By Robert Mann

Few, if any, at the state Capitol should have been shocked that no Louisiana city was among the 20 finalists for the massive, new second headquarters, also known as HQ2. The $6.56 billion in tax incentives state Economic Development officials offered could not persuade the company to bring its 50,000 employees here.

Imagine a mountain of money that tall being insufficient to overcome a state’s colossal economic and social problems. I would love to read the assessment on Louisiana that Amazon’s site selection consultant prepared for the company’s brass. I suspect it might look something like this:


To: Jeff Bezos, Amazon CEO

From: The Site Selection Team

Reg: Louisiana’s Bid for HQ2

Louisiana has offered an impressive incentive package, hoping to lure us to the Bayou State. While it enjoys many natural resources (including the Gulf of Mexico and the Mississippi River) and a vibrant and diverse culture, Louisiana is among the least desirable locations in the nation.

In Politico’s recent annual assessment of the states, Louisiana finished last for the second year in a row, based on its cumulative poor rankings in the following categories: per capita income, unemployment, poverty, home ownership, high school graduates, life expectancy at birth and infant mortality. For all the reasons discussed below, we cannot recommend locating this facility in Louisiana.

Economy: There is almost nothing about Louisiana’s economy that is attractive to a company like Amazon. Louisiana has one of the nation’s worst business environments, and its economic growth is among the most anemic. It has some of the lowest economic opportunity and ranks poorly in gender equality. Its worker environment is last among the states. Only one state has a higher poverty rate.

In WalletHub’s recent ranking of the most innovative states, only two — Mississippi and West Virginia — were considered worse. It’s among the least hospitable places for working moms and working dads and is also one of the worst states for millennials. It is the least financially literate state.

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5 thoughts on “Was anyone really surprised when Amazon snubbed Louisiana for its new HQ2?

  1. Three of my four educated children did not see anything worth keeping them out in Louisiana and live elsewhere. I’m not at all surprised that Louisiana didn’t make the list.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. As usual, you nailed it. However, I think the hammer missed on an important point—Louisiana has been called a judicial “Hell Hole” and has ranked at or near the bottom of every assessment regarding lawsuit abuse and our judiciary. You may consider our poor ranking a positive, but for purposes of the article about Amazon, I guarantee they did not.


  3. Of all the things to occur during this “audition” consider that nola had a flooding event during a rain storm, and it’s revealed that half or more of the pumps in the city aren’t working. Just a great visual for the HQ2 folks to get a gander at. Meanwhile, the mayor saw no need to leave Aspen when it happened.


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