Below the Radar

Inside Lockheed's $250 Billion Pentagon Connection

For over five years, Lockheed and Boeing battled for the contract. They spent millions building prototypes and millions wooing politicians. Since the 1999-2000 election cycle, Lockheed has spent $12,725,000 on lobbying and campaign contributions, with nearly $2 million going to the Republican Party, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Boeing, in contrast, spent $9.8 million on lobbying and campaign contributions, with some $1.9 million split almost evenly between the two parties.

"The defense industry is one of the major industries that enjoys close ties with the U.S. government," says Pete Eisner, managing director at the Center for Public Integrity. "It's a long-standing practice of revolving door, and it's not the first time the door's spun more than once. With Americans preoccupied with the war on terrorism, there should be heightened scrutiny on these contracts. They might be coming around the back door when we may not be giving it our full attention."

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