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The Other Engine is Back: Once again, lawmakers are poised to slap down the Pentagon’s attempt to kill the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter alternate engine program. The House Armed Services Committee air-land panel has recommended cutting one aircraft and reducing the Air Force and Navy F-35 research and development accounts by $125 million each to fund a second alternate engine in the 2008 defense authorization bill. Panel chairman Rep. Neil Abercrombie (D-Hawaii) recognizes that “cost pressures” led the Pentagon to terminate the program, but he maintains that “this mark recognizes the potential benefits of a competitive program.”