Senate grills Secret Service on potential ‘pattern of misconduct'

"We want to improve that number to 100 percent," Sullivan responded during a grilling from Johnson. He later explained to Collins that the survey found 18 to 19 percent of respondents said they would not report misconduct and the remaining respondents were "indifferent."

Throughout the hearing, senators decried the scandal as harmful to the Secret Service's reputation. Swift action was needed to "clean the wound," Lieberman said, as well as to ensure that protection of the president, presidential candidates and others is not compromised.

Sullivan said that in addition to launching its own investigation of the Columbia situation and placing all 12 of the employees involved on leave and suspending their security clearances, the agency has established a "professional reinforcement working group" to review the agency's practices, training, personnel management and other functions of the agency as it relates to ethics.

Edward is heading up a review of the Secret Service's handling of its internal investigation. Collins stressed that the review must be completely independent of the agency, a directive Lieberman seconded. The committee instructed Edwards to add sufficient staff to his team to expedite their review, which senators said they hope will be concluded this summer.

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