White House Fiscal Responsibility Summit: The Procurement Session


In case you haven’t heard the White House held a fiscal responsibility summit today. One of the sessions was on procurement.

White House pool reporter Jon Ward of the Washington Times braved what he called a “wonky session” to bring us the following nuggets:

  • Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., will introduce a bill to require the Defense Department to reexamine contracts when costs exceed 25 percent of original estimates. Levin said the military must stop trying to add the latest technology and accept what they have to prevent cost hikes and delays.
  • Deputy Secretary of State for Management, Jack Lew, said government contracting needs more competition. He also asked how government can meet its surge requirements while contracting less.
  • Sen. Joe Lieberman, I-Conn., noted that more than half of government contracts are for services and said he believes that shows the government is violating rules prohibiting the outsourcing of inherently governmental functions.
  • Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., called for more oversight of information technology spending, which she believes is out of control. She suggested the government hire more in-house IT specialists, which she noted should be easier given the current economic climate.

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