There's a meteor headed for Earth. A really big one. A really, REALLY big one. Scientists have been working on several practical plans for this sort of thing for years, devising things like attachable solar sails, nuclear nudge, rock-spitting drills, and so on. None of these involve humans leaving the ground.
So, why does the president get on the air and announce that he's sending up a team of humans with drilling equipment, lasers, and nuclear weaponry to blow the thing up?