Tom Cotton demands answers on Secret Service finding cocaine in White House
Says ‘Congress and the American people deserve to know how cocaine got into the White House’
Sent a letter to USSS Director giving her nine days to reply to six questions – and schedule a briefing with Congress on the incident
Sen. Tom Cotton wants more clarity after the Secret Service found cocaine inside the White House over the weekend – and is demanding Americans and Congress receive their well-deserved answers.
Cotton, the top Republican on the Criminal Justice and Counterterrorism Subcommittee, wrote a letter to U.S. Secret Service (USSS) Director Kimberly Cheatle on Wednesday with six questions he wants answered.
He demanded that Cheatle schedule a briefing with his staff.
‘Congress and the American people deserve to know how cocaine got into the White House,’ he said in a tweet along with an image of the letter.
A uniformed Secret Service agent found on Sunday evening a white powder substance in the White House, which led to a hazmat situation and evacuation of the premises. President Joe Biden was not at the White House because he was in Camp David with his family for the long holiday weekend.
Criminal Justice and Counterterrorism Subcommittee Ranking Member Sen. Tom Cotton (pictured) is demanding answers from the U.S. Secret Service on finding cocaine in the West Wing as hunt ensures over who’s to blame for bringing illicit drug into the White House
Critics of the first family say President Joe Biden’s addict son Hunter (second from right) is to blame for the drugs in the White House. Pictured: President Joe Biden, first lady Jill Biden, Hunter Biden and son Beau, three, watch fireworks from the White House Truman Balcony on Tuesday, July 4, 2023
Washington DC Fire Department said preliminary testing found the substance to be cocaine, according to a dispatch call from July 2. This was later confirmed in follow-up laboratory testing on Wednesday.
While dispatch said the powder was found in the ‘library’ of the White House, USSS released a statement that the cocaine was actually found in a ‘West Wing work area.’ Later reports contradict both of these claims, saying now that the illicit drug was discovered in the cubby of a storage facility in a dime-sized, zippered bag where many White House staff and guests store their phones.
USSS has launched an investigation to find who brought cocaine into the White House and how it made it past any potential security screening. Biden critics and trolls online think they already cracked the case – so to speak – and are claiming Hunter Biden is the culprit.
Meanwhile, Cotton is demanding USSS Director Cheatle respond to his letter in nine days – by close of business on Friday, July 14.
‘According to public reports, the Secret Service has not yet confirmed where in the West Wing the cocaine was found,’ Cotton wrote in his Wednesday letter. ‘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,’ the Arkansas senator added.
Along with gaining clarity on the situation at hand, Cotton also wants to know if this has happened in the past.
‘In the past five years, how often has the Secret Service encountered illegal drugs at the White House complex? How often were these drugs detected during security screenings, and how often were these drugs encountered inside secure areas?’ he questioned.
Speculators online have said that President Biden’s addict son Hunter, 52, is to blame for bringing drugs into the White House. But others speculate it could have been a number of people who traverse through the White House every day.
Hunter was at the White House on Friday, June 30 before heading to Camp David for the long Fourth of July weekend with his family. He returned to the White House with President Biden, first lady Jill Biden, wife Melissa Cohen and son Beau, three, on Tuesday for the Independence Day celebration on the South Lawn.
The White House has remained silent on the incident.
But Biden’s Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre was forced to face questions on the matter during the press briefing on Wednesday afternoon.
She wouldn’t go further than what was stated by USSS so far – but did imply that the area it was found is a ‘heavily traveled’ spot in the White House.