As promised, Florida Today published a “guest editorial” by Republican presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani today, where the candidate outlines his stance on civil and commercial space policy. After leading off discussing the shuttle-CEV gap, calling it “unacceptable”, he continues with these key paragraphs:
We will maintain America’s technological advantage in space. We will send Americans back to the moon and onto the next great frontier in human space exploration: Mars.
We will support the Commercial Orbital Transportation Systems [sic] Program to stimulate important private entrepreneurial efforts in spaceflight.
We will expand private-sector access to Cape Canaveral launch pads. To help prepare astronauts for longer stays in space, we will fund the Space Life Sciences Lab.
Giuliani also calls for an increase in NASA’s budget, but not by a specific amount: “NASA currently receives less than 1 percent of the federal budget — six-tenths of 1 percent, to be more exact. An increase would do wonders without affecting 99 percent of the federal budget.”
Still, this is one of the bolder space policy statements made by a presidential campaign to date in this campaign, committing to human missions to the Moon and Mars as well as supporting commercial efforts like COTS. However, given Giuliani’s standing in recent polls—third place, well behind McCain and Romney —this policy could soon be of only academic interest.