Vice President Pence very clearly ignored instructions while he was visiting NASA's Kennedy Space Center on Thursday.
While examining a piece of "Critical Space Flight Hardware" that was labeled "DO NOT TOUCH," Pence went ahead and, well, touched it.
And a new meme was born -- and don't worry, the vice president is in on the joke.
C'mon dude, really? pic.twitter.com/SqZZ43exxl— Mike Rundle (@flyosity) July 7, 2017
i couldn't help myself. pic.twitter.com/AxdVtF9HIP— Citrine (@Melangetic) July 7, 2017
we are all thinking the same as critical-space-flight-hardware i think. pic.twitter.com/tbNDOIaAeD— 'ingie (@yngling) July 7, 2017
This looks like an appalled face. pic.twitter.com/njIygeTZyT— Coy Woolard (@coylums) July 7, 2017
Like this? pic.twitter.com/NXPo8ZEpY3— Brian (@BWFeldy) July 7, 2017
Still, for its part, NASA seemed thrilled with the vice president's visit.
Vice President Mike Pence visited KSC for an up close look at the Spaceport. He spoke to employees & toured work being done at Kennedy. pic.twitter.com/xgvSTKZdAf— NASA Kennedy / KSC (@NASAKennedy) July 7, 2017
And the vice president himself, who was there on a tour with Republican Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, was able to make a joke:
Okay...so this isn't exactly the first time this has happened. pic.twitter.com/6Y7b3UlJXe— Vice President Pence (@VP) July 7, 2017
NASA spokesman Bob Jacobs said the "do not touch" signs are there as a day-to-day reminder, but noted that in this case, touching the hardware was fine.
"Procedures require the hardware to be cleaned before tiles are bonded to the spacecraft, so touching the surface is okay," Jacobs said in an email. "Otherwise, the hardware would have had a protective cover over it like the thermal heat shield, which was nearby.”
Last week, President Trump signed an executive order re-establishing the National Space Council to coordinate the country's space efforts. Pence is leading the council.
“Let us do what our nation has always done since its very founding and beyond: We've pushed the boundaries on frontiers, not just of territory, but of knowledge," Pence said in remarks to Kennedy Center employees, according to NASA. "We've blazed new trails, and we’ve astonished the world as we’ve boldly grasped our future without fear. From this 'Bridge to Space,' our nation will return to the moon, and we will put American boots on the face of Mars."
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