Astronaut Shane Kimbrough, currently the only American in space, sent his absentee ballot from the International Space Station.


Kimbrough arrived last month and is set to return home in February next year, and is living aboard the ISS with two Russian cosmonauts. Astronauts have been allowed to vote from space since 1997, when astronaut David Wolf became the first American to vote from space. Astronauts must apply for an absentee ballot a year in advance of the elections they want to participate in while in space, and they list their address as “low-Earth orbit.”

A secure electronic ballot is emailed to the astronaut by Mission Control in Houston, Texas, is filled out, and returned via email to the county clerk. For NASA astronauts, Houston is considered home, so Kimbrough’s vote will go toward the race in Texas.

At the end of next week, three more astronauts will join Kimbrough and his comrades, coming from America, Russia and France.

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