Amazon says it lost its $10 billion 'JEDI' contract bid due to a 'personal vendetta' from Trump
In a nutshell: It’s no secret that Amazon and President Donald Trump don’t exactly get along. However, the relationship between the two took a turn for the worse when Amazon lost its bid for the US Department of Defense’s (DoD) $10 billion JEDI contract to Microsoft. In a lawsuit filed against the Department of Defense, the tech giant attributes this loss of potential work to “improper pressure” from Trump and a “personal vendetta” from the President.
This lawsuit isn’t the first indication we’ve seen that Amazon is displeased with its failure to obtain the defense contract. When Microsoft first came out ahead in the JEDI deal, Amazon said that a “detailed assessment” based “purely on the comparative offerings” of both tech firms would have led to a different result.
However, at the time, Amazon stopped short of stating that there was any outright bias from President Trump. Even when the company first announced its plan to challenge the DoD’s decision, any such claims were mostly absent. It wasn’t until today, when this challenge’s court documents were unsealed, that Amazon’s beliefs were made fully public.
The lawsuit can be read right here (with some portions redacted; likely for security or privacy reasons), but we’ll do our best to summarize some of Amazon’s main complaints.
For starters, the company says numerous “fundamental errors” were made during the DoD’s evaluation of Amazon’s Web Service (AWS) cloud skillset. The company alleges that the DoD ignored the “unique strengths” of AWS, overlooked “clear failures” in Microsoft’s bid, and “[deviated] altogether” from its own evaluation criteria to give a “false sense of parity” between the two frontrunners.
Amazon also alleges that President Trump launched “repeated” attacks on the company and its bid for the JEDI contract, both in public and behind-the-scenes. While we’re not saying Amazon’s claims are accurate, Trump has indeed expressed concern with AWS’ bid in the past.
Further, Amazon says Trump once directed his former Secretary of Defense, James Mattis, to “screw Amazon” out of the JEDI contract. This information comes from a book — simply titled “A Warning” — allegedly published by Mattis’ former “chief speechwriter.”
It remains to be seen whether or not Amazon will successfully manage to sway the DoD’s already-established decision, but we’ll keep you updated on this matter moving forward.