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Originally published January 23 2012

TSA detaining Sen. Rand Paul violates U.S. Constitution

by J. D. Heyes

(NaturalNews) The police state grew again today when agents from the out-of-control Transportation Security Administration briefly - and unconstitutionally - detained U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., at the Nashville International Airport, a move the White House unbelievably supported.

According to reports, Sen. Paul was detained by TSA agents after refusing to submit to a pat-down while trying to catch a flight back to Washington. Agents said they saw something unnatural during the initial screening process and wanted to pat down the son of GOP presidential contender and U.S. Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, but the senator refused to submit.

As if there is a huge threat to aviation posed by American lawmakers, White House spokesman Jay Carney, whose job it is to speak for the president, had this to say: "I think it is absolutely essential that we take necessary actions to ensure that air travel is safe."

Perhaps Carney and President Obama, the latter of whom once claimed to be a constitutional law professor, should actually read the nation's founding document before waxing poetic about the "essential" role of a federal agency that is supposed to follow its provisions. Article 1, Sect. 6 is quite clear in spelling out that U.S. lawmakers on their way to conduct the nation's business are not to be detained, period.

Specifically, that provision states, "The Senators and Representatives 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."

That seems pretty clear to us, but apparently the TSA must either be exempt from following the Constitution, as well as established law, or the authoritarianism flowing like a swollen creek out of Washington is so advanced now that petty government agents now have the power to stop and detain our elected representatives.

Of course, TSA is denying it did any such thing. In a statement, the agency said its agents merely escorted Sen. Paul out of the security area after smugly claiming that its personnel, as usual, did nothing wrong.

"When an irregularity is found during the TSA screening process, it must be resolved prior to allowing a passenger to proceed to the secure area of the airport. Passengers who refuse to complete the screening process cannot be granted access to the secure area in order to ensure the safety of others traveling," said an agency statement.

Again, we say, this is a United States senator, not what you would call the prototypical terrorist type. And why is he even being hassled in the first place? Would the president be so supportive of the TSA if the lawmaker in question was a member of his own party or, heaven forbid, African-American? Remember, this is the president who accused a police officer of acting "stupidly" when he arrested a black Harvard professor named Henry Louis Gates, then threw down the race card, claiming, "There is a long history in this country of African-Americans being stopped disproportionately by the police."

The elder Paul, who is hot on the trail of the leading Republican candidates for president, summed up both the TSA and the incident in general. "The police state in this country is growing out of control," he said. "One of the ultimate embodiments of this is the TSA that gropes and grabs our children, our seniors, and our loved ones and neighbors with disabilities. The TSA does all of this while doing nothing to keep us safe." Both Paul's have called for eliminating the TSA. At a minimum someone should make them learn the Constitution.


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