Thoughts on tomorrow’s Senate vote on NASA authorization, from Henry Vanderbilt of the Space Access Society:
…let them both know that you support full funding for NASA Commercial Crew, and full funding for NASA space exploration technology, and that you are very much against any new NASA heavy lift booster development as very likely being a massive waste of taxpayer dollars.
Read the whole thing.
[Post Instalanche update]
More background and related links here.
[Thursday morning update]
He also has some thoughts on how it could have been a lot worse:
while I don’t want to sugar-coat this awful bill, I’m just saying that it is no cause for despair. My philosophy from the start of this website and blog has been based on a belief that progress usually comes in step-by-step increments. It will be disappointing if the 2011 NASA budget doesn’t make the huge step initially promised. Nevertheless, even this bill is a step forward.
I never have high hopes for space policy. The bill could be a lot better, but just getting rid of Constellation, and particularly Ares, is a huge improvement. I’m willing to take if for now, and start to educate the Republicans so we can get better policy when they take over next year, and hope that they don’t try to undo everything that Obama did, and restore the disastrous Bush policy, simply on partisan grounds. It’s important to have a serious discussion on what we’re trying to accomplish, and how best to do it, regardless of the genesis of various policies. It hasn’t happened yet, but hope springs eternal.
[Update a while later]
No word about the press conference yet, but here is Hutchison’s official statement.