The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) attempted to non-competitively transfer its entire Medical-Surgical Prime Vendor program, worth an estimated $10 billion to $27 billion, to the Defense Logistics Agency.
The Bradley team — which was led by Aron Beezley, and which filed the lead bid protest before the U.S. Court of Federal Claims in connection with the matter — uncovered during discovery that the VA had been secretly planning this unlawful, multibillion-dollar transfer behind the backs of its loyal contractors, including our client, and over the legal and ethical objections of VA legal counsel and VA procurement officials.
The court ruled in our client’s favor on each of our counts, (a) declaring the VA’s conduct unlawful, (b) granting our client permanent injunctive relief, (c) finding that the VA breached its implied duty to fairly and honestly consider our client’s proposal, and (d) awarding our client its bid preparation and proposal costs.
As Law360 remarked about the case:
[The Court] likened the [VA’s] proposed transfer plan to the “avoidable downfall” of the “prideful sea captain” from famed poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s 1840 poem The Wreck of the Hesperus, saying the VA had acted against the advice of senior procurement and legal officials within the agency who had raised ethical and legal concerns regarding the plan from early on—including a belief the agency would lose a related court challenge.
“Like the experienced crew of the Hesperus, agency personnel warned of the perils of a plotted course and when ignored, ‘[d]own came the storm and smote amain, the vessel in her strength’ leaving behind only a ‘dreary wreck’ awash upon the shoals,” he said.