North Dakota Republican barred from flight after incident with security agent

A North Dakota Republican was barred from boarding a flight on Monday after a Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agent sought to pat him down.

North Dakota state Rep. Jeff Hoverson (R) told KFYR-TV that he had intended to celebrate his wedding anniversary with his wife. They were at the Minot International Airport on Monday to board a flight. 

Hoverson told the news outlet that he moved the TSA agent’s hand away from him even though the agent had told him prior to the incident that he would be giving him a pat-down. The state lawmaker claimed that he had not given the TSA agent permission to do a security check on him.

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"When the passenger proceeded through the screening machine, an anomaly was detected, which triggered an alarm. The Transportation Security officer explained that a patdown would be required," the TSA said in a statement to The Hill, explaining the situation.

"The passenger objected during the patdown and called the police. Ultimately, both the passenger and his companion complied with patdowns and all alarms were cleared. The airline was alerted to the incident and made the decision to deny boarding," the agency continued.

Hoverson told KFYR-TV that he believed he and others had overreacted to the incident.

"The safety of our passengers and crew is our top priority. With that in mind, our policy would be to deny boarding to anyone who might present a potential safety risk to passengers and crew during a flight. That would include a passenger who is being actively investigated by police for assaulting a TSA agent," Allegiant said in a statement.

The Hill has reached out to Hoverson for comment.

Updated at 4:20 p.m.