A man masquerading as a member of Congress walked into a secure backstage area without being properly screened and spoke with President Obama at an awards dinner last fall. Five days later, a woman walked backstage unchecked at a gala dinner where Obama was a featured guest. Months after that, two people strolled unnoticed past a Secret Service checkpoint into the first layer of the White House grounds.
An assistant director of the Secret Service urged that unflattering information the agency had in its files about a congressman critical of the service should be made public, according to a government watchdog report released Wednesday.
The Secret Service took more than a year to replace a broken alarm system at former president George H.W. Bush’s home, raising concerns within the agency about the safety of the Houston residence and the Bush family, according to a government report scheduled to be released Thursday.
The Secret Service has put a senior supervisor on leave and suspended his security clearance after a female employee accused him of assaulting her after-hours at agency headquarters last week, the agency said Wednesday.
The Republican chairman of a House oversight committee issued subpoenas late Tuesday demanding testimony from two Secret Service employees about a White House incident last month in which two agents are being investigated for allegedly disrupting an active bomb investigation.
The Secret Service has imposed a new, stricter policy that prohibits staff from driving government cars within 10 hours of drinking alcohol, according to an internal agency memo reviewed by The Washington Post.
Much of the surveillance video taken during a March 4 incident at the White House complex, in which Secret Service agents drove into a barricade marking off a bomb-threat investigation, has been erased, the agency’s top official told lawmakers Thursday.
"Once they have actually left office, we seem to grow fonder of our ex-presidents... Now, little more than four months before he leaves office, President Obama has begun to get a taste of this phenomenon."
Gwen Ifill is moderator and managing editor of "Washington Week" and co-anchor and managing editor of the "PBS NewsHour." The best-selling author of "The Breakthrough: Politics and Race in the Age of Obama," Gwen has covered seven presidential campaigns and moderated two vice presidential debates.