The Washington Post

Former Secret Service agent breaks tradition by publishing book about Clinton White House

Former agent Dan Emmett has angered the service with details of the behavior of President Clinton, First Lady Hillary Clinton and the White House staff in his book “Within Arm’s Length: The Extraordinary Life and Career of a Special Agent in the United States Secret Service,” according to the Washington Examiner.

“We do stress to all our employees the importance of not sharing anecdotes about the personal, private moments of the protectees,” Secret Service spokesman Ed Donovan told the Examiner. “It causes concern because we don’t want to erode the trust that we have with our protectees.”

The faults Emmett finds in the Clinton White House seem more the stuff of opinion than fact — and the details are from from profound. He asserts that Clinton put himself and his agents unnecessarily in harm’s way when he went for what Emmett calls a “totally pointless photo op” on the South Korea-North Korea border.

If the Service was as concerned as Emmett suggests, I can’t imagine it would have permitted the visit. Could it be that Emmett is engaging in a bit of professional second-guessing?

Emmett also gripes that Hillary Clinton was aloof and that the young White House staff “viewed Secret Services agents as the hired help.” Emmett’s complaint about Hillary seems to amount to not getting a regular thank you from her, the way he did from the president and first daughter Chelsea.


Follow Steven Levingston on Twitter @SteveLevingston

Steven Levingston is the nonfiction editor of The Washington Post. He is author of “Little Demon in the City of Light: A True Story of Murder and Mesmerism in Belle Époque Paris” (Doubleday, 2014) and “The Kennedy Baby: The Loss that Transformed JFK” (Washington Post eBook, 2013).

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