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Senator Douglas Questions Moonshot

Jan. 26, 1962 - Senator Paul H. Douglas (pictured second from left in 1958) said today that he and many astronomers question the wisdom of spending billions to land a man on the moon. The Illinois Democrat said the public had never had a chance to consider the program, “but we are committed to it.” Sometimes it looks like “purely a stunt to get there before someone else,” he said. The Senator said there was a serious question whether the nation should spend that much money when “we consider what it could do in the way of schools, health, etc.” Budget Director David E. Bell defended the space program under Mr. Douglas’ questioning at a hearing of the House-Senate Joint Economic Committee. He said there was no stunt involved.

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