Sessions meets with Gates, removes hold on Pentagon nominee
"I have great respect for Sec. Gates and I appreciate his meeting with us today. We had a productive conversation regarding a number of important defense issues, including the Air Force tanker acquisition program. The tanker remains the Air Force's top acquisition priority. There is no question that our men and women in uniform desperately need these aircraft. The process has gone on far too long, and it's imperative that we get these refueling tankers to the war fighter as soon as possible."
"I was pleased to hear the Secretary reaffirm his commitment to a fair and transparent process that will deliver the best airplane to our troops. Anything less than a fair competition would be a body blog to the military procurement process, signaling that politics trump merit."
"Dr. Carter, a capable and qualified nominee, has made a similar commitment and has indicated his desire to move forward with a competition that selects the aircraft with the most capability for the taxpayers' money. It is important that the Pentagon's chief acquisition officer be in place to oversee this tanker competition as well as numerous other critical acquisition programs. Accordingly, after our conversation today, I am pleased to lift my hold on Dr. Carter's nomination. I look forward to working closely with him in the future."
Earlier this month, Sessions and Sen. Richard Shelby, placed holds on the nomination of Ashton Carter, over the tanker contract.