Does the United States need a Department of Homeland Security?

Many people in homeland-security circles question the idea of a single department composed of automonous agencies with clashing work cultures.

    The Federal Eye

      1 million eligible for DOD security clearance, but not on payroll

      Some DOD agencies have more people eligible for clearances than they do staffers.

        Feds honored for ‘outstanding achievements’

        Feds will be honored with Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medals for outstanding work.

          Patent official says fraudulent time is ‘unacceptable’

          These are changes to be expected now that Congress is paying attention. But most of them will need approval from the agency’s union, which is likely to push back against some.

            ‘Don’t ask, don’t tell’ is over. But challenges remain for LGBT vets and service members

            The Department of Veterans Affairs has only been fully recognizing married same-sex couples in states that have marriage equality.

              Survey

              Is the federal hiring system broken?

              The Post wants to hear from you why getting the best people into government is so hard, and what managers are doing about it.

                The Federal Diary

                Eligible for security clearance, but not on DOD’s payroll?

                FILE - In this March 27, 2008, file photo, the Pentagon is seen in this aerial view in Washington. Is the U.S. spending enough money on defense, and is it spending it in the right ways? In the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks the money spigot was turned wide open, pouring hundreds of billions of dollars into the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and expanding the armed forces. Now that’s changing, and an important issue in the election is whether budget cuts have gone too far.  (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File)

                GAO finds that many contractors could obtain access to classified information but are not working.

                Navy Yard workers remember when their world shattered

                WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 16: People attend a service at Admiral Leutze Park on the grounds of the Washington Navy Yard to remember the victims and to mark the one year anniversary of the Washington Navy Yard shooting on Tuesday September 16, 2014 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Matt McClain/ The Washington Post)

                Navy Yard staffers recall last year’s massacre. They are sad, but they also have pride in their colleagues.

                Survivors recall the Navy Yard massacre one year later

                WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 16:  United States Navy personnel prepare for a service at Admiral Leutze Park on the grounds of the Washington Navy Yard to remember the victims and to mark the one year anniversary of the Washington Navy Yard shooting on Tuesday September 16, 2014 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Matt McClain/ The Washington Post)

                People who were there talked about being in the building during the Navy Yard massacre one year ago.

                In the Loop

                In the Loop: Intruders and other scary stories

                FILE - In this Sept. 20, 2014 file photo, uniformed Secret Service officers walk along the fence on the North side of the White House in Washington. The Secret Service is boosting security outside the White House following an embarrassing security breach in which an intruder with a knife scaled the White House fence, dashed across the lawn and made it all the way inside before agents managed to stop him.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

                That White House security breach was bad, all right. But it’s not the worst of its kind we know of.

                White House intruder incident pales next to a really scary one in Canada

                Obama wasn’t in the White House, whereas the Canadian PM was asleep in the residence when it happened.

                NCI director Varmus drops the F-bomb

                It’s on the audio tape. But not on the video. What happened?

                Fine Print

                Fine Print: The significance of Obama’s words

                FILE - In this June 30, 2014, file photo, President Barack Obama, accompanied by Vice President Joe Biden, pauses while making a statement about immigration reform, in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington. Obama over time has been embraced and scorned by immigrant advocates who have viewed him as both a champion and an obstacle to their cause. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File)

                In the fight against the Islamic State, slogans are not as key as strategy.

                Fine Print: It’s going to be a long fight

                Al-Qaeda was just the first round of this protracted war against terrorism, Walter Pincus writes.

                Fine Print: Hill has to step lively, wisely on Islamic State

                FILE - In this Sept. 8, 2014, file photo, workmen erect metal scaffolding pipe around the dome of the U.S. Capitol in Washington. Seven weeks before the elections, Republicans and Democrats are both playing it safe, willing to make short-term sacrifices of long-held positions in hopes of maximizing their chances for victory at the polls. That means that House Republicans who recently voted to sue Obama for allegedly failing to obey the Constitution seem likely to hand him new war powers to combat militants seeking an Islamic state. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

                Obama wants lawmakers on board in the fight, but that means striking a balance between restrictions, reality.

                The High Court

                Supreme Court: Was gay marriage settled in 1972 case?

                Same-sex marriage status in the U.S., state-by-state

                The meaning of a 1972 ruling appears entirely dependent on judicial perspective.

                High Court: Justices get another shot at gerrymandering

                FILE - This Monday, June 30, 2014, file photo shows the Supreme Court building in Washington. No one on the Supreme Court objected publicly when the justices voted to let Arizona proceed with the execution of Joseph Wood, who unsuccessfully sought information about the drugs that would be used to kill him. Nor did any of the justices try to stop the deaths of inmates in Florida and Missouri by lethal injection. Even as the number of executions annually has dropped by more than half over the past 15 years and the court has barred states from killing juveniles and the mentally disabled, no justice has emerged as a principled opponent of the death penalty. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

                Florida judge takes a stand, sets stage for two cases going before the Supreme Court in the fall.

                This term’s key Supreme Court rulings, in the justices’ own words

                This photo taken June 30, 2014 shows the Supreme Court in Washington. Conservative Republicans claimed victory this week in the Supreme Court ruling on religious freedom and the White House’s acceptance that an immigration overhaul won’t happen this year. Today’s victories could haunt the GOP in two years’ time, as the party’s presidential nominee looks for much-needed support among women and Hispanics in the 2016 election. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

                The justices’ writings offer fresh insights into the court’s important decisions from this past term.

                The Influence Industry

                Influence Industry: U.S. Chamber of Commerce looks West

                It hopes to woo Silicon Valley, but whether it can is an open question.

                Federal Player of the Week

                Reaching consensus to improve the energy efficiency of appliances and commercial equipment

                John Cymbalsky heads the Appliance Standards Program, which has been designed to save consumers money while reducing energy usage and greenhouse gas emissions.

                The Federal Coach

                Celebrating what government gets right

                This year’s Service to America winners are examples of federal leadership that works.

                Treating citizens like customers

                Federal government ranks lower than cable companies when it comes to customer satisfaction.

                How NASA keeps innovating

                NASA is more bureaucratic than it used to be, so how does it continue to take bold and creative risks?

                Prospects

                Job possibilities are growing again

                In federal government, hiring is picking up; career-seekers must make an effort to keep pace.

                Latest Federal News

                Column

                Fine Print: The significance of Obama’s words

                Fine Print: The significance of Obama’s words

                In the fight against the Islamic State, slogans are not as key as strategy.

                Column

                In the Loop: Intruders and other scary stories

                In the Loop: Intruders and other scary stories

                That White House security breach was bad, all right. But it’s not the worst of its kind we know of.

                Meet the winners of the federal Oscars

                Meet the winners of the federal Oscars

                The “Sammies” honor exceptional civil servants. The top winner this year is a CDC employee.

                Celebrating what government gets right

                Celebrating what government gets right

                This year’s Service to America winners are examples of federal leadership that works.

                1 million eligible for DOD security clearance, but not on payroll

                1 million eligible for DOD security clearance, but not on payroll

                Some DOD agencies have more people eligible for clearances than they do staffers.

                White House intruder incident pales next to a really scary one in Canada

                White House intruder incident pales next to a really scary one in Canada

                Obama wasn’t in the White House, whereas the Canadian PM was asleep in the residence when it happened.

                NCI director Varmus drops the F-bomb

                It’s on the audio tape. But not on the video. What happened?

                Feds honored for ‘outstanding achievements’

                Feds honored for ‘outstanding achievements’

                Feds will be honored with Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medals for outstanding work.

                Patent official says fraudulent time is ‘unacceptable’

                Patent official says fraudulent time is ‘unacceptable’

                These are changes to be expected now that Congress is paying attention. But most of them will need approval from the agency’s union, which is likely to push back against some.

                Some senators up for reelection aren’t hustling home just yet

                Some senators up for reelection aren’t hustling home just yet

                Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), in a newly tightened race against an independent challenger, can’t get out to Kansas just yet.

                Navy Yard staff remember massacre

                Navy Yard staff remember massacre

                Navy Yard staffers recall last year’s massacre with sadness, but also pride

                Column

                Fine Print: It’s going to be a long fight

                Al-Qaeda was just the first round of this protracted war against terrorism, Walter Pincus writes.

                Column

                In the Loop: Party at the White House or on the Hill?

                In the Loop: Party at the White House or on the Hill?

                Lawmakers had to choose between a big-time picnic or listening to Gingrich and DeLay discuss 1994.

                Many Obama nominees will be left on the floor Thursday night when the Senate slithers out of town

                Many Obama nominees will be left on the floor Thursday night when the Senate slithers out of town

                The Senate is expected to confirm an ambassador to Ireland and eight other nominees Thursday evening.

                Holder Watch: Day 2,054

                Holder Watch: Day 2,054

                Holder is already one of the longest serving attorneys general in American history. How long will he stay?

                What will be the mail truck of the future?

                What will be the mail truck of the future?

                Replacing the USPS fleet would cost postal officials about $5 billion, and that’s a check that at the moment they can’t write.

                Here’s why VA Secretary Robert McDonald’s cellphone is sometimes busy

                Here’s why VA Secretary  Robert McDonald’s cellphone is sometimes busy

                McDonald gave out his cellphone number last week to the media. Since then he’s gotten some 150 calls.

                Meet the VA official expanding the national cemetery system

                Ronald Walters, the highest-ranking official with the National Cemetery Administration, is a finalist for a prestigious management award.

                Ronald E. Walters: Caretaker for the dead

                Ronald E. Walters: Caretaker for the dead

                The head of VA’s National Cemetery Administration has helped keep standards high.

                Column

                A Bush is fired up over Points of Light

                A Bush is fired up over Points of Light

                Neil Bush blasts GOP Senate hopeful David Perdue for criticism of his dad’s foundation.

                Treating citizens like customers

                Treating citizens like customers

                Federal government ranks lower than cable companies when it comes to customer satisfaction.

                Senate finally confirms an ambassador to critical Turkey post

                Senate finally confirms an ambassador to critical Turkey post

                The Senate moved yesterday to confirm seven more Obama appointees, including three ambassadors

                GOP congressman seeks criminal prosecution of patent office cheating

                GOP congressman seeks criminal prosecution of patent office cheating

                U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf seeks criminal prosecution of patent office fraud

                Column

                Is Holder preparing to let go?

                Is Holder preparing to let go?

                There is more speculation about the attorney general’s future.

                Senate confirms Hartley as ambassador to France, two others for nuclear commission

                Senate confirms Hartley as ambassador to France, two others for nuclear commission

                The Senate Tuesday confirmed eight Obama nominees, including ambassadors to France and Guatemala and members of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

                Somber Navy ceremony remembers ‘good people’

                Somber Navy ceremony remembers ‘good people’

                Navy Yard ceremony remembers 12 people slain there one year ago.

                Attention Biden alumni! Scheduled reunion Tuesday postponed. Joe’s in. . . Iowa.

                Attention Biden alumni! Scheduled reunion Tuesday postponed. Joe’s in. . . Iowa.

                First Joe Biden had a conference call with former staff. Then a reunion was scheduled (but postponed) for Tuesday. Now he’s headed to Iowa. So not running?

                How NASA keeps innovating

                How NASA keeps innovating

                NASA is more bureaucratic than it used to be, so how does it continue to take bold and creative risks?

                Reaching consensus to improve the energy efficiency of appliances and commercial equipment

                Reaching consensus to improve the energy efficiency of appliances and commercial equipment

                John Cymbalsky heads the Appliance Standards Program, which has been designed to save consumers money while reducing energy usage and greenhouse gas emissions.