So this morning I blogged about Senator Shelby putting a “blanket hold” on 70 of President Obama’s appointees. The backstory to this is that he is doing it to secure a couple of key earmarks for his district.
The key issue is that Shelby wants the Air Force to tweak an RFP for refueling tankers so that Airbus (partnered with Northrup Grumman) would win the bid again over Boeing. The contract had been awarded in 2008, but the GAO found that the Air Force had erred in calculating the award. After the Air Force wrote a new RFP in preparation to rebid the contract, Airbus calculated that it would not win the new bid, and started complaining. Now, Airbus is threatening to withdraw from the competition unless the specs in the RFP are revised.
Airbus is a French firm. He’s demanding an earmark that benefits a European company that is in direct competition with the USA company Boeing.
It gets worse:
The Senator confirmed that he launched the hold, in part, because he is upset with a tanker contract worth $35 billion that remains unresolved between Northrop Grumman/EADs and Boeing. Shelby favors the Northrop Grummann-EADS bid largely because it would result in tankers being assembled in his home state. The two contractors, in turn, have donated to Shelby’s campaign committees, hoping ostensibly to secure favor or at least an audience with the Alabama Republican.
According to a review of campaign finance records, Shelby’s political action committee received $7,500 in donations from EADS’s PAC during the past two election cycles and an additional $21,500 from Northrop’s PAC since 2000.
The investigative journalism group Center for Public Integrity looked at all political action committees associated with Northrop Grumman and concluded that Shelby has received at least $108,233 in contributions since his first Senate election in 1986.
Airbus Chairman T. Allan McArtor, meanwhile, donated $1,500 to Shelby in May 2009. Samuel Adcock, EADS Senior Vice President of Government Relations, donated $1,000 to Shelby in 2003. A fellow lobbyist and top executive at the company, Ralph Crosby, donated the same amount that same year. One other EADS employee, Bacon Douglas, donated $1,500 in 2003.
The Republicans would have you believe it’s “Country First” and they are the true patriots in this country.
The reality is that they are a bunch of corrupt hypocritical liars out to pad their own bank accounts. This right here is Exhibit A.
I’m just sayin’…