JSF Survives the QDR:

The Air Force version of the F-35, which had been considered a goner in recent weeks, was spared the hatchet. Pentagon officials agreed that they could derive no appreciable savings by eliminating the conventional takeoff and landing version. USAF officials carried the day in arguing that the CTOL version is the most capable and least costly of the three. It had been suggested that USAF use the Navy carrier-capable model, which weighs 7,000 pounds more, with corresponding reductions in range and payload, or the short takeoff/vertical landing model the Marines are buying. No matter how OSD tinkered with F-35 permutations, senior Air Force officials say they just couldn’t find much money to save in the near term, so the program was largely left intact.