Obama Shoots Down New Helicopter Fleet

Joins McCain in dissing costly Marine One chopper upgrade
By Gabriel Winant,  Newser User
Posted Feb 24, 2009 8:20 AM CST

(Newser) – John McCain should know by now that Barack Obama is not an easy target. Yesterday, at the White House fiscal summit, Obama gave the floor to McCain, who tried to put some heat on his host by criticizing a plan to procure a new presidential helicopter fleet, ABC reports. Obama said he's already on it, and he finds the current chopper more than adequate. “Of course I've never had a helicopter before," he joked. "So, you know, maybe—maybe I've been deprived and I didn't know it.”

While the president didn't officially kill the fleet of Lockheed Martin VH-71 helicopters—each of which, with cost overruns, will now cost more than Air Force One—he said he'd already ordered a review of the project, calling it "and example of the procurement process gone amok."