House GOP seeks White House cocaine briefing
Why it matters: GOP lawmakers are making the case that the development raises broader concerns about White House security.
- Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) sent the Secret Service a letter on Wednesday asking several questions about their security procedures.
Driving the news: Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.), chair of the House Oversight Committee, requested "additional information" about the incident in a letter to Secret Service Director Kimberly Cheatle.
- "The presence of illegal drugs in the White House is unacceptable and a shameful moment in the White House’s history," he wrote.
- Comer said the discovery has "raised additional concerns with the Committee regarding the level of security maintained at the White House," requesting a staff-level briefing by July 14.
The context: The detection of a white substance prompted a brief evacuation of the White House campus on Sunday, with lab tests later determining the powder was cocaine.
- White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters at a briefing on Wednesday that the cocaine was found in a "heavily trafficked" area of the West Wing — reportedly a cubby near one of the entrances.
- "The president and the first lady and their family were not here this weekend, as you all reported on this," Jean-Pierre added.