SpaceX’s spat with Air Force prompts corruption accusation

Brittany A. Roston - May 23, 2014
SpaceX’s spat with Air Force prompts corruption accusation

Last month, SpaceX filed a lawsuit to get work with the Air Force, something that has been henceforth granted to a Boeing and Lockheed Martin joint venture. That led to plans by the Air Force to certify SpaceX to carry its payload, but that doesn’t seem to be the end of the issue.

When the lawsuit was filed in April, Elon Musk called the lack of competition a financial burden to tax payers, and said that his company SpaceX and others like it should be “qualified…to compete” in the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle contract.

As a result of the lawsuit, the Air Force planned to shell out $60 million for certifying SpaceX, something revealed by Lt. Gen. Charles Davis in an interview. The move was to prove that “allegations of cronyism” are not true.

That move doesn’t appear to be the end of the matter, however, and Elon Musk took to Twitter to make a fairly serious accusation: “V[ery] likely AF official Correll was told by ULA/Rocketdyne that a rich VP job was his if he gave them a sole source contract.”

He followed that up shortly with another tweet saying that he believed that to be true because “Correll first tried to work at SpaceX”, but was told no. He called on the Defense Department Inspector General to examine the issue, and that leads us to today.

Aerojet Rocketdyne spokesman Gleen Mahone has told the Associated Press that the accusations are “completely without merit”, and that Correll didn’t begin working with them until after the contract had been awarded.

SOURCE: Business Insider

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