Rand Paul has a quick fix for TSA: Pull the plug

By BURGESS EVERETT | 5/3/12 6:32 PM EDT Updated: 5/5/12 11:33 AM EDT

Rand Paul has a reform plan for the Transportation Security Administration: Scrap the whole thing.

A personal message from Paul (R-Ky.) came atop emails this week from the Campaign for Liberty Vice President Matt Hawes, asking for readers to sign a petition in support of Paul’s “End the TSA” bill. A Paul spokeswoman said that legislation is being finalized next week.

Paul was stopped by the TSA before a flight from Nashville earlier this year,  causing him to miss a flight — and a big speech at the March for Life in Washington. Paul referred to the incident in his fundraising email.“Every inch of our person has become fair game for government thugs posing as ‘security’ as we travel around the country. Senator Rand Paul has a plan to do away with the TSA for good, but he needs our help,” reads the petition, which also asks signers to “chip in a contribution to help C4L mobilize liberty activists across America to turn the heat up on Congress and end the TSA’s abuse of our rights.”

“The American people shouldn’t be subjected to harassment, groping, and other public humiliation simply to board an airplane. As you may have heard, I have some personal experience with this, and I’ve vowed to lead the charge to fight back,” Paul wrote at the top of a C4L fundraising pitch, according to blogs that received the email. “Campaign for Liberty is leading the fight to pressure Congress to act now and restore our liberty. It’s time to END the TSA and get the government’s hands back to only stealing our wallets instead of groping toddlers and grandmothers.”

“In 2011 alone, the Transportation Security Administration’s 50,000 Transportation Security Officers screened more than 603 million passengers at 450 airports across the country and stopped more than 125,000 prohibited items at airport checkpoint, including over 1,300  firearms,” the TSA said in a statement provided to POLITICO. “Eliminating the agency charged with protecting the very system that continues to be a target for potential attack by our adversaries would directly undermine security. While TSA does not comment on pending legislation, it looks forward to working with Senator Paul on sensible proposals for enhancing security and improving the screening experience for passengers.”

Paul’s spokeswoman said in an email that in addition to the “End the TSA” legislation, Paul is working on “multiple” TSA bills, including one to privatize the service as well as a passenger bill of rights. Ending the TSA has been a presidential campaign plank of Rand Paul’s father, Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas), who started the political organization C4L. And last week, Rep. Paul Broun (R-Ga.) called on TSA Administrator John Pistole to step down.

More at the original story: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0512/75896.html

 

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