Congressman uses Tucson massacre to demand preferential treatment by TSA

Tuesday, January 18, 2011 by: Jonathan Benson, staff writer
Tags: TSA, shootings, health news

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(NaturalNews) Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC) wasted no time trying to take advantage of the Tucson massacre for his own personal benefit. Not long after the tragic shootings took place, Clyburn told "Fox News Sunday" that because of the shooting spree, members of Congress should be given special treatment by the U.S. Transportation Security Administration (TSA) when flying.

"I really believe that this is the place where we feel the most ill at ease, is going through airports," he said. "We've had some incidents where TSA authorities think that Congresspeople should be treated like everybody else. Well, the fact of the matter is, we are held to a higher standard in so many other areas, and I think we need to take a hard look at exactly how the TSA interact with members of Congress."

Clyburn did not, however, offer any sort of rationale as to why the shootings should prompt special treatment for Congressmen at airports. The incident has absolutely nothing to do with airport security requirements, so it is unclear how the two are related in his mind. Nevertheless, Clyburn stood his ground, even demanding that the House "beef up the funding" so individual Congressmen can install private security forces at their own homes. According to reports, Clyburn has already taken such action at his own home.

But not everyone in Congress agrees with Clyburn's positions. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.), for instance, expressed serious concern over such proposals.

"I'm concerned about putting up more walls between myself and the people that I represent," she told Fox. "I want to make sure that we're looking at it, that we're making an appropriate response, that we as members are being smart in our interactions."

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