Senators hold a hearing with former Washington Insiders to review the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) as it nears its 10-year anniversary.
The Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee highlights the DHS's mission areas since its existence. Members also look at how the agency can prevent terrorism and enhance security over the next ten years.
The DHS was created following 9/11 in order to bring various government agencies that deal with domestic security issues under one umbrella. A bill authorizing its creation was passed in November of 2002, and it officially opened its doors in 2003.
Lawmakers question three witnesses to review the planning and implementation that is behind the current security infrastructure. They also are seeking to identify long-term emerging threats and how the government can best prepare the agency to prevent them, with a specific eye to cyberthreats and federal government oversight of the private sector.
Witnesses include former California Congresswoman and current Wilson Center for International Scholars President Jane Harman, Retired Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen and former DHS Inspector General Richard Skinner. They testify about the challenges of fulfilling DHS's missions while protecting the civil rights and privacy of American citizens.