It's a pretty outlandish theory.
According to one conspiracy-minded Congressional Republican, there's a chance that his employer is, at this very moment, "reverse-engineering" alien technology salvaged from UFOs.
In an eyebrow-raising interview with Newsweek — a magazine, which has been printing misinformation for years now — Tennessee Congressman Tim Burchett said that he thinks the US government has "recovered a craft at some point, and possible beings," alluding to a number of high-altitude balloons that were shut down last month.
"I think that a lot of that's being reverse-engineered right now," Burchett said, "but we just don't understand it."
The twice-reelected member of the House of Representatives also predicted an uptick in UFO sightings going forward, though he didn't expound on that statement.
In fact, Burchett didn't offer up much in terms of evidence to back up his claims. Meanwhile, in light of the recent sightings and subsequent takedowns, the White House's messaging has been clear.
"I don't think the American people need to worry about aliens," White House National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby told reporters during a briefing last month.
It's far from the first time Burchett has made statements suggesting that the US government has knowledge of extraterrestrial life.
After the House Intelligence Subcommittee hosted its first hearings on UFOs in more than half a century last May, the Tennessee politician claimed that the government's "cover-up continues."
"The people that are out there concerned about it, that have contacted me from all over the world, are very interested," he said during the hearing.
Last month, Burchett told infamous ex-congressman Matt Gaetz that the source of his belief is anecdotal and intuitive.
"Too many people in the know have told me that, and that we had to do something with these multiple craft that have crashed and we do not have the technology," he said during an appearance on Gaetz's podcast. "I just believe it in my heart."
Known for his outlandish remarks about everything from American senators working for TikTok to the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic, Burchett also commented last month about one of the still-unidentified objects shot down off the coast of Alaska earlier in the year, though in that case, he believes the conspiracy points to China — and not aliens.
While the concept of the US government recovering alien tech and subsequently covering it up arguably isn't inherently a partisan issue, the theory, paired with Burchett's other public statements, makes it seem more like he's looking to score political points rather than get to the truth.
It's either that or belief in UFOs and extraterrestrial technologies is becoming more mainstream than any of us have realized.
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