Turnover was too high in the politically appointed ranks above Air Force procurement official Darleen Druyun, Defense secretary says.
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Merger will add more than 1,800 positions to Office of Personnel Management's 3,000-member workforce.
Issues that Congress may take up include costs and impact on the domestic base-closure process.
Former Rep. Lee Hamilton, D-Ind., urges President Bush to get involved in reviving overhaul bill.
Move could frustrate Boeing's bid to provide KC-767 tankers to the Air Force.
Senate conferees say it is now up to President Bush and House GOP leaders to push for an agreement.
ACLU throws curveball at airline screening program by highlighting strict congressional requirements.
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., accuses Air Force of "either a systemic failure in procurement oversight, willful blindness or rank corruption."
But several committee chairmen vehemently oppose creating the permanent panel.