Iowa Senator Tom Harkin says he hasn’t made up his mind yet, but he’s not sold on the idea of arming commercial airline pilots. A bill allowing pilots to have guns in the cockpit passed the U-S House Wednesday. Harkin, a democrat, says he more in favor of having armed air marshals on the planes.He says the air marshals would be trained and know what to do. He says it may even be better to arm the stewards, as they could take care of something immediately. Harkin says the recent arrest of two pilots who were drunk scares him more than the threat of terrorists getting into the cockpit.He says pilots are human beings who have emotional problems, and we don’t know what they’re doing, and don’t lock them up at night so they don’t drink. Harkin says a drunken pilot with a gun is a scary thought. Harkin says he wants to see other measures — like strengthening the cockpit doors — move forward before the pilots start packing heat.He says pilots need monitors in the cockpit to see what’s going on in the rest of the plane, they also need a way to send out a distress signal that can’t be corrupted. Harkin expects the House bill to come to the Senate later this year.
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