Could Congress shortchange commercial crew funding?

When the Obama Administration released its FY2011 budget one year ago Tuesday, the proposal called for spending $6 billion over five years on commercial crew development. After the extended debate on the subject the near-term spending on the program was trimmed in the authorization bill to $1.3 billion in 2011-2013, compared to $3.3 billion over [...]

White House and NASA, speaking in harmony

On Thursday the White House issued a statement by the president on NASA’s Day of Remembrance, the agency’s recognition of those who lost their lives in space exploration. An excerpt from the president’s statement:

Fifty years ago, a young President facing mounting pressure at home propelled a fledgling space agency on a bold, new [...]

Senate space subcommittee will get new ranking member

Thursday afternoon the Republican leadership of the Senate Commerce Committee announced the GOP members who will serve on the full committee in the new Congress. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) will return as ranking member of the full committee, where she will be joined by:

Olympia Snowe, Maine John Ensign, Nev. Jim DeMint, S.C. John [...]

Florida’s senators speak about NASA

Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL) is one of NASA’s biggest advocates in Congress, and has a long track record on space policy. It’s not a surprise, then, that his office released Wednesday a six-minute video (below) of Nelson talking about space exploration, timed to the 25th anniversary of the Challenger accident this week. Most of the [...]

Reaction to past and future space policy in the State of the Union

Reps. Sandy Adams and Bill Posey (R-FL) must be disappointed: contrary to their desires expressed earlier this week, the president did not directly address space policy in his State of the Union address last night. (Well, maybe not that disappointed: Posey didn’t mention the omission in a statement with his reaction to the speech.) Instead, [...]

When a 25-percent cut is getting off easy

Lost in yesterday’s hubbub about the State of the Union address was the introduction of legislation to radically cut spending by new Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY). Paul’s plan would cut $500 billion in discretionary spending in FY2011 (which is already well underway, although without final appropriations bills) by making major cuts in most agencies and [...]

Could NASA warm up to a budget freeze?

Both ABC News and MSNBC are reporting that in his State of the Union speech tonight, President Obama will call for a five-year freeze for non-security discretionary spending. There will be, according to ABC, some exceptions for new initiatives in areas such as innovation, education, and infrastructure, but it would appear that, by and large, [...]

Democratic membership of the House Science Committee (Updated)

Although there’s been no formal release from the Democratic caucus of the House Science, Space and Technology Committee, the Democratic members of the committee were formally named last week in a House resolution:

Jerry Costello (IL) Lynn Woolsey (CA) Zoe Lofgren (CA) David Wu (OR) Brad Miller (NC) Daniel Lipinski (IL) Gabrielle Giffords (AZ) Donna [...]

Briefs: dueling editorials, Alabama worries, a SOTU request

In an editorial Saturday, the Orlando Sentinel complains that Congress is “making a mess of the U.S. space program.” The editorial complains about the lack of Congressional action to remove a provision from last year’s appropriations bill that now requires NASA to spend money on Constellation programs effectively canceled in the new authorization act, as [...]

Members react to being named to space subcommittee

Rep. Steven Palazzo (R-MS), the new chairman of the House Science, Space and Technology Committee’s space and aeronautics subcommittee, is pleased with his assignment, he tells hometown newspaper Biloxi Sun Herald. “I am excited to be able to play a role in shaping future manned space-flight missions and maintaining Stennis Space Center’s critical importance in [...]