Vice President Mike Pence on Thursday inched America closer to an age of interstellar defense, one where a four-star general leads a multi-billion dollar effort to defend American satellites against nations “pursuing space war-fighting capabilities,” as Defense Secretary Jim Mattis described it.

“The time has come to establish the United States Space Force,” Pence said.

Yes, they’re actually calling it “Space Force.” No, this is not a 12-year-old boy’s fever dream.

But it could seem that way in the near future if Congress doesn’t approve the Pentagon plans for America’s first armed service since 1947. Next year’s budget will seek funding and approval for the galactic venture.

This is OnPolitics Today: To infinity, and beyond.

Stormy Daniels’ lawyer: He’s running, or raising his profile

Heads up, 2020 watchers: Michael Avenatti, the Stormy Daniels lawyer and frequent on-air critic of President Donald Trump, has made his way to Iowa. Avenatti will speak Friday night at an Iowa Democrats fundraiser while “exploring a run for the presidency of the United States,” he told The Des Moines Register. Avenatti is best known for representing Daniels, the adult film star suing Trump in connection to her alleged affair with the president. Critics have accused Avenatti of flirting with a White House run to raise his profile, a claim the lawyer denied.

The ballad of lost ballots continues

A so-called “clerical error” resulted in the loss of 100 votes for Kansas Gov. Jeff Colyer as he trails challenger Kris Kobach in the state’s Republican primary for governor. Kobach’s current role? Secretary of State. News of the now-rectified blunder, which cut Kobach’s lead in half, came a day after nearly 600 lost votes surfaced in a highly watched Ohio congressional race. A county clerk told USA TODAY that the votes were somehow inputted incorrectly by Kobach’s office once submitted, shaving off 100 votes for his opponent. It’s unfortunate, but nothing new: Here’s why ballots routinely go missing in U.S. elections.

Elsewhere in politics


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