NASA Chief 'Appalled' By Accusations He's Not Cooperating with Obama's Team

A firestorm of words has erupted over posts to a blog at the regarding NASA Administrator Michael Griffin and President-elect Barack Obama's transition team.

According to the blogger, Robert Block, Griffin has been less than cooperative with the transition team. Block posted yesterday to the blog, "The Write Stuff," that according to unnamed sources: "Griffin is scripting NASA employees and civilian contractors on what they can tell the transition team and has warned aerospace executives not to criticize the agency's moon program."

Block continued: "Griffin's resistance is part of a no-holds-barred effort to preserve the Constellation program, the delayed and over-budget moon rocket that is his signature project."

Today, Griffin replied, calling the charges "simply wrong."

"I am appalled by any accusations of intimidation, and encourage a free and open exchange of information with the contractor community," Griffin said. "I would like to reiterate what I have stated in a previous email to all NASA Officials: we must make every effort to 'lean forward,' to answer questions promptly, openly and accurately."

Block also wrote that NASA Chief of Strategic Communications, Chris Shank, said Griffin was concerned that the six-member transition team "lacks the engineering expertise to properly assess some of the information they have been given." Block said Griffin had a "heated 40-minute conversation" last week with the head of the transition team, Lori Garver, a former NASA associate administrator. Shank denied there was an argument.

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