Ex-Homeland Security boss University president says it’s all about safety
Rapiscan Systems lobbied aggressively to win a major contract with the Transportation Security Administration to provide X-ray body scanners at airports, only to lose the contract in 2013 after the company failed to deliver software to protect the privacy of passengers.
Rapiscan now has a friend on the inside.
Earlier this month, Rapiscan lobbyist Christopher Romig took a job with the House Appropriations Committee’s Homeland Security Subcommittee, which oversees the TSA budget.
During the previous push for a TSA contract, Rapiscan employed Michael Chertoff, former Secretary of Homeland Security, who now works as a pundit and a homeland security industry consultant through his firm the Chertoff Group. According to the Huffington Post, Rapiscan previously spent as much as $271,500 on lobbying per year to help secure business with the TSA.
Romig’s shift through the revolving door was first noted by Legistorm.
In his last lobbying filing statement, Romig disclosed that he lobbied Congress on “aviation, port and border security,” as well as the “budget and appropriation.” All areas he will now supervise as a professional staff member.
Tom Ridge was not a rich man when he resigned as the chief of the Department of Homeland Security in 2004. His financial disclosure from that year showed he had investments worth between $100,000 and $815,00 in companies. Though modest by the current standards of senior government officials, those investments included companies “with contracts with his department and others who want to profit from homeland security,” a CQ story said at the time.
Yet soon after leaving government service, Ridge bought a property in Chevy Chase, Maryland worth about $2 million. His home, which was featured in Home & Design, aka “The magazine of luxury homes and fine interiors,” boasts custom interior decorations, including a table designed by the brother of the late Princess Diana, a dining room paneled with “native Sweetgum” and artwork “representative of the Tudor period.”
So how exactly has Ridge made all his money?