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Hearing of the Transportation Security Subcommittee of the House Homeland Security Committee - Challenging the Status Quo at TSA: Perspectives on the Future of Transportation Security


Location: Washington, DC

I would like to welcome everyone to this hearing and thank all of our witnesses for their participation.

Let me start by saying that giving up on TSA without having something better to fill its place is not an option.

For all of its faults, the fundamental reason TSA was set-up after 9/11 was to deploy enhanced security measures to prevent another attack on aviation.
That security mission is just as important today, if not more important than it was eleven years ago.

Having said that, letting TSA carry on the way it has for the last eleven years is equally not an option.

TSA's poor conduct is sending a strong message to American taxpayers.
That message is: TSA doesn't care or doesn't know how to best serve and protect the traveling public.

I am convinced we need to undertake major reforms to the federal
government's role at our airports.

I look forward to discussing some of those reforms here today.

The fact is Band-Aid measures won't solve TSA's problem.

This is going to require a great deal of collective thought and ingenuity.
The Pre-Check program is a great first step. But at this stage, Pre-Check doesn't benefit the average traveler and it's not clear where the program will go from here.

Today's hearing is a chance to have an open discussion about ideas for meaningful reform at TSA, building upon the success of the Pre-Check program, the private-sector screening program known as SPP, and others. I remain committed to fixing TSA and holding it accountable to do the job it was meant to do in the first place.

We need to make our transportation systems as secure as possible, at the lowest cost possible, and with the least intrusion on travelers.
I want to extend my sincere thanks to the panel of witnesses we have here today for contributing their insight to this effort.

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