Updated Feb 13, 2020 - Technology

Amazon lawsuit causes judge to temporarily block Microsoft Pentagon contract

Jeff Bezos. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

A federal judge has temporarily blocked the $10 billion cloud computing contract the Defense Department awarded to Microsoft as it reviews a lawsuit by Amazon, CNBC reports.

The big picture: Amazon claims the decision to hand Microsoft the contract for the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) project in late October was influenced by President Trump, who has repeatedly and publicly taken shots at Amazon and its owner Jeff Bezos.

  • The cloud computing network was set to become active on Feb. 14, per the Washington Post.
  • As part of the lawsuit, Amazon wants to question Trump about his communications with its competitors and with Pentagon officials to establish his "well-documented personal animus towards Mr. Bezos, Amazon, and the Washington Post," according to a court filing.
  • The court filed the injunction on Thursday, but documents were sealed, per CNBC.

What they're saying:

“While we are disappointed with the additional delay we believe that we will ultimately be able to move forward with the work to make sure those who serve our country can access the new technology they urgently require. We have confidence in the Department of Defense, and we believe the facts will show they ran a detailed, thorough and fair process in determining the needs of the warfighter were best met by Microsoft.”
— Frank X. Shaw, Microsoft corporate vice president for communications

Go deeper

Amazon wants to depose Trump in lawsuit over $10 billion Pentagon contract

President Trump with Defense Secretary Mark Esper. Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images

Amazon wants to depose President Trump, Defense Secretary Mark Esper and former Defense Secretary James Mattis as part of its lawsuit against the Pentagon for granting a $10 billion cloud computing contract to Microsoft, court documents filed on Monday show.

Why it matters: Amazon claims the decision last year to hand Microsoft a $10 billion contract for the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) was influenced by Trump, who has repeatedly and publicly taken shots at Amazon and its owner Jeff Bezos.

Podcast: Amazon wants Trump to testify

Amazon raised the stakes in its effort to get the Pentagon to reverse its decision to give Microsoft a $10 billion cloud computing contract, nicknamed JEDI, arguing that there was clear political bias. Dan digs in with NPR's Alina Selyukh. 

Go deeper: Amazon wants to depose Trump in lawsuit over $10 billion Pentagon contract

Jeff Bezos to spend $10 billion on climate change research, advocacy

Bezos at Amazon Smbhav in New Delhi on Jan. 15. Photo: Sajjad Hussain/AFP via Getty Images

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos announced the launch of his "Earth Fund" on Monday via Instagram to fund climate change research and awareness.

What he's saying: Bezos says he's initially committing $10 billion to fund "scientists, activists, and NGOS" that are working on environmental preservation and protection efforts.