Alarming Standards for Identity Verification
Senator Ted Cruz has expressed alarm over the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) application of different standards for verifying the identities of American citizens and illegal aliens. He argues that the TSA’s use of the CBP One app, which allows migrants to upload photos and other information, poses a significant risk. Even if these individuals lack proper identification, they can still be paroled into the United States.
Concerns over National Security and Public Safety
Cruz highlights the potential dangers of this lax verification process, emphasizing the risk of terrorists and criminals traveling under fake identities. He notes that TSA and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) rely on the data from CBP One to verify identities without authenticating identity documents from the migrants’ home countries. This raises concerns about the ability to confirm the true identities of migrants.
Disparity in Verification Processes
While migrants enjoy free verification for their identities, American citizens have to pay for governmental IDs at DMVs or the State Department. Cruz is seeking information about the use of alternate identification by TSA, the circumstances under which alternative IDs can be used, and the cost burden on American citizens related to illegal immigrants. He also wants to know how many passengers screened by TSA went through an alternate identity verification process on a specific date.
TSA’s Response and Enhanced Screening Measures
A DHS official has assured that TSA verifies the identity of every traveler before granting access to secure areas of airports. The official emphasizes that TSA employs a thorough, multi-source identity verification process culminating in enhanced screening at checkpoints. Noncitizens who pose a threat to public safety or national security are detained or turned over to another agency for investigation and prosecution. TSA does not allow individuals who pose a public security threat to enter the secure areas of airports.
Republicans’ Concerns over Limited ID for Migrants
Cruz’s concerns are the latest in a series of worries raised by Republicans about migrants, both illegal immigrants and those paroled, potentially boarding aircraft with limited identification. Last year, TSA faced scrutiny over a policy allowing illegal immigrants to use civil immigration enforcement warrants as alternative forms of identification. TSA clarified that these warrants serve as the starting point for further verification processes.
Fox News Digital has reached out to DHS for comment on Cruz’s letter.