As of this writing, the nomination of Rep. Jim Bridenstine, R-Oklahoma has not been officially announced, but already various luminaries in the science and space world are lining up for and against the appointment. Who these people are, including President Obama’s science advisor on one side and a prominent lunar scientist and advocate of a return to the moon on the other, is illuminating of how the politics is working out. The reasons both sides are giving are even more so.

John Holdren is pretty sure Bridenstine would be a disaster

According to Think Progress, John Holdren, President Obama’s science advisor, is pretty sure that Bridenstine is a bad choice.

To be sure, the issue that irks him the most is climate change. However, Holdren also called the nominee, “a danger, if confirmed by the Senate, to NASA’s leadership in space science and Earth science alike.”

One should be reminded about Holdren, who he is and what he believes. Before he became concerned about climate change, Holdren was very concerned about over population, being as he was an acolyte of Paul Ehrlich. Holdren favored forced abortions and sterilizations to curb the rise in world population enforced by an international organization with police power.

More recently Holdren favored the "de-development" of the United States as a way to fight climate change. The plan was to be implemented regardless of the economic and human consequences.

More relevant to the question at hand, Holdren, along with Lori Garver, was instrumental in formulating the disastrous Obama decision that canceled the Bush era Constellation space exploration program that led to the sham project, Journey to Mars. Holdren helped to cripple NASA as an agency engaged in space exploration for at least a decade.

Paul Spudis says that Bridenstine as an ‘inspired choice’

Paul Spudis, a lunar scientist, and advocate for a return to the moon penned a lengthy essay on his blog describing the task that he sees the new NASA Administrator having to accomplish. The task is to restore the space agency’s role in spreading humanity and its economic sphere of influence beyond the Earth, particularly to the moon.

Spudis defends Bridenstine against his critics that he is a “politician,” something he sees as a feature and not a bug since the skill set of politics will serve him in good stead in dealing with, among other people, members of congress.

Spudis is basing his assessment on his long term advocacy of a return to the moon in a sustainable way, focusing on economic enhancement as well as science and exploration. Bridenstine will have a tough job, but as others have pointed out, he has a vision that should set things right after years of dysfunction. As a scientist, Spudis is unimpressed by the criticism that Bridenstine does not have a science or engineering background. Bridenstine, thanks to his sponsorship of the American Space Renaissance Act, has a keen understanding of the issues involved in space policy.