Judge orders Pentagon to stop work on JEDI cloud contract

Source: Politico | February 13, 2020 | Jacqueline Feldscher

The legal decision gives a boost to Amazon’s case, at least in terms of public perception.

The Pentagon must stop work on its major cloud computing contract that Microsoft won last year, a court ruled on Thursday in a major win for former bidder Amazon.

Amazon, which asked for the delay, argues it lost the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure, or JEDI, contract to Microsoft because of President Donald Trump’s remarks disparaging the company and its founder, Jeff Bezos.

Amazon is suing the Pentagon in the Court of Federal Claims, and filed the request for an injunction on Jan. 22, saying in a statement that “it is common practice to stay contract performance while a protest is pending and it’s important that the numerous evaluation errors and blatant political interference that impacted the JEDI award decision be reviewed.”

The judge agreed with Amazon. The ruling is sealed, but a summary of the document posted on the Public Access to Court Electronic Records website said the Pentagon is “hereby preliminarily enjoined from proceeding with contract activities … until further order of the court.” Amazon must provide $42 million in security, which will be held by the court until the case is closed, to cover any costs and damages if future court proceedings show the injunction was issued wrongfully, the summary says.

The legal decision gives a boost to Amazon’s case, at least in terms of public perception, according to Andrew Hunter, a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and former acquisition official.

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