Secretary Janet Napolitano has written an opinion piece defending her cabinet office, the Department of Homeland Security, and its tactics allegedly needed to prevent terrorist attacks on American airline flights. The secretary focused, particularly, on AIT (Advanced Imaging Technology) in use nationwide.

The California Supreme Court reversed a lower state court ruling that struck down a 2001 California law providing that in-state illegal-alien residents could pay much lower college fees than out-of-state students. The difference in tuition rates was substantial. At the University of California the in-state fee is about $12,000 per year while the out-of-state fee is about $35,000 per year.

AP reported on November 17 that Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, speaking to reporters after a 90-minute breakfast meeting with members of Congress, was exerting pressure on the Senate to vote on a new U.S.-Russian nuclear weapons treaty. Clinton asserted that postponing the vote until the next session of Congress would undermine national security.

The effort to exclude illegal aliens from the benefits of “in-state” tuition rates has suffered a setback in California, as that state’s Supreme Court has overturned a lower-court ruling that would have required illegals to pay “out-of-state” rates. In Texas, however, the tuition struggle between legal and illegal residents is being fought out in a different venue: the student Senate at Texas A&M University.

Rather than wait for the new Congress to be installed in January, President Obama decided to press forward for the Senate confirmation of Andrew Traver for Director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).