The Secret Service has taken charge of the investigation into the discovery of cocaine at the White House on Sunday. The illicit substance was found in a working area of the West Wing, prompting concerns about security and transparency. Senator Tom Cotton, a Republican from Arkansas, is urging the Secret Service to provide swift and detailed information about the incident.
In a letter addressed to Secret Service Director Kimberly Cheatle, Senator Cotton emphasized the need for transparency, stating, “The Secret Service has not yet confirmed where in the West Wing the cocaine was found. I urge you to release that information quickly, as the American people deserve to know whether illicit drugs were found in an area where confidential information is exchanged. If the White House complex is not secure, Congress needs to know the details, as well as your plan to correct any security flaws.”
Earlier this week, it was confirmed that the white powder discovered at the White House was indeed cocaine, as determined by testing conducted by the District of Columbia Fire Department.
Senator Cotton’s letter to the Secret Service Director included several questions and requests for information, such as a complete list of individuals with access to the White House complex without undergoing security screening and another list of those subject to lesser security screening requirements along with a description of those requirements and the reasons behind them. He also inquired about the frequency of Secret Service K-9 screenings for visitors to the White House interior and the agency’s history of encountering illegal drugs within the secure areas of the White House.
The senator also sought clarification on whether an arrest would be made once the investigation identifies the individual responsible for bringing cocaine into the White House. Additionally, he requested details about the Secret Service’s security audit procedures, including the frequency of audits, the most recent audit findings, and any subsequent adjustments made to address potential security flaws.
Multiple media outlets have reported that the cocaine was discovered in a West Wing entrance where visitors typically place their belongings before embarking on tours.
The investigation led by the Secret Service aims to shed light on this concerning incident and ensure the ongoing security and integrity of the White House complex.