Gates have too many fingers in to many pies related to national security.
The US Government Accountability Office (GAO) has revealed why it upheld Microsoft's challenge over the award of a $10bn National Security Agency (NSA) cloud contract to arch-rival AWS. The protest filed by Microsoft was regarding a procurement named WILDANDSTORMY (WANDS) won by AWS in August, and on 29 October the GAO …
"Saying you guessed is prohibited"
You got that right, but just about as idiotic is trying to put everything into a numerical metric. Sometimes just by reading the proposals you can just intuitively tell which offeror knows their stuff and can actually deliver on their technical claims versus which one(s) is/are either barely getting by on technical justification or has/have loads of content that appears to be utter b0ll0cks. "Risk" metrics are supposed to cover this but are often understated and/or ignored up the chain.
===> Anon for obvious reasons, as Rule #1 of Source Selection Club is you Do Not Talk about SSClub, and Rule #2 is... (Note: I've only done SSC for a prime defense/defence OEM choosing major componentry, not an actual gov, but the same rules apply because contracts say so.)
Round and round the mulberry bush
The monkey chased the weasel
I'm surprised anything ever actually happens under the American system. No wonder they're losing ground to the Chinese. The Chinese make their decisions concisely and efficiently, instead of letting them be decided by irrelevant "authorities" like the courts. The court room is hardly the place to negotiate requirements for a contract of this scope.
So far, the only ones making bank are the lawyers - and the taxpayers are paying the tab for them. :(