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DeSantis to Amazon: ‘We welcome you to come to Florida'

He said the company was ‘demagogued’ out of building a second headquarters in New York City.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. (Al Diaz/Miami Herald/TNS)
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. (Al Diaz/Miami Herald/TNS)
Published Feb. 20, 2019
Updated Feb. 21, 2019

Gov. Ron DeSantis said today that he welcomed Amazon to put its second headquarters in Florida after the online retailer pulled out of a deal to build the campus in New York City.

“What I can say on behalf of Florida to companies like Amazon: We welcome you to come to Florida,” he said.

DeSantis said that New York’s political climate — not opposition to the nearly $3 billion in tax incentives New York was offering — that caused the company to leave.

Many cities, including Miami, had been courting the corporate giant, which is one of the most valuable companies in the world. After facing fierce opposition from some New York Democrats, including Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the company backed out of the New York deal last week.

DeSantis, a Republican, said that Florida’s political climate was better than New York’s.

“I think if you look at what just happened with Amazon in New York City, there is a hostility to some of these companies — political hostility — that I think mattered more than a lot of the other things that they were talking about,” DeSantis told the Economic Club of Florida in Tallahassee. “I know that there’s a debate about tax incentives, this, that, but I think it was beyond that.

"I think that this hostility to companies like Amazon, a lot of the financial institutions are consistently demagogued, and I just think they’re paying a price for doing that.”

He added that Florida, in addition to not having a state income tax, is also more welcoming to big companies.

“I think Florida’s a place where you can do well without having to face some of the political blowback that you see in other parts of the country,” he said. “And so our posture here is one of welcoming, not one of demagoguery and hostility.”

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