Nelson Seeks Recount; Culberson, Rohrabacher Lose Reelection Bid as Dems Take House


Narrowly trailing Florida Republican Gov. Rick Scott in his bid for re-election, Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) has sought a recount of votes. Nelson, who once flew aboard the space shuttle, has been a strong supporter of NASA and sits on the Senate Science Committee.

Rep. John Culberson (R-Texas), who is as strong of a backer of NASA exploring Europa as he is opposed to the space agency cooperating with China, has lost his bid for re-election as control of the House of Representatives shifts to the Democrats. He chairs the House Appropriations Committee’s Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, and Science.

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.), who is a strong supporter of commercial space, has also lost his bid for re-election. He is a member of the House Science Committtee that oversees NASA’s budget.

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) fought off a strong challenge from Democrat Beto O’Rouke to win reelection to the Senate, which will remain in Republican hands. Cruz chairs the Senate Space Subcommittee.

In the Antelope Valley, Republican Rep. Steve Knight lost his bid for a third term in the House. He is the son of the late William J. “Pete” Knight, a test pilot who flew the X-15 rocket plane in the 1960’s. Knight serves on the House Science Committee.

Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) will continue to represent the northern part of the Antelope Valley. He will lose his position as House majority leader when the Democrats take over control of Congress in January.

Democrats have been more skeptical of the Trump Administration’s plan to create a Space Force as the sixth branch of the armed forces. It remains to be seen what effect Democratic control of the House will have on that plan.

  • Jeff Smith

    Nelson was an SLS supporter (one of many)
    Culbertson was the driving force behind Europa
    Rohrabacher has SpaceX in his district.

    SLS seems to have suffered no real injury, but some of the individual passion projects may take a hit.

  • duheagle

    A recount seems unlikely to help Nelson. He needs to concede and find something else to do that doesn’t involve people kissing his posterior because those days are over.

    Europa has other fans, but I’m thinking those pushing Enceladus missions might benefit if Europa missions are delayed or modified.

    SpaceX’s Hawthorne plant is nowhere near Rohrabacher’s district. The BFR factory site in San Pedro is a lot closer, but still several miles from the nearest corner of CA’s 48th House District. The Hawthorne plant is actually in Maxine Water’s 43rd House District. The San Pedro BFR works is in CA’s 44th House District, currently represented by Nanatte Barragan.

  • ReSpaceAge

    Dam shame Cruz’s ass didn’t get kicked out the door with him.

    Good case for term limits.

  • mattmcc80

    Two fewer climate science deniers on House science committees is just fine with me.

  • duheagle

    Needless to say, I disagree.

    But term limits wouldn’t have been in play anyway as I have never seen any such proposals that didn’t allow Senators at least two terms. Cruz just won his second term.

    I think the odds of term limits for Congress ever being implemented are zero. Doing so would require a constitutional amendment. Short of a new Constitutional Convention, the only way an amendment happens is to get it through both houses of Congress on a super-majority vote. Good luck with that.

    Then a super-majority of states has to agree. Both big and small states and red and blue states tend to like to have at least one of their Senators be a high-mileage guy (or gal) with a lot of pull and some key committee assignments. Again, good luck bucking that.

    There’s a reason the only elective federal job that is term-limited is that of the President.

    The only places that have any term limits are certain states, for their state-level legislators and/or governors and executive branch higher-ups. And there is not a single such state where such limits got put in via said legislators. Every case was due to an initiative campaign. Problem is, many states don’t have any constituional provision for grass-roots initiatives. The U.S. as a whole certainly doesn’t.

  • duheagle

    As so-called “climate science” has long since become, in effect, a non-falsifiable system of religious belief, it isn’t the so-called “deniers” who are anti-science.

  • Michael Halpern

    It’s provable fact

  • windbourne

    Actually, it is not a proven fact. Like evolution of man, it is impossible to prove that they are the underlying science.
    Now, we can prove the chemistry and physics of AGW, but it is impossible to prove that AGW is the cause of climate change. HOWEVER, the proponderence of evidence backs AGW, and if true, the consequences are likely going to be very harsh to mankind.

    In fact because right/left extremists refuse to deal with it, I am guessing that in about 10 years, Chinese leaders will realize that they have it worse, will invade Russia, and either one of those 2 will release a biological weapon. That will be done to lower global population to about 2 billion or less.

  • publiusr

    That worries me–I want a Europa probe myself.

  • duheagle

    No, it isn’t.

  • duheagle

    That China will eventually absorb at least Siberia at some point seems all but certain. But I think 10 years is way too early a timetable. Also, as there has been essentially no global warming for the last two decades, what, in the next decade, do you see occurring in China – and not in Russia – that is supposed to make China willing to start a major land war of conquest?

  • windbourne

    The globe has been warming CONSTANTLY for the last 120 years. I grew up in temps of -35F on Illinois border. When I moved to Colorado front range in 79, we regularly got -25F for 2-4 weeks in the winter. Now, a cold winter for northern Illinois is one that hits -15 to -20F. And we have not see -20F in Colorado front range since early 90s. Cold here is hitting -10F for a night.

    https://climate.nasa.gov/vital-signs/global-temperature/
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_temperature_record
    https://www.climate.gov/news-features/climate-qa/why-did-earth%E2%80%99s-surface-temperature-stop-rising-past-decade

    The ice in the Himalayas is melting fast. That is why China has built diversionary dams, while telling India that they were not building dams, and then claiming that the dams are for water storage/electricity. Problem is, that dams have different designs based on needs. ALL of the ones built/being built by CHina, are diversionary, on the tributaries that sends water to Pakistan, India, Bangledash, etc all the way to ho chi minh.

    China in another 10 years is in for REAL trouble. Some of the most fertile land in the globe is in China. It is being destroyed in part by pollution, but also by climate change. China in 10 years, will be in major droughts and the citizens starving.. The leaders of China are making things worsr, but preparing for global war. In particular, they continue to build massive numbers of new coal plants. They lie about them, but then are caught via sat. Why are they building these? Because they have loads of coal and are trying to move their transportation to EVs. For China, this is about national security. They do not give a F*&k about the globe.

  • Michael Halpern

    Overwhelming evidence for it

  • windbourne

    Actually, Florida statewide counts are not done and the difference in Nelson-Scott is less than what is uncounted. So, it makes total sense that nelson insist that the count be done, before declaring it.

    And given the choice of a far right thief who stole billions from the gov. vs an ex-astronaut,
    I will take the astronaut.