The Hill reports that TSA chief John Pistole offered to give enhanced pat-downs to senators at a hearing today. More precisely, he offered to have a TSA screener do the deed.
Today's hearing, and Pistole's salacious offer, were prompted by growing public outrage at TSA policies. Passengers are required to allow the TSA to take nude pictures of them; many people find this objectionable. Passengers who opt out must be patted down. New procedures require screeners are to touch passengers' breasts, buttocks, and genitals. Some passengers have compared the enhanced pat-downs to sexual assault, and at least one woman has threatened a lawsuit.
National security is not the only reason TSA decided to implement new screening policies. The Washington Examiner's Tim Carney recently reported that the CEO of Rapiscan, one of two companies that makes full-body imaging machines, is an Obama donor who accompanied the President on his recent trip to India. Carney also reports that President Bush's former Secretary of Homeland Security, Michael Chertoff, was paid by Rapiscan to promote its machines shortly after leaving office.
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