It seems that President Joe Biden isn’t the first Democrat in the Oval Office with cocaine-related occurrences reported at the White House, based on historical accounts of prior administrations.
Presidential histories for Clinton, Roosevelt, and John F. Kennedy also include instances of illicit drugs, including cocaine, surfacing during their tenures.
According to a book penned by ex-Secret Service agent Gary Byrne, some staffers from Clinton’s administration allegedly indulged in cocaine while on duty. A 1997 report by the LA Times suggested that the Clinton administration was accused of setting up a unique drug testing system to ensure their staff, several of whom were implicated in cocaine and other drug usage, could obtain security clearances.
Kennedy reportedly used a variety of illicit substances to manage persistent health issues, revealed by unsealed presidential health records. Among the drugs he purportedly used were codeine, Demerol, and methadone for chronic pain, alongside other medications for sleep, anxiety, and infections.
Historian Steve Gillon postulated that President Franklin Roosevelt may have regularly been administered cocaine for sinus problems, based on a review of Roosevelt’s health records and contemporary medical literature. The caveat being, Roosevelt likely wasn’t aware that his sinus treatments included cocaine, as medical practitioners at the time were advised to withhold this information from patients.
Various visitors to the White House have claimed to have used illegal substances while there. Reports include instances of rapper Snoop Dogg claiming to have smoked marijuana in a White House bathroom in 2013, and country music star Willie Nelson stating that he smoked a joint on the White House roof during Jimmy Carter’s tenure. A former Villanova basketball player, Gary McLain, also claimed to have been under the influence of cocaine during a White House visit in 1985.
On June 3, Secret Service agents found white powder in the White House, two days after Hunter Biden, known for his struggles with drug addiction, left the premises. The substance was later confirmed as cocaine.
However, there are conflicting reports about the likely suspects leading to the cocaine discovered on the White House grounds.
According to a source with knowledge of the investigation who spoke to the New York Post, the cocaine was discovered in a small plastic bag stashed within a cubby typically used by staff and guests to store personal items.
This cubby is primarily employed to keep phones and other personal items secure, an official confirmed to The Post.
Visitors are often given the opportunity to tour parts of the West Wing, with these tours usually scheduled over the weekend.
Don Mihalek, a former U.S. Secret Service agent, explained, “From Friday night to Sunday, West Wing tours generally take place, conducted by staff, congressional members, and others who have this privilege. The cocaine was reportedly found in an area accessible to anyone visiting the White House.”
In response to the incident, the Republican-led House Oversight Committee intends to request a briefing from the Secret Service regarding the cocaine found on the premises, a committee official disclosed to ABC News.
“The U.S. Secret Service, funded by Congress, apparently allowed the substance into the White House through their extensive screening process. The Oversight Committee will be requesting a briefing from the Secret Service,” the committee aide stated.
The Secret Service has confirmed that part of their investigation will involve reviewing security footage to determine when the small bag of cocaine was placed into the cubby.
Earlier, there were reports based on the dispatch call from the White House on Sunday that the substance was found at the executive mansion library.
Miranda Devine of the New York Post reported that the cocaine was found in the library of the executive mansion.
— Miranda Devine (@mirandadevine) July 4, 2023
“The cocaine was found in the library of the executive mansion, according to the dispatch call,” Devine noted.
Ari Fleischer, a former White House Press Secretary, noted that since it was inside the executive mansion, it is likely Hunter Biden.
“You have got to be kidding me,” he said. “Cocaine was found at the WH and authorities aren’t saying exactly where it was found. If it’s the Old Executive Office Building, it’s likely staff. If it’s the mansion, it’s likely Hunter. Reporters do your job.”
Federal law categorizes cocaine as a Schedule II drug under the Controlled Substances Act, making possession of it illegal. Cocaine is a powerful stimulant that induces euphoria and is highly addictive.