Thursday, June 04, 2009
McDonnell Supports Virginia Spaceport
Virginia Republican gubernatorial nominee and former state Attorney General Robert "Bob" F. McDonnell has provided political support for the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport with great consistentecy on the campaign trail beginning with the statewide launch of his campaign; and, he continues to do so in a recent interview with Human Events.com, a voice of the conservatives denoting how space politics is being elevated in the Commonwealth these days.
Human Events Editor Jed Babbin posed this question: "One of the things you mentioned in your speech was also a little bit out of the ordinary. You said you wanted to build an east coast spaceport in Virginia. Why? How are you going to do that? What does it mean for the state?"
McDonnell responded: "Well, we’ve got the start of that already at Wallops Island, Virginia. We’ve got a spaceport that we’ve actually just teamed up with Maryland that just got its first major contract from Orbital [Sciences Corporation], a [$1.9] billion contract to launch satellites over the next couple of years. We competed with Cape Canaveral and won. It’s a tremendous victory for Virginia space travel. I think in the future, we all know, that space exploration and satellites and technology is going to be a tremendous source of economic activity in the future. I want to be at the cutting edge of that. We’ve got a start already. I know there are some things to do to boost state support of that, to help them with more research and development, to help them get more contracts. If we do that, I think it has enormous possibilities for jobs and new revenues to come to Virginia. That’s one of our great assets: We’re going to continue to make it better."