That inquiry found no evidence that any of the political staff on the trip engaged in personal misconduct, Carney said.
In all, 12 Secret Service and 11 military personnel have been implicated in the widening scandal, which includes allegations of heavy drinking, visits to strip clubs and payments to prostitutes in advance of Obama’s participation in the Summit of the Americas.
“There was no indication that any member of the White House advance team engaged in any improper conduct or behavior,” Carney said. He added that the review was not prompted by any specific allegations against White House personnel but rather out of “an abundance of caution.”
The advance staff for a presidential trip abroad usually includes hundreds of personnel from the White House, Secret Service, military, State Department and other agencies, who are sent to the location as much as two weeks in advance of the president’s arrival.
The woman who was at the center of uncovering the scandal, Maryland native Paula Reid, spoke to The Washington Post last week.
Those who know Reid said the move revealed a steely resolve that has marked her 21-year rise through the ranks of an agency whose macho reputation has again come under scrutiny. Her story offers a counterbalance to critics who contend the Secret Service has been slow to clean up its act from the “Mad Men”-era days when some agents joked that their off-duty mantra was “wheels up, rings off.”
Not that Reid, an intensely private person, would admit it. In an interview, she offered few new details of her role, sticking to what colleagues described as her businesslike approach.
“I am confident that as an agency we’ll determine exactly what happened and take appropriate action,” she said in the interview with her and an agency spokesman. “Despite this current challenge facing the Secret Service, my job is to keep Miami personnel focused on our core protective and investigative missions. Anything less is counterproductive to the many critical functions we perform each day.”
Reid is still in the thick of it, assisting in the investigation. Those who have worked with her since she joined the Secret Service in 1990 described her as well suited for the challenge.
One former agent who worked with Reid in Miami during her previous stint in that bureau said she was exacting in the extreme, able to quote the agency administrative manual the way “fundamentalists quote the Bible.” This ex-colleague said that he did not always agree with her management approach but that he respected her work ethic and ability.