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Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Sen. Mikulski to Chair Senate Appropriations

Sen. Barbara Mikulski
A series of dominoes fell Wednesday on Capitol Hill that left Sen. Barbara Mikulski in line to take the gavel of the Senate Appropriations Committee, a move that would significantly increase Maryland’s clout in the chamber and make her the first woman to helm the panel, reports The Washington Post.
There is a probability, however, that Mikulski may relinquish the chair of the Commerce, Justice, and Science appropriations subcommittee, whose jurisdiction includes NASA. There is also the possibility she could retain it.

The Senate Democratic Caucus still must ratify her appointment to be committee chair. That vote is expected tomorrow, notes SpacePolicyOnline.
"It is especially gratifying to be the first woman to lead this powerful committee," the 76-year-old lawmaker said in a statement. "I am grateful for this opportunity to fight for the day-to-day needs of the American people and the long-range needs of the nation."
The House and Senate appropriations committees set spending policies for Congress. How it might change the spending priorities of NASA and those of Gaddard and Wallops is yet to be seen but impact is almost certain.

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