‘A civilization on Mars thousands of years ago’: Congressman stuns NASA scientists
A California congressman baffled a panel of space experts testifying in Washington when he asked if it was possible that Mars was home to an ancient alien civilization. The panel told him that there was “no evidence” and it would be “extremely unlikely.”
A hearing before the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology on Tuesday was interrupted when Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-California) requested additional time to ask the panel of scientists with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) if there was any evidence of archaic extraterrestrials living on the red planet.
"You have indicated that Mars was totally different thousands of years ago,” said Rohrabacher, who is the vice chairman of the Science, Space and Technology Committee and a member of the Space and Aeronautics Subcommittee since he first entered Congress in 1989.
“Is it possible that there was a civilization on Mars thousands of years ago?” he asked.
Kenneth Farley, a professor of geochemistry at California Institute of Technology who worked on the Mars 2020 rover mission, fielded Rohrabacher’s question by first clarifying that “the evidence is that Mars was different billions of years ago, not thousands of years ago.”
“Billions… Well, yes,” Rohrabacher responded.
"There's no evidence that I'm aware of," Farley added before Rohrabacher interrupted.
“Would you rule that out? See, there's some people... Well, anyway,” Rohrabacher said before being interrupted by Farley.
"I would say that is extremely unlikely," Farley responded.
While it is unclear what Rohrabacher meant by “some people,” NASA recently had to respond to comments made by an InfoWars guest who claimed that there was a colony of kidnapped child slaves on Mars. NASA denied that there are any humans on the red planet.
Twitter erupted on Tuesday with many ridiculing Rohrabacher over his question.
Not a joke, sadly. With this vital question answered, perhaps NASA can tell us if there's civilization in Congressman Rohrabacher! https://t.co/1pWthkg7Js— Garry Kasparov (@Kasparov63) July 18, 2017
looking forward to full committee hearings featuring the ghost of Robert Stack as a witness— Brian L Kahn (@blkahn) July 18, 2017
Our Vice Chairman of the Science, Space and Technology Committee, everyone— Tara M (@tarachel42) July 18, 2017
That moment when you're not sure if the ancient Martian civilization question is a joke or if your agency's funding depends on your answer pic.twitter.com/Nh4Yxl6Sce— Brian L Kahn (@blkahn) July 18, 2017
California Congressman Dana Rohrabacher asked NASA about ancient civilizations from Marshttps://t.co/2jkFTn8Iyrpic.twitter.com/l6CQnxR3iU— Salvador Hernandez (@SalHernandez) July 18, 2017
Some Twitter users were even able to combine Rohrabacher’s comments on Mars to previous comments he made that have led some to accuse him of being soft on Russia.
Dana Rohrabacher is a Putin plant. I wonder where he is going with this Mars civilization question? New way to mis-spend tax dollars https://t.co/ClL0aslocl— Beki Knott (@lotsofuss) July 18, 2017
1st there was "Putin pays him" and now Dana Rohrabacher asks NASA if there were civilizations on Mars! #HeNeedsToGohttps://t.co/sR3ebKWXRT— eztempo (@eztempo) July 19, 2017
Rep. Rohrabacher denies global warming, is the best friend to the Russians in the House and apparently is so out of touch, he asks this... https://t.co/R7wNVMiofQ— Bryan William Jones (@BWJones) July 18, 2017