Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) and Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO) today sent letters to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Attorney General Merrick Garland, and the Acting Inspector General of the Department of Defense Sean O’Donnell regarding whether Amazon violated antitrust or ethics laws by attempting to influence the procurement process for the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (“JEDI”) contract for cloud computing services for the Department of Defense. A potential 10-year, $10 billion contract to support warfighter operations across the department, it is the largest government cloud contract to a single contractor in history.
In their letter to Amazon, the congressmen wrote in part:
“We are writing regarding potentially corrupt and anticompetitive conduct by Amazon Web Services, Inc. (‘AWS’) that may have violated federal conflict of interest and antitrust laws. Specifically, we are concerned that Amazon may have attempted to monopolize one or more markets relating to government and/or commercial cloud computing services by improperly influencing the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure procurement process.”
In addition to questioning Amazon on their involvement in the process, the congressmen asked the Department of Justice to open an investigation into the procurement process, and the Department of Defense to provide the full investigative file compiled by the Office of Inspector General that found conflicts of interest within the procurement:
“We have recently reviewed the Department of Defense (‘DoD’) Office of the Inspector General (‘DoD IG’) report on the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure Cloud Procurement (‘Report’). The DoD IG was tasked with investigating the extent to which illegal and undisclosed conflicts of interest on the part of senior DoD officials impacted the JEDI procurement.
“Based on our reading of the Report, it seems that the DoD IG investigation confirmed the existence of these conflicts, and more. Further, facts contained in numerous press stories regarding the procurement are largely or entirely confirmed by the Report. Conflicted officials clearly and repeatedly advocated on behalf of their former client to secure for it one of DoD’s largest and most important information technology contracts.”