The Justice Department's Bureau of Prisons (BOP) recently committed $830,160 to purchase Protective Stab Vests for use by employees in federal prison facilities. The contract was awarded on a sole-source, no-bid basis because the need was determined to be of an "urgent and compelling nature." Documents accompanying the posting say that "thousands of vests ... are now considered to be End- of-Life" and need replacing, and vests are needed for new employees as well.
The new contract was awarded on Friday, October 31, the same day the old Blanket Purchase Agreement (BPA) expired. The new agreement covers only five months and is intended to give the Bureau of Prisons time to negotiate a new BPA with a broader bidding process. This bridge contract was awarded to Armor Express, the current provider of the Taurus Spike Level III stab resistant vests used in federal prisons. The documents say that the Taurus vest is the only vest that has been tested by the BOP that meets Bureau specifications, and Armor Express is the only vendor that can make a timely delivery.
Potential lawsuits are also cited as a reason for the urgency of the award. According to "Other Factors" section of the justification, the "agency and bargaining unit (Union) have agreed that all staff assigned to High Security facilities and other select positions throughout the agency will be required to wear stab resistant vests while on duty ." In another section, the documents assert that with the new vests, "legal recourse against the Bureau would be taken and would subject the Bureau to exorbitant administrative and litigation costs." Originally, the BOP had opposed the union demand for the vests, but dropped the objection in May 2011.
espite the urgent nature of the need and the sole-source, no-bid award, the contracting officer "determined the price to be fair and reasonable." The Bureau of Prisons did not respond to an email inquiring why the Bureau allowed the original Blanket Purchase Agreement to expire without preparing in advance for a new BPA given that the vests in question do not wear out overnight.
President Obama does not want to be a Supreme Court justice. He calls it "too monastic" for his own personality. Besides, in an interview with the New Yorker, President Obama acknowledges that he needs to get out of the "bubble" after what will be eight years as president of the United States.
Hillary Clinton is right about Benghazi—or at least she's right about one thing.
According to a story by Maggie Haberman about the Benghazi chapter in Clinton's forthcoming book HardChoices, the former secretary of state contends that some of her critics have badly mischaracterized the now infamous question she asked at a January 23, 2012, congressional hearing: "What difference, at this point, does it make?"
“Detroit civil rights lawyer Shanta Driver made a last-minute decision to argue in a high-profile Supreme Court affirmative action case on Oct. 15 in part, she said, because so few African-Americans appear before the justices.”
We're way past overload on Trayvon Martin-George Zimmerman commentary, but there is a tiny tributary of the story that has been largely overlooked. And it's worth a moment because it points to a larger problem regarding both the state and the public.
In university classrooms, and across campuses nationwide, we hear it repeatedly: Ever--increasing calls for “social justice.” But not everyone is on board:
Social justice, it is well to remind these “forward-looking” professors, means in practice class justice, class justice means class war, and class war, if we are to go by all the experience of the past and present, means hell.
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg talks about her work outs in an interview with the Washington Post. “When I started, I looked like a survivor of Auschwitz,” she tells the paper. “Now I’m up to 20 push-ups.”