Still same as the old boss. A fan of the site sends me this Boston Globe article, which discusses how prominent Democratic politicians pushed to get the second F-35 engine into the final DOD Appropriations bill prior to President Obama's signature. You might remember that F-35 second engine as one of those costly gold-plated things that DOD really didn't ask for and that President Obama said he wouldn't stand for. First it was gone.
The Obama administration has signaled for months that funding for a second F-35 engine in the fiscal 2010 defense bill could become veto bait. Gates spent months, most recently at the beginning of September, making the case that the Pentagon does not need the alternative engine, built by a General Electric-Rolls-Royce team.
Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii) said
Wednesday that he decided against funding the engine because he was concerned about the floor vote on the entire defense spending bill.
Senator John F. Kerry, a Massachusetts Democrat, said that GE officials had told his office that 1,000 jobs in Massachusetts will be saved or maintained once full production begins on the backup engine.
"There will also be some jobs gained, but maintaining jobs right now is very important,’’ he said yesterday, defending his efforts to persuade fellow lawmakers, including the highly influential Senator Daniel Inouye of Hawaii and Representative John Murtha of Pennsylvania, to overturn Obama’s proposal in a final vote on Saturday.
Inouye chairs the Senate Appropriations Committee, while Murtha oversees a House panel with jurisdiction over defense spending.
Kerry also used his influence with the White House to get it to back off a threatened presidential veto. He told the Globe that he ultimately got assurances from Rahm Emanuel, Obama’s chief of staff, that the president would not veto the fiscal year 2010 defense appropriations bill if the money for the engine was included. Obama signed the bill which totals $626 billion, on Monday.
What utter bullshit. This is just unjustified crap, and it doesn't smell any better coming from a Democratic politician than a Republican. In talking about defense acquisition with a colleague, he said that he might believe in Santa Claus, but he didn't believe in acquisition reform. With clowns like this in the Senate and White House, it's no wonder that the Defense Department can't get clear of its huge funding bills and massively overpriced, behind schedule programs.
The VH-71 presidential helicopter program also got $85 million to "wind down" its efforts. Must be a big office. The USMC's Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle is getting $293.5 million, despite its many troubles. I'm severely disappointed.
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