I thought this first article was a good little run down of some commonsense moves for protecting members of congress.  Of course all of this is coming out after the recent shooting that killed six and critically wounded Representative Gabrielle Giffords in Arizona. The other two articles detail the potential for copycat killers, and what members of congress think about their own personal security or lack of it.

     Although I would have liked to have heard more of a discussion about private security and specifically privatized executive protection services for members of congress.  We use highly trained private security specialists to protect members of congress in war zones through programs like WPS, but what about for members of congress in the US?  Perhaps a similar program could be started just to meet the needs of congress throughout the nation?

    Or a stipend could be given to members of congress with the idea that they could contract the services of competent executive protection specialists wherever they go in the nation.  To depend upon police departments purely for this type of security could be a strain on them in terms of man power and financially, or these officers could be the wrong tool for the job.  In some parts of the country, I don’t know if a member of congress would want a police officer watching their back. Meaning there are some cops out there that are very low paid and minimally trained for high end executive protection duties.  Private industry is very good at this task, and this is their bread and butter.

     Finally, the government could just ramp up the Secret Service and task them to get this going.  They could literally assign a detail to every member of congress, and give everyone custom tailored protection.  Of course the cost of this could be pretty high, but they are leaders of this country and they are public figures.  Or we could tell members of congress to wear a vest, a gun, and tell them to hope for the best. It is a dangerous world out there and executive protection services, either private or public, should be a priority. –Matt

How to Protect Members of Congress

Officials warn of Arizona copycat attacks

Lawmakers rethink security after Arizona shooting

How to Protect Members of Congress

It doesn’t have to break the budget to provide the security they need.

By Marc Ambinder

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

On Wednesday, the FBI and the U.S. Capitol Police will brief members of Congress on basic security precautions they can take when they’re interacting with constituents. Also on the agenda: an explanation of how Capitol Police officers conduct threat assessments. What the members are likely to hear may be as simple as surrounding themselves with aides wearing suits or setting up a thin rope line to create a slight barrier between them and possible danger.

They will also hear about threats beyond the shooting in Tucson, Ariz. Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Terrence Gainer told WTOP Radio on Monday that he had referred 49 threats against senators alone to the FBI within the past year. But the rarity of actual assassination attempts against members of Congress underscores the challenge for investigators.

“A lot of people will talk, but a tiny few will act; and most who act tend not to talk beforehand,” is how one current federal agent describes people who threaten public officials.

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