“More and more corporate power,” says Gov. Cuomo, is “trying to abuse workers.” Yet that doesn’t seem to include the corporation he just helped to a $3 billion taxpayer gift.
Of course, Cuomo wasn’t talking about Amazon, but rather the (far smaller) Charter Communications, which is embroiled in a dispute with unions, and so has earned the gov’s wrath.
But Charter isn’t demanding any public money, just refusing to fork over as much of its own money as IBEW Local 3 demands. Cuomo, on the other hand, is using public power to make the company bend — ordering state regulators to force it out of New York if it doesn’t give in.
Amazon, meanwhile, has long resisted all attempts to unionize its employees — yet Cuomo considers the deal bringing half its new headquarters here to be a huge win.
In his defense, Cuomo seemed to suggest that he was the one bowled over by Amazon’s corporate might, telling Politico: “That’s how Amazon ran the competition. . . It was their rules.” And never mind that other tech giants, like Facebook and Google, have brought thousands of jobs to the city without winning any special handouts.
New Yorkers rightly love the idea of Amazon coming to town, but are hardly enthralled with how it’s being done. A new Quinnipiac Poll finds that city residents welcome the company coming to Queens 57 percent to 26 percent. Yet they’re evenly split on the merits of Amazon’s windfall (especially since they’re the ones paying for it). And by 38-34 percent, they disapprove of how Santa Cuomo handled the deal.
In short, they’re most worried about the abuse of corporate power when their own governor is enabling it.
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