First lady’s Princeton classmate a senior VP at firm that built Obamacare website

Toni Townes WhitleyThere is surely a reasonable explanation for the fact that a top executive at the firm which received a no-bid contract to build Healthcare.gov was a Princeton classmate of Michelle Obama. On its face, it smells a lot like cronyism or something more sinister, but rest assured: An explanation is forthcoming.

The Daily Caller reports that Toni Townes-Whitley (Princeton ’85) is a senior vice president at CGI Federal, which designed the $678 million Obamacare enrollment website. Townes-Whitley and Obama are both members of the Association of Black Princeton Alumni, but that’s another coincidence. And Bill Ayers is just a guy who lives in Obama’s old Chicago neighborhood!

There’s more. Townes’s boss, George Schindler, was an Obama 2012 campaign donor — but that was after his company won the Obamacare website contract, so obviously there is no quid pro quo.

As to the contract:

As reported by the Washington Examiner in early October, the Department of Health and Human Services reviewed only CGI’s bid for the Obamacare account. CGI was one of 16 companies qualified under the Bush administration to provide certain tech services to the federal government. A senior vice president for the company testified this week before The House Committee on Energy and Commerce that four companies submitted bids, but did not name those companies or explain why only CGI’s bid was considered.

The good news is that Jeffrey Zients, the economic adviser hired by the White House to clean up CGI’s and Kathleen Sebelius’s mess, is not a fellow Princeton alum or pal of the First Lady. He did, however, work as a management consultant for Bain & Company, the vulture capitalist outfit that Team Obama worked so hard to make an albatross around the neck of Mitt Romney in the last presidential election. Then again, Barack Obama’s antipathy toward Bain lasted only through Election Day.

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