Two interesting soundbytes from US presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich from the GOP debate in Florida Thursday night:
Does it contemplate that some day we could have a rocket? My point in the speech I made yesterday, which is on CSPAN and I’d love to have all of you look at it. It’s based on having looked at space issues since the late 1950’s when missiles and rockets was a separate magazine. And working with NASA and others. I believe by the use of prizes, by the use of incentives, by opening up the space port so that it’s available on a ready basis for commercial fight, by using commonsense for example the Atlas-V could easily be fixed into a man capable vehicle so you didn’t have to rely on — on a Russian launch or a Chinese launch.
There are many things you can do to leverage accelerating the development of space. Lindbergh flew to Paris for a $25,000.00 prize. If we had a handful of serious prizes, you’d see an extraordinary number of people out there trying to get to the moon first in order to have billed that. And I’d like to have an American on the moon before the Chinese get there.
I do not want to be the country that having gotten to the moon first, turn around and say, ‘It doesn’t really matter. Let the Chinese dominate space. What do we care?’ I think that is a path of national decline. And I am for America being a great country, not a country in decline.