I ALMOST didn't bother to finish this book (something I almost never do). I'm a fan of "hard" sci-fi, cut my teeth on Heinlein and Clarke, and have a special love for "alternative history". Although Whittington's premise is plausible, he brings almost nothing new to the story, even throwing in some dialogue and situations from other fiction and non-fiction books about the early days of NASA. But what really got me, and I admit I'm a bit picky, was the OBVIOUS lack of editing. Not only is it filled with numerous, repeated mispellings, but even whole words used inappropriately. And it's Madalyn Murray O'Hair, not O'Hara, or O'Hare as she becomes in the end. Halfway through, I thought "This HAS to be self-published", and I was right. Both of this author's books have been published by Xlibris, and they'll publish yours, too, for $375. I'll volunteer to be your editor.
But, y'know, fatuous as I found the writing in the early going, it grew on me, and I found that I actually liked it. Probably won't read it again, but I liked it. So might you, if you can get past the lack of editing.
And to the reviewer who considered it "liberal-bashing", it didn't seem that way to me, even though one of the "heavies" is a liberal Congressman. It was that "either-or" approach to the space program espoused by the liberals of the time that killed it. Pretty hard to tell a story of an alternate history without mentioning that. It would be like writing a real history of WWII without including Neville Chamberlain. And the Speaker of the House is certainly a sympathetic character. Whittington does get in a couple of digs at some guy from Arkansas, but doesn't mention him by name. And you'd have to be in really deep denial to think that the Soviets didn't "run" Americans during the Cold War. Look up the Venona Project. I'm sure we were doing the same (I hope). "(International) Politics ain't beanbag!"