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Tag: White House

Two Top Homeland Security Officials Forced to Resign Amid Trump Purge

By Steve Neavling

Two top Homeland Security officials have been forced to resign by the White House as President Trump continues to remove anyone who hasn’t demonstrated “complete loyalty.” 

Bryan Ware, a senior policy aide at the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, and Valerie Boyd, the top official for international affairs at Homeland Security, are the latest national security officials to resign under pressure, The Washington Post reports.

“They’re looking for complete loyalty, and someone with experience serving different administrations is not perceived as sufficiently loyal,” one person who spoke on the condition of anonymity told The Post

Boyd previously served in the administrations of Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama. 

In her resignation letter, Boyd told acting secretary Chad Wolf that she hopes the administration will “act with honor” by creating a peaceful transition to a new presidency. 

“It has been my belief that people of character should support the institution of the Presidency and work within it to inform and influence policy decisions that reflect well on the people’s government,” Boyd wrote. “This belief has been tested many times these past few years, and it is my fervent prayer that I made the best possible choices. I wish you and our colleagues across the government the strength to act with honor in the months ahead.”

Ware told The Post, “I’m proud of the work that I did. I’m proud of what the agency accomplished and proud to have had the privilege to serve the country.”

Neither the White House nor Homeland Security would comment. 

Secret Service Agents Often Don’t Wear Masks While Accompanying Trump to Events

By Steve Neavling

Secret Service agents are tasked with protecting the president, but they often don’t wear masks to protect against the spread of the coronavirus at campaign events, according to an ABC News review of videos and photographs.

Secret Service agents are required to wear masks, and the CDC recommends the use of face coverings as a primary defense against COVID-19. 

Agents who accompany Trump to rallies and events – both indoor and outdoor– frequently don’t wear masks. Then again, neither does Trump, who was diagnosed with the coronavirus earlier this month.

Trump event mocked Democratic presidential candidate Vice President for relying on masks. 

“I don’t wear masks like him. Every time you see him he’s got a mask. He could be speaking 200 feet away and he shows up with biggest mask I’ve ever seen,” Trump said.

At events and rallies for Biden, by contrast, Secret Service agents are seen wearing masks.

The Secret Service declined to explain why agents protecting the president often don’t wear masks, but said in a statement, “The Secret Service continues to follow CDC guidelines regarding the use of PPE. While we continually assess the environment in which we conduct our protective operations, we will not discuss the manner in which we conduct them.”

The Secret Service has been tight-lipped about whether agents have been infected in connection with the diagnosis of Trump and others in his inner circle. 

Meadows Continues Attack on Wray: ‘We Want to Make Sure He’s Doing His job’

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows on “Face the Nation.”

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows doubled down on his criticism of FBI Director Christopher Wray on Sunday and even suggested he could be replaced, ramping up the baseless narrative that mail-in votes are going to lead to widespread fraud.

“As we look at this, we want to make sure he’s doing his job. There are different degrees of confidence in different Cabinet members,” Meadows said on CBS’s “Face the Nation.” “Certainly, he’s still there. The minute that the president loses confidence in any of his Cabinet members — they serve at his pleasure — he will certainly look at replacing them.”

The rebuke of Wray comes after he told the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee on Thursday that there’s no evidence of “any kind of coordinated national voter fraud effort.”

Meadows lashed out at Wray on Friday, saying the FBI director “has a hard time finding emails in his own FBI, let alone finding out whether there is any kind of voter fraud.”

On Sunday, Meadows said Wray was too quick to dismiss election fraud.

“To suggest that there is a process that is full of integrity is trying to make a verdict before you’ve actually heard the case,” Meadows aid. “That’s my problem with Director Wray. They need to investigate it and make sure that the voting populace, make sure their vote counts and no one else’s does.”

But Wray emphasized to lawmakers last week that the FBI “would investigate seriously” any evidence of election fraud.

Former Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson weighed in Sunday.

“It’s disconcerting to see the president and his chief of staff cast doubt on the integrity of our democracy,” Johnson said “Face the Nation.” “In fact, mail-in voting is almost as old as the nation. There are states now where the predominant way to vote is by mail.”

CBP Arrests Armed Woman Accused of Sending Ricin to President Trump

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

CBP officers on Sunday arrested a woman accused of sending an envelope containing the poison ricin to the White House.

The woman was arrested with a gun in her possession soon after crossing the Canadian Border in Buffalo, The Associated Press reports.

The suspect’s identity had not been disclosed as of Monday morning. She is expected to be charged Monday.

The letter, which was addressed to President Trump, was intercepted at a mail-screening facility and traced back to Canada, according to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, which helped the FBI investigate.

Ricin, which is derived from castor beans and has no antidote, can be deadly if inhaled or ingested.

Secret Service Officer Shot Man Who Appeared to Be Holding a Gun. It was a comb

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

A man shot by a Secret Service officer near the White House was holding a comb and suffered from mental illness, according to new court documents.

Myron Berryman, 51, who was charged with assaulting a police officer after the Aug. 10 shooting, approached the Secret Service officer and said he had a gun, The Washington Post reports. Court records say Berryman appeared to grab an object from the right side of his body and pointed his clasped arms at the officer.

Berryman was shot in the torso and is now recovering at a psychiatric hospital, his lawyer says.

It wasn’t until after the shooting that the officer realized Berryman had a comb, not a gun.

Just before the shooting, according to a police report, Berryman is accused of shooting at the officer, “I’m going to kill you. I’m going to shoot you.”

Unarmed Man Shot by Secret Service Was Threatening to Kill People Near White House, Authorities Say

File photo via Secret Service.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

An unarmed man shot by a Secret Service officer, prompting President Trump to duck out of a press conference Monday, was shouting that he was going to kill people near the White House, The Associated Press reports.

Myron Basil Berryman, 51, of Forestville, Md., was hospitalized in critical condition Tuesday and charged with assaulting a law enforcement officer.

When a uniformed Secret Service officer approached Berryman at the corner of 17th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue, a few blocks from the White House, Berryman said he had a gun and moved aggressively toward the officer, Secret Service Uniformed Division Chief Tom Sullivan told the Associated Press.

Berryman is a licensed boxer who had been charged with resisting arrest and disorderly conduct in the past, The New York Post reports.

AG Barr Contradicts Trump’s Explanation for Visiting White House Bunker During Protests

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Attorney General William Barr contradicted President Trump’s insistence that he visited the underground White House bunker during late May protests for “inspection.”

Barr told Fox News on Monday that the Secret Service recommended that Trump seek shelter in the bunker.

“Things were so bad that the Secret Service recommended that the president go down to the bunker,” Barr said Monday evening in an interview on Fox News. “We can’t have that in our country.”

Trump said last week that he did not go to the bunker for safety as protesters clashed with the Secret Service in Lafayette Square outside the White House.

“Well, that was a false report,” Trump said Wednesday on Brian Kilmeade’s Fox News Radio show. “I was there for a tiny, little short period of time. It was much more for an inspection.”

Secret Service Tightens Security Around the White House

Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The U.S. Secret Service is tightening security around the White House as anti-police brutality protests continue in Washington, Fox News reports. 

A Secret Service source tells the network the agency has installed anti-rioting fences around the White House and implemented road closures. Specifically, a nearly eight-foot-high chain-link fence was installed along the perimeter of Lafayette Square.

“They’re expanding the perimeter,” a source told Fox News.