H.R. Clinton On Space

Sen. Hillary Clinton formally stated her position on US Space policy in October.  This weekend she reiterated and extended her position.  According the the press release she will:

double NASA’s and FAA’s aeronautics R&D budgets as part of her plan to reverse the Bush administration’s war on science. She will pursue a balanced strategy of robust human spaceflight, expanded robotic spaceflight, and enhanced space and Earth science activities. She will speed development, testing, and deployment of next-generation launch and crew exploration vehicles to replace the aging Space Shuttle program. At the same time, Hillary’s innovation agenda calls for stimulating in-house research and commercial development by making the R&D tax credit permanent. She will also double federal investment in basic research, which is critical for ensuring that America is at the forefront of new ideas.

Of course, doubling the R&D budget sounds good, but the press release did not state from where the monies will come.  We no longer expect our politicians to be so specific.  Over at Space Politics, it’s pointed out that the statement doesn’t say the time period over which the budget would be doubled (and I doubt it would be a doubling of the 2008 budget in 2009).

As for the development, testing and deployment of the next-generation launch and crew exploration vehicles, if she’s talking about Ares and Constellation, the candidate (and the future president, whomever that may be) might want to consider that the program is not without its critics within the space community.  In fact, there’s some serious concern that the vehicle has a serious architectural flaw, that makes its successful testing problematical.

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