The editorial boards of New York City’s largest newspapers viewed the collapse of a deal to bring a new Amazon headquarters to New York as an embarrassment for the city and a symptom of an increasingly unfriendly political environment for big employers.
A look at their editorials:
The Daily News
So-called progressives just killed 25,000 to 40,000 high-quality jobs coming to New York City.
So-called progressives just shredded plans that would have delivered up to $27.5 billion in New York tax revenue over 25 years — real money that could have gone for schools and subways and public housing and health-care for the needy.
So-called progressives just looked at caterers, construction workers, electricians, cleaners and countless other professionals in Long Island City and throughout the five boroughs desperate to benefit from the economic activity that new employees would bring, and said: Suck it up. Amazon failed our ever-changing litmus tests, so we don’t want them here.
Now one of the world’s biggest and most innovative companies, perfectly poised to play a central role shaping the global economy for a generation, will take its employment opportunities elsewhere.
Even the leftist rag the Daily News is slamming the Amazon Killers. pic.twitter.com/QIq1Zyy5qS
— bjsgarda317☘ (@bjsgarda317) February 15, 2019
The New York Post
Amazon’s decision to drop its New York City expansion plan is a loss for the city and for the company — with lessons for both sides, and for the politicians who brokered the now-failed deal.
New York needs to think about how the local economy is to keep growing, with new middle-class jobs. The “bribe big companies to move in, then demand more concessions” model plainly isn’t going to work.
Amazon, meanwhile, ought to realize that holding a national competition, apparently to see who’d offer the most subsidies, can only guarantee suspicion about whatever deal you wind up getting.
The New York Times
“You have to be tough to make it in New York City,” Mayor Bill de Blasio boasted, choosing to jeer at Amazon as it canceled its plans on Thursday to build a new headquarters in Queens, after some local officials angrily criticized its proposal.
What a strange thing for the mayor to take pride in. It’s certainly true that you have to be tough these days. But that’s because the subways don’t work, the streets are gridlocked, the housing is unaffordable, the shelters are overcrowded, and the schools are segregated and often inadequate. Now think how much tougher it’ll become for the typical citizen — not the ones who ride in chauffeured government cars — if New York gets a reputation for the smugness of its politicians and their hostility to business.
There were all sorts of problems with the deal New York cut to bring Amazon to the city, and Amazon is no paragon, but its abrupt withdrawal was a blow to New York, which stood to gain 25,000 jobs and an estimated $27 billion in tax revenue over the next two decades. This embarrassment to the city presents a painful lesson in how bumper-sticker slogans and the hubris of elected — and corporate — officials can create losers on all sides.
The Wall Street Journal
After getting mauled by a mob of unions and politicians, Amazon on Thursday cancelled plans to build a second headquarters in New York City. It’s a testament to New York’s toxic business environment that even $3 billion in subsidies wasn’t enough to keep the company in town …
Mr. Cuomo blamed hostile state Senate Democrats for driving off Amazon and insisted the state’s “fundamentals” will “continue to attract world class business.” If that’s so, why did New York politicians spend $10 billion last year_more than any other state_on business incentives? Republican states also compete with subsidies, but progressives have to offer more to compensate for their oppressive business climates.
The city has the country’s second-highest income tax, and Mr. de Blasio last month proposed that all private employers be required to provide workers two weeks of paid vacation each year. That’s on top of paid family leave. Animus toward business represses the organic investment and job growth that make a dynamic economy.