Thursday, June 5, 2008

Rebuttal to Craig Harms

In today's Wichita Eagle a letter to the editor by Craig Harms took issue with a previous post stating that Tiahrt had voted for outsourcing. Without providing any quotes in the bill to the contrary he claimed that what was said on the blog (and referenced in the original letter to which Harms is replying to) is fabricated and Tiahrt voted against outsourcing (although public record shows he voted for the bill.

Here is the section I was referring to:

"Part III: Other Domestic Source Requirements - (Sec. 826)Exempts from Buy American requirements procurements: (1) outside the United States in support of contingency operations; (2) for which other than competitive procedures have been approved which relate to unusual and compelling urgency of need; and (3) of waste and byproducts of cotton and wool fiber for use in the production of propellants and explosives.

(Sec. 828) Provides a Buy American requirement exception with respect to ball and roller bearings prepared for use in foreign products."

The definition of a contingency operation from the free dictionary:

A military operation that is either designated by the Secretary of Defense as a contingency operation or becomes a contingency operation as a matter of law (10 United States code (USC) 101[a][13]). It is a military operation that: a. is designated by the Secretary of Defense as an operation in which members of the Armed Forces are or may become involved in military actions, operations, or hostilities against an enemy of the United States or against an opposing force; or b. is created by definition of law. Under 10 USC 101 (a)(13)(B), a contingency operation exists if a military operation results in the (1) callup to (or retention on) active duty of members of the uniformed Services under certain enumerated statutes (10 USC Sections 688, 12301(a), 12302, 12304, 12305, 12406, or 331-335); and (2) the callup to (or retention on) active duty of members of the uniformed Services under other (non-enumerated) statutes during war or national emergency declared by the President or Congress.

Therefore what Harms is ignoring is the stated exemption that the military can buy materials from outside the United States if those materials may be used in military operations. The only exception is ball bearings. Boeing doesn't just provide ball bearings, but if that's what Harms intended then yes, Tiahrt did vote to protect that huge ball bearing industry in Wichita.

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