Amazon declines to commit to Jeff Bezos testimony in Congress

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos October 02, 2019.

Elif Ozturk | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images

Amazon said On Friday, he will “make the appropriate executive available” in response to requests from the House Judiciary Committee for CEO Jeff Bezos to testify regarding the company’s private label strategy.

Earlier this month, the committee forced Bezos to testify after Democratic leaders said they suspected Amazon of lying in Congress. Committee’s best Democrats said they suspect Amazon is lying to Congress about its private label strategy after a recent Wall Street Journal report on the company’s use of third-party vendor data appeared to contradict testimony precedent from an Amazon senior executive on his use as an individual seller Data.

The committee also threatened to summon Bezos if he did not comply.

In one response to the committee Amazon vice president Brian Huseman said on Friday that the company appreciates the opportunity to “fix the issues” raised in the committee’s letter. But Amazon’s response does not allow us to agree to make Bezos available for testimony.

“We strongly disagree with any suggestion that we have attempted to mislead the Committee or not to have cooperated in the investigation,” said Huseman.

Amazon said it had “been working in good faith with the committee” for almost a year to provide information about its sales practices, as well as to answer questions from the committee about the Journal’s report. The company has also launched its own investigation into the Journal’s findings and has said it will share the results of its investigation with the committee.

House Antitrust Committee Chair David Cicilline, DR.I., who was one of the signatories to the letter sent to Amazon, reiterated the committee’s position that he would ask Bezos to appear if he wanted it.

“No one is above the law, no matter how rich or powerful,” Cicilline said in a statement. “We have asked Mr. Bezos to testify before the United States Congress about Amazon’s troubling business practices and false statements, and we expect him to do so. Whether he does it voluntarily or by subpoena is his choice.”

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