For NASA and its leading contractors, shaken by sharp changes in the wake of the 2008 presidential election, Tuesday’s results could translate into serious belt tightening.
Yet Mr. Trump has stressed the importance of supporting deep-space exploration, and his campaign attracted a cadre of veteran experts with long histories supporting robust space efforts.
One far-reaching set of potential changes that have been discussed for years may now be squarely on the table, according to industry officials and transitions aides: restructuring and shrinking NASA’s web of regional centers.
Such moves could slash thousands of employees and save billions of dollars yearly.
Based on Mr. Trump’s campaign positions, NASA’s climate-change research also may come under the ax, along with aerospace research not directly tied to space endeavors.
During the primaries, Mr. Trump hinted his NASA policies would cut agency spending as part of a broader deficit reduction drive, though such topics generated scant attention. But as the general election campaign heated up in Florida, where space is a fundamental pillar of the economy, the message morphed into extolling the importance of pursuing such programs
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