What happened: Vice President Kamala Harris assumed command of the National Space Council in May 2021. Nearly two years later, a SpaceX next-generation Starship exploded during a test flight over Texas.
Why it matters: It's another space-related scandal for Harris, who in 2022 presided over several launch delays involving the Artemis 1, a massive new rocket NASA hopes will one day carry humans to the moon for the first time since 1972. The SpaceX Starship is also being developed with that goal in mind.
Connecting the dots: SpaceX president and COO Gwynne Shotwell has served on the National Space Council's User Advisory Group since December 2022, when Harris formally invited her to join.
Big picture: Harris has shown little desire to take on any real responsibility as vice president. Her first assigned task—managing the immigration crisis—did not go well.
Chairing the space council must have seemed like an easy gig. Alas, Harris has managed to bungle that as well. In one of her first official acts as space council chair, Harris hired a bunch of child actors and forced them to listen to her wax maniacally about the wonders of space.
Bigger picture: Most Americans are (justifiably) terrified at the thought of Harris becoming president.
Context: President Joe Biden is 80 years old.