More Personnel Shifts - and White House Factional Politics

Editor's note: Word has it that Ed Weiler may be returning to NASA HQ from his tour of duty at GSFC soon. Also, it would seem that OSTP will continue its slow motion take over of NASA with the appointment of one of its staffers (or a preferred individual) - as Deputy Administrator to replace Fred Gregory. Courtney Stadd, a favorite of OSTP, apparently cannot make the financial sacrifice that would go with taking the number 2 position as a civil servant.

The folks at OSTP never liked the way that Sean O'Keefe dealt directly with the President and Vice President - especially during the formulation of the VSE - and they are determined to make sure that this situation does not happen again. OSTP will do so by having one of their own as the No. 2 at NASA.

In this regard, it is interesting to note who publicly swore in Mike Griffin (OSTP Director John Marburger - in his outer office) - and who swore in Sean O'Keefe (Vice President Cheney in front of an audience of hundreds at the National Air and Space Museum). The venue/mode of swearing in reflects nothing as to the inherent skills of either man. Rather, since neither Griffin nor O'Keefe were close to being the (initial) top choice for the job, it does illustrate the mode whereby Administration space policy was to be communicated back and forth. You work with the tools that you have at hand: O'Keefe was a self-professed bean counter and a Washington insider. Griffin is a rocket scientist/program manager. O'Keefe's White House interaction mode was direct and done personally. Griffin's will apparently (at least at the onset) be layered and bureaucratic - especialy since he has told senior staff that he has never met with President Bush with regard to NASA.

Stay tuned.

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This page contains a single entry by Keith Cowing published on May 19, 2005 11:16 AM.

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