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Press Releases

November 04, 2011

Proposed Border Surveillance Plan Needs Better Planning and Cost Estimates

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, issued the statement below in response to the release of a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report he requested on the Arizona Border Surveillance Technology Plan, successor to the failed SBInet program. The report, entitled "Arizona Border Surveillance Technology: More Information on Plans and Costs Is Needed before Proceeding," found that U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) … Continue Reading


November 04, 2011

Thompson Offers Amendment to Increase Geographic Diversity at the US Coast Guard Academy

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, offered an amendment on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives to the Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2011 (H.R. 2838) to allow Members of Congress to nominate qualified candidates for admission to the U.S. Coast Guard Academy. Under current law, Members of Congress can nominate qualified high school students for acceptance to West Point, the Naval Academy, the Air … Continue Reading


November 02, 2011

Ten Months of Republican Rule – No Progress on Homeland Security

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released a fact sheet that documents the lack of legislative action by the Committee on Homeland Security so far in the 112th Congress. The fact sheet, produced by the Democratic staff of the Committee, illustrates how the Committee on Homeland Security lags behind most other authorizing committees in the U.S. House of Representatives - both in terms of the number of bills reported to … Continue Reading


October 28, 2011

DHS and DOJ Must Work Together to Improve Courthouse Security

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the statement below in response to a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report on federal courthouse security. The report, entitled Federal Courthouses: Improved Collaboration Needed to Meet Demands of a Complex Security Environment (GAO-11-857), was undertaken in response to the Congressman's request. It found that additional steps should be taken to improve courthouse … Continue Reading


October 21, 2011

Thompson Statement on the Withdrawal of Troops from Iraq

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, released the following statement regarding news from President Obama that all American troops will be out of Iraq by the end of the year: President Obama has fulfilled his promise to bring all American troops out of Iraq by the end of the year. This is the final step of a responsible, structured timeline that began in early 2009. After nine long years, the American people can … Continue Reading


October 20, 2011

Thompson Statement on the Death of Moammar Gadhafi

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, released the following statement on news of the death of Moammar Gadhafi: Today's news marks the final closing to a brutal and tyrannical regime. I hope the Libyan people use this moment as an opportunity to begin rebuilding their country and government. Along with help from the international community, Libya can now move forward to restore its institutions and find a path to … Continue Reading


October 12, 2011

Thompson Statement on the DHS Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Committee on Homeland Security Ranking Member Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS) delivered the following prepared remarks for the full Committee markup of the Department of Homeland Security Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 (H.R. 3116): Turning to the legislation before us today, I am troubled that a bill called the Department of Homeland Security Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 does not actually authorize funding for the Department to undertake all its missions. … Continue Reading


October 04, 2011

Thompson Statement on TSA PreCheck Pilot Program

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, released the following statement regarding the announcement from Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Administrator John S. Pistole that the agency will be implementing a pilot program for a risk-based pre-screening security initiative called PreCheck: "As someone who has championed secure and commonsense enhancements to checkpoint screening, I am pleased that … Continue Reading


September 30, 2011

Thompson Statement on the Killing of al Qaeda Leader Anwar al-Awlaki

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, released the following statement in response to news that al Qaeda leader Anwar al-Awlaki was killed in Yemen: Less than six months after the killing of Osama bin Laden, we have scored another strategic counterterrorism victory with the death of Anwar al-Awlaki. As an American born al Qaeda leader, al-Awlaki was one of the most dangerous terrorists in the world. He was linked to … Continue Reading


September 22, 2011

FEMA Contracting Practices Still Need Work

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the following statement in response to a Department of Homeland Security Office of the Inspector General (OIG) report on the Federal Emergency Management Agency's contracting processes. The report, entitled "FEMA's Contracting Officer's Technical Representative (COTR) Program" (OIG-11-106), found that endemic and longstanding problems exist in the COTR program. The COTR program … Continue Reading


September 11, 2011

Thompson Statement on the 10th Anniversary of September 11

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, released the following statement commemorating the tenth anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks: Ten years ago, this nation arose to news of unthinkable tragedy and unimaginable pain. Today, we are again reminded of that tragic day and how it forever changed this great nation. We will never forget those we lost that Tuesday morning, nor will we forget the heroism of the … Continue Reading


September 08, 2011

Richmond, Thompson Applaud Former GOP Homeland Security Secretary's Support of Disaster Relief Without Offsets

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Tom J. Ridge, the first Secretary of Homeland Security and former Republican Governor of Pennsylvania testified at a hearing on Capitol Hill that he supports a clean boost to disaster relief funds without offsets or budget cuts elsewhere. While testifying before the full House Committee on Homeland Security hearing on The Attacks of September 11th: Where are We Today Mr. Ridge stated, in response to a question posed by Congressman Cedric Richmond (D-LA) on budget offsets … Continue Reading


September 07, 2011

Hearing Statement - "The Attacks of September 11th: Where are We Today"

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Committee on Homeland Security Ranking Member Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS) delivered the following prepared remarks for the full Committee hearing entitled The Attacks of September 11th: Where are We Today: Today, we meet to discuss this nation's progress in bringing about safety, security and resiliency against terrorism since the attacks of 9/11. But before we look back, I want to acknowledge and remember all the firefighters, police officers, and ordinary people who lost … Continue Reading


September 07, 2011

GAO: DHS Has Yet to Reach Full Potential

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, released the following statement on the Government Accountability Office (GAO) report on the state of Homeland Security. The report, entitled "Department of Homeland Security: Progress Made and Work Remaining in Implementing Homeland Security Missions 10 Years after 9/11", illustrates that while DHS deserves commendation for implementing crucial and strategic programs it still has … Continue Reading


September 01, 2011

Irene Preparation Commendable; FEMA Crucial to Disaster Response (Updated)

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the following statement regarding Hurricane Irene and the Federal Emergency Management Agency's preparation and response: Although the cleanup for Hurricane Irene has just begun, it is evident that FEMA and the Administration prepared and responded admirably to this widespread disaster affecting tens of millions of Americans across the Eastern Seaboard. FEMA was able to … Continue Reading


August 03, 2011

TSA Must Step-Up Oversight of Airport Credentialing Procedures

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the following statement regarding the Department of Homeland Security's Office of the Inspector General report on the Transportation Security Administration's oversight of security badge issuance to airport employees. The report, entitled "TSA's Oversight of the Airport Badging Process Needs Improvement," raises questions about discrepancies in TSA's airport employee badging … Continue Reading


August 02, 2011

Long-awaited Ammonium Nitrate Security Regulations Announced

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the following statement regarding notice from the Department of Homeland Security that the Secretary will publish a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) in the Federal Register for the creation of the Ammonium Nitrate Security Program: The publication of this long-awaited proposed regulation is a positive development. At a time when the EU and other countries are looking to … Continue Reading


July 29, 2011

Deepwater Program Still Problematic

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the below statement in response to a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report on continuing problems with the United States Coast Guard (USCG) Deepwater program, entitled "Coast Guard: Action Needed As Approved Deepwater Program Remains Unachievable" (GAO-11-743): "As delays continue and problems mount, we still do not know the true cost of the Deepwater program. I urge … Continue Reading


July 27, 2011

Ranking Member Thompson Hearing Statement

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Committee on Homeland Security Ranking Member Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS) delivered the following prepared remarks for the full Committee hearing entitled Al Shabaab: Recruitment and Radicalization within the Muslim American Community and the Threat to the Homeland: Today, this committee will hold the third hearing in its series on terrorism and the American Muslim community. In previous hearings, we have heard testimony about young Americans of Somali descent who left … Continue Reading


July 26, 2011

Statement for the Record - Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Hearing

(WASHINGTON) - Congressman Bennie G. Thompson, Ranking Member, House Committee on Homeland Security, submitted the following statement for the record for the United States Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, Ad Hoc Subcommittee on Contracting Oversight hearing on: Small Business Contracts: How Oversight Failures and Regulatory Loopholes Allow Large Businesses to Get and Keep Small Business Contracts: I would first like to thank Chair McCaskill for conducting this … Continue Reading