Tuesday, June 14, 2011

(A Few) Republicans Debate NASA

As reported by the Space Politics web site, NASA's future came up in last night's Republican presidential candidates debate in New Hampshire.

Newt Gingrich articulated a detailed position, but no other candidate did. Tim Pawlenty uttered a short and vague comment, but that was it.

It left the impression that human space flight just isn't a priority for most of these candidates, which probably reflects the general sentiment of the nation. As much as many in the space advocacy movement would like to believe otherwise, the reality is that most people like watching rockets launch but aren't willing to invest the time in pressuring their elected officials to make it a priority.

UPDATE June 15, 2011 — CNN's "NASA Insider" adds this perspective on Monday's GOP debate:

After Newt Gingrich's harsh comments about NASA during Monday's night's debate between GOP presidential hopefuls, you'd guess the outrage from the nation's legendary space agency would be deafening.

So far today, all we've heard from Houston and Washington are crickets.

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