Trump Campaign Removes Space Video That Violated NASA Ad Rules

Politics 2020/6/5

Trump Campaign Removes Space Video That Violated NASA Ad Rules

The campaign to reelect President Donald Trump pulled SpaceX, NASA and astronauts and their families into a campaign video that appeared to violate the space agency’s advertising regulations.

The video, released on Wednesday, was the latest effort by the president to parlay his stewardship of American space policy into an upbeat campaign issue. It included shots of two NASA astronauts, Robert L. Behnken and Douglas G. Hurley, who blasted off on Saturday aboard a SpaceX rocket, the first time astronauts have headed to orbit from the United States since 2011.

The campaign removed the video from YouTube on Thursday evening, but not before more than 4,000 people signed a petition that sought to “Stop Donald Trump politicizing SpaceX and NASA accomplishments.”

Karen L. Nyberg, a retired astronaut who is married to Hurley, posted a message on Twitter that said she and her 10-year-old son should be off-limits to political campaigns.

Titled “Make Space Great Again,” the campaign video, almost three minutes long, intercut between President John F. Kennedy’s 1962 speech setting the goal of a moon landing by the end of the decade, video footage of the Apollo 11 mission, a 2018 speech by Trump promising new space achievements and Saturday’s launch.

NASA makes its images and videos freely available for news organizations and noncommercial uses. But advertising requests are handled much more strictly. While the regulations do not explicitly mention political campaigns, they state, “As a government agency, NASA will not promote or endorse or appear to promote or endorse a commercial product, service or activity.”

The regulations also state, “Astronauts or employees who are currently employed by NASA cannot have their names, likenesses or other personality traits displayed in any advertisements or marketing material.”

Neither SpaceX, NASA nor the Trump campaign rep

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