No Trump NASA transition team yet

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It appears that the Trump transition operation has no plans as yet to form a transition team for NASA.

NASA Associate Administrator Robert Lightfoot sent a memo to NASA employees stating that NASA has been informed that no ART will be assigned to NASA for now. “The President-Elect Transition Team (PETT) has indicated that NASA will not be receiving an Agency Review Team (ART) at this time. NASA, as all federal agencies, stands ready to support the PETT at a future date.” A NASA transition team could be set up later, although time is getting short, or the incoming Administration could wait until after the inauguration to address NASA and other space issues.

Rumors were that former Congressman Bob Walker would be very involved in a NASA transition team. He was the point man for space policy during the final weeks of the Trump campaign. He co-authored two op-eds for Space News, one on civil space policy, the other on national security space, and spoke to the FAA’s Commercial Space Transportation Advisory Committee (COMSTAC) on October 26 outlining top-level Trump space priorities. Walker became a lobbyist after he retired from Congress and is now executive chairman of one of the top lobbying firms in Washington, Wexler|Walker. The lobbyist ban presumably excludes him from serving now.

One pattern I see developing with Trump is his willingness to hire and fire people. The change in transition leadership between Christie and Pence shows this. I suspect that he will be replacing cabinet appointees and administration management heads much more frequently that we are used to seeing in government. This is good. And it will certainly be different from the Obama administration, where you could literally commit crimes and not be fired.

As to NASA, it is not surprising that Trump is not making this a priority. It is not unusual for it to take months, even a year, for a new administration to pick its NASA administrator. That is what happened under Obama. The new administration has far more important slots to fill that must come first.



  • PeterF

    I can think of at least one administrator that should probably get a pink slip. Hint: he seems to be focused entirely on proving that humans are destroying the pristine mother through climate change…

    Also, I’m wondering if Mr. “Rinse and Repeat” will be unceremoniously booted from the position he “couldn’t refuse” as soon as the new head of the RNC is firmly in place… What a fitting development for one of the people who was so effective in the war on the TEA party.

  • Cotour

    Trump intends to heal the Republican party, and further take it over at the same time and recast the whole RINO mess into an actual party with American interests at its foundation. A mind bending concept.

    Meeting with Romney (that must have been an interesting phone call) is a brilliant and totally asymmetrical strategy that not many could pull off. Trump is a political animal not ever seen in Washington to the point that he may well own most if not all of them in time and / or the remainder will live in fear of crossing him. There will be consequences paid to actions taken (or not taken), I think is a good bet.

    And at the same time on the 21st of January 2017, when he becomes empowered with the peoples proxy he becomes a potential threat to all our freedoms and liberty. Will he rise to the occasion? I am optimistic (at the moment)

    This is going to be very interesting to say the least.

  • D. K. Williams

    Perhaps a business-savvy administrator will be appointed to trim the bloat and get NASA’s focus back to actual science instead of “pork and fiefdoms.” Of course, this also means Trump will have to back said administrator with pork-loving Congressmen.

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