Acting Director of the Secret Service Joseph Clancy told lawmakers on Wednesday he’s “confident” he can restore the American public’s faith in the agency, in the wake of high-profile security breaches that put the President and First Family in danger.
“We are confident we can fulfill our mission with honor, and restore the secret service’s rightful place as the most respected protection service in the world,” Clancy said Wednesday in front of the House Judiciary Committee.
It has been a little over a month since Clancy took the reigns at the Secret Service, after previous director Julia Pierson stepped down after the public found out that an army veteran named Omar Gonzales had been able to reach the East Room of the White House after jumping a fence and running inside.
Clancy acknowledged the failures of the agency in recent months, saying he is working to adjust training and morale within an agency he notes is stretched thin. He also addressed the Sept. 19 fence jumping, calling it “devastating.”
“What hits me hardest is the range of shortcomings that ultimately allowed Omar Gonzalez to enter the White House practically unencumbered,” he said.
The Washington Post reports Rep. Jason Chaffetz, who will serve as the next chairman of the House Oversight committee, grilled Clancy on whether or not anyone had been punished for misleading the public on when the fence jumper was detained in early reports.
“We’ve cited at least two, I believe three, incidents when the public was misinformed,” Chaffetz reportedly said. “The Secret Service misled us on purpose.”
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