The Secret Service is having trouble balancing investigating crimes and protecting Donald Trump's family

Field officers are spread thin because they have to protect his family all over the world

By Matthew Rozsa
April 7, 2017 9:20PM (UTC)
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(Reuters/Gary Cameron)

Last month it came out that the Secret Service would need roughly $60 million more in its budget to adequately protect President Donald Trump and his family. Now it turns out that the Trump's protection requirements are exacting a human toll on the Secret Service as well as a fiscal one.

The increase of 40 percent more people under its protection compared to most non-campaign years has caused the Secret Service to be spread thin, according to a report by The New York Times. Many agents in New York and other field offices have been temporarily reassigned from criminal investigations to protect Trump family members in two-week stints, while agents who were already assigned to protect the president and his family have had to work overtime hours. Not surprisingly, employee morale is now at the lowest among any federal agency.


Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, who chairs of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, told The Times that the Secret Service is "flat-out worn out." Similarly, the committee's ranking Democratic member Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., said that their experience is "like being on a bike that you never get off of."

While the human toll on the Secret Service is significant, the financial one is also quite staggering. The cost of travel and security for Trump's seven weekend trips to his resort at Mar-a-Lago have already amounted to at least $24 million, comparable to what Obama cost taxpayers in travel expenses during the entire first two years of his presidency.

This news come out shortly after it was revealed that a member of Vice President Mike Pence's Secret Service detail had been arrested in Maryland for soliciting prostitution.

Matthew Rozsa

Matthew Rozsa is a staff writer for Salon. He holds an MA in History from Rutgers University-Newark and is ABD in his PhD program in History at Lehigh University. His work has appeared in Mic, Quartz and MSNBC.

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