The House member whose district would have housed Amazon’s New York City headquarters is none too happy about the e-commerce giant’s pullout — unlike neighboring Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., who claimed victory Thursday for helping to kill the project.
The Seattle-based company said it will proceed “as planned” with a new office for 25,000 people in Northern Virginia, part of the D.C. metro area. But it blamed its reversal on a Queens headquarters in New York on elected officials who raised concerns about potential housing price hikes and other problems.
Ocasio-Cortez, a first-term House member representing a Queens- and Bronx-based district, gloated about Amazon’s decision.
“Anything is possible,” she tweeted. “Today was the day a group of dedicated, everyday New Yorkers & their neighbors defeated Amazon’s corporate greed, its worker exploitation, and the power of the richest man in the world.”
Ocasio-Cortez was a longtime critic of Amazon’s New York plans. She began raising concerns in November, before taking office in Washington. She claimed Amazon’s decision to set up shop in Queens would hasten gentrification, increase housing prices, and displace current residents. Several local and state elected officials also weighed in against the deal.
But the New York Amazon headquarters would not actually have been based in Ocasio-Cortez’s congressional district. Rather, it was planned for the 12th District, based primarily on Manhattan’s East Side, but also taking in western Queens, including Long Island City, and represented by Carolyn Maloney.
Maloney, a Democrat first elected to the House in 1992, on Thursday had a decidedly less optimistic appraisal of the local Amazon situation.
“Disappointed that NYC wont be home to 25K+ new jobs from HQ2 & that LIC will lose out on infrastructure improvements that would have accompanied this project. This is not the Valentine that NY needed,” Maloney wrote, kicking off a series of tweets lamenting the Amazon move.