but in my opinion its meaning is not clear enough to change the federal common law that a bid to the federal government may be withdrawn at any time before it is accepted if it can be shown that the amount of the bid resulted from an honest mistake.
There is no federal statute and no other federal regulation which governs the present case. It should be pointed out, however, that there is a federal regulation which has been written clearly and which leaves no doubt as to its meaning, but which does not apply to the present case. It is the Armed Forces Procurement Regulation (32 C.F.R.Sec. 401.303, 1951 ed.) which provides:
'Bids may be modified or withdrawn, at any time prior to the time fixed for opening thereof, by written or telegraphic notice received prior to the time fixed for opening. After the opening of bids no bid may be modified * * * or withdrawn, etc. * * *'
I am satisfied that under the facts which have been stipulated in the present case defendants' substantial underbid was the result of an honest mistake. No federal statute or regulation prevented them from withdrawing their bid. Under both the ordinary common law and the federal common law they had the right to withdraw it. The withdrawal, therefore, should have been permitted.
The statements of fact and law in the foregoing opinion will constitute the Court's findings of fact and conclusion of law in the case.
And now, May 25, 1954, it is directed that judgment be entered in favor of the defendants, Samuel F. Lipman and Myles Spilberg, individually and as copartners, now or late trading as North Contracting Company, and against the plaintiff, United States of America.