Washington – Congressman Ralph M. Hall, Ranking Minority Member of the Science Committee and former Chairman of the Space Subcommittee, issued the following statement today on the President’s nomination of Sean O’Keffe as Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

NASA can ill afford to be leaderless at this critical time in its history, so I am very pleased that the President has named a new NASA Administrator to replace Dan Goldin. I certainly appreciate Mr. Goldin’s dedicated service to our nation and I hope that he will remain a valuable resource for all of us to draw on in the days ahead.

Mr. O’Keefe is well known to the Committee through his oversight of the Space Station Program at the Office of Management and Budget. We hope that Mr. O’Keefe continues to emphasize the need for NASA to institute more effective management and cost estimation methods in the Space Station Program.

At the same time, I will continue to emphasize to NASA and OMB that our vision in space must include a Space Station that is a world-class research facility. Fundamentally, this means a Station with seven, not three, crew on board at all times. Anything less would compromise our space research effort, our relationships with the international partners, and ultimately the entire purpose and rationale of the Station program. I look forward to working with new Administrator to achieve these goals.