Washington (CNN) - There was little debate about job qualifications and more talk about whether screeners at the nation's airports should be able to unionize during Thursday's confirmation hearing for the president's latest nominee to head the Transportation Security Administration.
John Pistole, currently deputy director of the FBI, generally received praise for his law enforcement experience, but several Republican senators - including South Carolina's Jim DeMint, who placed a hold on an earlier nominee for the same reason - pressed Pistole to oppose allowing airport screeners to unionize.
Texas Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchinson told Pistole she is "adamantly against" allowing screeners to join unions.
"You can't have eight hour days," said Hutchinson. "You have to be able to respond to emergencies."
Pistole did not express an opinion on whether TSA workers should be able to unionize but told the senators that Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano has asked him to study the issue.