Senate Democrats

DEMOCRATS ANNOUNCE CONTRACTING REFORM BILL

Washington, DC — Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid, Senator Byron Dorgan, and Senator Patrick Leahy today unveiled the Honest Leadership and Accountability in Contracting Act of 2006, the Democratic proposal to clean up the persistent problem of waste, fraud, and abuse in government contracting, that rewards cronies and refuses oversight.

The new bill will, among other provisions, punish war profiteers with harsh new penalties, crack down on corporate cheaters, force real competition for government contracts, and ban cronyism in contracting.

“Americans are disgusted by the culture of corruption that they see everyday in Washington, from sweetheart deals to Halliburton in Iraq, to the head of procurement in the Bush Administration led away in handcuffs,” said Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid. “Democrats have led the fight to reform government, and we will not stop just with lobbying reform. America can do better than a government sold out to corporate cronies and special interest friends.”

“Taxpayers deserve to know that their tax dollars will be spent wisely, not left wide open by fast-buck artists with friends in high places,” said Senator Dorgan. “The standards this legislation would create will restore integrity to a federal contracting process that has too often been operated in a manner that neither ensures confidence nor that taxpayers get a fair return for what they have paid.”

“Waste, fraud and abuse in the name of defense is doubly destructive and doubly offensive, and it should never be tolerated,” said Senator Leahy. “It saps resources needed by our troops and it plays the taxpayers for fools, all the while hiding under the cover of national defense.”

Democrats have led the fight to reform Congress, an effort that has so far resulted in new lobbying reform legislation making its way through the Senate right now. But since the culture of corruption in Washington is not limited to the lobbying process, Democrats are introducing legislation to reform all aspects of our government.

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