- The Washington Times - Saturday, March 27, 2010

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama’s second choice for transportation security chief has withdrawn from consideration because of questions over his background as a defense contractor.

Retired Army Maj. Gen. Robert Harding took himself out of the running Friday night as head of the Transportation Security Administration, another setback for Obama after his first choice withdrew in January.

Harding said the distractions caused by his work as a defense contractor would not be good for the administration or the Homeland Security Department. The TSA is part of that department.

Harding has extensive intelligence experience that Obama hoped to tap in shoring up airport screening and other anti-terrorism transportation fronts.

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