The incoming chairman of the Republican Governors Association suggested Friday that TSA screeners would be more help securing the nation's border with Mexico.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry said Friday on Fox Business Network that states need to "push Washington back into that box that we call the United States constitution," but said the federal government needs to follow through on its responsibility of securing the U.S. border.
"Just in the last two weeks, I've had five of my citizens who've lost their lives on that border with Mexico, and that is an irresponsible lack of focus by our federal government," Perry said, calling the federal security an "abject failure."
When asked if, in the wake of the TSA invasive pat-down controversy, he'd replace TSA screeners as states are allowed under federal law, Perry had an idea.
"How about we take all those TSA agents and put them on the border with Mexico where they can do some security there?" Perry said. "That's where we need security substantially more than in our airports and what we're seeing out of this bunch."
Perry cautioned that the incoming lawmakers in the 112th Congress "better be dreaming about" cutting the size of government and embracing fiscal conservatism when they go to sleep at night and focus on it every waking day.
"That's the type of individual that will be rewarded by the voters with a re-election," he said.
The possible presidential contender said that will also be the hallmark of a successful nominee.
"I'd like to find somebody with the characteristics will stand up and run for the presidency in 2012 and say, I want to go to Washington, D.C. and help you make Washington as inconsequential in your life as I can make it," he said.
Perry didn't say whether he was that person, but said he had "the best job" as governor of the Lone Star State. "I want to be back in the state being a governor and making things happen," he said.