A bipartisan amendment to the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Authorization Act of 2009 “prohibits the TSA from using Whole Body Imaging (WBI) machines for primary screening.” Today TSA calls this equipment Advanced Imaging Technology (AIT).

The amendment was co-sponsored by Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) and Carol Shea-Porter (D-NH) and passed the House on a 310-118 vote. See how your Representative voted. (Seven of Washington State’s nine Congressmen voted yes: only Hastings (R) and Dicks (D) voted no.)

The bill (HR2200, summary) is stalled in the U.S. Senate; it passed the House on a 397-25-11 vote. See how your Representative voted.

According to Speaker of the House Pelosi:

This bill is the first reauthorization of TSA since it was created in the Aviation and Transportation Security Act of 2001 (PL 107-71).  (In 2002, TSA was moved into DHS when the Department was created.) The bill authorizes $7.6 billion in FY 2010 and $8.1 billion in FY 2011 for the activities of TSA, including key increases over FY 2009 funding.

Ever since TSA was created in 2001, its focus has been on aviation security.  A key aspect of this legislation is beginning to put surface transportation security on an equal footing with aviation security – with key surface transportation security enhancements.

Consumer Traveler lauded the bill, noting that this was ” the first time [since 2001] that Congress said, ‘Whoa, TSA.”

On 8 June 2009, the bill was referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, where it has languished. The committee is composed of 25 Senators and led by Chairman John D. (Jay) Rockefeller IV (D-WV) and Ranking Member Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX).

Remaining Democrats (alpha)

  1. Senator Mark Begich, AK
  2. Senator Barbara Boxer, CA
  3. Senator Maria Cantwell, WA
  4. Senator Byron L. Dorgan, ND
  5. Senator Daniel K. Inouye, HI
  6. Senator John F. Kerry, MA
  7. Senator Amy Klobuchar, MN
  8. Senator Frank R. Lautenberg, NJ
  9. Senator Claire McCaskill, MO
  10. Senator Bill Nelson, FL
  11. Senator Mark Pryor, AK
  12. Senator Tom Udall, NM
  13. Senator Mark Warner ,VA

Remaining Republicans (alpha)

  1. Senator Sam Brownback, KS
  2. Senator Jim DeMint, SC
  3. Senator John Ensign, NV
  4. Senator Johnny Isakson, GA
  5. Senator Mike Johanns, NE
  6. Senator George S. LeMieux, FL
  7. Senator Olympia Snowe, ME
  8. Senator John Thune, SD
  9. Senator David Vitter, LA
  10. Senator Roger Wicker, MS

This is cross-posted from IWillOptOut.org.


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KATHY GILL, Technology Policy Analyst
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