Today, Congressman Ted Poe (TX-02) joined U.S. Senators Kay Bailey Hutchison and John Cornyn and the Houston-area congressional delegation in sending a letter to President Barack Obama inviting him to visit the Johnson Space Center (JSC) to witness the great work being done there and to discuss the Centers role in the future of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

It is important that President Obama come to Houston and see first-hand what Johnson Space Center and Mission Control is all about, said Poe. Houston is just as big a part of NASA as Orlando if not more. The 40 years of experience at JSC simply cannot be replaced. We cannot concede leadership to the Russians and Chinese. Houston was the first word from the moon, not Moscow or Bejing.

The full text of the Houston-area delegations letter to President Obama is below:

President Barack Obama

The White House

1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW

Washington, D.C. 20500

Dear President Obama:

We are writing to invite you to visit the Johnson Space Center (JSC) to witness the great work being done here and discuss the Centers role in your vision for the future of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

We are very pleased to see your administrations focus on the future of the NASA and manned space flight. We look forward to working with you to continue Americas 40 year record of space dominance. However, after reviewing your Fiscal Year 2011 Budget Proposal and listening to your speech at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, we are concerned that the JSC and its experienced workforce will not be fully utilized under your proposal for NASA.

Your proposals reliance on a promising, yet still fledgling commercial space industry, combined with retiring the Space Shuttle and canceling Constellation will severely diminish the manned space flight program and provide the JSC with no true mission objective. The United States will be left without domestic manned space flight capabilities or the ability to support the International Space Station (ISS), putting the station at risk of major operational failure well before its planned retirement in 2020. In addition, it is unacceptable for the U.S. to forfeit its dominance in space and risk national security by becoming dependent on the Russians to reach the ISS.

The JSC represents 40 years of experience and infrastructure that is not possessed anywhere else and cannot be replaced if we allow it to be lost now. To reduce the space gap and keep our country at the forefront of space exploration, it is critical for NASA to continue its support and development of manned space flight capabilities while the commercial industry continues to grow.

We hope you will meet with us and the talented workforce here at JSC in Houston or with our delegation in Washington, D.C. to further detail your vision for JSC and its role within your proposal for NASA. We are excited to work with you to define the future of American manned space flight and look forward to hosting you in Houston soon.



U.S. SenatorU.S. Senator


U.S. Representative U.S. Representative


U.S. Representative U.S. Representative


U.S. Representative U.S. Representative


U.S. Representative U.S. Representative


U.S. Representative U.S. Representative