The U.S. Senate is about to vote on the National Defense Authorization Act, the foundation for our military that pays our troops, sets Pentagon policy and priorities, and funds major weapons systems.
Yesterday, news reports uncovered a single line inserted by a single Senate Armed Services Committee staffer to Senator McCain that would block the Pentagon’s chief space technician from participating in DOD space policy:
“One provision tucked deep in a committee draft of the bill would prohibit Mike Griffin, the Pentagon’s chief space technician, from having a say in Department of Defense space policy.”
And this isn’t the first time:
“Sen. John McCain, who chairs the Senate Armed Services Committee and is a long-time SpaceX supporter, has previously attempted to insert language favoring Elon Musk’s company over ULA.”
Ahhh, we get it now. This Senate staffer is dazzled by Elon Musk’s BS – actually there’s more to this story. This bill, unbelievably, is written to give a critic of ULA greater authority. Why? Apparently, this Senate staffer blamed the demise of his former company (Xcor) on ULA.
Despite President Trump’s emphasis on winning in space, Senate staffers aren’t above petty inside baseball tactics to set themselves up once they leave government. The big question is whether Musk’s companies will be around when this staffer is ready to jump ship or whether his government gravy trail will derail.