Don’t mess with Texas—that’s the message that the state’s legislature is sending to the TSA. The Washington Post reports that Republican Rep. David Simpson is trying to pass a bill that would make it illegal for airport security agents to deliberately inappropriately touch travelers during screenings.
Simpson tried to pass a similar bill in 2011, which made it through the full House, but was scrapped after federal officials threatened to close all Texas airports, rather than put TSA agents at risk of violating a law while doing their jobs. That bill would have made it illegal for TSA agents to touch travelers’ genitals during screenings (at all), so the new bill clarifies that agents would have to deliberately be fondling passengers in an inappropriate manner to be in violation.
The Washington Post quoted Simpson as saying, “The problem is this effort at security is really treating travelers, innocent people, as criminal suspects and making them submit to unreasonable, very intrusive searches.”
Opposing Representatives disagreed, stating that they were concerned about the possibility of airport shutdowns, which would be disastrous for Texas’ economy..
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