Sunday, June 18, 2006

Bush’s Contracting Bonanza Benefits Ex-Administration Officials

(AP) Over 90 ex government officials in Homeland Security are now working for contractors in that very industry. The ex-Bush officials now sell security products and services to the department they once helped manage. In return for their contacts, insider knowledge and influence the turncoats get high salaries and generous perks.

A former inspector general in the Homeland Security Department called the relationship “almost incestuous”. The Bush administration response “loopholes in federal law make it easy for former bureaucrats to quickly capitalize on their government work”.

Ask Tom Scully, the ex-Medicare chief who negotiated with future employers while working on the new prescription drug benefit. He jumped through that same loophole in 2004, landing with Senators Dole and Daschle at Alston & Bird, a D.C. lobbying house. Might retiring Representatives Tom Delay and Bill Thomas also end up with those high salaries and generous perks? Count on it.

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