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CA Congressmen take sides on port security


San Diego's two republican congressmen take different positions on a controversial deal to give an Arab company control of some U.S. port operations. KPBS reporter Alison St John has more.

Congressman Duncan Hunter says he opposes selling shipping operations to Dubai Ports World of the United Arab Emerate. Even though the president supports the deal Hunter says he does not stand behind Mr. Bush on this issue, because he says, security depends on relationships.

Hunter: "That is if you have someone in the Arab government who was paid or extorted by the bad guys, by a terrorist group, to make sure that a certain cargo container was not searched, that could make the difference between a disaster occurring in this country and not occurring , so I think it's a mistake."

Hunter says he hopes the president will reconsider his position. But if not, Hunter is ready to vote to override a presidential veto.

Congressman Darryl Issa, on the other hand, says the sale should not be opposed on the basis of the company's nationality. But, Issa believes more security safeguards are needed whenever U.S. operations are owned by any foreign company.

Alison St John, KPBS news.

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