Thursday, February 4, 2010

Secure borders or airline safety?

The Obama administration is proposing to scale back some border security programs set up after the 9/11 attacks and ramp up aviation security following the attempted Christmas bombing, in what some conservative lawmakers say is a dangerous priority shift.

Rep. Hal Rogers, R-Ky., the top Republican on the House panel overseeing the Department of Homeland Security's budget, says the border security funding in President Obama's budget for fiscal year 2011 is "woefully inadequate" and "as dangerous as it is indefensible."

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano says her department's $56.3 billion budget for next year, up 2% over this year, enhances security "across the board." Department spokesman Bobby Whithorne says the budget "continues to support smart, effective programs to strengthen border and interior security" while making "significant investments in aviation security."

The administration thinks it can pick between secure borders or airline safety. It can't. We need both. We demand both.

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