WASHINGTON— Two New England Republican senators, Scott Brown of Massachusetts and Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire, this week introduced legislation to make it easier for U.S. contracting officials to void contracts with companies that funnel American tax dollars to Afghan warlords and strongmen, including the Taliban, in exchange for protection and other services, according to a statement from Brown’s office.
“It is absolutely unacceptable that our hard-earned tax dollars are being used by the enemy to harm our soldiers and undermine our efforts in Afghanistan,” said Brown, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee. “While members of our military are risking their lives, we need to do everything possible to support their mission and protect their safety.”
Ayotte added in a statement: “Unfortunately, because of insufficient oversight, a significant portion of our contracting dollars in Afghanistan have ended up in the hands of powerbrokers and insurgents who undermine our interests and attack our brave troops…the U.S. is at war in Afghanistan, and our contracting laws and regulations need to reflect that reality.”
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Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.