GiveItUpCheney.Org is a project of Essential Information (www.essential.org), a non-profit tax exempt advocacy group based in Washington, D.C. whose work is focused primarily on government and corporate accountability. We provide provocative information to the public on important topics neglected by the mass media and policy makers.
We began this project as an adjunct to our ongoing work with HalliburtonWatch.org. We believe that Vice President Cheney’s personal history as former CEO of Halliburton and afterwards, as Vice President while receiving deferred compensation payments and holding options on Halliburton stock, constitute a clear conflict of interest.
While Vice President Cheney played a key role in driving the nation to war against Iraq, Halliburton rose to become the Army’s top contractor, and the largest contractor operating in Iraq. According to a 2005 Defense Department report, Halliburton’s take “alone represents 52% of the total contract value” of 149 prime contracts in Iraq worth approximately $42.1 billion and funded at $25.4 billion. (1)
The record of the United States in Iraqi reconstruction has been marred by crony contracting, billions of dollars in unaccounted for expenditures, a failure to deliver promised infrastructure repairs, and imposed policies of market fundamentalism. Both U.S. taxpayers and the Iraqi people (whose oil revenues were also used to pay U.S. contractors, including Halliburton) have suffered the consequences from an epidemic of fraud, waste, price-gouging, bribery and other abuses. (For details, see HalliburtonWatch.org.) All of this has occurred with little consequence.
Meanwhile, Halliburton’s stock has quadrupled in price since the war began.
As a good faith measure to prove that he will never further profit from this unjust war, we are calling upon Vice President Cheney to relinquish any residual claims upon his Halliburton stock. As is evident from our analysis of the law, whether or not it is being held in trust makes no difference. If Cheney truly intends to donate all the proceeds to charity, he should give it up, now.
The “Give It Up, Cheney” campaign suggests Mr. Cheney consider donating the proceeds from his remaining Halliburton stock options to the following charities that work with Iraq war veterans:
Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund
National Coalition for Homeless Veterans
Give It Up, Cheney can be reached at info@GiveItUpCheney.org, or 202-387-8030.
(1) Defense Contract Audit Agency, Briefing Slides: DCAA Contract Audit Support for Iraq Reconstruction (May 3, 2005).