Saturday, March 8, 2008

Congress's Pro-Corruption Caucus

If I saw this in a movie I would call the development cynical and farfetched, but more representatives are inveighing against John McCain for helping to bust Boeing on its corrupt defense contracting practices.  As you'll recall from my post yesterday, as a result of the exposure of that corruption an Air Force tanker deal with Boeing was revoked, and when the deal was put up for bid again a rival consortium won the contract.  Aside from Speaker Pelosi's view, here are some more reactions:

  • "I hope the voters of this state remember what John McCain has done to them and their jobs." --Rep. Norm Dicks (D-Washington).


  • "Having made sure that Iraq gets new schools, roads, bridges and dams that we deny America, now we are making sure that France gets the jobs that Americans used to have.  We are sending the jobs overseas, all because John McCain demanded it."  --Rep. Rahm Emanuel (D-Illinois).


  • "John McCain will be the nominee and I will support him, but if John McCain believes that Airbus or EADS is the company for our Air Force tanker program he's flat-out wrong - and I'll tell him that to his face."  -- Rep. Dave Reichert (R-Washington).


  • "I think we absolutely will hear more about it.  We'll hear it mostly from the Democrats and they have every right to be concerned."  Rep. Todd Tiahrt (R-Kansas).

If you read the AP story these quotes were taken from, it points out that all of those quoted represent districts that would have gained jobs had Boeing's corruption gone undiscovered.  No doubt many more legislators would be expressing similar views if the projected impact were more widespread. 


Tom O'Neill said...

And meanwhile, the EADS award will mean something on the order of 150 new, high-paying jobs for the Clarksburg area, as a major component of the project will be produced at the North Central WV Regional Airport (or was that Harrison/Marion Regional Airport...or Benedum Airport....)

Brian said...

Indeed, now that I think of it I probably should have mentioned that in one of my original posts, in the interests of absolutely full disclosure.

The new jobs will obviously be good for the north-central region. On the downside, this will only help reinforce, albeit to a small degree, West Virginia's reliance on federal largess as a substitute for addressing the policy errors that are the underlying cause of our economic problems. Of course, given a choice between taking the new jobs or not taking the new jobs, the former would be better, but I can never shake the view that these federal contracts are big shots of morphine when what our state needs is invasive surgery; they mask, rather than address, the causes of our pain.

Thus ends my rant on federal contracts.