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Impeachment and the Moon-Mars Mission Cannot Co-Exist

Oct. 16, 2019 (EIRNS)—Democratic Congressman José Serrano from the Bronx, has stated at a committee meeting today that he will not allow the Trump Administration’s Moon-Mars mission, Project Artemis, to be funded at the level requested and required to get it done. Serrano is chairman of the House Appropriations subcommittee which marks up NASA’s budget.

The White House and NASA have requested extra “manned space exploration” funding of $1.6 billion in Fiscal Year 2020 to start the acceleration of Project Artemis toward a human return to the Moon in 2024. The Senate Appropriations Committee has marked up three-quarters of that increase thus far.

But the Houston Chronicle reported that Serrano “dismissed” that effort today.

“ ‘It is better to use the original NASA schedule of 2028,’ said U.S. Rep. José Serrano, a Democrat from New York and chairman of the House Appropriations subcommittee for commerce, justice and science. This, he continued, would allow for a safe, cost effective and successful program.... ‘We all want to return to the Moon, but we want to do it in a responsible way,’ Serrano said. ‘I’m extremely concerned about the additional cost to move the date up to 2024.’ ”

The paper did not point it out, but there has never been a “cost-effective” space mission, nor one “done in a responsible way.” Space missions like the Apollo Program or the new Project Artemis are productivity-effective by virtue of the science “driver” they provide for rapid technological innovation, and thus they pay for themselves multiple times but at a later time period than their launch.

As for the “original timetable of 2024,” Serrano’s vanilla “talking points” would take it back where it was until Trump took office: nowhere. NASA Watch website pointed out that this is waiting an administration out “until after an election.” One President’s NASA programs are typically gutted by an incoming President.

But more, Serrano is a Democrat committed to President Donald Trump’s impeachment. If he thinks impeachment could succeed, he will want to give the President nothing that could redound to his credit with the American people.

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