OMB Says No Tanker Delay or Bomber Cancelation

The White House is not seeking to delay the Air Force’s KC-X tanker program by up to five years, Office of Management and Budget spokesman Ken Baer said Wednesday. Nor, Baer said, has the White House directed the Defense Department to cancel the Air Force’s next-generation bomber program, the Press-Register of Mobile, Ala., reported today. New reports claiming either are “simply wrong,” said Baer, according to the newspaper. As we noted in our earlier coverage, CQ Today did not claim that these were final decisions. That would seem to be in line with what Pentagon Press Secretary Geoff Morrell said yesterday in response to questions on this topic. Morrell said, “There have been suggestions, options, advice given” by OMB, but that this “should not be confused with a directive.” (press briefing excerpt) He said DOD is “still very much in the midst” of the budget process. “I can assure you that no decisions have been made, about any one of the programs that are under review, and that if you hear contrary, you’re hearing false information,” he said. (For more, read yesterday’s AFP report.)