Some miscellaneous items from the last few days:
It’s not posted yet on the committee’s web site, but the full House Science Committee will hold a hearing on Wednesday, March 2, on NASA’s FY12 budget request. NASA administrator Charles Bolden is the sole witness scheduled to testify.
Last week the Senate Commerce Committee announced the chairs and ranking members of its subcommittees. To no one’s surprise, Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL) will return as chairman of the science and space subcommittee. The committee’s new ranking member is freshman Sen. John Boozman (R-AR). However, it’s likely that full committee ranking member Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) will continue to play a major role in any space topics during this Congress.
Last week the full House approved an amendment to its 2011 continuing resolution to transfer nearly $300 million from NASA to a Justice Department community policing program. The amendment was introduced by a Democrat, but passed thanks to the votes of 70 Republicans, who joined 158 Republicans to approve the amendment. So what was the reaction of Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL)? He blames the Obama Administration: “If the White House had argued for NASA among House Democrats, we would have protected NASA from this cut,” he told the Huntsville Times. Of course, if those 70 Republicans hadn’t voted for it, the amendment wouldn’t have passed regardless of what the Democrats did, as the GOP is now in the majority, but Brooks offers no explanation why 70 of his fellow House Republicans voted for the amendment.