White House

Commerce, Richardson, and space

The Washington Post reported today that New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson is a leading candidate to become the Secretary of Commerce in the Obama Administration. This has relevance to space policy given his recent comments on the topic of commercial space. As reported here last month, Richardson vowed to make sure “that the Obama Administration is pro-commercial space” during comments at a press conference in Las Cruces. (At the same press conference he also said he was “very happy” as governor of New Mexico and that his advocacy would be “hopefully here still as governor of New Mexico”, but added, “you never know”.) As Commerce Secretary he would be well-placed to continue his advocacy of commercial space, in large part because the department is home to the Office of Space Commercialization. As secretary, Richardson would be in position to press for more resources for the office (assuming he is sincere about his advocacy), as well as potentially influence policy in other parts of the administration, perhaps through a reconstituted National Aeronautics and Space Council.

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