Representative Frank Wolf, representative from Virginia’s 10th congressional district, has long been ardently opposed to a competitive contracting process for NASA’s commercial crew programme. Because Rep. Wolf chairs the House subcommittee on commerce, justice and science (CJS), he’s in a position of great influence over NASA. Previously, he’s used his position to push through very tight restrictions on exchanges with China, making it virtually impossible to connect in any legitimate way. “If my Chinese counterpart comes here, I’m forbidden to even buy him a cup of coffee,” says one high-ranking NASA employee.
But Rep. Wolf appears to have had a change of heart on commercial crew. According to a release by his office, Wolf and NASA have reached an agreement on the way forward.
The deal is essentially that NASA will receive funding at or near the levels promised by the Senate — $525 million or so — if the commercial crew integrated capability (CCiCap) space act agreements are limited to 2.5 (two primaries, and one partial award), if CCiCap is the final development round and if the next contract awards are the standard federal acquition regulations.
If true — it is unconfirmed by NASA at this time — it ...