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March 07, 2008

Does Nancy and Co. REALLY Want to Take This Tack?

Pelosi points finger at McCain on Boeing

..."My understanding is that it was on course for Boeing before. I mean, the thought was that it would be a domestic supplier for it," Ms Pelosi told reporters.

"Senator McCain intervened, and now we have a situation where the contract may be - this work may be outsourced."

The air force originally chose Boeing to supply it with 100 tankers. But Congress cancelled the deal after it emerged that Darleen Druyun, a former top air force acquisitions official, had held illegal job discussions with Boeing while still negotiating the deal. Ms Druyun admitted boosting the value of the deal to help Boeing.

Mr McCain has pointed to his aggressive investigation into the Boeing deal as evidence that he is willing to stand up to powerful corporate interests.

The tanker scandal claimed the career of former Boeing chief executive Phil Condit. Ms Druyun and Mike Sears, Boeing's former chief financial officer, were sent to jail.

Boeing's arrogance (coupled with complacency and insider coziness) cost them that contract, not John McCain. Corruption in government was supposed to be a rallying cry for old girl, Filthy Harry and Howard, right? They're 'different', 'cleaning out the swamp' kind of politicians, n'est pas? Honestly, they told me so.

But if Pelosi and ~ by extension ~ the Democrats are foolishly willing to feed Maverick red meat to feast on? By all means, wheel in the bloody parts carts and buckle up for safety!

UPDATE: The Democrats in Congress might want to scale back the outrage, period. Or at least refine their argument.

...The uproar over the Air Force tanker award has taken on a protectionist tone on Capitol Hill, with many members of Congress accusing the Pentagon of choosing a French plane over an American one. EADS’ Airbus subsidiary is based in France.

Leading the charge are lawmakers from Washington, Kansas and other states that stood to gain jobs from a Boeing win.

Boeing said the tanker contract would have supported 44,000 new and existing jobs at Boeing and more than 300 suppliers in more than 40 states.

It would have performed much of the tanker work in Everett and in Wichita, Kan., and used Pratt & Whitney engines built in Connecticut.

By awarding this contract to Airbus, the U.S. government is leading those jobs to the guillotine,” Washington Democrat Patty Murray said on the Senate floor Thursday.

Boeing estimates that about 85 percent of its tanker would have been made in the U.S.

Still, had Boeing won the competition, its tanker would have

used a fuselage made in Japan and a tail made in Italy,
noted Scott Hamilton, an aviation industry consultant based outside Seattle.

...The real reason for the intense anger over the Air Force decision, Hamilton believes, is that it cuts to the heart of a long-running rivalry between Boeing and Airbus.

And anti-French sentiment is compounding the furor to least some degree, with some analysts speculating that the backlash might not have been nearly so fierce had the deal gone to, say, a British company.

After all, Hamilton noted, the U.K’s BAE Systems is a major supplier to the Pentagon and “no one complains about that.

And nobody has a cow when Boeing sells planes to FOREIGN governments. THAT'S called "competition'.

Posted by tree hugging sister at March 7, 2008 10:23 AM


I thought the same thing when I read that article this morning. Pelosi's commentary is disgusting.

Posted by: Nobrainer at March 7, 2008 11:38 AM

Meh, San Fran Nan is backing up the Washington congressional delegation, most of whom are Democratic, and most of whom depend directly on Boeing staying solvent, as Boeing is a major employer in Western Washington. Murray and Cantwell are leading the charge; I've received multiple e-mails from Murray already.

But the fact that she's putting her head on the chopping block by being hypocritical? Pure red meat.

Posted by: The_Real_JeffS at March 7, 2008 11:58 AM

Do you have a link to the Pelosi article?

Posted by: Boy Named Sous at March 7, 2008 01:05 PM

One that doesn't require subscription? I'd love to blog on this too, Pelosi really put her foot in her mouth this time.

Well, among other times, but you know what I meant.

Posted by: Boy Named Sous at March 7, 2008 01:11 PM

Try this. If it doesn't work, these guys excerpted almost the whole thing.

Lemme know what works, will ya?

Posted by: tree hugging sister at March 7, 2008 01:16 PM

Poifect, thank you.

Posted by: Boy Named Sous at March 7, 2008 01:29 PM

Posted by: Boy Named Sous at March 7, 2008 02:29 PM

Regarding the update, that's been the case for years. I've known a few Boeing workers over the years, and that company has been outsourcing a lot of work overseas for a long time.

While this example is not "international" in scope, Boeing moved their corporate headquarters to Chicago back into 2001. This indicates that they aren't too concerned about keeping jobs in any one location, especially since Boeing is considered a fixture in the Pacific Northwest.

It's the primary reason why I'm not outraged over the selection of the Airbus design; truth be told, most of the aerospace industry is international in scope, and has been for a long time.

Posted by: The_Real_JeffS at March 7, 2008 03:38 PM