- The Washington Times - Friday, June 7, 2019

President Trump on Friday blasted NASA’s plans to go to the moon by 2024, instead suggesting future space programs stop at the moon before heading to Mars.

“For all of the money we are spending, NASA should NOT be talking about going to the Moon - We did that 50 years ago. They should be focused on the much bigger things we are doing, including Mars (of which the Moon is a part), Defense and Science,” Mr. Trump tweeted as he returns home from a European trip.

Mr. Trump might be reacting to a few reports about the potential for NASA to take part in another crewed moon landing, which hasn’t been done since 1972.

NASA awarded three companies a total of $253.5 million to begin bringing the science and technology necessary to take humans back to the moon in a program dubbed “Artemis.”

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine also said Thursday to USA Today that Congress needs to approve the Trump administration’s requested $1.6 billion in next year’s budget, otherwise putting a man on the moon by Mr. Trump’s 2024 deadline is “off the table” and will have to wait until 2028.



Media Matters’ Matthew Gertz said Mr. Trump may have brought up the topic after watching Fox Business Network, which discussed NASA’s moon landing plans roughly an hour before the president’s tweet.

Host Neil Cavuto said NASA is “refocusing on the moon, the next sort of quest, if you will, but didn’t we do this moon thing quite a few decades ago?”

 

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