Trump orders resurrection of National Space Council

President Donald Trump, center, signs an Executive Order to reestablish the National Space Council, alongside members of the Senate, Congress, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and Commercial Space Companies in the Roosevelt room of the White House in Washington, Friday, June 30, 2017. Vice President Mike Pence will chair the council. Also pictured are NASA Astronaut David Wolf, left, NASA Astronaut Alvin Drew, second from right, and NASA astronaut Buzz Aldrin, right. Photo Credit: (NASA/Aubrey Gemignani)

July 1 (UPI) — Twenty-four years after it ceased operating, the National Space Council was revived Friday by an executive order from President Donald Trump.

The president issued an executive order to re-establish the space exploration panel, which was formed in 1989 by President George H.W. Bush and disbanded four years later.

“This Executive Order revives the Council and will reinvigorate America’s role as a leader in space, strengthen America’s economy, and advance the security of the American people,” the White House said in a blog post Friday.

“The future of American space leadership — we are going to lead again. It’s been a long time, it’s over 25 years” Trump said before signing the order. “We are going to be leading like we have never led before.”

Like its predecessor, the new space council will have the vice president as its chairman and will include a number of other executive-level members.

The 1989 council was preceded by a similar panel called the National Aeronautics and Space Council, which operated between 1958 and 1973, during the United States’ space race to the moon with the Soviet Union.

“The next great American frontier is space,” Trump added. “We started but we never completed. We stopped, but now we start again.”

Former astronaut Buzz Aldrin, the second human being to walk on the moon, and former NASA flight director Gene Crantz both attended Friday’s signing ceremony.


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