Amazon comes out against DOD motion to reconsider JEDI cloud award decision

By Justin Doubleday / March 24, 2020 at 12:41 PM

Amazon Web Services is asking a court to block the Defense Department's motion to reconsider aspects of its decision to award the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure contract to Microsoft, arguing DOD is merely giving Microsoft a "do-over" on its bid.

In a new filing in the Court of Federal Claims today, Amazon's lawyers submitted their opposition to DOD's motion for voluntary remand to reconsider technical aspects of its decision to award the potential 10-year, $10 billion JEDI cloud contract to Microsoft.

"The government should not be permitted to gerrymander the corrective action to preserve the illusion that Microsoft offered the lowest price while simultaneously perpetuating competitive impediments for AWS, the only offeror that submitted a compliant proposal eligible for award," Amazon's lawyers write.

In a statement provided to reporters today, an AWS spokesman said the company is "pleased to see the DOD recognize the need to take corrective action, but we're concerned that the proposed approach is not designed to provide a complete, fair, and effective re-evaluation."

"Instead of addressing the breadth of problems in its proposed corrective action, the DOD's proposal focuses only on providing Microsoft a 'do-over' on its fatally flawed bid while preventing AWS from adjusting its own pricing in response to the DOD's new storage criteria," the spokesman continued.

Last month, the judge in the case ordered DOD to stop work under the contract after finding Amazon would likely be able to show that DOD erred in its evaluation of the competing contractors' cloud storage solutions.

As part of its motion for voluntary remand, DOD is asking the court's permission "to accept limited proposal revisions addressing the offerors' technical approach to that price scenario." DOD is also seeking to reconsider its evaluation of both AWS and Microsoft's online marketplace offerings, with the potential to "conduct clarifications with the offerors relating to the availability of marketplace offerings."

However, DOD did not address AWS' overarching allegations that President Trump's bias against Amazon led defense officials to make multiple errors in its award decision in favor of Microsoft.

Meanwhile, Microsoft said it supports DOD's motion to reconsider the limited aspects of the award decision.

"We believe the Department of Defense made the correct decision when they awarded the contract," Microsoft spokesman Frank Shaw said earlier this month. "However, we support their decision to reconsider a small number of factors as it is likely the fastest way to resolve all issues and quickly provide the needed modern technology to people across our armed forces. Throughout this process, we've focused on listening to the needs of the DOD, delivering the best product, and making sure nothing we did delayed the procurement process. We are not going to change this approach now."