TSA Nominee Resigns Amid Controversy

By Matt Hawes

Erroll Southers, President Obama’s choice to lead the Transportation Security Administration, withdrew from consideration for the position earlier today.  Southers faced criticism from senators and was also weighed down by information that he may have misled Congress concerning his use of a government database to dig up personal information.

From the Washington Post:

As The Eye first reported in November, Southers told senators that he asked a co-worker’s husband who worked for the San Diego Police Department at the time to run a background check on his ex-wife’s boyfriend.

The incident did little to stop his confirmation by the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. But a day after the panel referred his nomination to the Senate, Southers told lawmakers that he himself had twice conducted the database searches, downloaded confidential law enforcement records and then passed the information on to the police department employee….

Read the rest.

Senate opposition was led by Senator Jim DeMint, who not only opposed Southers’ plans for TSA, but was pressing for more information about the database incident.

It’s no surprise, however, that many lawmakers have taken the opportunity to praise Southers and express their disappointment that he has withdrawn his name.  After all, violating civil liberties and abusing your authority to dig up personal information is a central tenet of the government’s approach to security.  A questionable history would only add to his qualifications.

Since the nomination is currently vacant, I’d like to officially take this opportunity to plug my support for Steve Bierfeldt to head up the TSA.

View the original article at Campaign for Liberty


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