“Rand Paul detained” today became the top search term on Google. Unfortunately, for truth and for those who would get a chuckle out of a hypocritical libertarian Senator actually being detained, U.S. Senator Rand Paul was not detained by the TSA, any more than a movie theatre turning away a customer without money to buy a ticket was “detained.” What’s amazingly hypocritical about the libertarian Senator lying about being “detained” by the government, setting off Tea Party sensibilities about invasive government growing too big and controlling our every move, is that Rand Paul was on his way to a pro-life really to restrict women’s right to choose, the March for Life in Washington, D.C.
Turns out, apparently something in Senator Rand Paul’s leg set off a TSA body scanner, but the Senator, rather than submit to a pat-down, was escorted out of the airport because he would not comply. This is standard procedure, as we all know when the TSA’s backscatter machines became a national discussion just before Thanksgiving a year and a half ago.
In, “Rand Paul Is So Full of Shit About Being ‘Detained’ by the TSA,” Gawker writes,
Kentucky Senator Rand Paul (of the Paul Libertarian Blimp Empire) hates the TSA. It’s his “signature issue” — his contentious questioning about the agency’s aggressive security policies got him a lot of positive press among internet conservatives and libertarians last year. So must have been really excited, just, positively tumescent when TSA agents asked to pat him down this morning, and he refused. “Just got a call from @senrandpaul. He’s currently being detained by TSA in Nashville,” his communications director Moira Bagley Tweeted shortly after. The only thing is, though, Rand Paul was never actually “detained” by the TSA.
Despite the most fervent wishes of the libertarian conservative corner of the internet, Paul was not seized by Barack Obama’s Black Panther stormtroopers and tortured for information about the supposed “gold standard”: he set off the body scanner (something in his knee, apparently), which requires a pat down; he refused the pat down, and was escorted out of the security area. He took another flight later. Inconvenient? Sure. Silly? Absolutely? But Rand Paul was not detained.
Even the uber-conservative religious website LifeNews reported:
CNN’s Dana Bash has reported that the TSA has responded, saying Paul walked away willingly.
“When an irregularity is found during the TSA screening process, it must be resolved prior to allowing a passenger to proceed to the secure area of the airport,” TSA spokesman Greg Soule told CNN. “Passengers who refuse to complete the screening process cannot be granted access to the secure area in order to ensure the safety of others traveling.”
The TSA told the news network that Paul was “not detained” and left the checkpoint willingly.
For the record, we’re no fan of the TSA, backscatter machines, or pat-downs. But we are fans of not lying, and especially fans of our elected representatives not lying. We’re not fans of Republican Senator Rand Paul.
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