Yesterday Homeland Security Secretary Mike Chertoff sat down with a group of homeland security bloggers to discuss the upcoming 5-year anniversary of the Department, accomplishments under his watch, and other topics. In what became more of a rapid fire reverse panel discussion, Chertoff sat opposite the eight of us fielding exactly one question from each person. The topics ranged from immigration modernization to cyber security to warrantless wiretaps. As usual, the Secretary enthusiastically â€“ if sometimes combatively â€“ took on every question with the gusto of a real policy wonk.
Rather than rehash for you the details, you can access transcript of the roundtable from the DHS website. The transcript does not name questioners, but I asked the first question on USCIS Transformation, and others in the group were Ryan Singel of Wired, Townhall.com’s Amanda Carpente, Jeff Stein of CQ, J.P. Freire from American Spectator, Counterterrorism Blog’s Andrew Cochran, and Rich Cooper, former DHS official and contributor to Security Debrief. It was a great opportunity to meet these individuals in person
Because the meeting became more like a press interview than a discussion, I believe that we could have used the time better. Actually, we could’ve simply used more time, but that’s impractical. See the transcript for the details. It gets exciting when Jeff Stein digs in on the use of intel from warrantless wiretaps. See Ryan Singel’s distillation for highlights, too.