FILE - In this Nov. 19, 2014 file photo, then-acting Secret Service Director Joseph Clancy testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington. US officials say President Barack Obama has picked Clancy as agency's director. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File) (AP)

Donald Trump will get to choose who's going to be in charge of the Secret Service

The Secret Service has been through a crisis in recent years, so now it's up to Trump to fix it


Taylor Link
February 15, 2017 6:43PM (UTC)

Many high-profiled positions in the new administration remain unfilled. Add director of the Secret Service to the list. The organization tasked with, among other things, ensuring the president's safety, announced that Director Joseph Clancy will retire early next month, leaving President Donald Trump the opportunity to name a new agency head.

Clancy took over the Secret Service in 2014, when the agency was going through a bit of a crisis. Scandals involving call girls, security breaches and botched assignments rocked the Secret Service under the Obama administration. So the former president tapped Clancy to rebuild an agency that was experiencing a high turnover rate and receiving a shortage of qualified job applications.

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Business appeared to be usual until Trump became president-elect and continued to employ a private security team even though it is the Secret Service's responsibility to protect the incoming president. In January, two weeks before Trump's inauguration, Clancy denied rumors that Trump's private security was causing more harm than good. Clancy told CNN that that there were no conflicts between his agents and Trump's private security team. "There is no friction at all," Clancy said.

"They are not in our meetings. They are not armed," he added. "They are more of a staff function than a security function. We don't interact with them."

The statement announcing Clancy's intention to step down did not offer an explanation as to why he was leaving.

There are a few names floating around that could potentially replace Clancy, according to a report from The Washington Post. Some prospects include George Mulligan, current chief operating officer; Mickey Nelson, former assistant director; and the new deputy director, William Callahan.

The Secret Service's detail under the Trump administration includes Trump Tower in New York, where the first lady resides with her son. The costs and resources to secure the White House and a Manhattan skyscraper is unprecedented. Clancy had said that the Secret Service would not be paying the costs to occupy some floors in Trump Tower.

The president could potentially tap somebody outside the Secret Service to rehabilitate the agency in a new image.

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Taylor Link

Taylor Link is an assistant editor at Salon. You can find him on Twitter at @taylorlink_

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Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Barack Obama Donald Trump Jason Chaffetz Joseph Clancy Secret Service

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