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Presidential hopeful says he'd use burger and beer to deter space aliens

Seth Moulton
U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton, D-Mass., speaks during the Polk County Democrats Steak Fry in Des Moines, Iowa, on Sept. 30, 2017.   -   Copyright  Charlie Neibergall AP file
By David Freeman with NBC News Tech and Science News
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There's no evidence that space aliens are preparing to invade Earth, but presidential hopeful Seth Moulton is ready with a beer and a burger if they do.

In response to a Buzzfeed reporter's cheeky question Monday, the Democratic congressman from Massachusetts said he'd "start with diplomacy."

"What I would do with this alien, I'd give him a classic American meal," Moulton said after announcing his candidacy for president. "I'd serve a beer and a burger."

Sounds yummy, though it's unclear that American cuisine would be enough to avert interplanetary mayhem if aliens did invade. And if you've ever seen "Independence Day" or "Mars Attacks!," you know that making nice to aliens doesn't always work out well for earthlings — at least in the world of Hollywood make-believe.

Having served as a liaison to Iraqi leaders during his time in the Marines, Moulton has seen the power of diplomacy first hand. And Moulton's musings earned a bit of lighthearted support from one scientist who has long been involved in the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI).

"If spacecraft from another solar system were to set down on Earth, you can be sure the occupants are technologically far, far beyond us," Seth Shostak, senior astronomer at the SETI Institute in Mountain View, California, told NBC News MACH in an email. "Trying to fight them off would be like cavemen taking on the army's Special Forces .... Diplomacy is the only strategy that might work."

Then again, Shostak said, hamburgers might not be the best food to offer hungry aliens, "given that the aliens' biochemistry is undoubtedly somewhat different than ours!"

Angelle Tanner, a professor of physics and astronomy at Mississippi State University in Starkville, echoed Shostak's comments, joking that the aliens "could be allergic to gluten."

Aliens aside, Moulton's platform includes support for the Green New Deal, a public option for health insurance and new infrastructure projects, including high-speed rail.

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