Tags: leon cooperman | amazon | nyc | aoc | ocasio | cortez

Leon Cooperman: AOC Push to Left 'Disgraceful, Wrong'

By    |   Wednesday, 27 February 2019 03:22 PM

Leon Cooperman, a billionaire investor and the founder of Omega Advisors, is worried the U.S. may be steering too far left, especially after Amazon.com Inc. opted against opening a second headquarters in New York City.

"What happened in New York with the movement led by AOC is disgraceful and wrong," Cooperman, who was born in the Bronx, told CNBC's Leslie Picker from the Forbes SHOOK Top Advisor Summit on Tuesday. AOC refers to Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-NY.

Ocasio-Cortez and other critics of the Amazon deal, which would have created 25,000 jobs in Long Island City, said the state went too far in offering the online retail giant tax incentives. After multiple discussions, Amazon (AMZN) recently said the planned project was canceled."We have to make sure the country does not move to the left."

Cooperman said the apparent trend to push the country into socialism must be stopped now.

"What we have is a bunch of candidates running on the Democratic ticket that are left-leaning, and that's, in my opinion, very counterproductive and destructive," said Cooperman, who has signed The Giving Pledge, meaning he agreed to donate most of his wealth to charitable causes.

Meanwhile, a senior Amazon executive disputed claims raised by Ocasio-Cortez that Amazon workers face “dehumanizing conditions” as being untrue and invited her to take a tour of company facilities, Reuters explained.

Ocasio-Cortez, a newly elected progressive Democrat who was an outspoken critic of the plans to locate Amazon’s second headquarters in a New York City neighborhood near her congressional district, asked on Twitter if Amazon’s culture of “strict performance” is “why Amazon workers have to urinate in bottles & work while on food stamps to meet ‘targets?’ Performance shouldn’t come at the cost of dehumanizing conditions.”

She cited a September Newsweek story that raised those claims.

Dave Clark, Amazon’s senior vice president of worldwide operations, responded on Twitter that the claims “simply aren’t true. We are proud of our jobs with excellent pay ($15 min), benefits from day 1, & lots of other benefits like our Career Choice pre-paid educational programs.” He invited her to take a tour of Amazon’s operations.

A spokesman for Ocasio-Cortez did not respond to a request for comment.

Ocasio-Cortez was among progressive New York Democrats who had objected to the $2.8 billion in incentives from the city and New York state to woo Amazon to build a new headquarters in the city’s borough of Queens. Amazon abruptly canceled the plan. 

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Leon Cooperman, a billionaire investor and the founder of Omega Advisors, is worried the U.S. may be steering too far left, especially after Amazon.com Inc. opted against opening a second headquarters in New York City.
leon cooperman, amazon, nyc, aoc, ocasio, cortez
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2019-22-27
Wednesday, 27 February 2019 03:22 PM
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