The Defense Department's internal watchdog says it found no evidence to support an allegation that the Pentagon showed favoritism toward space contractor United Launch Alliance.
The office of inspector general said Thursday that Brett Tobey, a former vice president of engineering for the Denver-based company, had recanted the allegation and apologized.
The investigation began in March after Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain cited comments Tobey reportedly made to students at the University of Colorado. The inspector general's office says Tobey told investigators he was being dramatic to hold the students' attention.
Neither Tobey nor McCain immediately responded to a request for comment.
United Launch Alliance, a joint venture of Lockheed Martin and Boeing, puts military and national security satellites into orbit.
The company said it was pleased by the findings.