Ron Paul’s son, Senator Rand Paul, ran into trouble at a TSA checkpoint at the airport in Nashville this morning, but the agency says reports he was detained are inaccurate.
Senator Paul was on his way to the anti-abortion “March For Life” rally in D.C. when he set off an alarm at the security checkpoint. His communications director, Moira Bagley, subsequently Tweeted, “Just got a call from @senrandpaul. He’s currently being detained by TSA in Nashville.”
A TSA official told us Mr. Paul was not detained at any point. The agency claims he triggered an alarm during his millimeter wave body scan. If passengers set off alarms during scanning they are required to submit to a pat down. According to the TDA, Senator Paul refused to comply with the pat down and was escorted out of the airport by local law enforcement.
The TSA released the following statement about the incident:
“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. 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.”
In the past, Senator Paul has been critical of TSA security procedures. Last September, he criticized the agency’s “invasive searches” at a Senate hearing.
“We have to bring some sense to what we’re doing in this country,” Senator Paul said.
As of this writing, Ms. Bagley has not responded to a request for comment on this story.