DoD Buzz

Donley Nomination Stalls; Boeing Friends At Work?

The tanker wars may have gotten much hotter, as I reported was possible in June, with the stalled nomination of Michael Donley to be Secretary of the Air Force.

Yesterday evening, the Senate Armed Services Committee reported out (that means approved) the nominations of Gen. Norton A. Schwartz for Air Force Chief of Staff, and Air Force Gen. Duncan J. McNabb, for head of Transportation Command. But not Donley's nomination.

My colleague Megan Scully at Congress Daily reported this morning that Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., wrote a letter to Defense Secretary Robert Gates warning that she will place a hold on Donley's nomination because Air Force and Defense Department officials "have not recognized the gravity of the flaws in the tanker acquisition process."

I saw an Air Force email on the issue and it only noted that the Donley vote had not taken place. It also noted that Schwartz and McNabb were approved by a vote of 14-1. I hear from a well-placed source that Donley's nomination may not have been placed on hold. Last night's action was, according to this source, "just process." We'll see.

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