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Cliff Owen / AP

A court blocked Palantir, a software company, from bidding last year on an Army data analytics program that is currently overpriced and underperforming. Palantir said it could supply a system (at around $100 million/yr) that would give soldiers information about weather, terrain, and likely locations for ambushes and roadside bombs. Palantir is appealing the ruling.

Given Trump's track record of vying with Boeing and Lockheed Martin for cheaper contracts, he could swoop in and change the game in order to cut costs, according to Fortune.

The claims from Palantir's case imply the government's terms for bids excluded Palantir from the start:

The Army has, "a failed procurement approach that is unlawful, that bene­fits no one but the incumbent defense contracting industry, that irrationally resists innovation from Silicon Valley, that wastes billions in taxpayer dollars, and that even risks the lives and effectiveness of our Soldiers in uniform" and has "an attitude that effectively tells units in the field, 'Don't let your war get in the way of our program.'"

Rebuttal from an Army official who used to head up procurement: "These people came in and said, 'We have our own business model and we're going to fight to the death for it.'"

It's about the establishment, too: Instead of Palantir's the Army chose a system — that often sits unplugged and unused because it's so archaic — from a team of establishment beltway defense contractors. As Congressman Duncan Hunter put it, "The Army...is full of fiefdoms, where they all protect their people and their programs. Palantir had no chance." That dynamic could play to Trump's anti-establishment style.

The Palantir-Trump Admin connection: Peter Thiel, one of Palantir's co-founders, is a Trump ally. Plus, Mike Flynn, H.R. McMaster, and Jim Mattis have been vocal supporters of Palantir's technology.

Go deeper

"Atmospheric river" swings Northern California from drought to flood

Satellite view of the bomb cyclone swirling off the coast of the Pacific Northwest and the atmospheric river affecting California on Oct. 24. Photo: CIRA/RAMMB

A series of powerful "atmospheric river" storms are delivering historic amounts of rainfall across parts of drought-stricken California and the Pacific Northwest — triggering widespread power outages and flooding.

Why it matters: The strong atmospheric river, packing large amounts of moisture, is causing Northern California to whiplash from drought to flood.

Updated 1 hour ago - World

Saudi dissident claims MBS said he could get "poison ring" to kill king

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman attending the Saudi Green Initiative Forum, via video link, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on Saturday. Photo: Royal Court of Saudi Arabia/Handout/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

A former senior Saudi intelligence official who worked with the U.S. on counterterrorism alleged to "60 Minutes" in an interview broadcast Sunday that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman discussed in 2014 killing the kingdom's then-monarch.

Why it matters: The claim by the exiled Saad al-Jabri, whom Saudi authorities describe as "a discredited former government official," that the crown prince, known as "MBS," allegedly said he could obtain a "ring from Russia" to carry out the attack, is one of several serious but unproven allegations he made on the CBS show.

“You blew it”: GOP activist turns on corporations over vaccine mandates

The chairman of the American Conservative Union said on "Axios on HBO" he accepts "Joe Biden is my president, and I want him to succeed," but predicted Republicans retake the House and Senate in 2022 — with greater than 50% odds Donald Trump runs in 2024.

The big picture: In a joint interview with his wife, Mercedes, Matt Schlapp also refused to share their vaccination status. And he told corporate America "you blew it" by embracing vaccine mandates and liberal social stances that have alienated GOP voters and politicians.

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