Congress Might Sink Marine Corps's Sea-to-Land Vehicle

Tired of big bills for a questionable Marine Corps vehicle, Congress threatens to kill it.

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A House appropriations subcommittee is on the verge of killing the $12 billion expeditionary fighting vehicle program because of cost overruns and worries that the vehicle isn't safe. House Defense Appropriations Chairman Rep. John Murtha put the Marines on notice today that he is ready to cut it after already spending $4 billion. Murtha said he would let the EFV—which he mocked as a World War I tank look-alike—continue only after Lt. Gen. George Flynn, deputy commandant for combat development and integration, pledged to get the program under control. The EFV, made by General Dynamics, is designed to ship 17 marines 25 miles from a ship to a battlefield beach and then act as a ground vehicle. Besides high costs of $20 million for each of the 600 planned vehicles, lawmakers say it is too heavy to float in bad seas and too lightly armored to deflect improvised explosive devices. "I'm just worried about this particular program," Murtha said at a hearing. Flynn, however, expressed confidence in the EFV.

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