Amazon hires lobbyist with Trump ties amid contentious Pentagon cloud contest

Amazon Web Services CEO Andy Jassy delivers the keynote at a 2018 conference. (Amazon Web Services Photo)

Amazon Web Services is enlisting Jeff Miller, a former fundraiser for President Donald Trump, according to a lobbying disclosure form published last week.

Miller’s lobbying organization, Miller Strategies, will advocate on Amazon’s behalf on “issues related to cybersecurity and technology,” according to the form.

Miller is one of hundreds of executives who have helped raise money for Trump’s re-election campaign, according to CNBC, which first spotted the lobbying form. Amazon could not immediately be reached to comment on the new hire, which comes as the company competes for a $10 billion contract to build the Pentagon’s war cloud.

Amazon has long been seen as a frontrunner for the project, known as Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure or JEDI, though Microsoft is also in the running.

Amazon’s chances appeared to improve last week when a federal judge shot down Oracle’s bid to be re-considered for the lucrative deal. In the spring, Oracle sued the Department of Defense, claiming the procurement process was tailor-made for Amazon.

Though that claim didn’t resonate with the judge, it did seem to find a sympathetic ear from the president. On Thursday, Trump told reporters that he is looking into JEDI after “tremendous complaints about the contract” from “companies like Microsoft, Oracle and IBM.”

DoD was expected to award the contract as early as this month. It isn’t clear whether Trump’s inquiry will impact the timeline.

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