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11/15/10

Bush's Homeland Security Secretary & MSNBC Profiteering Off Airport Scanners

Michael Cherdoff, the Homeland Security Secretary under Bush who strongly advocated the machines , now is a leading manufacturer of those pedophilish and likely unhealthy airport scanners disrupting our airports. Tom Blank, who worked under Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich, Chad Wolfe, a former aide to Republican Kay Bailey Hutchison... and General Electric also lobbied for the invasive procedures.

motherjones.com- "The body scanner is sure to get a go-ahead because of the illustrious personages hawking them. Chief among them is former DHS secretary Michael Chertoff, who now heads the Chertoff Group, which represents one of the leading manufacturers of whole-body-imaging machines, Rapiscan Systems. For days after the attack, Chertoff made the rounds on the media promoting the scanners, calling the bombing attempt "a very vivid lesson in the value of that machinery"—all without disclosing his relationship to Rapiscan...

... After spending more than $30 million on the puffer machines—most of them purchased from GE—the TSA announced earlier this year that it was suspending their use. Only about 25 percent of the machines were ever even deployed at US airports. A report last month from the Government Accountability Office found that the TSA had not adequately tested the puffers before buying them.

Also from months ago:
Washington Examiner- One manufacturer, according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, is American Science & Engineering, Inc. AS&E has retained the K Street firm Wexler & Walker to lobby for "federal deployment of security technology by DHS and DOD." Individual lobbyists on this account include former TSA deputy administration Tom Blank, who also worked under House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

Chad Wolf—former assistant administrator for policy at TSA, and a former aide to Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Tex., a top Senate appropriator and the ranking Republican on the transportation committee—is also lobbying on AS&E’s behalf.

Smiths Detection, another screening manufacturer, employs top transportation lobbying firm Van Scoyoc Associates, including Kevin Patrick Kelly, a former top staffer to Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., who sits on the Homeland Security Appropriations subcommittee. Smiths also retains former congresswoman Helen Delich Bentley, R-Md.

Former Sen. Al D’Amato, R-N.Y., represents L3 Systems, about which Bloomberg wrote today: "L-3 has ‘developed a more sophisticated system that could prevent smuggling of almost anything on the body,’ said Howard Rubel, an analyst at Jefferies & Co., who has a ‘hold’ rating on the stock."

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