Exploring The Real Effects Of Competitive Sourcing

Sep 26, 2003
B-339 Rayburn House Office Building


Hon. Maurice P. McTigue
Director, Government Accountability Project
Mercatus Center, George Mason University

Geoffrey F. Segal
Director of Privitization and Government Reform Policy

Click Here to listen to audio archive.

While it appears that Congress is working to defeat the Administration’s flawed competitive sourcing initiative, the larger question remains unanswered : “Should agencies buy goods and services from the best providers?”

Throughout this recent debate two fallacies have emerged: First, the best provider is the one who charges the least, and second, that competitive sourcing is a full-scale movement of public jobs to the private sector.  Both are inherently wrong. 

Even in times of budget crisis, identifying low-cost providers does not always further a federal agency’s mission.  In addition, tasks that are “inherently governmental” are those in which the government enjoys an advantage or possesses local expertise and may be the best provider of services. Activities that are essentially governmental, such as national defense, are not up for competition.

The Mercatus Center at George Mason University cordially invites you to a discussion with our own Distinguished Visiting Scholar, the Honorable Maurice P. McTigue, Q.S.O.  McTigue will share his first-hand knowledge about public sector competition as a former New Zealand cabinet minister and Member of Parliament – and through an informal dialogue answer your questions and address your concerns about this political minefield.