Reports say President Bush will call next week for NASA to return Americans to the moon to build a permanent base from which Mars missions can be more easily launched. While critics say Congress is already spending money like a drunken sailor, Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley says it won’t come down to a debate about the cost of this possible project. Grassley says money won’t be the issue, but the issue will be whether there’s any additional information or scientific benefit that can come from such a mission. With the deaths of seven astronauts in the shuttle Columbia crash in February, Grassley says safety will also be a big factor. The Republican from New Hartford says if NASA is going to attempt a manned mission to Mars, the space agency will have to show the American people it can carry out the feat without a loss of life. He says Congress will be very careful to be sure the money is wisely spent.The President’s anticipated speech on the moon/Mars mission is to coincide with Wednesday’s ceremonies honoring the 100th anniversary of the first Wright brothers flight.
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