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New Poll Funded by Amazon Shows Strong Support, Especially in Queens, for HQ2

An aerial view of Anable basin, where Amazon is planning on building new headquarters. (Kevin P. Coughlin/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo)

Feb. 6, 2019 By Nathaly Pesantez

A new poll commissioned by Amazon shows overwhelming support across New York City, especially among Queens residents, for the e-commerce giant’s headquarters in Long Island City—the second poll to show such results since the company’s controversial HQ2 announcement in November.

The poll, released on Tuesday by HarrisX, the market research firm, revealed that about seven out of 10 New Yorkers, or 69 percent, approve of the tech giant locating a new campus in Long Island City, with 19 percent disapproving. Of the 901 people polled, 12 percent either did not know enough about the item or did not have an opinion on it.

In Queens, where 225 residents were surveyed, the percentage of those in support jumps to 80 percent, with 16 percent opposed to the project. Four percent of pollers came under the “don’t know” category.

The survey, also shows that the majority of respondents think Amazon’s new headquarters will create good jobs, improve the city’s economy, raise tax revenues for vital projects, and help make New York City an east coast tech hub.

But hundreds of respondents also felt that the development of a new campus would have some downsides.

The cost of housing in the city would very likely or somewhat likely increase with Amazon’s new headquarters, according to 63 percent of New Yorkers surveyed. The same percentage of voters also believe it is very likely or somewhat likely that HQ2 would make public transit and transportation issues even worse.

Amazon headquarter boundaries in Long Island City (EDC)

More than half of the New Yorkers polled also believe the project “comes with too much of a tax giveaway.” While 20 percent of respondents were unfazed by the tax giveaway, 23 percent of those surveyed said “don’t know.”

Other findings reveal that 45 percent of those surveyed feel the city’s economy is headed in the wrong direction, while 40 percent feel it is still on the upswing.

The HarrisX poll surveyed registered voters in the city from Jan. 24-31, and administered the survey online and by telephone. Phone polls were conducted using live, professional interviewers in English and Spanish, the firm said, adding that the margin of error is 3.3 percentage points.

“The results of this poll are welcome news for both Amazon and New York City. Today, a plurality of New York City voters say that the city’s economy is headed in the wrong direction, and the HQ2 is seen as providing a boost to that economy, including by a majority of Queens’ residents,” said Dritan Nesho, CEO of HarrisX, in a statement. “Some concerns remain around rising housing prices and transportation, but overall the public sees Amazon HQ2 landing in Long Island City as a win for New York.”

The poll comes about two months after a Quinnipiac University poll also showed strong support around the city for the company’s Long Island City headquarters and the deal that brought it to the fore. It also revealed Queens to be the borough most in support of the HQ2 deal.

The Amazon-funded poll is also another step in the company’s campaign to rally public support for its 4-million-square foot campus at Anable Basin. Efforts include, so far, mailers sent out to New Yorkers highlighting the benefits of Amazon’s presence in the area in the form of 25,000 jobs and beyond; initiatives like hiring NYCHA residents for a new customer service center and funding computer science courses across city high schools; and a new cloud computer certificate program for CUNY and SUNY students.

Amazon has also deliberately called on locals to contact legislative bodies and individual politicians who have opposed the plan, like Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer and State Sen. Mike Gianaris, and tell them to support it instead.

Indeed, the new HarrisX poll targets Gianaris’ senate district, which covers the area where Amazon plans on building its headquarters and most of western Queens, specifically. Of the 170 district 12 residents polled, 77 percent support Amazon’s headquarters in the area and 19 percent disapprove.

New York State Senate District 12, represented by Sen. Mike Gianaris. (NY Senate/Google)

The firm said the district 12 and Queens results show no “not in my backyard sentiment” for the HQ2 project.

While the survey was done toward the end of January, its release yesterday follows reports of Gianaris being selected by the Senate majority leader to the Public Authorities Control Board, a body that will review the Amazon plan and could stop it.

The poll, like the one before it, was panned by critics of the deal.

Speaker Corey Johnson questioned the veracity of the results.

“If you believe these poll numbers – I have 500 million in direct cash to fund your trillion dollar company and I’ll throw you another 2 billion in ‘incentives’,” he tweeted, referring to the incentives outlined for Amazon as part of its deal with the city and state.

Van Bramer took to posting a basic pie chart that purports to show the calls and e-mails he has gotten from constituents on the HQ2 project that he says counter the poll.

“So a poll—paid for by Amazon—reveals that everyone loves HQ2. Shocking!,” he tweeted.

Gianaris, meanwhile, could only “laugh” in response to the Amazon-commissioned survey.

While Amazon’s deal with the city and state is not binding, the company has repeatedly signaled its intent to carry out its campus buildout as the administration has boasted of the “historic” project.

The company is in the early stages of its state-run planning and review process, and is expected to begin construction for its Anable Basin offices in 2020.

email the author: [email protected]

84 Comments

Not a Nimby

JVB does not speak for all of us in LIC. This will be a transformative economic event for not only Western Queens but for all of the city and metro area. It diversifies our economy which has historically been overly reliant on financial services for tax revenue. This is a game changer for our region and will certainly pay for itself through other sales and income tax revenue.

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who needs amazon when we got AOC wind farms

dont worry people of queens, if this thing falls thru you can still get a decent job when those wind farms start popping up around the bronx, you can thank Osasio-Cortez! I hope those kids at Queensbridge think of getting a job in windfarm maintenance.

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Applaud to City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, Deputy Leader of the City Council James G. Van Bramer , State Sen. Michael N. Gianaris

Your Voice is Voice of Long Island City Residents — The ones that are working hard and trying make living here NOT the ones that trying to make instant fortune of Amazon coming here!! We are grateful for everything you do continue SPEAK FOR ALL OF US !!!

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25,000 tech jobs, 5,000 union jobs for security, maintenance and construction plus all the additional service jobs and much needed tax revenue that would of came along with it. You are NOT the voice of our LIC.

25,000 tech jobs, 5,000 union jobs for security, maintenance and construction plus all the additional service jobs and much needed tax revenue that would of came along with it. You are NOT the voice of our LIC. Those JOBS could of fed a lot of families.

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Naked Bezos

Most of those jobs are not going to locals. Amazon will bring in outsiders who will displace the locals. There will be price gouging by greedy landlords and a lot of families will go HOMELESS. Nice try again Mr. Landlord.

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Sad Landlord

It’s not the jobs that you care about Mr. Landlord. You just care about your overpriced apartments.

Except

Without a union to support their interests, they would be dependent on corporate beneficence–not an article of Amazon’s track record.

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LIC Direct

Gianaris and Jimmy Van Bramer are F*&%ing Morons! The Washington Post just reported that facing opposition from local politicians, Amazon reconsiders NY Headquarters site!!! Amazon is looking for alternative sites. Considering the sorry state of our roads, the crappy quality of life, crumbling subways and the fiscal mess coming our way with DiBlasio announcing a $750 million shortfall and Guv Coumo announcing possible $4 train fare, legalizing Marijuana, taxing it, congestion pricing and the growing $2.3 billion dollar deficit you would think JVB, Gianaris would want Amazon to come to LIC. Amazon being kicked in the teeth, being confronted, opposed & criticized every step of the way, called in to hostile city council meetings, why would Amazon want to come to this Sh*t-hole city??? The city and state need Amazon more than ever now that Coumo announced that NY State has lost $2.3 Billion in revenue because of the trump tax plan and flight of families out of New York to non tax states such as Texas and Florida. Amazon ready to chuck the deal altogether. I bet they decide to move their new operations across the river to Newark, NJ still within the confines of the NY/NJ/CT Tri-State area. Our property taxes, sales taxes, health insurance, food prices all going up. We pay for all these social programs to appease freeloaders – have work brigades sweeping the streets in exchange for the free shelter and food – work is good, gives a sense of pride. The law abiding working class folks in LIC and Sunnyside are so screwed. Blame Jimmy Van Bramer, Gianaris and Corey Johnson and a host of others. We are so screwed — going back to the gloomy 1970’s NYC .

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pols' polls doubter

Amazon’s planned campus would be exempted from the city’s usual zoning process-for or against?

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Chas

Everyone on here uses Amazon. Don’t Lie.
As for me . Selling my place and getting out.
Bye,Bye NYC.

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Local Shopper

Nope. Some of us still shop at local stores.
Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.

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Amazon is GREAT for LIC

I hate to break it to all the opposers, but economic development is almost inevitable in LIC. The fact that one of the most prominent companies in the world has chosen LIC as its new HQ2 is a GREAT thing and the company will absolutely help with the modernization of the area and I am sure that issues re transportation etc will be worked out. The politicians taking extreme views to block Amazon are just looking for votes from a small subsection of their constituents and at the end of the day don’t really care about the long term progress of the area. It would be great to have an honest politician for once. People might not like change, but change is coming anyway and Amazon coming to LIC is a good thing for the community as a whole over the long term. I urge everyone who is opposed to stop thinking of their short term selfish interests and start thinking of the greater good.

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Sal C

Speaking the truth. What is another 25,000 people in a borough of 2,340,000 people? It’s a drop in the bucket. This is an excellent opportunity for Queens! What about Google going to Hudson Yards? It really does come down to people not liking change and just not thinking long term.

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LIC Direct

As a homeowner in LIC my property tax has gone up from $800 in 1998 to $8,129 in 2019. The quality of life has not increased, under Jimmy Van Bramer and Gianaris’ watch, the neighborhood has been inundated by hotels while conveniently were converted in to homeless shelters overnight with the dumping of parolees from Upstate Prisons to the Cityview shelter in Blissville, so many that Parole Officers can’t keep up — all under the cover of darkness without informing the community. JVB knew this was coming as far back as April 2017 and DiBlasio denied it a the Town Hall Meeting at Queens Vocational High School. JVB & Gianaris don’t stand up for the hardworking folks in their districts. They rather represent the freeloaders — but the demographics are changing, more Hispanics are becoming politically active and moving up – see what happened to Joe Crowley? Same will happen to JVB and Gianaris voted out when we elect a Dominican American, Mexican American or someone else from the Hispanic Diaspora – their days are numbered. I welcome Amazon to LIC, I’m against the DiBlasio giveaway in incentives and hope everyone realizes that JVB and Gianaris are against good paying jobs coming to Queens.

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Senor Grande

Very good. We need vote for hispanic. Yes Very good. Need free school, free doctors, free place to live. Yes Very good. Vote out Van Boner and Genius. Want more diversity in LIC. Too many rich people. Homeless hotel good. Need to increase property tax to get me more free stuff!!!!

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LIC Direct

At least many of us in LIC who purchased homes will be cashing out and getting out of NYC Senor Grande. NYC and NYS have major money problems. No more free stuff freeloader.

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Tai

Well it is what it is. I worked at Amazon in San Marcos TX. This was the Fulfillment center and it is not easy. You get a 30 min crappy lunch and have to run back to clock in and get back to your station. The place is literally 1 million SQ ft. It was almost impossible. Then you stand for almost 10 hours a day constantly moving. Your breaks are timed and they watch everything. It’s pretty scary honestly. It’s modern day slavery. This is a HQ so to all of you ppl who think you will be getting jobs, don’t wait in line because you will be trumped by ppl who already work in the company and will have those jobs. Also prepare to have a major degree because a high school diploma for the HQ will not do. This place is extreme corporate. All of LIC’s property taxes and more will rise along with gentrification being part of it. Ugh. The world we live in is so sad.

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Nobody said it would be easy

Sounds like you were just plain lazy and didn’t want to work. BTW what do you work at now?

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Tai

No I’m far from lazy! The work is intense. Maybe you should work there and see how you like it bending, turning going up and down a ladder. If you stop for anything at your station, just say a cramp they will get on you. So kiss my ass with the lazy crap. I will never be an Amazon slave. Kudos to those who can stand it because the turnover rate is huge there! No time for negative comments especially for someone who has never worked for the company!

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Nobody said it would be easy

My god the horror of it! bending, climbing ladders and turning. Turning, now that takes the cake altogether. something tells me that you are one of those kids that demanded a trophy even when you lost

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Tai

Ppl can do what they want. I worked there so I seen enough. I’m not complaining, every job will have it’s ups and downs. Yes the work is very hard but it wasn’t for me. I’m from Texas and recently moved back to NYC and see all of the fuss over Amazon. In reality I could give two craps about it, as long as the ppl get what they are told. No one wants false promises. Anyways I’m done. There always has to be some ass with a come back because you are Team Amazon. Lmao. SMH. Who GAF and take your comments and put them in the jerk box.

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Anonymous

After demanding secret negotiations and making a secret deal, Amazon is surveying public opinion? Outreach to the public about what affects us is either done beforehand or it’s unbelievable.

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No to Amazon HQ

Ridiculous. I don’t know a single person in Sunnyside, Astoria or LIC that support this. They’re just lying now. Have an independent firm do the poll.

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Put up your head and look around

You may need to climb out from under that rock youdwell within and talk to your neighbors. At least the ones that own their own home and ask them.

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SuperWittySmitty

I’m a native of Queens and have lived in Sunnyside (and Woodside) for close to 30 years. I’m very much in favor of Amazon coming here and I know many others who share my thoughts. I’ll bet you would ignore the evidence no matter how objective the source is. You are only concerned about yourself and not the community.

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Rory Sunnyside

Born and raised in Sunnyside and I support it. 2 kids in school currently studying computer science and cyber security. 25,000 future Amazon jobs in LIC is a blessing.

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Not a Nimby

I disagree. I know plenty of people in all of the these neighborhoods that fully support Amazon coming to our area.

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Anonymous

anti-union; helps ICE; destroys small business–for or against? was that question on the survey?

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Anonymous

another survey question which shows that surveys can be slanted any way one wishes to frame them:
Amazon demands secret backroom negotiations and a personal helipad–for or against?

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Dreone73

A poll commissioned by Amazon shows support of Amazon, wow you don’t say???? There’s plenty of us residents who think it’s a crap deal for the neighborhood and the city. Give me 300 million in tax breaks and I’ll commit 250 Million to infrastructure….

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Bill

Amazon coming to LIC will be amazing. It will have a positive ripple effect bringing lots of other companies to the area. LIC will becomes a top flight tech hub and destination. Anyone who talks about gentrification in the area is comical- that was so 15 years ago in LIC. And while it will have some impact in the area, it absolutely pales in comparison to the sunnyside railyards project.

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Henry

This is an interesting finding. Living in Jackson Heights I have not spoken to anyone who supports JVB’s position. This is also true of my friends in Sunnyside, including one person who worked long and hard on JVB’s initial political campaign. Now JVB will not respond to any of his emails (supporting Amazon in Queens) but continues to send request for money for his future campaigns. It seems JVB ignores those who support Amazon coming to Queens while highlighting those who do not support Amazon coming to Queens. I personally cannot imagine supporting JVB in future campaigns, especially if runs, as many think he will, for Queens Borough President.

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Rd. St. Dr. Ave.

Well, living in Jackson Heights you won’t have to deal with it so much directly…

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Leslie G.

I haven’t found anyone in Sunnyside-including some who own tgeir own apartments who are for Amazon shifting $3 billion in tax subsidies for HQ2. Everyone here realizes that it is the rest of the city’s and state’s tax payers are going to foit that bill. Also, if past is prologue, similar tax giveaways to companies to keep or bring them to NYC with promise of jobs found those jobs never materialized.

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QNS

The tax incentives are PERFOMANCE-BASED meaning if Amazon’s jobs “never materialize” then they will NOT get the tax breaks. Pleas do some research because you obviously don’t know what’s going on.

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Anonymous

You’ve obviously never owned a business or even know much about business. Keep listening to the flip flopping Bramer and Gianaris

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OpposedtoAmazon

This has nothing to do with Socialism … people who are opposed to Amazon bringing part of its headquarters to Queens recognize that Amazon is a greedy company that has continually put small businesses out of business. It’s already happening in our neighborhoods. We need to continue to support homegrown small businesses, while allowing room for some large companies that show corporate responsibility and treat their employees well. Unfortunately, Amazon does not fall into that category.

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Zul

Yes you are correct! Why can’t others see this? It will be the ruin of lic even more so than at present.

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LICer

If Amazon is so terrible? Why there were 238 cities want it? Are you telling me that the majority people in the county are idiot?

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C

In another poll, 90% of New Yorkers found not to have a clue what they’re talking about while the other 10% receive news from other sources outside of Facebook

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Malcolm Greenberger

What kind of moron is actually going to believe a poll funded by Amazon about Amazon? Probably the same kind of moron that has no understanding of the myriad facts surrounding this company and its nebulous deal. Amazon is not welcome anywhere near NYC for about 1000 reasons that should be obvious by now to all.

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[email protected]

Perhaps instead of giving bogus arguments (“I have X,XXX reasons why”) how about both of you provide some of those reasons to try to sway people one way or the other?

Pre-internet, people used to engage in “debate” and provide real facts as to why they were right and their opponent was wrong.

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Black Forest Iced Cake

Thank you, Mr. Greenberger, for saying what I’ve been saying, all along, too! NO Amazon in Queens!!

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25,000 JOBS

Black Forest Iced Cake – some people actually like to work and provide for their families instead of depending on NYCHA, Homeless Shelters, Gianaris and Bramer.
25,000 JOBSSSSSSS

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Mauricio

Only 20% of those polled say they are ok with the 3 billion dollars of incentives and breaks! Amazon does not deserve this deal!

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did Pollster's received.. $20 $50 or 1 yr Amazon Prime for free ?

Would love to See Union Teamsters supporting this moving project!..When all of those folks will be getting jobs there & they wont be able to be part of Union! As the Amazon dude said last week on the Amazon hearing “They preferring to have direct relation w employees” what that means in simple words ..we can s$%& you at any time we feel like it and you cant do nothing about it. Thats a great set up for Amazon ..but Not For New Yorkers working class!!! I APPLAUD to State Sen. Mike Gianaris, & Jimmy Van Bramer for standing up for simple folks– Be PROUD for what you do & stand your grands on next session in Feb!
BTW…if any person is supporting this ‘moving gift to LIC’ lets be honest here ..you are owner of some kind of property in lic or surrounding areas ,,and you seeing this as
” i just hit jock pot without playing lotto” —i truly hope that Amazon will find diffrent playground ..and leave LIC alone

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Jack LIC

I am a local LIC renter and support Amazon. The 25,000 JOBS will be private corporate jobs. However, they will hire an additional 3,000 32BJ UNION brothers for security and maintenance on top of the 1,500 to 2,000 UNION construction workers for development.
https://www.crainsnewyork.com/real-estate/building-workers-union-all-amazons-arrival
Please stop listening to flip-flopping politicians like Gianaris and Bramer who are upset cause they didn’t get their kickback.

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George

WOW! I didn’t even know about the union jobs. That would bring 25,000 Amazon jobs, 5,000 union jobs plus all the additional service jobs AND PEOPLE ARE COMPLAINING. WTF?

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NoTaxBreaks4Amazon

I take it they called every landlord and broker in the neighborhood to conduct the survey? If Amazon wants to come to NYC, they need to pay to do so, not the other way around. Call your local officials and let them know that.

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LIC mommy

I’ve been here for a decade, and I think it’s a good thing. It was either going to be residential (which we couldn’t handle) or commercial, and if it were going to be commercial, I’m glad it’s Amazon which had the clout to get things done for LIC – like the streetcar and other infrastructure investments

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anybody but Van Bramer & Gianaris

And Van Bramer and Gianaris continue to lie about how their constitutes are against amazon 2 to 1 for coming to LIC. Let them now prove that.

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LIC resident FOR HQ2!

The local politicians are terrified of getting in Alexandria’s firing line. They feel that if they dont jump into the Democrats’ new Socialist wagon, they will become extinct. They are clueless about what most people in LIC want. Elections will eventually come our way.

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Primed Up

BUT if everyone loves Amazon then is it possible the Socialists could be…WRONG? Besides, they need to keep the Amazon fight going, how else will Jeremy Rosenburg get his 15 minutes in foreign newspapers.

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