate greed, its worker exploitation, and the power of the richest man in the world.”
It’s your district, not hers, now is that how you see it?
MALONEY: Absolutely. My constituents want jobs.
BURNETT: This was 25,000 job.
MALONEY: Twenty minimum, it would have been many, many more, 25,000 jobs at 150,000 minimum for the for the job. Many entry-level jobs would have been – many, many more they were working with the community on job fairs and the other types of entry-level jobs that they would have. There were promises for a new school and having – as a former teacher. I was intrigued with their plans to have a curriculum in 30 different schools supported by Amazon on high-tech.
We should be really diversifying our base of taxes, our base of businesses. We’re too dependent on financial services. And it used to be that we would protest wars. Now we’re protesting jobs. People are complaining about jobs coming to your – this is the best – let me tell you, Erin, if this had gone through, it would have made overnight New York City the high-tech capital of the East Coast. The most important job center for tech jobs.
And as a former member of the City Council, I have worked through several mayors in trying to figure out how to diversify our economy. We’ve been investing in high-tech schools, ones on my district, Cornell Tech to train the next geniuses in tech. Now, we would have had a place for them to go to work. But Amazon …
BURNETT: But you don’t because the progressives in your own party, including people like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez who get so much attention now. They stopped it.
MALONEY: Well, I’m a progressive too, but I’m pragmatic. If someone is going to bring a job to my district, to my city and billions of dollars in tax revenue, you also had a story this week that we were $3 billion under projected revenues for the state and roughly $1 billion under projected, this is the first quarter, we’re $4 billion less than we usually get and yet we’re kicking out a company that would have been paid – they were projecting over 10 years roughly $27 billion in taxes and not to mention the economic activity, the small businesses were thrilled because there would be more activity.
I am disappointed. It used to be if you wanted to change something you worked with the contract to change it. You didn’t just take them out.
BURNETT: No, they probably said they didn’t talk to them.
MALONEY: I know. They just said, “We don’t want it.” And they are demonstrating and against it, and it’s jobs, it’s jobs, I’ve never seen anything like this. Most of the time people are trying to figure out and spending most of their time trying to figure out how to bring jobs to New York and to keep them here.
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