Senator Ted Cruz is proposing a legal amendment that would require the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and airport police departments to provide special security escorts for high-profile lawmakers and federal judges through U.S. airports.
The Texas Senator notoriously flew to Cancun from Houston International Airport in 2021 during a severe winter storm and widespread power outages that left millions of Texans without heating during freezing temperatures.
The only reason that anyone knew Cruz had escaped to the sunnier and much warmer climes of the Mexican coast, however, was because a vigilant passenger managed to capture photographic evidence of the controversial Republican senator traveling through Houston Airport.
Cruz had requested that the Houston Police Department escort him through the airport.
Now, the 53-year-old lawmaker wants to make it a legal requirement for the TSA and airport police to provide security escorts and even private screening services to members of Congress and federal judges, as well as some members of their families.
Cruz is looking to have the law added to a major aviation bill, and it would apply to lawmakers or judges, along with their spouses or children, who have been the “subject of a threat”.
If the TSA is notified that a covered lawmaker or judge is expected to pass through an airport, the agency would be required to arrange a security escort through the airport “without delay”. The TSA would not be allowed to charge fees for this service, the Cruz amendment reads.
The amendment also states that covered people should be escorted through special security screening lanes, which may be out of view of the general public.
Although Cruz is a controversial figure to be requesting this new law, threats against lawmakers are currently on the rise and tensions are expected to rise sharply in the run-up to the 2024 Presidential election in November.
Mateusz Maszczynski honed his skills as an international flight attendant at the most prominent airline in the Middle East and has been flying throughout the COVID-19 pandemic for a well-known European airline. Matt is passionate about the aviation industry and has become an expert in passenger experience and human-centric stories. Always keeping an ear close to the ground, Matt's industry insights, analysis and news coverage is frequently relied upon by some of the biggest names in journalism.