WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Senator Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), ranking member of the Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee (CJS), which has jurisdiction over funding for NASA, today the following statement regarding President Obama's alternative plan for the future of NASA.
"As a result of the alternative offered by the President today, there is now no hope for a bright future in human space exploration. The President's new plan continues the destruction of forty years of U.S. space supremacy by pinning our hopes for success on unproven commercial companies. The President redirects funding for a tested and successful space exploration program, Constellation, to let so-called private industry develop with taxpayer money a launch vehicle for humans. One of these commercial companies highlighted by the President already has an agreement with NASA, is currently two years behind schedule, and is requesting 60 percent more money to do the job they have already been paid to do. Yet these companies represent the quicksand foundation upon which President Obama has placed his faith to deliver humans safely to space. We need to move forward with a real plan that is based on defined requirements, proven technologies, and achievable goals. The President's new alternative fails to meet any of these. The Administration has shown once again that it is no longer committed to robust space exploration by terminating Constellation, the one program that is actually capable of making it happen."