The Pentagon Beat – November 14, 2018

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Marjorie Censer, editor of Inside Defense and Tony Bertuca, chief editor of Inside the Pentagon, discuss the departure of DoD CMO John Gibson and how the results of last week’s election could change the defense acquisition landscape.


After only 9 months on the job, the Defense Department’s chief management officer suddenly resigned this week. While it is unclear exactly why John Gibson vacated the position, Tony Bertuca, chief editor of Inside the Pentagon, says that the officer was well liked within the agency.

“In my reporting, everyone I have talked to said that Jay Gibson was a terrific guy and a terrific executive. The Pentagon has not done a very good job explaining why Gibson left his position after only 9 months… What Mr. Gibson was working on, however, is sometimes considered a third rail,” Bertuca said. “He was trying to find $46 billion in efficiencies over five years. They want to reinvest that money into weapons modernization. The GAO has been very skeptical of all the Pentagon’s efficiency efforts.”

 

In other defense news, Raytheon CEO Tom Kennedy remarked that “deficit hawks” wouldn’t be a problem for the military budget after the results of the midterm elections.

 

“Given some Republican losses in the house, Tom Kennedy was positive on what that could mean. That hurdle to increase defense spending was gone,” said Marjorie Censer, editor of Inside Defense. “We’ll have to see how this Congress works with each other and of course with the executive branch, but that was the initial response from the Raytheon chief executive.”