TSA detains Senator after “anomaly” in body scan

posted at 11:45 am on January 23, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

On one hand, if it’s true that the Transportation Security Administration really saw an anomaly in the airport body scan, then a demand for a patdown would be the right call.  On the other, just how big of a security risk does a sitting United States Senator pose — unless it’s one that has openly criticized TSA for its intrusiveness?

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., was detained by airport security officials on Monday, according to his communications director Moira Bagley, who posted about the incident on Twitter.

“Just got a call from @senrandpaul. He’s currently being detained by TSA in Nashville,” Bagley wrote. She did not immediately respond to an email for further information.

Paul’s father, GOP presidential candidate and Texas Rep. Ron Paul, also confirmed the report on his Twitter and Facebook accounts. The elder Paul’s Facebook post had racked up 2,000 comments in the first 30 minutes.

The senior Paul wrote that his son was “being detained by TSA for refusing full body pat-down after anomaly in body scanner in Nashville.”

The Hill has more about Senator Paul’s ongoing political battle with the TSA:

Both Pauls have been vocal critics of the TSA, calling for the controversial agency to be disbanded.

“This kind of gets back to this whole idea of what we are willing to… give up as a country,” Sen. Paul said of pat-downs last summer during a hearing in which TSA Administrator John Pistole appeared before lawmakers.

“The press reports are horrifying,” Rep. Paul also said last summer, during one of his weekly “Texas Straight Talk” audio addresses.

“Ninety-five-year-old women humiliated, children molested, disabled people abused,” he continued. “Men and women subjected to unwarranted groping and touching of their most private areas, and involuntary radiation exposure.

This history between the Pauls and TSA tend to raise questions about whether today’s demand was motivated by something else other than security.  For that matter, so does the fact that Rand Paul is not terribly likely to hijack a flight or use an airplane for terrorism.  TSA’s we-have-to-treat-everyone-equally-to-avoid-appearance-of-profiling approach puts political correctness ahead of actual security, and perhaps there will be no better example than the demand to pat down a sitting US Senator and detaining him when he refused to consent to it.

No one thinks a Senator should get different treatment than anyone else, but that proves that the security theater we experience at airports isn’t designed with flight security as its primary goal.  Besides, let’s not forget that TSA is already working on programs for clearing frequent travelers on an expedited basis who they know through prior investigation won’t pose a security risk on commercial flights.   Who in their right mind thinks that Senator Rand Paul represented any kind of real security risk on board an aircraft?  Anyone? Anyone?  Bueller?  Bueller?

The next Congressional hearings on the TSA will prove very interesting, and probably very entertaining.  So will the debate on their appropriations for FY2013.

Update: Right on cue, the TSA trots out its we-don’t-profile defense:

TSA said it followed its normal procedure with Sen. Paul, who has often sharply criticized the agency’s pat-downs.

“When an irregularity is found during the TSA screening process, it must be resolved prior to allowing a passenger to proceed to the secure area of the airport,” the agency said Monday in a written statement. “Passengers who refuse to complete the screening process cannot be granted access to the secure area in order to ensure the safety of others traveling.”

Yes, that’s terribly egalitarian, but egalitarianism shouldn’t be the point of airport security.  I don’t feel any better getting on an airplane knowing that the TSA wasted everyone’s time by focusing on a sitting US Senator who didn’t pose any risk of terrorism.  I’d prefer that they learn to focus on actual threats rather than displays of egalitarianism, thankyewverahmuch.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Comment pages: 1 2 3

He wasn’t wearing any panties.

GoodBoy on January 23, 2012 at 1:58 PM

Here’s how I would handle this at the airport if I were Rand Paul:

First of all, I would ask to speak to the highest ranking TSA official available at that airport. If asked why, I would refuse to speak on fifth amendment grounds to anyone else.

Then, if/when I was finally able to talk to said official, my conversation with him/her would go something like this:

As a citizen, I have a right to be free from unreasonable search and seizure. On that basis alone, I am refusing further security measures until such time as you can produce a search warrant. As a Senator, according to the constitution, I also have the right to go to and from my congressional business unimpeded, guaranteed to me by the constitution. I will not submit to a pat-down, and that is a settled question. The only question you can decide now is what kind of hay will be made of this incident in the media after I do have my freedon.

gryphon202 on January 23, 2012 at 12:15 PM

We should all email this to him, unless he has already said something similar. ;)

PatriotGal2257 on January 23, 2012 at 2:01 PM

you’d think a libertarian would understand the fact that he doesn’t have a right to air travel; airlines are owned and operated by private entities – if he doesn’t want to go through a pat-down, drive a car.

social-justice on January 23, 2012 at 2:04 PM

As a citizen, I have a right to be free from unreasonable search and seizure.

gryphon202 on January 23, 2012 at 12:15 PM

And as a private carrier, the airline can deny passage to anyone refusing to adhere to security guidelines.

A senator, even one as “special” as Rand Paul (why is he so special, again?) has as much of a right to force an airline to seat him as any other citizen – ie none.

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 2:04 PM

I’m sorry, are you saying a Senator could drive 120 mph and it would be unconstitutional to pull them over?

Wagthatdog on January 23, 2012 at 2:08 PM

Here’s an idea:

Before allowing yourself to be subjected to a TSA grope, ask the official to read and sign the document below. And keep it in case any trouble ensues.

U.S. Constitution – Amendment 4
Amendment 4 – Search and Seizure
“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

I have read the text of the 4th Amendment to the US Constitution, as printed above, and hereby affirm that I understand the rights of US citizens under this amendment prohibiting unreasonable search and seizure in the absence of a valid warrant or probable cause.

____________________________ ____________________________
Printed Name Signature

____________________________ ____________________________
Title and Badge Number Date

No, I haven’t done it yet, I haven’t been taken aside for the grope. But I fully intend to if the situation occurs.

iurockhead on January 23, 2012 at 2:08 PM

iurockhead on January 23, 2012 at 2:08 PM

And when they tell you, “rather than sign this document, we’re simply not going to allow you to fly”, what then?

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 2:12 PM

I smell pink slips in the near future for someone…. this song comes to mind:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hmzgcs6peu8

maineconservative on January 23, 2012 at 2:28 PM

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 2:12 PM

Then I wouldn’t fly. But I would do what I could to publicise the fact that the TSA, a federal agency, refuses to acknowledge the Constitution.

iurockhead on January 23, 2012 at 2:28 PM

So it depends on what your definition of ‘detain’ is?

de·tain
Verb:

Keep (someone) in official custody, typically for questioning about a crime or in politically sensitive situations.
Keep (someone) from proceeding; hold back.

If Rand Paul missed his flight bcs of this nonsense, then he was DETAINED. See above definition.
PArsing effing words again people.
The man WAS detained. For, like, real.
Bcs you can see plain as day what the definition of the word is.
And him missing a flight will have fulfilled that definition of what actually occurred.
If he didn’t miss his flight, OK. So did he miss his flight?
If so, HE WAS DETAINED!

And regarding the fellow on page one who quipped how basically we should do this no tolerance policy garbage, what utter BS & insanity.
What has zero tolerance gotten us in this nation?
INSANITY & ZERO common sense.
The very existence of the TSA is Unconstitutional.
Check this part of the document out of which I speak:

To borrow money on the credit of the United States;

To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and
with the Indian Tribes;

To establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization, and uniform Laws on the subject
of Bankruptcies throughout the United States;

To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the
Standard of Weights and Measures;

To provide for the Punishment of counterfeiting the Securities and current Coin
of the United States;

To establish Post Offices and Post Roads;

To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited
Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings
and Discoveries;

To constitute Tribunals inferior to the supreme Court;

To define and punish Piracies and Felonies committed on the high Seas, and
Offenses against the Law of Nations;

To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning
Captures on Land and Water;

To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be
for a longer Term than two Years;

To provide and maintain a Navy;

To make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces;

To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union,
suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;

To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for
governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United
States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers,
and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline
prescribed by Congress;

To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District
(not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and
the acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United
States, and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent
of the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the Erection of
Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings; And

To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into
Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this
Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or
Officer thereof.

TSA doesn’t fit within any of that.
I do not see where their creation fits ANYWHERE up there.
This is crap.

Badger40 on January 23, 2012 at 2:28 PM

you’d think a libertarian would understand the fact that he doesn’t have a right to air travel; airlines are owned and operated by private entities – if he doesn’t want to go through a pat-down, drive a car.

social-justice on January 23, 2012 at 2:04 PM

Actually, because most airlines have received money or subsidy from the government, they’ve lost their right to discriminate against any customers for any reason.

The 48er on January 23, 2012 at 2:28 PM

you’d think a libertarian would understand the fact that he doesn’t have a right to air travel; airlines are owned and operated by private entities – if he doesn’t want to go through a pat-down, drive a car.

social-justice on January 23, 2012 at 2:04 PM

That’s an astonishingly inaccurate statement. Senator Paul was detained by a government agency using its monopoly on the use force to block his use of a private service. If he had been refused service by the airline for not submitting to their pat down, then he would have no complaint, since the airline does not have the power to detain him nor can it stop him from going to a competitor.

But the airline never would have been so stupid since as a private entity, it must compete and please its customers by exercising some common sense and acting in an efficient manner.

RadClown on January 23, 2012 at 2:29 PM

I bet this will be brought up at the upcoming debate, and I hope it is a topic.

doublezero12 on January 23, 2012 at 11:48 AM

-
Indeed, my wish also. Long overdue.

diogenes on January 23, 2012 at 2:31 PM

On one hand, if it’s true that the Transportation Security Administration really saw an anomaly in the airport body scan, then a demand for a patdown [of a Senator en route to Washington DC -- particularly detained in order to prevent his voting] would be the right call. –Ed

Unconstitutional abuses of power “would be the right call” so far as Ed Morrissey is concerned.

Members of Congress en route to D.C. can not be detained, preventing them from fulfilling their official duties. Rand Paul offered to go through the machine again, but the TSA insisted on groping. They can not claim that Sen.Paul presented a threat to either national security, or to the peaceful processing of travelers at the airport. Sen.Paul has grounds and standing to sue the TSA now.

All things considered, the most likely cause of the “machine’s anomaly” was caused by a TSA employee, not by the Senator. The TSA denied the Senator access to either passing through a second time, or the wand search in order to fulfill their own curiosity.

Comments above advocating the sexual molestation of travelers are written by perverts and victims alike, as if since they’ve been molested, everyone should submit to the same abuse.

Rather, be outraged against the TSA molestation official policy, and demand that our taxes certainly NOT fund such attrocities.

Fools would believe official propaganda v. facts. The TSA has NOT augmented travel safety in the USA.

maverick muse on January 23, 2012 at 2:32 PM

RadClown on January 23, 2012 at 2:29 PM

Don’t expect logic or constitutional regard from a Marxist, “social-justice” meaning INEQUALITY under the law.

maverick muse on January 23, 2012 at 2:35 PM

Yes, that’s terribly egalitarian, but egalitarianism shouldn’t be the point of airport security. I don’t feel any better getting on an airplane knowing that the TSA wasted everyone’s time by focusing on a sitting US Senator who didn’t pose any risk of terrorism. I’d prefer that they learn to focus on actual threats rather than displays of egalitarianism, thankyewverahmuch.

OK, so any congress person gets a free pass… wait, what about the muslim one? Or just white ones? Or Republicans? you never know with some of those far-left communists, might take down a plane in celebration of May Day.

What about Tom Cruise? I mean, really, Tom Cruise is going to blow up an airplane? He should get a pass… but not Alec Baldwin or any Baldwin except that one with the blonde hair? I think he’s alright. And Tebow. Fo Sho, let him through.

All these people should be allowed through even if they set off the scanning device because, you know, there’s no way they’d blow up a plane.

So, if you guys want to compile a list of all the people who OBVIOUSLY won’t blow up planes, maybe we can send it to the TSA and they’d consider telling their agents to let these people pass even if they set off scanning devices. Just because it would be stupid not to let them.

I don’t feel any better getting on an airplane knowing that the TSA wasted everyone’s time by focusing on a sitting US Senator who didn’t pose any risk of terrorism.

And by everyone you mean Rand Paul, right?

Tom_Shipley on January 23, 2012 at 2:41 PM

you’d think a libertarian would understand the fact that he doesn’t have a right to air travel; airlines are owned and operated by private entities – if he doesn’t want to go through a pat-down, drive a car.

social-justice on January 23, 2012 at 2:04 PM

Perhaps you need to take your educational institutions to court and sue for malfeasance. Your reading comprehension is abysmal. Ummm…Sen. Paul was not refused the ability to fly by an airline, he was refused entrance to the secured area of the Nashville airport by the TSA, an agency of Homeland Security, an arm of the executive branch of the Federal government. So while your assertion is technically correct, i.e. that Sen. Paul does not have a constitutional right to fly with a specific airline, your premise, i.e. that he does not have a constitutional right to fly period, is wrong. Or perhaps all those Cessnas, Pipers, and Lears are just there for show. And if there truly is no constitutional right to fly, then there is also no constitutional right to drive (your proposed alternative), either.

Cannon Fodder on January 23, 2012 at 2:43 PM

That depends on whether you consider being made to miss his flight an “arrest.”

Arrest isn’t the issue, to me “they shall not be questioned in any other Place.” means that a Senator or Representative can’t be detained while traveling to or from a legislative session.

If that’s the case then the TSA shouldn’t have stopped him at all.

jasetaro on January 23, 2012 at 2:43 PM

I bet this will be brought up at the upcoming debate,

Tonight, NBC, you bet that any of the networks (including FOX) will bring up the TSA?

Shoulda, coulda, woulda? If any would, they would have already.

To date, how many long-term expositions regarding TSA stories make the headlines, unless ridiculing Jesse Ventura (denied right to trial), for example? If the media brings up the TSA given today’s abuses (daily TSA abuses are ignored except in Ron Paul’s platform), the bet is whether the MSM side with or against the TSA this time, given the media black-out of all things dealing with constitutional law, including the lack of recognition for Ron Paul potus candidate.

maverick muse on January 23, 2012 at 2:48 PM

The only bad thing about doing away with the TSA is that we would have private security firms at every airport. Which means that if you travel between 2 airports with different security firms, you will probably go through security again after getting off the plane assuming you have another flight. If a firm is in charge of that airport they will not want another firm’s mistakes make them look bad.

But, overall, I think private security would be cheaper and more efficient. Also, every airport would have a unique security plan due to the layout of the airport.

jeffn21 on January 23, 2012 at 2:50 PM

Rand, you can’t bring anomalies on airplanes!

Akzed on January 23, 2012 at 2:53 PM

I’m sorry, are you saying a Senator could drive 120 mph and it would be unconstitutional to pull them over?

Wagthatdog

Horse & buggy carriages couldn’t go that fast when the Constitution was written.

buzdburd on January 23, 2012 at 2:55 PM

Akzed on January 23, 2012 at 2:53 PM

No knees permitted — the TSA way to prevent any knee-jerk response from victimized travelers being sexually molested.

maverick muse on January 23, 2012 at 2:56 PM

Unloading my shoes, belt, sports jacket, watch, coins, wallet, laptop, and shampoo and mouthwash in conga line of strangers is not right, and it leaves me unkept and the above articles dirty. I don’t like it.

steveracer on January 23, 2012 at 2:57 PM

I thought the Constitution prohibited law enforcement from preventing Congress critters from getting to the Capitol?

matthew26 on January 23, 2012 at 2:57 PM

No one thinks a Senator should get different treatment than anyone else

again, Ed, read the Constitution and go figure. It protects legislators en route to Congress from being detained — all the more significant when en route to vote on legislation, and the detention is malicious in nature.

maverick muse on January 23, 2012 at 3:01 PM

Have the TSA Gropestapo Perverts ever stopped any terrorism? Of course that’s not their job. Their job is to carry on OBl’s work of destroying what America is, or at least was.

VorDaj on January 23, 2012 at 3:11 PM

you’d think a libertarian would understand the fact that he doesn’t have a right to air travel; airlines are owned and operated by private entities – if he doesn’t want to go through a pat-down, drive a car.

social-justice on January 23, 2012 at 2:04 PM

Right, and the airline denied him… oh wait they didn’t. The Airline was perfectly ok with him getting on the plane, and he was ok getting on the plane.

The GOVERNMENT decided this voluntary interaction between business and customer needed extra steps added by the GOVERNMENT to have the GOVERNMENT search all travelers without warrant or probable cause.

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Ring any bells? I’ll give you a hint, it’s the FOURTH… something. I’m sure you can find it.

So why should the Government get to intrude on a business arrangement between two people in order to violate the Constitutional rights of one of them again?

What part of the above text was followed by the Federal Government officials here? Did they have a warrant or probable cause? Or does the Constitution not apply anymore? Did we repeal it? Is there a later amendment clarifying this search was acceptable?

I’ll admit I have libertarian leanings so I’m not clear what your point is… maybe support of the Government violating the Constitutional rights is something we just don’t understand.

If the airline had said “No, we don’t like you, we think you’re stupid and you smell bad, you can’t get on our planes”… that’s fine. That is your private entity argument. But that has no relation to what happened, so I’m not sure why you tried to make that point.

gekkobear on January 23, 2012 at 3:15 PM

you’d think a libertarian would understand the fact that he doesn’t have a right to air travel; airlines are owned and operated by private entities – if he doesn’t want to go through a pat-down, drive a car.

social-justice on January 23, 2012 at 2:04 PM

Were it not for the fact that my colleagues have already done a fine job pointing out just how constitutionally illiterate you are, I would be right now be pointing out just about how much of a dumbass you are.

As it stands, however…

JohnGalt23 on January 23, 2012 at 3:15 PM

Both are wrong here.

The TSA was wrong to detain the Senator. “The Senators and Representatives…shall in all Cases, except Treason, Felony and Breach of the Peace, be privileged from Arrest during their Attendance at the Session of their respective Houses, and in going to and returning from the same….” according to Article I, Section 6. As he was on his way to attend a session, he should not have been detained.

But the constitution does not grant the Senator the right to board a plane. The TSA should have simply told the Senator to find a different way to Washington and sent him on his way without detention. Congress enacted the enabling statutes and knew how to exempt itself from these rules if they wanted to. Compare the securities laws, for example.

If he reacted to that advice by making a scene that amounted to a breach of the peace, then he could be detained.

EconomicNeocon on January 23, 2012 at 3:15 PM

EconomicNeocon on January 23, 2012 at 3:15 PM

Well at least you don’t hide what you are.

Dante on January 23, 2012 at 3:20 PM

Obama sides with TSA.

Schadenfreude on January 23, 2012 at 3:22 PM

But the constitution does not grant the Senator the right to board a plane. The TSA should have simply told the Senator to find a different way to Washington and sent him on his way without detention. Congress enacted the enabling statutes and knew how to exempt itself from these rules if they wanted to. Compare the securities laws, for example.

If he reacted to that advice by making a scene that amounted to a breach of the peace, then he could be detained.

EconomicNeocon on January 23, 2012 at 3:15 PM

Nooo! That’s not how the constitution works. The Consitution did not grant the FEDERAL GOVERNMENT the “right” to search someone who is simply going about their business without a warrant.
From your point of view, the government can force us to do anything not explicity prohibitted by the constitution (well, including certains things… like the “right to bear arms” and to be protected against warantless searches).

This kind of thinking makes me want to hit my head against my desk.

Timin203 on January 23, 2012 at 3:22 PM

As it stands, however…

JohnGalt23 on January 23, 2012 at 3:15 PM

You two are antipodes. S/he doesn’t deserve your attention.

Schadenfreude on January 23, 2012 at 3:24 PM

I’m curious – Does the President of the United States have to go through a screening/pat down every time he flies?

If not – why not? White House supports these police state tactics then he should follow suit.

fatlibertarianinokc on January 23, 2012 at 3:27 PM

you’d think a libertarian would understand the fact that he doesn’t have a right to air travel; airlines are owned and operated by private entities – if he doesn’t want to go through a pat-down, drive a car.

social-justice on January 23, 2012 at 2:04 PM

So much FAIL.

EddieC on January 23, 2012 at 3:27 PM

Is that a Congressional document in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me…

Wyznowski on January 23, 2012 at 3:28 PM

I’m curious – Does the President of the United States have to go through a screening/pat down every time he flies?

If not – why not? White House supports these police state tactics then he should follow suit.

fatlibertarianinokc on January 23, 2012 at 3:27 PM

Nah. Neither does the VP or speaker (Pelosi wouldn’t have had to go through the checkpoints if she had been flying commercial). I think it’s something to do with their secret service people (who also don’t go through the checkpoints.) I don’t really remember the details, but I remember this being a minor controversy over the summer.

But keep in mind, the pres, vp, and (until boehner) the speaker, never fly commercial anyways so it doesn’t really matter what the rule is.

Timin203 on January 23, 2012 at 3:29 PM

You know who else never goes through checkpoints? The 1%. They fly charter or private planes. :-)

Timin203 on January 23, 2012 at 3:30 PM

But the constitution does not grant the Senator the right to board a plane.

EconomicNeocon on January 23, 2012 at 3:15 PM

Neither does the Constitution specifically grant the Senator the right to eat dinner. Therefore the federal government has the power to keep the Senator from eating dinner.

(Hope this helps)

EddieC on January 23, 2012 at 3:33 PM

I’m all for moving to an Israeli system, chock full of profiling goodness.

But until that day, everyone – even the magic fruit of Ron Paul’s loins – has to follow the same rules.

Get groped or don’t fly. Rand Paul chose to not fly, therefore he “detained” himself.

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 3:35 PM

Nah. Neither does the VP or speaker (Pelosi wouldn’t have had to go through the checkpoints if she had been flying commercial). I think it’s something to do with their secret service people (who also don’t go through the checkpoints.) I don’t really remember the details, but I remember this being a minor controversy over the summer.

But keep in mind, the pres, vp, and (until boehner) the speaker, never fly commercial anyways so it doesn’t really matter what the rule is.

Timin203 on January 23, 2012 at 3:29 PM

Yeah, you’re right. Air Force One could not be used as a weapon. Psshhh

fatlibertarianinokc on January 23, 2012 at 3:35 PM

No one thinks a Senator should get different treatment than anyone else, but that proves that the security theater we experience at airports isn’t designed with flight security as its primary goal.

Bingo. Airport security has more to do with political correctness than actual security. As I’ve said here many times on other threads: I’ll take my chances on an airplane and handle a terrorist myself rather than give up my dignity to a bunch of unionized, bored incompetents.

God bless Todd Beamer. Let’s ROLL!

the_souse on January 23, 2012 at 3:35 PM

Obama sides with TSA.

Schadenfreude on January 23, 2012 at 3:22 PM

Anyone surprised.

That has become the standard by which to measure the correctness of one’s position:

If the White House comes down on one side of an issue, the polar opposite of that position is the one that is lawful, Constitutional, moral, prudent, etc.

Oh, wouldn’t I love to have Senator Paul made a Federal Case out of this.

turfmann on January 23, 2012 at 3:39 PM

I’m all for moving to an Israeli system, chock full of profiling goodness.

But until that day, everyone – even the magic fruit of Ron Paul’s loins – has to follow the same rules.

Get groped or don’t fly. Rand Paul chose to not fly, therefore he “detained” himself.

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 3:35 PM

Well who the hell passed a constitutional amendment behind my back that allowed the government to set the rules for flying commercially in this country?

Rand has to use a less efficient mode of transportation (a car) to drive from KY to DC because the federal government said so.

The TSA has also been setting up road blocks in places with their VIPER unit. They’ve also been at train stations, major sporting events, etc., and this program is only going to grow.

So is your argument going to remain, “hey, get groped or don’t leave your house. Rand Paul chose to not leave his house, therefor he “detained” himself.” I mean, cmon!

Yeah, you’re right. Air Force One could not be used as a weapon. Psshhh

fatlibertarianinokc on January 23, 2012 at 3:35 PM

TSA only has checkpoints in airports for commercial flying. Airforce One does not park at a Delta gate and get boarded like a commercial jet. It is also under 24/7 armed guard and is full of secret service and airforce personell when the president is on board.

Timin203 on January 23, 2012 at 3:43 PM

Well who the hell passed a constitutional amendment behind my back that allowed the government to set the rules for flying commercially in this country?

Timin203 on January 23, 2012 at 3:43 PM

Then change the law.

To go to the airport knowing you’re liable to get groped, then complain that they want to grope you, is stupid, elitist, or both.

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 3:45 PM

TSA said it followed its normal procedure with Sen. Paul, who has often sharply criticized the agency’s pat-downs.

TSA = not getting it.

The whole problem is that your normal procedures are more about putting on a show than actually stopping threats to airline security.

BadgerHawk on January 23, 2012 at 3:52 PM

This complete crap. Sen. Paul is being singled out for who he is. Having gone through TSA many times over the last two years due to my last deployment, I never once saw a uniformed soldier, or even one in civvies, take a pat-down. That’s out of probably one thousand soldiers. I’ve been metal-detected, had the wand, had my bags searched…. but no one touched me. Granted, we are.pretty much Mr. Super-Compliant when we go through, but I still think the CAC ID card has something to do with it.

So why touch a Senator?

M240H on January 23, 2012 at 3:52 PM

Then change the law.

To go to the airport knowing you’re liable to get groped, then complain that they want to grope you, is stupid, elitist, or both.

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 3:45 PM

It’s an illegal, unconstitutional breach of our 4th amendment rights to be subjected to a search without a warrant anywhere in the US. Because Rand Paul lives in KY but works in DC, the most sensible mode of transportation for him is flying on a commercial plane. So in order for him to do his job in DC his choices are: Drive (which is a huge pain in the ass and takes much longer), live fulltime in DC and never see his family, OR be subjected to a breach of his fourth amendment rights.

But he should just commute via car, not plane, deal with the huge inconvenience and shut up about the it, right? That’s how we do things in America?

Timin203 on January 23, 2012 at 3:53 PM

To go to the airport knowing you’re liable to get groped, then complain that they want to grope you, is stupid, elitist, or both.

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 3:45 PM

Truly a message Ronald Reagan would have taken to the people.

////////////

JohnGalt23 on January 23, 2012 at 3:55 PM

Then change the law.

To go to the airport knowing you’re liable to get groped, then complain that they want to grope you, is stupid, elitist, or both.

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 3:45 PM

Sure, let’s even make it a constitutional amendment so nobody can force this indignity on us.

Wait, we already DID THAT!

Burning Rain on January 23, 2012 at 4:04 PM

…the security theater we experience at airports isn’t designed with flight security as its primary goal.

Much like the “Force Inconvenience Measures” at military bases when the FPCON goes up. LIke those water-filled plastic barriers in the road are going to prevent someone from driving up the curb to get around them to a target.
Either do it right, or not at all.

Dexter_Alarius on January 23, 2012 at 4:12 PM

And as a private carrier, the airline can deny passage to anyone refusing to adhere to security guidelines.

A senator, even one as “special” as Rand Paul (why is he so special, again?) has as much of a right to force an airline to seat him as any other citizen – ie none.

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 2:04 PM

Thats nice but it wasnt the airline, it was the TSA. The two are not the same.

Sultanofsham on January 23, 2012 at 4:18 PM

I’m all for moving to an Israeli system, chock full of profiling goodness.

But until that day, everyone – even the magic fruit of Ron Paul’s loins – has to follow the same rules.

Get groped or don’t fly. Rand Paul chose to not fly,

Winner!

Let’s think back to the airport security rules that were in place circa 1789 when the Constitution was ratified.

Oops. Manned flight would take more than a century after that. So using their general power to regulate commerce, no doubt, over the last 100 years or so, we have the FAA brought to you by Congress. We the people have tolerated the FAA and now the TSA without bothering to amend a document that could not possibly have anticipated manned flight. I’m not sure they conceived of automobiles back then.

And lets remember that a mostly Republican (our guys) group created the Department of Homeland Security. Now we don’t much like our monster.

Bottom line: Rand Paul is a Senator who needs to abide by the rule of law, however inconvenient it may be for him.

Should he publicize the problem? Absolutely. Should he try to change the system? That can’t happen fast enough. But until he succeeds, he needs to get in line with the rest of us.

EconomicNeocon on January 23, 2012 at 4:22 PM

Ban Muslims from flying. Problem solved.

WhatSlushfund on January 23, 2012 at 4:23 PM

Thats nice but it wasnt the airline, it was the TSA. The two are not the same.

Sultanofsham on January 23, 2012 at 4:18 PM

The TSA is tasked with providing security over air travel, you’re distinction is one without a difference. If you want to fly, you have to pass security, that’s the law. Just because Ron Paul’s son was likely made while dad was reciting the Constitution, doesn’t give him special privileges.

These laws have been in place for a decade, now all of a sudden Rand Paul is inconvenienced, makes it a constitutional crisis? Please. I’m certain Rand flew before this happened, he knew full well the rules.

This is nothing but a cheap publicity stunt designed to transfer Ron’s cult of personality to the crowned prince, nothing more.

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 4:26 PM

A friend of mine is a pilot and he said that the TSA used to (a few years ago) make him go through the same security line as everyone else, causing unnecessary delays. He would frequently, loudly explain to everyone in line that they needn’t worry because the plane wasn’t leaving without him, so they have plenty of time.

Finally, after explaining to them that it is really silly to make the pilots go through these checks, they relented and he can now pass through a special line. He had to explain slowly that he didn’t need a gun or a knife. If he wanted to bring the plane down, it was going down!

Spiders from Mars on January 23, 2012 at 4:42 PM

The TSA is tasked with providing security over air travel, you’re distinction is one without a difference.

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 4:26 PM

A private carrier and the TSA are not the same. The airline didnt deny passage as you stated. Its disingenuous the say:

And as a private carrier, the airline can deny passage to anyone refusing to adhere to security guidelines.

when it doesnt have anything to do with what happened today. The private carrier didnt tell him to bugger off we’re not letting you on. The TSA did. Not the same, not even close.

Sultanofsham on January 23, 2012 at 4:53 PM

Airport security has more to do with political correctness than actual security.

the_souse on January 23, 2012 at 3:35 PM

It has nothing to do with political correctness. It has everything to do with molding a compliant public.

Dante on January 23, 2012 at 4:54 PM

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 4:26 PM

Wow.

Dante on January 23, 2012 at 4:55 PM

The private carrier didnt tell him to bugger off we’re not letting you on. The TSA did. Not the same, not even close.

Sultanofsham on January 23, 2012 at 4:53 PM

The airlines cannot legally let someone on their aircraft unless they pass security. You can play word games all you want, but the fact is, if you don’t play the TSA game you don’t get to fly, period.

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 5:02 PM

The airlines cannot legally let someone on their aircraft unless they pass security. You can play word games all you want, but the fact is, if you don’t play the TSA game you don’t get to fly, period.

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 5:02 PM

Your the one playing word games. Ones a private carrier the other is a part of the government, not private in any way.

Sultanofsham on January 23, 2012 at 5:04 PM

This is about a great deal more than a ‘right to fly’ via airports, the TSA seems committed to moving far beyond airports to highways and trains. Just one example: Mission Creep: This Tennessee Highway Is Now Patrolled by TSA

So now what will those that defend the goons say? Perhaps that you don’t have a right to use the government highways? Maybe sidewalks too, after all, those are owned by the government. Will we end up being able to exercise our constitutional freedoms only on our own property?

slickwillie2001 on January 23, 2012 at 5:23 PM

demand to pat down a sitting US Senator and detaining him when he refused to consent to it.

Should do it to all of them, then maybe they’d get serious about real security.

IrishEyes on January 23, 2012 at 5:55 PM

TSA doesn’t fit within any of that.
I do not see where their creation fits ANYWHERE up there.
This is crap.

Badger40 on January 23, 2012 at 2:28 PM

It was George Bush and the Republican establishment that gave you TSA.

The Republicans owned the White House, the Senate, and the House of Representatives and said … “Gee, it might be nice to have PRIVATE COMPANIES perform airline security in airports.”

Dimmocrits – said … “No way! We need a new government agency full of government employees!”

And the establishment Republicans said … “M’kay”

This is the kind of sh** you will have again when you have Mitt Romney in the White House, Mitch McConnell in charge of the Senate, and John Boehner in charge of the house.

You can bank that.

HondaV65 on January 23, 2012 at 6:20 PM

While we are at it, the fourth is not the only amendment the TSA routinely tramples. Which part of “the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed” gives the government the right to tell me I can’t walk onto the 8am US Airways shuttle to New York with my favorite shotgun? OK, clearly US Airways can bar me from boarding their privately owned airplane armed, but the TSA? I don’t think so.

And then… Are muslims people? Are hand grenades arms? See where I’m going with this?

I’m just sayin’…

Time Lord on January 23, 2012 at 6:30 PM

And as a private carrier, the airline can deny passage to anyone refusing to adhere to security guidelines.

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 2:04 PM

If that were true, (or rather, if the inverse were true) we wouldn’t be reading this story. As it stands, the airlines have no say in the matter.

Nobody would be crabbing if each airline was allowed to handle its own security. The market would work it out. And I dare say nobody would be getting felt up by former 7-11 employees, either.

angelat0763 on January 23, 2012 at 7:21 PM

Your are not being detained. Your are being prevented from enterining into a secured airport terminal. You have not submitted to the security procedures put in place to keep that airport terminal secure. You are free to leave the airport and proceed through any other available means of transportation to your final destination….

That would be my response if I was the TSA head.

New_Jersey_Buckeye on January 23, 2012 at 12:45 PM

Except that’s not the way TSA works. You CAN’T withdraw from the screening process once you’ve begun it. If, for instance, the machine detects an anomaly and you don’t want to be groped, you can’t say, “Never mind. I’ll just go home and try again tomorrow with a different outfit on and see if that keeps the machine from flagging me.” Too bad. You’ve started the process and now you must comply with TSA’s procedure (aka grope session) or be subject to arrest.

Senator Paul had begun the screening process.

CJ on January 23, 2012 at 7:52 PM

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 5:02 PM

Your the one playing word games. Ones a private carrier the other is a part of the government, not private in any way.

Sultanofsham on January 23, 2012 at 5:04 PM

Pretzel logic at its finest.

gryphon202 on January 23, 2012 at 11:28 PM

Aside from asininity I’d like to know why a full body pat down is required rather than a pat down of the indicated part of the body, in this case the region of one of his knees.

{^_^}

herself on January 24, 2012 at 3:23 AM

A simple re-screening should suffice and if the situation is resolved the person allowed to continue. Enough of the BS,

LizardLips on January 24, 2012 at 8:45 AM

A simple re-screening should suffice and if the situation is resolved the person allowed to continue. Enough of the BS, – LizardLips on January 24, 2012 at 8:45 AM

I totally agree. I think we can all agree that it was a horrible mistake to create the TSA in the aftermath of 9/11. We just got more Federal Employees on the payroll, not better protection from hi-jackers and terrorists.

SC.Charlie on January 24, 2012 at 11:15 AM

The TSA is tasked with providing security over air travel, you’re distinction is one without a difference. If you want to fly, you have to pass security, that’s the law. Just because Ron Paul’s son was likely made while dad was reciting the Constitution, doesn’t give him special privileges.

These laws have been in place for a decade, now all of a sudden Rand Paul is inconvenienced, makes it a constitutional crisis? Please. I’m certain Rand flew before this happened, he knew full well the rules.

This is nothing but a cheap publicity stunt designed to transfer Ron’s cult of personality to the crowned prince, nothing more.

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 4:26 PM

Right, lets change the law… maybe to a law that DOESN’T VIOLATE THE 4TH AMENDMENT!

That’d help because the people who are perfectly willing to violate the Constitution will of course stop if we change a law… laws are much more important than Constitutional Rights… or something like that.

If they’d accept a law liming their power they’d let the Constitution limit it easier. Why trying something lesser when a more effective means failed is questionable at best.

Does that work for you? You hook up a crane and can’t move a petrified tree stump from your yard so you have your 5 year old go try and lift it by hand?

I’m just curious why you think a law would have more effect than a Constitutional Amendment does? Do you not understand the hierarchy as to which is more important if they’re in conflict?

The airlines cannot legally let someone on their aircraft unless they pass security. You can play word games all you want, but the fact is, if you don’t play the TSA game you don’t get to fly, period.

Rebar on January 23, 2012 at 5:02 PM

Right, so what if they violate the Constitutions; there’s a law and laws trump the Constitution… apparently this changed since I was in school. When did this change and laws became the “highest law in the land” and the Constitution became a general guideline you could follow if it wasn’t too inconvenient?

The fact that you’re making this argument constantly that laws are important and the Constitution isn’t is terribly disappointing to those of us who know what the Constitution says and think we might want to keep some of those rights.

But at least that won’t worry you… rights are only valid if there isn’t a law removing them.

gekkobear on January 24, 2012 at 1:15 PM

Your are not being detained. Your are being prevented from enterining into a secured airport terminal. You have not submitted to the security procedures put in place to keep that airport terminal secure. You are free to leave the airport and proceed through any other available means of transportation to your final destination….

That would be my response if I was the TSA head.

New_Jersey_Buckeye on January 23, 2012 at 12:45 PM

Right, you can leave whenever you want.

http://gawker.com/5689925/

However you will be arrested and fined $10,000 for leaving the secure area.

But you don’t have to stay, you’re not detained… until you try to leave. Then you’re arrested and owe $10,000 for the crime of not staying.

Hey, there’s also no penalty for murder… but when they catch you they’ll throw you in jail and probably issue some fines as well.

But there’s no penalty for it… until they catch you.

And you don’t have to stay; you’re not being detained… until you try to leave.

Sorry, that’s a load of crap. When you’ve already clarified that you’ll sue people for $10,000 for not finishing the security check… you don’t get to say “you can leave whenever you want”.

Get your stories straight… you’ve already done the lawsuit against the guy you called the police on and the tried the $10,000 fine on for leaving… but that isn’t problematic and you aren’t detained?

Pull the other one, it’s got bell on.

gekkobear on January 24, 2012 at 1:20 PM

It was George Bush and the Republican establishment that gave you TSA.

The Republicans owned the White House, the Senate, and the House of Representatives and said … “Gee, it might be nice to have PRIVATE COMPANIES perform airline security in airports.”

Dimmocrits – said … “No way! We need a new government agency full of government employees!”

And the establishment Republicans said … “M’kay”

This is the kind of sh** you will have again when you have Mitt Romney in the White House, Mitch McConnell in charge of the Senate, and John Boehner in charge of the house.

You can bank that.

HondaV65 on January 23, 2012 at 6:20 PM

Another reason why that crazy ba$tard Ron Paul is only looking better & better.
I totally agree.
RINO’s are only slowing down the inevitable ruination of this country.
Not stopping it.

Badger40 on January 24, 2012 at 8:26 PM

Comment pages: 1 2 3