WASHINGTON – U.S. Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), chairman of the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee, and Rep. Barbara Comstock (R-Va.), chairwoman of the Subcommittee on Research and Technology, today congratulated National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Astronaut Peggy Whitson for breaking the U.S. record for most time spent in space.

Chairman Smith: “Congratulations to Astronaut Peggy Whitson for setting the 534-day American record for time spent in space. This morning’s call between President Trump and Astronauts Peggy Whitson and Jack Fischer is an important reminder of the great goals in space our country can achieve. I stand with President Trump in recognizing what our astronauts on the International Space Station and our scientists and engineers on the ground have accomplished. As a country, we must reach for future successes in space exploration. Research and Technology Chairwoman Barbara Comstock’s INSPIRE Women Act leaps toward that goal by directing NASA to put American women on a path to careers that will further our nation’s space program. This new public law takes strides in ensuring our young women have the resources and encouragement they need to pursue STEM careers. Astronaut Whitson’s accomplishment inspires Americans and furthers the United States as a pioneer in space exploration. I encourage students across the country to dream big, work hard, and follow in our great astronauts’ footsteps.”

Research and Technology Chairwoman Comstock: "The INSPIRE Women Act was designed to promote STEM and NASA careers so that the next generation of young women are mentored by women leaders like Astronaut Peggy Whitson, the American with the longest time spent in space. This legislation will provide resources to young girls and women who aspire to succeed as scientists, engineers, astronauts, mathematicians, and in many other STEM careers."

Watch President Trump’s call with the astronauts HERE.