Some of the celebration surrounding the Mars Science Laboratory's successful landing Sunday night on the Red Planet had a political tone.
"Even the longest of odds are no match for America's unique blend of technical acumen and gutsy determination," said Charles Holdren, President Obama's top science advisor.
Holdren hadn't sounded quite so bold just hours before, according to his friend and NASA administrator Charles Bolden. Holdren, Bolden said, had said he thought he was going to throw up.
Obama chimed in as well about the high-tech rover, nicknamed Curiosity.
The night's successful landing "parallels our major steps forward toward a vision for a new partnership with American companies to send American astronauts into space on American spacecraft," according to a statement from the president, posted on the NASA website.