Who says Barack Obama isn’t working to reduce government spending as promised? Why, in March he proposed reducing funding by half for the Federal Flight Deck Officer Program. This is a program that permits commercial airline pilots to keep firearms in the cockpit and to use lethal force to defend against air piracy. The measure would have saved taxpayers $12.5 million, which doesn’t amount to much, but the president also recommended trimming the Federal Air Marshal Service by $36.5 million.

Yesterday, Obama’s proposed cuts were rejected by the House of Representatives, according to a press release from Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman John L. Mica (R-Fla.). The provision to override the cuts was included in the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act (H.R. 5855), approved last night. Of the Obama cuts, Mica said:

Having armed pilots in the cockpit is an important layer of defense against terrorism, especially given the endless examples of the massive TSA bureaucracy’s other failures. It would be foolish to gut security programs that actually work, like the Federal Flight Deck Officer Program, in which our airline pilots bear much of the training costs and help ensure the cockpit is defended.

Obama’s proposed cuts were minuscule compared to the robust $7.6 billion budget his administration earmarked for the grossly ineffectual Transportation Security Administration. But, hey, you can’t accuse the president of not keeping his word to trim the budget—or of having well-ordered priorities.

Between its founding in 2001 and July 2011, the TSA was guilty of committing 25,000 security breaches. This included various and sundry weapons being carried through airport checkpoints and in many case aboard aircraft. Obama’s plan would thus have cut security dollars where they are most desperately needed—to subdue miscreants who succeed in breaching the porous barriers overseen by the TSA.

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