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June 23, 2003
I Want To Know More...

From the Boston Globe: "Washington Technology, a trade publication that tracks government information technology contracts, estimates MCI last year racked up $772 million in deals in which it acted as the prime contractor; that figure excludes the value of subcontracts. The company ranked eighth among all federal IT contractors. Despite its huge problems last year, including a Securities and Exchange Commission civil fraud probe and bankruptcy, 2002 was the first year MCI made the top 10."

Senator Susan M. Collins (Maine - R) tells the Globe: "I'm not aware of any godfather that MCI has in the federal government...I suspect it has more to do with the government's tendency to continue to do business with [existing] contractors. I almost think this is a case of habit rather than any back-room deal.''

That's good news if true - some skeptics think otherwise - but at the same, where's the godfather in the federal government saying, "Gee, this company committed $9 billion worth of fraud. Maybe in addition to a fine, we should think about not awarding them hundreds of millions of dollars in government work. Or at least not without an open bid..."

Bonus ironic juxtaposition: earlier this month, a WorldCom executive told reporters at a news conference that his company wasn't so bad. Running alongside ComputerWorld's story on the executive's comments? A WorldCom ad with a tagline that reads "I want to know more."

Posted by Greg Beato at 07:56 AM