Secret Service Agents Face Firing for Salahi Slip

Two agents on leave, face disciplinary action

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Dec 3, 2009 12:38 PM CST

(Newser) – The two Secret Service agents who let Michaele and Tareq Salahi crash last week’s state dinner have been placed on administrative leave and may be fired, agency chief Mark Sullivan told Congress today. Testifying before the House Homeland Security Committee, the Secret Service director took full responsibility for the screw-up and said the agents faced a range of potential sanctions, including potential firing, the Washington Post reports.

Conspicuously absent from the hearing were the Salahis themselves and White House social secretary Desirée Rogers, all of whom declined to appear. Peter King, the committee’s top Republican, has threatened to subpoena Rogers, but Robert Gibbs says President Obama would block that. The argument, he explained: White House advisers have been compelled to testify only in extreme instances like Watergate or 9/11. “I don’t think even Peter King would have the audacity to put the Salahis in the same” league, the White House spokesman said.

Michaele and Tareq Salahi, right, arrive at a State Dinner hosted by President Barack Obama for Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Nov. 24, 2009.
Michaele and Tareq Salahi, right, arrive at a State Dinner hosted by President Barack Obama for Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Nov. 24, 2009.   (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, file)
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