According to CNN, NASA, aeronautics, and exploration were each cut by $50 million in the Senate version of the Stimulus Bill.
That is a far cry from the original intent of the Senate moderates to cut $400 million from NASA’s budget. That prompted Senator Bill Nelson (D., FL) sent a letter to Sen. Daniel Inouye, Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, requesting that NASA be spared the budget knife that has been used so many times against it.
Of course, these numbers can change for good or for bad. Once the Senate passes its version of the Stimulus Bill, the House and Senate versions must be reconciled in a Conference Committee and the resulting Bill then voted upon again by both houses. A great deal can affect the Conference, i.e. who is named to the Conference Committee for each chamber.
The negotiations with the House members of the Conference Committee may get touch as NASA funding was not included in the House version of the Stimulus Bill.
On January 27th, Rep. Suzanne Kosmas, the New Smyrna Beach Democrat whose district includes Kennedy Space Center, filed an amendment that would give NASA $2 billion in the economic-stimulus proposal considered by the House. Unfortunately, Kosmas’ measure failed; her efforts may pay-off later on.