SpaceRef has posted “Barack Obama’s Plan For American Leadership in Space”, a document detailing the Democratic presidential candidate’s stand on space policy. (The document does not appear to be posted yet on Obama’s official campaign web site.) The document largely is an elaboration of a previous, brief statement from the campaign. Obama supports development of the Ares 1 and Orion (which are explicitly named here), completion of the ISS, robotic space exploration, and climate change research. On the milspace side, he calls for “a serious dialogue with Russia, China and other nations” to stop space weaponization, as well as continued support for surveillance satellites (which sounds odd; is anyone really thinking of decreasing use of spysats?)
One thing that is missing in this statement: any discussion of human exploration of the Moon, Mars, or other destinations beyond Earth orbit. His previous statement from the campaign said that he would “delay plans to return to moon and push on to mars”, and, of course, his education policy issued back in November called for paying for his initiatives in part by delaying the Constellation program by five years. Is the absence of any evidence of human space exploration language in this new statement evidence of its absence in his policy?