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Bill Nelson Continues To Block NASA Administrator Nominees

By Keith Cowing
March 13, 2009

Editor’s note: Well, it certainly seems that Sen. Nelson is of the mind that he is going to decide who is – or rather – who is not the next NASA Administrator. It should be no secret by now that Nelson would like to see former astronaut Charles Bolden nominated. Widely regarded as a sterling individual, few people dislike Bolden or question his capabilities.
However, the White House seems to have other ideas as to who they’d like to nominate. Nelson made it quite clear that he did not want Scott Gration to be the nominee due to a lack of space experience. Now, Nelson has made it clear that he does not want to see Steve Isakowitz as the nominee either and has taken active steps to block Isakowitz’s name from moving forward.
It would seem that Nelson’s prime, personal criteria for picking a NASA administrator is staunch support for human space flight – and keeping the shuttle flying as long as possible (thus reducing job loss in Florida). Alas, there are are other things besides human space flight on NASA’s agenda.
This is starting to get silly – and is becoming counterproductive so far as NASA’s best interests are concerned. It is time for Sen. Nelson to stop being selfish and allow the remaining members of the Senate to have some say in this matter – and to let the White House actually nominate someone to run NASA – someone who can run the agency for the entire nation, not just Florida.
Bill Nelson and Co. take down Obama’s NASA frontrunner , Orlando Sentinel
“Nelson and other NASA boosters did not like Isakowitzs reputation as a tough fiscal manager. Nelson aides blamed Isakowitz for helping kill a repair mission to the Hubble Space Telescope — a decision that was later reversed under former NASA chief Mike Griffin — and they worry that he would not be a strong supporter of human spaceflight. Manned spaceflight is vital for KSC, which launches the space shuttle and would be in charge of preparing its replacement for missions.”

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