Congress plots to create new 'Space Corps' branch to the military

The House Armed Services Committee recently approved a version of the 2018 military budget that includes the creation of a sixth military branch -- the Space Corps.

Today, the military consists of the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, and Air Force. A new branch has not been added since the Air Force in 1947.

According to the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act, the Space Corps would take over duties currently handled by the Air Force and its Space Command. Then, it would relate to the Air Force in the same way the Marine Corps relates to the Navy.

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X-37B, the US military's secretive space plane
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X-37B, the US military's secretive space plane
The X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle in the encapsulation cell at the Astrotech facility in April 2010, in Titusville, Fla. Air Force officials are scheduled to launch the X-37B April 21, 2010, at Cape Canaveral Air Station, Fla. The X-37B is the U.S.'s newest and most advanced unmanned re-entry spacecraft. (Courtesy photo) (Photo by DoD/Corbis via Getty Images)
Launch of Atlas V OTV3 from Cape Canaveral AFS, FL. December 11, 2012 (Photo by DoD/Corbis via Getty Images)
The X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle sits on the runway during post-landing operations Dec. 3, 2010, at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. The X-37B conducted on-orbit experiments for more than 220 days during its maiden voyage. It fired its orbital maneuver engine in low-earth orbit to perform an autonomous reentry before landing. (U.S. Air Force photo/Michael Stonecypher) (Photo by DoD/Corbis via Getty Images)
The Air Force's first unmanned re-entry spacecraft, X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle, landed at 1:16 a.m. Dec. 3, 2010, at Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. The X-37B conducted on-orbit experiments for more than 220 days during its maiden voyage. (U.S. Air Force photo/Michael Stonecypher) (Photo by DoD/Corbis via Getty Images)
The X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle in the encapsulation cell at the Astrotech facility in April 2010, in Titusville, Fla. Air Force officials are scheduled to launch the X-37B April 21, 2010, at Cape Canaveral Air Station, Fla. The X-37B is the U.S.'s newest and most advanced unmanned re-entry spacecraft. (Courtesy photo) (Photo by DoD/Corbis via Getty Images)
Launch of Atlas V OTV3 from Cape Canaveral AFS, FL. December 11, 2012 (Photo by DoD/Corbis via Getty Images)
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CNN reports that the Air Force isn't thrilled about the idea. Both Air Force Chief of Staff General David Goldfein and Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson told the news outlet that a separate Space Corps would create bureaucratic bloat and interdepartmental turf wars -- and it wouldn't improve anything at all.

"If I had more money," Wilson told CNN, "I would put it into lethality, not bureaucracy."

Though private spaceflight is trending around the world right now, Congress likely won't add the Space Corps to its arsenal for a while. The Senate version of the U.S. budget does not include anything about the Space Corps at all.

Who knows what could happen in years to come, though?

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