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Congressman John Larson

Representing the 1st District of Connecticut

Larson Questions Air Force Explanation for Tanker Choice

March 13, 2008
Press Release




IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 14, 2008             

Contact: Emily Barocas /202-225-7295/202-593-1377


Washington , DC -- Members of the Connecticut delegation met with the Air Force this morning to be debriefed on the source selection process for the KC-x Tanker Program.  While, the information the Air Force was limited in their ability to share specifics because of Boeing's pending protest, many important and basic questions still need to be answered.

 Congressman John B. Larson (CT-01), who called for the meeting, said afterwards,  

"I am still not convinced of the merits of the Northrup Grumman tanker. The Air Force was unable to give us a clear explanation of why the Northrup Grumman -EADs plane was chosen over one that would be built in this country by Boeing and Pratt and Whitney.  It appears on most factors that planes were rated equally.

It also seems as though the Air Force gave no consideration to the dangers of outsourcing our military technology to foreign companies.  The Air Force itself is caught up in the negative impacts of globalization.  They gave no consideration to the importance of maintaining a critical mass of trained and skill workers in this country who can take on any crisis we may face in the future. 

There are many issues that we in Congress will need to take a closer look at.  One is the claims filed against EADs for receiving illegal subsidies from the European Union.  Those subsidies make for an uneven playing field between the competing companies.  

Congress has a Constitutional responsibility to remedy the situation.  That is why upcoming hearings are so important."