"Hey, these gloves are tools, not articles of clothing".
DLA (Defense Logistics Agency) needed to purchase some electrical gloves to protect workers from electrical shock. The Government solicitation included the "Berry Amendment" clause that require articles of clothing, including "hand wear" be produced in the United States.
Integrity Supply, one of six offerors submitting bids, proposed gloves produced in Malaysia. DLA informed Integrity that its proposal was unacceptable because the end items proposed would not be produced in the United States.
Integrity appealed to the Comptroller General (CG), arguing that these gloves were not clothing but were worn solely to protect the worker from electrical shock and therefore should be considered tools, not clothing.
The CG ruled that the protester's emphasis on the protective nature of the gloves was misplaced. The term "clothing" as used in the Berry Amendment, is understood to include a wide variety of items including items worn for the purpose of protection. The CG found no basis to conclude that DLA acted unreasonably when it rejected Integrity's bid.
Integrity's sophomoric logic might be something to "try on" an unwitting contracting officer but to make a formal appeal of it to the Comptroller General is, in our opinion, misguided and a waste of everyone's time.
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