Struggling Queens business owners furious with AOC as cancelled Amazon HQ site sits empty

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Business owners in the New York City borough of Queens are furious with Democrats, particularly Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who chased Amazon out of the now-economically struggling city.

“Almost two years after Amazon pulled out from a proposal to build a massive headquarters along the Queens waterfront, the site is a vacant eyesore — and, to many locals, the squandered economic opportunity is even more painful amid the coronavirus pandemic,” the New York Post noted

“The world’s largest e-tailer abruptly canceled its projected 25,000 job-producing campus in February 2019 after being taken aback by ferocious opposition from local pols — including Democratic socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and state Sen. Mike Gianaris.” The Post referred to the vacant site as “the scar that won’t heal.”

Speaking to the Post, the following individuals commented on the situation:

  • Eric Benaim, CEO of Modern Spaces realty: “It’s really crazy what’s going on. The city has no solutions. We have a do-nothing mayor. I’m watching AOC selling ‘Tax the rich’ T-shirts for $58 while businesses are leaving New York. That’s AOC’s solution. Who is going to pay $58 for a T-shirt when you’re out of a job?”
  • Donna Drimer, owner of the Matted LIC art gallery and gift store: “The site just sits there empty. It’s terrible. We’re in the middle of a pandemic. People say, ‘If we only had Amazon.’ We got nothing. AOC, Gianaris, [local Councilman Jimmy] Van Bramer — wake up! People are leaving. Businesses are closing.”
  • Gianna Cerbone, owner of Manducatis Rustica restaurant: “I’m angry at the stupidity. Everybody fears AOC, who has no idea what she’s doing. Opposing Amazon benefited other communities. Imagine if AOC did something positive with her big mouth. I believed in Gianaris. Mike believed in the community until he went so far up AOC’s ass she couldn’t s–t him out.”
  • Bishop Mitchell Taylor, pastor of the Center of Hope International Church: “It’s like we’re living in the 1970s. Things are worse for poor people now. The Amazon project provided a ray of hope to a lot of people. We didn’t want a handout. The largest public housing project in the country wanted the opportunity to do business with the largest retailer in the country.”

“Governor Cuomo, who with Mayor de Blasio helped negotiate the deal largely in private, blamed the State Senate, where crucial leaders opposed the plan,” the New York Times reported. “Ocasio-Cortez, who opposed the campus, blamed Amazon for seeking $3 billion in tax breaks and incentives that she said should have been spent elsewhere.” 

Democrat New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo penned a full-page letter to Amazon founder, Jeff Bezos, to try and bring Amazon back. 

The Times highlighted a survey carried out by Siena College Research Institute that showed that New Yorkers pinned most of the blame on Ocasio-Cortez for ruining the deal. 

Gloating about sabotaging the Amazon deal, Ocasio-Cortez stated it was “incredible,” claiming that the city was “subsidizing” the tens of thousands of jobs that Amazon would have brought to the area. 

However, Mayor Bill de Blasio noted, “that $3 billion that would go back in tax incentives was only after we were getting the jobs and getting the revenue.”

Earlier this year, Ocasio-Cortez seemingly cheered job losses in the oil industry as the coronavirus pandemic began to devastate the U.S economy.

In a since-deleted tweet, Ocasio-Cortez wrote: “You absolutely love to see it. This along with record low interest rates means it’s the right time for a worker-led, mass investment in green infrastructure to save our planet. *cough*”

Ocasio-Cortez wrote her statement in a response to a tweet that stated: “Oil prices now at ‘negative values,’ meaning oil producers have to pay people to take it off their hands and store it because when demand plunges (like now), that is less expensive for them than building more storage and/or shutting wells down.”

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