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Trump reactivates National Space Council

Trump with executive order
President Donald Trump shows off an executive order reviving the National Space Council. NASA astronaut Alvin Drew, Apollo 11 moonwalker Buzz Aldrin and Vice President Mike Pence, the council’s chairman, are at far right. (Shannon Augustus / C-SPAN via Twitter)

After months of foreshadowing, President Donald Trump today signed an executive order to revive the National Space Council, a move that’s likely to open the way for space policy changes that have been largely put on hold during the White House transition.

The order was signed at a White House ceremony on the eve of a long Fourth of July weekend. Among those in attendance: members of Congress, Boeing’s Dennis Muilenburg and other aerospace executives, and astronauts including Apollo 11 moonwalker Buzz Aldrin.

“Today’s announcement sends a clear signal to the world that we are restoring America’s proud legacy of leadership in space,” Trump said.

Vice President Mike Pence will serve as the council’s chairman, and the members will include top-level administration officials including Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Defense Secretary James Mattis, the heads of the Commerce, Transportation and Homeland Security departments and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

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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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