The Obama administration announced Monday its third nomination to head the Transportation Security Administration.
Deputy FBI Director John Pistole becomes the third person selected for the job after former Los Angeles airport police executive Errol Southers and retired Army Maj. Gen. Robert Harding stepped aside amongst possible hang-ups in congressional confirmation hearings.
“John’s national security and counterterrorism expertise will be a great asset to the Department in our efforts to enhance the security of our vital transportation systems,” said Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano. “Strong and effective transportation security requires proactive measures and a strong understanding of the evolving threat picture. John’s significant experience and expertise in this field—which I have seen firsthand over the last 16 months—will serve both TSA and the traveling public well.”
Moderate Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, seen by the administration as a key dealmaker in Congress, showed early support for Pistole, as she initially did for the two prior nominees. However, consensus seems more positive this time around.
The Wall Street Journal’s Jonathan Weisman says the White House sees Pitole’s nomination as “bulletproof.”