Secret Service Director Mark Sullivan looked like he was having a bad day as he sat facing a firing squad of lawmakers determined to find out how the vaunted Secret Service could allow uninvited guests into the White House and even into a receiving line to shake hands with President Barack Obama.
“I’ve asked myself that question a thousand times over this past week,” Sullivan told the House Homeland Security Committee when asked how Tareq and Michaele Salahi were allowed to talk their way into the White House for last week’s state dinner although they were not on the guest list.
“Do I like to see this? Believe me, we are beating ourselves up over this,” said Sullivan, who looked like he could use a good night’s sleep and seemed to have a 5 o’clock shadow even at 10 a.m.
Sullivan said he had put three Secret Services officers on paid leave for their role in letting the Virginia couple into the state dinner held in honor of the Indian prime minister.
Sullivan’s agency has been the brunt of criticism after the Salahis talked their way into the White House and managed to pose with Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and others including the Marines guarding the White House.