McCain on F-35 negotiation breakdown: “Another symptom of our flawed defense acquisition system”

The F-35 program office recently failed to reach an agreement with Lockheed Martin on the next batch of low-rate-production fighters, known as LRIP 9. DOD issued a “unilateral contract.” Senator John McCain has not been a fan of the program.

Here, Breaking Defense highlights McCain’s complaint about concurrency, “the decision to produce hundreds of aircraft, on a cost-plus basis, before the technology is developed and completed, and to do all of this, lot after lot, without an actual contract in place between the government and industry.”

McCain calls this “the height of acquisition malpractice.” The site notes, however, that the F-35 appears “well on its way to Full Operating Capability,” and that the concurrency lesson has been acknowledged by “pretty much every respectable leader in the Pentagon.”

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