Ex-TSA Head: Stop Searching for Knives

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"TSA is focused on providing the most effective security in the most efficient manner, while ensuring the freedom of movement of people and goods," the agency said in a statement. "The agency is moving away from one-size-fits-all screening to progress toward improving both security and the passenger experience."

Hawley believes the key to an effective and efficient airport security system is making sure the public and security services are on the same page.

"The system overall started off as a regulatory system of writing rules and enforcing rules, and that is the heart of the problem because al Qaeda knows those rules," he said. "If we removed that patdown, allowed liquids, radically cut back on the prohibited items list, I think the public would get back with TSA and support TSA."

While Hawley believes the TSA's focus needs to be reevaluated, he strongly disagrees with a small, but loud group of Libertarians who are calling for it to be eliminated. He says if the TSA did not exist the result would be catastrophic.

"They'll blow the planes up. They'll blow them up by the dozens," Hawley said. "I can literally say that there are between 12 and 18 specific, real, credible plots every day when I was at TSA."

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