The White House has released an official response to a petition to “[s]ecure resources and funding, and begin construction of a Death Star by 2016.” Last September, the White House launched We the People on WhiteHouse.gov that allows Americans to create and sign petitions that, if signed by enough people, are reviewed by policy experts and receive an official White House response. The current threshold for a petition to receive an official response is 25,000 signatures within 30 days.
The White House's response to the petition to build a Death Star by 2016 was “No.” Paul Shawcross, Chief of the Science and Space Branch at the White House Office of Management and Budget, authored the official response. Although rejecting the petition, the response stated that the Administrations shares the petitioners' desire for job creation and a strong national defense. The response stated that a Death Star would not be built because:
- construction of a Death Star has been estimated to cost more than $850,000,000,000,000,000, and the administration wishes to reduce the deficit, not expand it;
- the Administration does not support blowing up planets; and
- “Why would we spend countless taxpayer dollars on a Death Star with a fundamental flaw that can be exploited by a one-man starship?”