TSA Chief John Pistole made the rounds on the network news shows this morning, urging passengers–and cable news hosts–to bring some “common sense” back into the discussion of increased airline security as the country moves into the holiday flying season.
Telling MSNBC’s Morning Joe that he’d been through an “enhanced pat down,” the procedure richly parodied in a fake TSA ad on SNL over the weekend, which was also noteworthy for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s statement on Face the Nation that she wouldn’t go through a pat down “if she could avoid it.”
Pistole said he felt the intrusive searches do their job: “I felt it was doing exactly what it was designed to do–protect people from somebody trying to kill hundreds of people.”
Pistole, whose agency released a confusing statement over the weekend suggesting that the stepped-up procedures could be rolled back, said nothing will change as the holiday season arrives. “Reasonable people can disagree,” Pistole said on MSNBC, saying that the searches had turned up contraband, but only in the form of smuggled drugs–no explosives or other weapons that might be the tools of terrorists.
Pistole also said the backscatter scanner that some fear may be dangerous was, in fact, “safe for everyday use.” Asked if he’d be willing to be scanned by the machine four times a week, Pistole said “yes.”
Watch Pistole make clear those invasive searches won’t be going away anytime soon, via CNN: