While the Transportation Security Administration says there's reason behind its new security processes at airports, the Republican congressman who's in line to become chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee says the agency is behind the times when it comes to protecting Americans.
"What they're doing really doesn't even address the current threat," Rep. John Mica, R-FL, told All Things Considered co-host Melissa Block this afternoon. Pat-downs and body scans of travelers might catch some of the would-be bombers of past years, Mica said, but won't stop terrorists intent on putting bombs on cargo planes.
"They're so far behind the curve I don't even like to think about it," Mica said of TSA:
Mica is an advocate of making more use of private contractors to do the screening and security work at airports. Melissa noted, as has Fox News, that Mica has come under some criticism because contributors to his campaigns have included companies that might benefit from such work. Mica called such talk "a lot of malarkey":
Much more from their conversation will be on today's edition of ATC. Click here to find an NPR station that broadcasts or streams the show. Later, we'll add the as-aired version of their discussion to this post.