TSA Critic, Senator Rand Paul, Prevented By TSA From Getting On His Flight To DC

from the he-might-be-a-terrorist dept

Senator Rand Paul has frequently criticized the TSA and its security theater at airports both for being intrusive and (more importantly) for not being effective. He's made the point repeatedly that it's a mistake to simply assume everyone may be a terrorist. So it's interesting to note that Paul himself was unable to board his flight to DC today after the TSA refused to let him through security. Apparently the scanner machine spotted something, and Paul refused a pat down. There was some dispute over whether or not he was "detained." The TSA denies "detention," which actually is an important issue, since you cannot detain elected officials on their way to Congress, according to Article 1, Section 6 of the Constitution:
The Senators and Representatives shall receive a Compensation for their Services, to be ascertained by Law, and paid out of the Treasury of the United States. They 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; and for any Speech or Debate in either House, they shall not be questioned in any other Place.
While the TSA says this wasn't a detention, it does raise questions over whether or not Senator Paul was "questioned in any other Place" while "going to..." his "respective" House. The White House put out a statement that kinda misses the point:
"I think it is absolutely essential that we take the necessary actions to ensure that air travel is safe, and I believe that’s what TSA is tasked with doing."
Sure, it's essential. But does anyone think that patting down a US Senator has anything to do with ensuring that air travel is safe?

Filed Under: detention, privacy, rand paul, tsa


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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 24 Jan 2012 @ 10:56am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Where do I start with this?

    "The Tea party types keep pushing abortion and contraception restrictions"

    Restrictions on what we feel is murder is not "big government". And nobody is trying to outlaw condoms, although they may object if you want to spend their money to give them to children.

    "not to mention limitations on collective bargaining (I guess corporations have freedom of speech, but workers can't freely assemble). "

    I like how you think being forced to join a union is related to "freely assemble." They can freely assemble just fine on their own without being forced.

    "Not to mention the Keystone pipeline, which means lots of emmanent domain suits depriving random people of their property all along the route"

    You know, that sort of thing IS provided for in the Constitution. But we DO object when they do things like take someone's home to give the land to a corporation so they can put up a shopping mall, even if SCOTUS says it's technically constitutional.

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