Politicians face scrutiny for every misstep they take – especially in the public eye. Many are quick to apologize or to deny, but only rarely do we see a politician actually laughing about a faux pas. But that’s what happened on Friday when Vice President Pence, who was speaking at Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, put his hand on a piece of space equipment clearly marked “Do Not Touch.”
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In typical fashion, Twitter users came out in droves to rip into the Vice President for his ineptitude. His response as to why he touched a part of the Orion spacecraft was unexpected- and refreshingly lighthearted.
“Sorry @NASA…@MarcoRubio dared me to do it!” he tweeted in response to the criticism he received. The VP also attached a photo of Florida Sen. Marco Rubio’s face circled in red.
Pence took the humor a step further when he tweeted a second time that perhaps this wasn’t the first time he’d touched something he wasn’t supposed to.
Rubio replied to Pence’s tweet with a playful tweet of his own. “In fairness, I warned @VP that ‘you break it, you own it,'” he wrote.
NASA’s Twitter even got in on the fun. “It was OK to touch the surface. Those are just day-to-day reminder signs. We were going to clean it anyway. It was an honor to host you!” they wrote.
According to The Verge, Pence was touching the titanium forward bay cover of the Orion capsule. It won’t deteriorate if someone touches it. They also reminded the public that if it truly was something that should never be touched by anyone, there would have been an enclosure around it.
Pence, who was there to speak about the Trump administration’s future plans of putting Americans on Mars and on the moon again, showed a lighter side to his personality that the American public rarely sees.