The House Science Subcommittee on Space began the 103rd Congress with several hearings to review U.S. space policy. The hearings, held February 2 and 4, with a third scheduled for February 17, consider a series of reports released by the National Space Council under former Vice-President Quayle. The hearing room was full with new members of the subcommittee, many of whom are from districts deeply affected by the aerospace industry.

On February 2, the subcommittee reviewed recommendations from the report, “A Post Cold War Assessment of U.S. Space Policy.” This report examined the historical context of all the U.S. space programs: civil, military, intelligence, and commercial and proposed policies for their future based on the changed global circumstances. As chair of the task force that produced the report, Laurel Wilkening, provost of the University of Washington, Seattle, summarized its main points.