Critics Question Why #2 Secret Service Official Holds Job After Shakeup


Two weeks after the Secret Service forced out four of its top officials, members of Congress question whether the agency should have ousted one more: its influential second-in-command, the Washington Post reports. Lawmakers from both parties are concerned that by keeping in place Alvin “A.T.” Smith, the Secret Service stopped short of fully reforming upper management following a string of embarrassing security lapses. Smith, a top official for nearly a decade and the deputy director since 2012, has managed day-to-day operations and was a key architect of its budgets and policies.

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee plans to invite Smith and acting director Joseph Clancy to appear at a February hearing focusing on the core reasons behind security breaches involving the White House and the president. Committee members have heard from whistleblowers who complain that Smith approved policy changes they say weakened the agency. “I'm worried that A.T. Smith is part of the problem, not part of the solution,” said committee chairman Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT). “He seems to be in the middle of most of these really bad decisions.”

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