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Monday, June 13, 2011

Republican Presidential Candidates Debate Federal Role in Human Space Flight

The Republican presidential field sent a clear message to NASA workers in America: They don’t see a federal role in funding human space flight, [video clip at 6:50 to 9:28].

Debate moderator John King of CNN asked the other six candidates in attendance whether they would continue federal funding for human space flight. Not a single candidate - Texas Rep. Ron Paul, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum and former Godfather’s Pizza CEO Herman Cain — raised their hand.

The unanimous verdict came during a New Hampshire presidential debate tonight and following a scathing assessment of NASA management by former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga.

GOP presidential candidate Newt Gingrich says "NASA has become an absolute case study in why bureaucracy cannot innovate,” he said. “What we have is bureaucracy after bureaucracy, failure after failure.”

Gingrich went further saying  it is about how to "get into space faster, better, more effectively, more creatively if you decentralize it, get it out of Washington and cut out the bureaucracy." He added "it is about getting to a space program that works."  More from SpacePolitics.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

"The Republican presidential field sent a clear message to NASA workers in America: They don’t see a federal role in funding human space flight"

This statement is not accurate. If you look at Gingrichs statements, he is quite clear in his support for HSF. He explicitly states he feels that kids should feel like realistically they too could go into space. This is not a general support for space, this is a statement specifically in support of HSF. What he does not support is the current bureaucratic NASA (his words) approach to accomplishing this and feels that this goal could be accomplished more effectively by heavier emphasis on fostering and incentivizing the private sector. I don't think it is fair to characterize this as not seeing a federal role, it is more a matter of seeing a diffent kind of federal role.

JackKennedy said...

Thank you for your comment. You provide a fair critique to benefit other readers.