AOC: Richest Man in the World Bezos Pays His Employees ‘Starvation Wages’

AOC in profile
Carolyn Kaster/AP

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) slammed billionaire Jeff Bezos, the richest man in the world and owner of the Washington Post, for paying his employees what she called “starvation wages.”

ABC Chief White House Correspondent Jonathan Karl asked Ocasio-Cortez on This Week with George Stephanopoulos Sunday if her brand of democratic socialism would allow people to become billionaires like Bezos, who started Amazon in 1994.

“I spend less time thinking about Jeff Bezos and more time about warehouse workers,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “But if his being a billionaire is predicated on paying people starvation wages and stripping them of their ability to access healthcare …”

“Amazon increased the minimum wage to $15 last November in response to criticism,” the Daily Mail reported. “The federal minimum wage has been $7.25 since 2009.”

“When you have a very large workforce and you underpay every single person and then you also participate in taking billions of dollars of government subsidies, that could be part of it,” Ocasio-Cortez said. 

“Whether Jeff Bezos is a billionaire or not is less of my concern than if your average Amazon worker is making a living wage if they have guaranteed health care and if they can send their kids to college tuition-free,’ Ocasio-Cortez said. 

“And if that’s the case, and Jeff Bezos is still a billionaire, that’s one thing,” Ocasio-Cortez.

Last week Ocasio Cortez and presidential hopeful Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) vowed to outlaw Amazon’s new “credit builder” card that the company and its banking partner said is designed to help people with no credit or bad credit.

The Daily Mail reported: 

Amazon launched its new secured credit card earlier this week. Users pay a deposit – in Amazon’s case between $100 and $1,000 – to ‘secure’ a line of credit which acts as collateral and sets their spending limit.

In Amazon’s case, the cards would only be available to those on their $119-per-year Prime package.

The deposit would only be repaid when customers upgrade to a regular Amazon Store Card after seven months of on-time payments. Both the secured card and store card can only be used for Amazon purchases.

The interest rate on the Amazon card, which is meant to be paid off each month to avoid paying any interest, is 28.24 percent.

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