Stain Prevention

Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) on Tuesday articulated on the Senate floor his concerns over the draft language in the Air Force’s KC-X tanker solicitation and urged the Pentagon leadership to correct a “deeply flawed” acquisition strategy while there is still time. Among his concerns, he said the proposed evaluation methodology does not consider best value, but rather lowest cost, and that this results in a significant bias toward a smaller aircraft—ostensibly favoring Boeing over Northrop Grumman. (Northrop would build tankers in his state.) Sessions implies that a failure to correct these issues will likely result in Northrop exiting the contest, as it has threatened, and Boeing winning a sole-source contract that is not in the warfighter’s or taxpayer’s best interest. “This will be a stain on the integrity of DOD’s procurement process that will not be removed for decades,” he warns. (Complete floor speech)