A rush to recruit additional Secret Service officers in the wake of numerous White House security lapses has led to a new problem: Several dozen of the fresh arrivals have been posted in sensitive positions without completing the required national security clearance process, according to two government officials familiar with the situation.
Secret Service Director Joseph P. Clancy acknowledged the problem last week during a private conversation with Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.). The lawmaker had raised the issue after hearing from a whistleblower who alleged that newly hired officers had been present for White House meetings in which classified material was shared, Meadows told The Washington Post.
Clancy promised to fix the situation as soon as possible, a Secret Service official said Tuesday. The official said the agency is struggling to work through an “administrative backlog” in issuing security clearances with the higher-than-normal volume of new hires.
The hiring push began after an incident last September in which a man jumped the White House fence, ran through the mansion’s front door and raced through much of the main floor. The breach was an embarrassment for the Secret Service and prompted lawmakers and security experts to call for beefing up protection for the compound and the first family.