US astronaut casts his ballot from space
Washington, Nov 9 (IANS) Astronaut Shane Kimbrough, the only US citizen in space on Election Day, cast his vote from the International Space Station (ISS), NASA said Tuesday.
Kimbrough, 45, who arrived on board the ISS in mid-October, exercised his right to vote from the space platform orbiting the Earth at 27,000 kms (17,780 miles) per hour.
“An electronic and secure ballot is sent to the member of the ISS crew from the clerk in his county. (The astronaut) fills in the form and returns it electronically. It’s all secure. It is all private,” Efe news agency cited a NASA statement.
A 1997 Texas law allows astronauts away from Earth to vote on Election Day provided, they request their ballots one year before launch.
Before launching on a four-month mission, Kimbrough said it was going to be special, being able to say ‘I voted from space’, Daily Mail reported.
Astronauts are ‘pretty much apolitical,’ he told reporters last month adding that he will be glad to welcome the new president, whoever it may be.
Previous US crewmember on board the ISS, astronaut Kate Rubins, also voted from space before returning to Earth last week.