Some House Republicans Say No to Outsourcing U.S. Passports
Posted by Joshua Price on April 11, 2008
Duncan Hunter and a few other House Republicans get “it” when it comes to outsourcing processes and business related to U.S. national security.
A group of House Republicans have introduced legislation that would require the State Department to use U.S.-made components for new electronic passport and to assemble the booklets here.
The bill is aimed at improving the security of passports and notes that all U.S. passports currently use foreign components and are assembled with a computer chip inside the cover in Thailand.
I particularly enjoy this excerpt from the legislation:
“National security is best served when the manufacture and assembly of United States passports occurs within the borders of the United States,” the legislation states.
Finally! At last some Republicans actually understand that there is more to life than maximizing profit.
Though there is one caveat to if you read that except carefully. It does not preclude a foreign-owned company from manufacturing or assembling passports within the border of the U.S.
You see, this bill only stipulates that the “manufacture and assembly” occur “within the borders of the United States.”
That’s a catch, but at this point I’m just happy that some Republicans actually understand the outrage associated with the passport scandal. See Bill Sali (R-Idaho) and Duncan Hunter (R-California):
“Allowing American passports to be manufactured and assembled overseas raises serious national security concerns,” said Rep. Bill Sali, Idaho Republican and a key co-sponsor. “Outsourcing work that has the potential to jeopardize the privacy and security of American citizens must be avoided.”
Rep. Duncan Hunter, California Republican and ranking member of the House Armed Services Committee, who is also a main sponsor, said: “The foreign production of our passports presents significant security concerns, particularly when considering that this form of identification is now a requirement for entry into the U.S.”
“There is absolutely no justification for outsourcing our nation’s passport production,” Mr. Hunter said.
In what will be interesting to see what happens with this bill.