Posted on | April 19, 2010 | No Comments
Politically connected staffers in Hillary Rodham Clinton’s State Department twisted arms to steer a $5.4 million contract for crystal stemware to a tiny interior-design firm without putting it out for bid . . .
Two senior State Department contracting officials, Randolph Bennett and Tandra Jones, successfully pushed for the contract to go to a firm run by Denise Mathis-Gardner as a no-bid minority “8(a)” contract, the source said — an action that one shut-out competitor complained cost taxpayers an extra $1 million.
The contracted firm, Systems Design Inc., based in Washington’s Georgetown neighborhood, had no experience making glassware, and its owner had only recently emerged from bankruptcy proceedings, the source said. . . .
“These two [Bennett and Jones] went down to the small-business office and insisted that we have an 8(a) company — have this company SDI do our contract,” the source said.
“They [SDI] don’t know how to make glass. The glassware is being made in Sweden.” . . .
Records show Bennett gave $1,000 to Barack Obama’s presidential campaign, $2,000 to the Obama Victory Fund and $2,300 to the Democratic National Committee for the inauguration.
The Obama administration: Transparent as Swedish crystal!