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Trump’s speech evokes trips to distant worlds

Trump and Pence
“Imagine the wonders our country could know in America’s 250th year,” President Donald Trump tells Congress. Vice President Mike Pence sits behind him. (White House via YouTube)

President Donald Trump referred to technology and science in only the most general terms tonight in his speech to a joint session of Congress, evoking a vision of curing illnesses and leaving footprints on distant worlds.

In advance of the speech, some reports hinted that there’d be a call to step up the pace of human space exploration, but that got lost amid the issues that are more central to Trump’s agenda – such as immigration and crime, terrorism and security, health care and jobs.

Much of what Trump had to say about technological innovation had to do with America’s past, not its future. The issue was addressed most directly toward the end of the speech.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributing editor at GeekWire, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing. Check out "About Alan Boyle" for more fun facts.

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