“We support the Biden administration’s focus on making bold investments in US infrastructure,” Bezos said. “Both Democrats and Republicans have supported infrastructure in the past, and this is the right time to work together to make this happen. We recognize that this investment will require concessions from all sides – both in terms of what is included as well as how it gets paid for. “
In 2019, then-former Vice President Joe Biden called Amazon his story of using tax deductions and deductions to reduce his corporate tax bill. The company fired back, saying, “We pay every penny we owe,” and that it has paid $ 2.6 billion. $ In corporation tax since 2016.
And again last year, then-presidential candidate Biden said Amazon should “start paying their taxes” as part of a broader critique of big, successful companies. Amazon has repeatedly said that it complies with all applicable tax laws.
The company also recently sparred with Senator Elizabeth Warren, who has spoken out in favor of raising taxes on large corporations. Last month, Warren said in a tweet: “Giant companies like Amazon are reporting huge profits to their shareholders – but they are exploiting loopholes and tax havens to pay almost nothing in taxes. That’s just not true.”
Amazon responded to her, saying, “You make the tax rules @ SenWarren; we just follow them. If you do not like the laws you have created, change them in every way. Here are the facts: Amazon has paid billions of dollars in corporation tax alone for the last few years. ”
For fiscal years 2017 and 2018, Amazon’s financial filing showed that it expected to receive money back from the federal government, not that it owed money in income tax. For fiscal year 2019, Amazon said it owed more than $ 1 billion. $ In federal income tax, according to a number of experts, accounted for slightly more than 1% of its profits.
In 2020, Amazon paid 1.7 billion. $ In federal taxes, the company said in its response to Warren. Its net income for the year was $ 21.3 billion.
While it has already drawn some criticism, the Biden administration’s infrastructure plan may be compelling enough to persuade more business leaders to sign up in support of rising business taxes.
Bezos said in his statement: “We look forward to Congress and the administration meeting to find the right, balanced solution that maintains or improves the competitiveness of the United States.”
And he is not alone. Rick Rieder, chief investment officer for global fixed income for BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager, said the return of the Trump-era corporate tax cuts would not hurt the economy – and could actually be positive for growth.
Rieder told CNN Business last month that he believes the U.S. economy “certainly” can withstand higher corporate taxes, and suggested that raising the corporate rate could help ensure economic gains are shared more evenly between companies and workers.
“The U.S. economy is incredibly resilient,” he said, “and will actually do well when you get some of this income distribution and consumption in an easier and better place, especially for lower and middle incomes.”
–CNN’s Brian Fung and Matt Egan contributed to this report