Last Friday, the editorial board of the New York Times added its considerable weight to the growing list of thought leaders advocating the completion of the 9-11 Commission recommendations – namely, the consolidation of congressional oversight of the Department of Homeland Security. Entitled “88, Count ‘Em,” the Times editors called the 88 committees and subcommittees who claim a piece of DHS oversight “little more than a competitive rush for headlines.”
As Congress begins its effort to find someone to blame for the Christmas Day near miss by the so-called “underwear bomber,” DHS officials will be pulled in many directions on the Hill (probably less than 88 but much more than necessary). It is ridiculous that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid can’t – or won’t – get their respective caucuses to adopt the remaining 9-11 Commission recommendation. It is an embarrassment that these so-called leaders refrain from showing leadership in this vital area.
As the NY Times concluded, “The nation needs far more reliable vigilance in the defense against terrorism.” I could not agree more.