From the Obamacare website to Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” anti-obesity logo, the administration is increasingly doling out no-bid contracts, prompting allegations of favoritism and questions about shoddy work.
Federal agencies awarded $115.2 billion in no-bid contracts in fiscal 2012, an 8.9 percent increase from $105.8 billion in 2009, even as total contract spending decreased by 5 percent during the period.
The jump followed President Barack Obama’s 2009 statement that no-bid contracts were “wasteful” and “inefficient” and that his administration would “dramatically reform the way we do business on contracts across the entire government.”
Some of the contractors have failed miserably, as in the case of CGI Federal, which won a $290 million no-bid contract to develop the HealthCare.gov website. After the website rollout debacle, CGI Federal was given a contract extension to try to fix the problem.
Questions have been raised over how the Canadian company – whose vice president is a college classmate of Michelle Obama – received the no-bid contract after compiling a track record of mishaps.
Other no-bid contracts, such as the one for the first lady’s anti-obesity project, have raised concerns that the administration is rewarding political allies.