President Obama has decided to appoint Joseph P. Clancy, who has guided the Secret Service on an interim basis for the last four months, to lead the agency permanently, law enforcement officials said Wednesday.
In appointing Mr. Clancy, a former head of Mr. Obama’s security detail, the president rejected calls from critics on Capitol Hill and members of a special Department of Homeland Security panel that said that a string of mishaps and scandals made it clear that the agency should be run by an outsider.
Had Mr. Obama chosen the other leading candidate for the job — Sean Joyce, a former deputy director of the F.B.I. — it would have been the first time in the agency’s 150-year history that it had been run by someone who had not previously been one of its agents.
The Secret Service’s most ardent critic on Capitol Hill, Representative Jason Chaffetz, the Utah Republican who is the chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, released a statement criticizing the decision.
“The panel made it crystal clear that only a director from outside the agency would meet the needs of the agency today — someone with a fresh perspective, free from allegiances and without ties to what has consistently been described as a ‘good old boys network,’ ” Mr. Chaffetz said.
“The good men and women of the Secret Service are screaming for a fresh start,” Mr. Chaffetz said. “At this moment in time, the Secret Service would best be served by a transformative and dynamic leader from outside the agency.”
Mr. Chaffetz said he appreciated “how available Acting Director Clancy has made himself over the past few months” and looked forward to working with him.
SOURCE: MICHAEL S. SCHMIDT
The New York Times