Procurement: February 25, 2000


The Pentagon is studying various ways to reconfigure the Joint Strike Fighter contract by selecting the winning design this fall instead of next year. The key point is that the JSF is considered the aircraft of the Democratic Party, and the White House wants the contract issued and locked in just in case Al Gore is not elected President. The Republicans, who back the F-22, are said to be ready to offer up cuts in JSF production to get all 339 F-22s built. It is generally agreed that if Al Gore wins, the F-22 buy will be cut to 100. It is seriously doubted that even a Republican president could get Congress to pay for 339 F-22 Raptors. --Stephen V Cole


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