Cummings: African-Americans worry ‘racist’ Secret Service not protecting Obama because he’s black

U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., said “85 percent” of African-Americans he speaks with raise the possibility the Secret Service may be intentionally slacking in its protection of this president because is black. 

Cummings, ranking member of the House Oversight Committee, told CBS’ “Face the Nation” Sunday that he doesn’t agree with the accusation and that the problems in the agency go way back.

“You know, there are these reports — and I know you’re aware of them — in the black community that a lot of African- Americans are worried that the president is not being protected because he’s an African-American and that this wouldn’t be the case if he were white,” host Bob Schieffer prompted.

“Eighty-five percent of all the African-Americans that come to me mention what you just said, and I don’t agree with it,” he said. “Let me tell you why. We have information that this goes all the way back to the Bush administration — a lot of the problems that we’re talking about now. It’s just that they’re coming to light.”

Cummings said appointing a new director is a step in the right direction, but that more employees in the agency need to go.

The problems did not begin with the departing director and they won’t end with her, he said. An overhaul is needed from top to bottom.

“The president’s people have told me that he feels very comfortable,” Cummings said of the change in leadership.

“He feels good about it, and most importantly the First Lady feels good about it.”

The agency is being headed on a interim basis by Joe Clancy, a former agent who headed security for the first family until he retired in 2011.

Michele Kirk

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