Sep 20, 2016

Laws Must Catch Up with Commercial Space

Washington, D.C. – House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) spoke on the House floor today in favor of H.R. 6007, legislation he sponsored to promote commercial spaceflight.

Full remarks are below or watch online here.

“I thank the speaker.

“The exploration of space has long united this country. Every American—rich or poor, living in cities or in the great rural areas that make up our country—can look to the moon knowing that American astronauts planted our flag there. Every time we look up into space, we have something to be proud of. But we know our journey has only just begun.

“Mr. Speaker, not too long ago commercial spaceflight was disregarded as some distant pipedream of the future. But today, thanks to innovation in places like Mojave, California, commercial spaceflight and the spaceports they take off from are at the epicenter of space exploration.

“These are the places leading in our journey to the great unknown. But as commercial space has ventured into the future, government policy has not kept up. We need to ensure government allows commercial spaceflight to succeed by updating laws to reflect changing circumstances. 

“Similar to airports, for our spaceports to function we need to prioritize safety and minimize the risk of structures interfering with the flight path of spacecraft on launch or reentry. The legislation I introduced that we are voting on today gives the FAA the authority they now lack to examine whether structures being built near spaceports will obstruct spaceflight. 

“With this, those leading our journey into space can remain confident that nothing back on earth will be slowing them down.

“I yield back.”