…surrounding the White House Friday night and was able to get all the way inside the White House before he was stopped. A little birdie has told me how the penetrator was able to get so far.
The Secret Service successfully detected the man as he was climbing the fence, and they responded to him promptly. They committed their initial effort at stopping him to remonstrating with him as he moved across the lawn: this is the sort of thing that was done in the 19th century; such things are unseemly in the 21st. The man was on the wrong side of history, and his effort was doomed to failure, anyway. And so on.
When that didn’t appear to slow the man’s progress, the Secret Service sought to form an interdepartmental task force to intercept him. They tried to enlist the Capital Police, the DC police, they even went as far afield as the Montgomery and Prince George’s County Sheriff’s Departments. By the time the Secret Service realized that that effort wasn’t bearing fruit, the man was entering the North Portico—the front door of the White House—and they were forced to act unilaterally to apprehend him.
This was a devastating episode for the Secret Service.