I voted from space: US As­tro­naut casts bal­lot

‘As­tro­nauts are pretty much apo­lit­i­cal’

Kuwait Times - - HEALTH & SCIENCE -

The lone Amer­i­can off the planet has cast his vote from space, keep­ing with NASA’s motto of “Vote while you float.” NASA said Mon­day that as­tro­naut Shane Kim­brough filed his bal­lot in Tues­day’s pres­i­den­tial elec­tion from the In­ter­na­tional Space Sta­tion some­time over the past few days. He ar­rived at the or­bit­ing lab in mid-October. Be­fore launch­ing on a four-month mis­sion, Kim­brough said it was go­ing to be spe­cial, be­ing able to say “I voted from space.”

By the time he’s back on Earth in Fe­bru­ary, Amer­ica will have a new com­man­der in chief. As­tro­nauts are “pretty much apo­lit­i­cal,” he told re­porters last month. “And I’ll be glad to wel­come the new pres­i­dent, who­ever that is.” The pre­vi­ous US space sta­tion res­i­dent, Kate Ru­bins, also cast an ab­sen­tee bal­lot from up there, be­fore re­turn­ing to Earth a week ago, ac­cord­ing to NASA.

A 1997 Texas law al­lows US as­tro­nauts to vote from space. For NASA as­tro­nauts, home is Hous­ton when they’re not cir­cling the globe. A se­cure elec­tronic bal­lot is for­warded to the as­tro­nauts by Mis­sion Con­trol in Hous­ton and re­turned by email to the county clerk. Kim­brough is shar­ing the space sta­tion with two Rus­sians. The crew will dou­ble in size at the end of next week, adding an­other Amer­i­can, a Rus­sian and a French­man. — AP

PARIS: This file photo taken yes­ter­day is an il­lus­tra­tion pic­ture taken in Paris show­ing fig­urines next to a de­flated globe. — AFP

KAZA­KHSTAN: In this Oct19, 2016, file photo, US as­tro­naut Shane Kim­brough, a mem­ber of the main crew to the In­ter­na­tional Space Sta­tion (ISS), talks to his rel­a­tives prior to the launch of the Soyuz MS-02 space ship, in Rus­sian leased Baikonur cos­mod­rome. — AP

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