Ayotte Legislation Prevents $12 Million From Flowing To Enemies In Afghanistan
General Dunford Says No Contracting With the Enemy Measure Has Improved Contracting Oversight, Kept Taxpayer Dollars Out of Enemies Hands
WASHINGTON, D.C. - At a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing today, General Joseph Dunford, the nominee to be the next commander of U.S. and coalition forces in Afghanistan, praised legislation U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) helped write that aims to keep U.S. taxpayer dollars from flowing to enemy hands in Afghanistan. Key provisions of the "No Contracting with the Enemy" measure, which Senator Ayotte introduced with Senator Scott Brown (R-MA), were included in the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act, which was signed into law in December 2011.
During today's hearing, Senator Ayotte asked General Dunford to provide an update on whether the legislation has been effective in Afghanistan.
General Dunford responded, "First, thank you for your assistance in passing that as part of the NDAA last year. In fact, General Mattis at the US Central Command...has used that authority a great deal over the past year. In fact, I understand, at least $12 million that might have otherwise gone into the hands of the Taliban, did not go into the hands of the Taliban because he had the authority to cancel those contracts...I also believe that over the past year...that they have changed the organizational construct...to provide better oversight to contracts and ensure that the money...that the coalition provides achieves the effect desired in terms of growing the capacity of the Afghans."
"The bill I helped write gave Pentagon contractors the flexibility they need to stop taxpayer money from falling into enemy hands. It was one of the first pieces of legislation I worked on in the Senate, and I'm pleased that it's making a difference," said Senator Ayotte.
Background: In August 2011, the Commission on Wartime Contracting found that as much as $60 billion of U.S. government contracting funds had been wasted or misspent in Iraq and Afghanistan, and that the second largest source of income for insurgents was U.S. contracting dollars. The "No Contracting With the Enemy" legislation makes it easier for U.S. officials to void contracts with contractors who funnel taxpayer resources to enemies of the United States.