The Huffington Post | By Benjamin Hart
Julia Pierson resigned as the head of the scandal-ridden Secret Service on Wednesday, but details about her shaky tenure at the agency keep emerging.
A critical new report from The Washington Post portrays Pierson as a consistent voice for a less robust security presence around President Obama and other dignitaries. One of the most damning details: Pierson, who was “irate” at what she considered excessive security measures for this summer’s U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit, said that “We need to be more like Disney World. We need to be more friendly, inviting.” Pierson had worked as a Disney costumed character during high school.
In another instance, Pierson wanted to assign around 30 officers to patrol the perimeter of the White House, even though an internal report recommended 100.
The report also outlined the Secret Service’s lack of morale and inability to “to fulfill its sacred mission.”
Pierson had been hired to right the ship after an embarrassing scandal involving prostitutes on a presidential trip in Colombia. But, as the report makes clear, she failed to make a dent in the agency’s “systemic problems,” which range from staffing shortages to resentment over long hours. She resigned after reports that a White House intruder had gotten much further into the president’s residence than the Secret Service had admitted, and that the agency had allowed an armed ex-convict onto the same elevator as Obama in September.