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Newt Gingrich plans to colonize the moon in two years and it make it the 51st State, if Newt becomes President. 

Gingrich laid out this plans during a speech in the city of Cocoa, on Florida’s Space Coast. He also said that near-Earth space would be bustling with commercial activity by 2015, and that America would possess a next-generation propulsion system by then, allowing the nation to start daily flights to Mars.

Gingrich said that he wants to make the Moon our 51st State and he wants to go to the moon, personally, and plant an American flag on the moon.

“I think we are the only country in the world that can develop the Moon and make it viable.  I can see something like the Mall of America on the moon,” Gingrich reportedly told reporters.

“By the end of my second year in office, we will have the first permanent base on the moon, and it will be American and the moon will have an NFL franchise,” Gingrich reportedly said.

The former Speaker of the House made no apologies for the boldness of his ambitions, which depend primarily on the emergence of a vibrant commercial spaceflight industry.

He said the U.S space program needs a kick in the pants like the one President John F. Kennedy gave it in 1961, when he promised to put a man on the moon by the end of the decade.

“I am sick of being told we have to be timid, and I am sick of being told we have to be limited to technologies that are 50 years old,” Gingrich told a standing-room-only crowd of cheering supporters.

With the retirement of NASA’s space shuttle program last July, the U.S. is now reliant on Russia to get its astronauts to and from the International Space Station, and will be until 2017 or so, when private American vehicles may start coming online.

Meanwhile, China is ramping up its space program.

“If the Chinese try to come to the moon, we will stop them.  The moon belong to the U.S.  We were there first,” Gingrich reportedly said.

Mitt Romney said that he thinks it’s a great idea for Gingrich to go to the moon.  “I think we should send him there right away.  The moon needs him,”  Romney reportedly said.