Critics Lace Into Secret Service Over Shoe Attack

But agents hail quick thinking, and president's speedy reflexes
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 16, 2008 3:35 AM CST

(Newser) – Weighty questions are being lobbed at the Secret Service in the wake of the recent Iraq shoe-tossing incident involving President Bush, reports the Los Angeles Times. Some experts wonder how an assailant was able to throw not one, but two shoes at Bush before agents intervened. "I thought they would have responded after the first shoe," said a former agent. "Thank God, Bush apparently played a little dodge ball when he was younger."

Officials who have reviewed the tapes say minor changes to procedure may result, but insist the service did its best. Everybody at the press conference had been searched, and video footage reveals that agents followed their training by rapidly scouting the room in case the shoe-throwing was a diversion for a second attacker. Ex-agents hail the decision to refrain from shooting in the crowded room—and commend the president for his own quick reflexes.