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Last updated 8:42PM ET
March 5, 2021
Gates Gets Involved In Tanker Battle
(APR - Alabama Public Radio ) - Defense Secretary Robert Gates has pledged to oversee a disputed $35 billion tanker contract after congressional investigators on Wednesday issued a report on the numerous mistakes the Air Force made in awarding the deal to Northrop Grumman and its European partner over Boeing.

The Government Accountability Office found that the Air Force offered the Northrop/EADS team extra credit for exceeding a fuel offload requirement when both teams "should have received equal credit." The GAO also agreed with Boeing that the Air Force did not establish in advance any size requirements for the aircraft.

Alabama GOP Sen. Jeff Sessions said "the GAO's concerns are strictly related to the Air Force's selection process, not its final judgment." Northrop-EADS had announced plans to build an aircraft assembly center in Mobile.

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