Purpose of Stop BEZOS Act is not to demonize Amazon, says Dem rep

Rep. Ro KhannaRohit (Ro) KhannaEnvironmentalists see victory with Green New Deal blitz Hillicon Valley: Washington preps for Mueller report | Barr to hold Thursday presser | Lawmakers dive into AI ethics | FCC chair moves to block China Mobile | Dem bill targets 'digital divide' | Microsoft denies request for facial recognition tech Lawmakers, tech set for clash over AI MORE (D-Calif.) said on Tuesday that he is not aiming to demonize corporations with legislation that would charge large companies for federal welfare programs that support low-wage workers. 

“No one wants to demonize entrepreneurs or demonize companies. That’s not the purpose of this," Khanna told Hill.TV's Buck Sexton and Krystal Ball on "Rising." 

"No one is saying that Jeff Bezos is evil or a bad person. I buy Amazon products. We get them all the time to our house, and there’s a lot that’s innovative about his model. But what we’re saying is we need to make sure that everyone is participating in the economic success," he continued. 

“Think about it from a worker’s perspective. They’re working hard. They choose the company that’s the richest company in the world. They choose to work there and they still can’t make ends meet. Something is wrong with that picture," he said. 

Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersCory Booker has a problem in 2020: Kamala Harris Wage growth shaping up as key 2020 factor for Trump Booker to supporter who wanted him to punch Trump: 'Black guys like us, we don't get away with that' MORE (I-Vt.) announced the Senate version of the bill, known as the Stop Bad Employers by Zeroing Out Subsidies (BEZOS) Act last week. 

Khanna, whose Bay Area district includes tech companies, introduced companion legislation in the House, known as the Corporate Responsibility and Taxpayer Protection Act.

Sanders cited a New Food Economy report that said a third of Amazon employees in Arizona and thousands in other states rely on food stamps. 

Amazon disputed the report's findings in a blog post last month, saying the food assistance recipients were employees who only worked for Amazon briefly or chose to work part-time. 

“Senator Sanders continues to spread misleading statements about pay and benefits,” Amazon wrote. "We encourage anyone to compare our pay and benefits to other retailers." 

— Julia Manchester