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What a joke. This Reuters’ article is so busy campaigning for Barack Obama that it fails to note one fundamental fact: It is the Obama administration that gutted NASA’s science program so that there is little likelihood of any missions to Mars, or elsewhere, in the foreseeable future. As noted correctly in this Science article describing the same Obama telephone call to JPL,
The president’s sweeping endorsement of research, however, carefully avoids the fact that his 2013 budget would cut funding for NASA’s Mars exploration program by nearly one-third and end the country’s role in two Mars missions planned jointly with the European Space Agency for later in the decade. Both the House of Representatives and a Senate spending panel have added back money for Mars exploration, although Congress is unlikely to settle on a final budget for the agency until next spring.
Look, I freely admit the federal budget has to be cut. And I am freely willing to have those cuts occur in NASA. What I can’t abide is the kind of junk journalism seen in the Reuters piece above, selling Obama as a big supporter of space research when he clearly has not been.