WASHINGTON, May 22 – Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) released a video Tuesday illustrating the extraordinary wealth of Amazon and its CEO, Jeff Bezos, contrasted with the fact that many Amazon workers must rely on public assistance programs due to low wages and face exhausting working conditions.
Later on Tuesday, Amazon News responded to the video on Twitter, saying:
"We’ve created over 130K new full-time jobs in the last year alone. Good jobs w/highly competitive pay & full benefits. Avg hourly wage in the U.S. for a full-time associate in our fulfillment centers, including cash, stock, & incentive bonuses, is over $15/hour. Competitive pay + full benefits -- health, vision/dental, retirement, generous parental leave, & training for in-demand jobs through our Career Choice program. Please compare our median pay & benefits to other retailers. We’d be happy for you to come see an FC for yourself."
In response to Amazon's invitation, Sanders issued the following statement:
"Thank you very much for your response to our video. I remain deeply concerned about Amazon, an enormously profitable corporation, paying workers wages that are so low that they are forced to depend on federal programs like Medicaid, food stamps and public housing for survival. At a time of exploding profits, I would hope that Amazon would pay everyone who works in your fulfillment centers a living wage. Thank you very much for your invitation to visit a fulfillment center. I look forward to doing that. Let’s work out a mutually convenient time."
As noted in Sanders' video, Bezos is the wealthiest person in the world with a net worth of roughly $130 billion. Amazon paid $0 in federal income taxes in 2017, and received another $789 million in breaks from the Trump tax plan.