So - the contract for the Air Force's tanker plane is up for rebid? Despite already having been awarded twice, once to Boeing and once to Northrop Grumman/EADS?
Let's leave aside for a minute the issue of whether the Air Force can manage the business affairs of a hot dog stand in the park, and talk about this plane, for which they propose to spend $35 billion dollars. Why do they need this plane? (A question nobody ever seems to ask.)
The purpose of this plane is to allow mid-air refueling of other airplanes; it is a refueling tanker. Why do we need to refuel planes in mid-air? Isn't that dangerous, and can't they land to refuel?
There was a time when we thought we needed to refuel airplanes in mid-air; it was a long time ago. Back in the good old days of Mutually Assured Destruction, we kept bombers, loaded with nuclear missiles, in the air around the clock; this was so we would be able to retaliate against Russia (sorry, the U.S.S.R.; but a lot of us called it "Russia" just the same) in case it were somehow able to land a nuclear missile on an American city. Since these bombers were in the air around the clock, of course, refueling them in mid-air was a good idea; then they'd never have to land.
So - it's 2008. The U.S.S.R. is gone. Russia is still there, but it's more interested in selling natural gas to Europe, and bullying the neighbors, than in shooting nuclear missiles at the U.S. We've even spent a lot of the years between then and now, destroying nuclear weapons in Russia and here, by mutual agreement.
You tell me why we need to spend $35 billion we don't have on a new refueling tanker.