Astronauts in space beam down message about voting

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) - The nearest polling place is 200 miles and a hair-raising rocket ride away, but those on board the International Space Station aren't forgetting to cast a ballot this election.

U.S. astronauts Mike Fincke and Gregory Chamitoff took the opportunity Monday to send a message: "If we can do it, so can you."

A bill passed in 1997 by the Texas Legislature set up a way for astronauts - most of whom live in Houston - to vote from space using an electronic ballot and secure e-mail.

In remarks that aired on NASA TV, the pair urged their fellow citizens to take the time to vote.

The astronauts ended their message with a zero-gravity flip.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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