Washington, DC – U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) joined host Michael Castner on The Wall Street Journal’s Radio Show The Daily Wrap to discuss her Trust the Troops Act, which would allow uniformed military members expedited passage through airport security lines. A transcript of their interview is below, or to listen to a recording, click here.
Michael Castner: The Daily Wrap continues, Michael Castner with you. Popped on our twitter account this morning and saw a great tweet from Senator Kay bailey Hutchison of Texas and I just had to call her. She has a passage of a bill called the Risk Based Security Screening for Members of the Armed Forces Act. In other words when you’re waiting in line with TSA, that’s right, uniformed members of our military can go in front of you and they should. Joining us right now is Senator Hutchison. Thanks so much for being with us!
Senator Hutchison: You bet Michael, great to be with you.
Michael Castner: I’m so glad you did this because how many times have we been at the airport and we have seen these members of the military being---treated like, you know they lay their lives on the line for us and we are treating them like they’re just regular folks off the street.
Senator Hutchison: It’s amazing and I have seen it time and time again. Here they are taking off their combat boots that have mud from Afghanistan on them and you just think, ‘Oh my gosh couldn’t we give them a little break here?’ And that’s exactly what Congress is now doing and this bill is going to the President. We passed it, we’ve talked to the House sponsor, and the House has already passed it. The tweaks that were put in by the Senate are going right to the House again and to the President. And all it does is say that when our military are traveling in uniform under official orders they are going to get a priority as they should. They’re putting their lives on the line every day as you said to protect our freedom and getting them to the front of the line is the least we can do.
Michael Castner: As a matter of fact I’ve actually seen people try and volunteer and the TSA people wouldn’t let them and I’m thinking the reason why you’re standing there and you’re able to fly is because of these people! It’s so funny that you mentioned the combat boots that was the thing that ticked me off the most.
Senator Hutchison: You know exactly, I met a young man in the hall after I passed the bill and he had been in the gallery when I was making my speech just before we passed it. And he said he’s Green Beret and he had been traveling and had his official radio, he was carrying his radio that had some messages on it and they took it apart at TSA to test it for explosives! (laughter) So that is just an example of what they’re going through. We won’t be able to get this implemented for this Holiday Season but they will know that in the next few months there’s going to be a change and this will show again how much America appreciates what they are doing.
Michael Castner: We’re talking with U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison, Republican of Texas. I love when you were talking about seeing them in line because this has got to be one of the best parts of being a Senator is when you see something wrong and you can do something about it. You can join with the other Senators and say, you know what? No, we’re putting a stop to this we are going to fix it.
Senator Hutchison: Yes, it does, it’s what makes this kind of public service worthwhile. This does not pass the smell test. It’s not right, let’s do something about it. This bill has gone through so fast. It went through the House on a unanimous consent; it went through the Senate on unanimous consent. It’s going to be a record time probably within one month of introduction that this bill has gone to the President. I hope that the members of the military who hear this and read about it know that it is because of the great respect that Members of both parties, both sides of the aisle have for the service that they’re giving our country.
Michael Castner: And I also like pointing out when our men and women in the Senate and the House can get something done. There is still hope when you do something like this. Senator. Especially at Christmas time I saw this, I got a big smile on my face this morning.
Senator Hutchison: I’m so glad. Thanks for reading the tweet!
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