Secret Service Director Can Raise Alcohol Standards Immediately

Secret Service Director Joseph Clancy has the power to respond to the latest allegations of misconduct by two senior level agents by raising agency standards for alcohol-related misconduct immediately, according to legal experts and a review of agency policies.

Clancy, in the hot seat Tuesday at a House hearing on the Secret Service’s budget, faced angry lawmakers demanding a quick and decisive response to the latest allegation of misconduct by two senior Secret Service agents accused of driving onto the White House grounds drunk, colliding with a barricade and disrupting an active suspicious-package investigation.

Even though Clancy acknowledged that an “element” of the Secret Service depends too heavily on alcohol to cope with the stress of the job, he said it would take time to change the culture of the agency.

Clancy also said he would wait months until an investigation of the incident is complete before taking any concrete step to respond beyond issuing a intra-agency statement condemning the episode.