NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson noted that water is a precious resource in space
Trump made the joke during a video call to congratulate Whitson on setting a new record
During a video call with NASA astronauts Monday, President Donald Trump joked that he wouldn’t want to re-use human urine as drinking water – a practice common in US spaceflight.
Following an explanation by NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson of how human waste is repurposed for consumption, Trump responded that he would rather the space travelers drink it than himself.
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Asked what the astronauts are “learning up there in space,” Whitson described to the President how those at the International Space Station are researching ways to re-use certain materials – like human waste – to create resources.
“Water is such a precious resource up here that we also are cleaning up our urine and making it drinkable,” Whitson said. “And it’s really not as bad as it sounds.”
“I’m glad to hear that,” Trump responded. “Better you than me.”
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The call was scheduled to congratulate Whitson on breaking the record for longest time spent in space by an American astronaut.
NASA astronauts Jack Fischer and Kate Rubins also participated, as did Trump’s daughter, Ivanka.