New Survey Findings: Public Support for NASA/Space Shuttle

July 13th, 2011

Credit: NASA

A just released Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey has found that 50% of Americans polled say the Space Shuttle program worth what it cost taxpayers.

As the last U.S. space shuttle now circles the planet, the survey found that Americans are slightly more supportive of the NASA program than they were a year-and-a-half ago.

These findings are little changed from a survey conducted last October, but the number of those who say the program has been worth the cost is up from 40% in January 2010.

Other survey findings include:

— Thirty-eight percent (38%) of adults believe the government should fund future space programs, but 33% say such programs should be funded by the private sector. Twenty-nine percent (29%) are not sure. While those sentiments are little changed from October, voters were more evenly divided on the question last April.

— Only 18% of adults believe the government should spend more money on space exploration in the future, while 30% say the government should spend less. A plurality (40%) thinks the government should spend about the same amount of money on space exploration as it did before.

— Overall, 74% of Americans believe it as at least somewhat important for the United States to have a manned space program, including 35% who say it’s Very Important. Twenty percent (20%) don’t think a U.S. manned space program is that important, but only three percent (3%) say it’s Not At All Important.

— Seventy-seven percent (77%) of Americans share a favorable opinion of NASA, including 30% who view the government space agency Very Favorably. Seventeen percent (17%) view NASA at least somewhat unfavorably, with four percent (4%) who hold a Very Unfavorable opinion.

For more information on the Rasmussen Reports survey and the questions asked, go to:

By Leonard David