Jim Bridenstine

The decision by Bill Nye to attend the State of the Union Address alongside the Trump administration's nominee to head NASA has put the celebrity science educator at odds with many scientists.

Nye, who starred in the children's program Bill Nye the Science Guy and now has his own Netflix original series, Bill Nye Saves the World is also CEO of the Planetary Society.

President Trump's State of the Union speech Tuesday night is intended to outline the priorities of the nation, while guests of the president and of lawmakers reflect the political messages each party wants to highlight.

Trump has invited a list of law enforcement and military heroes, a reinforcement of his intended theme of "building a safe, strong and proud America."

This Week in Oklahoma Politics, KOSU's Michael Cross talks with Republican Political Consultant Neva Hill and ACLU Oklahoma Executive Director Ryan Kiesel about changes at the state Department of Health with the resignation of the agency's commissioner and deputy along with the firing of its chief lawyer amid allegations of mismanagement, lawmakers pass patches to fix the budget after a grand bargain fails to pass out of committee and the State Supreme Court places a hold on a DUI law from taking effect while looking into its constitutionality.

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President Trump's pick for the next head of NASA, Rep. Jim Bridenstine, R-Okla., will have his Senate nomination hearing on Wednesday. He's been controversial because of his views on climate change.

TRANSCRIPT:

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST: Tomorrow, senators will get a chance to question President Trump's pick for the head of NASA. The nominee is Congressman Jim Bridenstine. He's a Republican from Oklahoma. NPR's Nell Greenfieldboyce reports that some are questioning whether he's got the right stuff.

This Week in Oklahoma Politics returns from the summer hiatus as KOSU's Michael Cross talks with Republican Political Consultant Neva Hill and ACLU Oklahoma Executive Director Ryan Kiesel about the call by Governor Fallin for a Special Session on September 25th after the unconstitutional ruling against the $1.50 fee per pack of cigarettes left a $215M hole in the budget, Oklahoma's junior Senator shows support for DACA after an announcement from President Trump to end the program and Congressman Jim Bridenstine gets bipartisan criticism over his appointment to head NASA.

President Trump's pick for the next leader of NASA is a fighter pilot who wants Americans to return to the moon but doesn't believe that humans are causing climate change.

With a vote scheduled for Thursday in the U.S. House, it's down to the wire for the American Health Care Act, the Republican-authored bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.

This Week in Oklahoma Politics, KOSU's Michael Cross talks with Republican Political Consultant Neva HIll and ACLU Oklahoma Executive Director Ryan Kiesel about the rocky start for a committee investigating sexual harassment claims against two lawmakers as one of the members walks out refusing to sign a confidentiality agreement and the governor is getting ready to release her executive budget facing a nearly $870 million shortfall as agencies come to the capitol asking members of the House Appropriations Committee for more money.

An announcement about NASA's leadership could come as early as next week. Oklahoma U.S. Rep. Jim Bridenstine, a former Navy pilot, has actively sought the position and appears to be the leading candidate.

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All five of Oklahoma's U.S. House members easily beat back Republican primary challengers on Tuesday and advanced to November's general election, while U.S. Rep. Jim Bridenstine in Tulsa automatically retains his 1st District seat with his victory.

Bridenstine, along with U.S. Reps. Tom Cole, Frank Lucas, Markwayne Mullin and Steve Russell, all easily won re-election.

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