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Senate approves Trump's nominee to lead NASA

Rep. James Bridenstine (R-OK). Photo: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

In a 50-49 vote along party lines, the Senate approved President Trump's pick to lead NASA — Oklahoma Congressman and Navy Reserve pilot, James Bridenstine.

Why it matters: The confirmation comes amid concern "about his record of partisanship as well as some statements questioning climate change, an area of research in which the space agency plays a central role," per the New York Times. The confirmation wraps up a seven and a half month period that left NASA without a permanent leader.