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Senator Rand Paul asks supporters to help abolish the TSA

Published time: May 03, 2012 20:54
Edited time: May 04, 2012 00:54
U.S. Senator Rand Paul (Reuters / Jonathan Ernst)

U.S. Senator Rand Paul (Reuters / Jonathan Ernst)

Kentucky Senator Rand Paul is rallying once more to end the TSA, and this time he is attacking the federal government’s grabby airport screeners for encroaching on the liberty of American passengers.

In a statement released this week, the Republican senator and son of a presidential hopeful, Texas Congressman Ron Paul, pleads with supporters to help abolish the US Transportation and Security Administration, insisting that the federal agents responsible for screening passengers in airports with invasive pat-downs are damaging what is left of Americans’ civil liberties.

“Sometimes our liberty slips away silently, and it is almost hard to notice what went wrong and where. The one fortunate thing about the TSA is that they certainly don’t fit that definition,” Senator Paul explains.

“The American people shouldn’t be subjected to harassment, groping, and other public humiliation simply to board an airplane. As you may have heard, I have some personal experience with this, and I’ve vowed to lead the charge to fight back.”

Earlier this year, Senator Paul was detained at an airport in Nashville, Tennessee while attempting to board a flight to the US capital. After passing through a full body scanner, an “anomaly” in the lawmaker’s knee raised a red flag and TSA agents asked him to submit to a hands-on search. Paul, a long-time opponent of the practice, refused and missed his engagement in DC. Hours later, his father offered up an earful to the TSA:

“The police state in this country is growing out of control. 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,” Congressman Ron Paul responded in a statement issued in January. “The TSA does all of this while doing nothing to keep us safe.”

“We must restore the freedom and respect for liberty that once made American the greatest nation in human history. I am deeply committed to doing that as president of the United States,” added Congressman Paul. “I'm proud of my son's stand, but just imagine those who receive this kind of treatment every day in our nation's airports and can't fight back? The elderly. The disabled. Little kids,” he said, “All victims of an out-of-control police state that, while doing nothing to make us safer, is working overtime to strip away our freedoms, our rights and our basic dignity.”

Months earlier, Senator Rand Paul condemned the TSA for continuously using the machines with mixed results and ongoing opposition, saying that the federal agency has gone “overboard” with their security practices.

“I think you oughta get rid of the random pat-downs. The American public is unhappy with them. They’re unhappy with the invasiveness of them,” explained the senator.

Congressman Paul has already vowed to abolish the TSA if elected president, and with supporters of his son urging the senator to consider a campaign for the White House in 2016, the younger of the libertarian lawmakers might be able to follow through with that goal if his father can’t capture the GOP nominee this year.

"The best network in the state of Iowa is Ron Paul's — they are the Republican Party in Iowa," conservative radio host Steve Deace tells Business Insider this week. "If Rand Paul wants to run for president, he will have that organization as a huge advantage over everyone else."

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