Head of TSA offers pat-downs to SenatorsSubmitted by bobbyw24 on Wed, 11/17/2010 - 15:45
By Jordy Yager - 11/17/10 11:23 AM ET
The head of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) offered on Wednesday to have airport screeners come to Capitol Hill to give senators a pat-down so they could fully understand the mechanics of the newly deployed, controversial technique.
John Pistole told senators on the Senate Science, Commerce and Transportation Committee that he “insisted” on receiving the pat-down to “experience what that involves so that we would know before we rolled it out,” and added that Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano has gotten a pat-down as well.
“Honestly, any member who has not experienced that pat-down [and] who would like to do that — I would not offer it — but an experienced qualified security officer would be glad to do that,” Pistole said.
Pistole has been at the center of growing public concern about the new pat-down techniques, which he described as “clearly more invasive” than the traditional screening airline passengers have been used to. But, he said, the invasiveness is justified by the level and types of threats to the airline industry that he is privy to.