Advocacy groups are now hoping to derail President Donald Trump’s nominee to run NASA over his history of anti-LGBT stances, including criticism of same-sex marriage as “contrary to millennia of human experience” and his description of bathroom protections for transgender people as “lawless federal bullying.”
Rep. Jim Bridenstine, a Republican congressman from Oklahoma and former Navy pilot, has drawn praise across the space community for his thoughtfulness on space policy and support for both traditional government programs and new private-sector ventures.
But lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender advocates are now trying to thwart his nomination based on Bridenstine’s controversial social stances, as they did with one of Trump’s nominees for Army secretary.
“It is rather hypocritical to have an individual so entrenched in his idea of ‘traditionalism’ to be nominated to lead an agency that has for almost 60 years pushed to expand our understanding and knowledge,” said Matt Thorn, executive director of OutServe-SLDN, which represents the LGBT military community. “NASA is rich in diversity. Rep. Bridenstine doesn’t have that same view. The Senate should block this nomination.”
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