‘Raises significant security concerns’: Hawley hammers TSA over ‘special privileges to illegal immigrants’

Concerns over “special privileges to illegal immigrants” sparked by airport signage left one GOP senator demanding answers over potential safety threats.

President Joe Biden’s long-ignored border crisis has readily been exacerbated by providing “pathways” for foreign nationals instead of curbing the flow of illegal entries. Reports that aliens have been granted travel on domestic flights without having to provide photo identification caused Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley (R) to seek answers from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on the “outrageous” threat.

“This practice not only undermines the rule of law but also raises significant security concerns for commercial airflight,” wrote Hawley in a letter to administrator David Pekoske of the Transportation Security Administration first reported by Fox News.

“If this report is accurate, this is outrageous,” said the senator of signage at airports detailing how aliens could opt out of having their photo taken by TSA.

Sen. Hawley letter to Pekos… by Fox News

The Missouri lawmaker’s letter appeared to be a response to a social media post from commentator Dave Rubin who had shared an image taken at Miami International Airport.

“Just snapped this pic. This is the state of absolute insanity happening at our airports. I’m in the Pre-TSA line, where migrants don’t have to have an ID to get through security and it’s their choice whether they want their picture taken. There is a plan to destroy America,” wrote Rubin of the sign that read, in part, how the CBP One app “only verifies the information you previously provided to CBP and will not store your information.”

The controversial app managed by U.S. Customs and Border Protection, which had been launched under the previous administration with expanded functionality under Biden, allowed foreign nationals to schedule appointments in advance to be inspected by the agency.

The service allows individuals to upload a photograph in advance.

“Millions of Americans are subject to the TSA screening process, which is often a burdensome, long inconvenience–and which includes photo identification. But every day, Americans take on this burden to increase the safety of their fellow passengers,” continued Hawley. “Therefore, it makes no sense to give special privileges to illegal immigrants who should not even be allowed in the United States in the first place, let alone allowed to board U.S. aircraft. This is symbolic of the Biden Administration’s prioritization of open border policies over Americans’ safety.”

CBP has argued the aliens are not in the country illegally because they have been paroled for their unlawful entry into the United States and a TSA spokesperson defended their security measures to Fox News.

“If a noncitizen opts out, as part of identity verification, TSA checks the live face against a photo taken by CBP upon encounter to ensure that they are the same person,” the spokesperson claimed. “If identity is confirmed, the noncitizen receives enhanced physical screening of their person and property.”

“All individuals without an acceptable form of identification go through a stringent identity matching process and then receive additional screening before being allowed to proceed to his or her flight. Additionally, TSA denies boarding to all noncitizens whom TSA cannot match to government holdings,” their statement continued.

Meanwhile, A DHS spokesperson contended, “Recent reports that noncitizens have lower security bars for traveling on domestic flights are false. Noncitizens without acceptable forms of ID must undergo additional, more robust screenings to fly within the United States.”

Hawley set a Feb. 15 deadline for an official response from TSA on the allegations as well as details on the number of aliens who’ve opted out of being photographed and were permitted to board commercial flights “without presenting photographic identification.”

Kevin Haggerty

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