The Young Turks podcast is hosted by former MSNBC host Cenk Uygur and Anna Kasparian. I started listening to Uygur when he did a progressive radio program with TCM host Ben Mankowitz. Uygur later hosted a news program on MSNBC 2010 – 2011.
On the October 27 podcast, Uygur and his panel talk about the awarding of a $300 million contract to Whitefish Energy, a company owned by a buddy of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, to do work in Puerto Rico. Only a few months ago, this company had two permanent employees.
There were charges of cronyism when the no-bid contract was awarded and now, as if it couldn’t be worse, details of the contract between the company and FEMA have been leaked. According to an article in the Hill, the deal between the Trump headed government agency and the small Montana company prohibits the “government from reviewing labor costs or profits related to the company’s relief efforts in Puerto Rico.” According to the contract, the government is not allowed to “audit or review the cost and profit elements” of the work.
The contract also prohibits the government from making “any claim against Contractor related to delayed completion of work.”
When San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin called for the deal to be voided, the company threatened in a tweet to stop work.
“They are threatening not to do their job which frankly is quite irregular for a company hired to the work for the public sector,” Yulin tweeted in response.
Two House committees and a federal watchdog have all opened investigations into the deal.
As one of the panelists on The Young Turks asked: “Why bother going into organized crime when you can go into politics?”
See The Hill, “Whitefish Energy contract bars government from auditing deal.” By John Bowden, 10/27/17
The Young Turks Podcast.