US Secret Service agents found a tiny bag of cocaine inside the White House this week, but they have no idea how it got there.
Agents discovered a ziplock bag containing a small quantity of white powder during a routine sweep of the building last weekend. Authorities evacuated the building while a member of the Washington DC hazardous materials team could examine the mysterious powder. An initial test revealed it to be cocaine hydrochloride, but authorities sent it off to a lab for further confirmation. This week, the lab confirmed that the powder was indeed cocaine.
Republican pundits who were hoping to accuse President Biden of blowing lines at work are out of luck, though. The president and his wife were at Camp David when the drugs were found, and didn't return to the White House until Tuesday. Agents said that they discovered the bag in a part of the building that is accessible to tour groups, visitors, and staff. More specifically, it was discovered in the area where guests are asked to hand over their phones before entering the West Wing.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told CNN that the coke was found in a “heavily traveled area... where visitors to the West Wing come through.” She also acknowledged that tourists had visited that area on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday last week. But when asked whether or not she believed that the drugs were dropped by a tourist, she said she wasn't “going to speculate on who it was.”
At this point, it's hard to say whether the culprit was a staffer who dropped their stash or a tourist who actually intended to do some lines in the White House. Whoever it was, they wouldn’t be the first person to get high in the presidential residence. Willie Nelson famously said that he smoked a joint on the White House roof in the late 1970s, and Snoop Dogg also said he blazed a blunt in a bathroom while Herbie Hancock was receiving a presidential award.
Some presidents have been known to partake as well. There are rumors that John F. Kennedy smoked joints with his mistress in one of the White House bedrooms. Kennedy also reportedly received regular amphetamine injections from Dr. Max Jacobson, better known as “Dr. Feelgood.” Believe it or not, this was actually completely legal, as amphetamine does have an approved medical use - unlike cannabis.
Another president may have actually used cocaine in the White House as well. Professor Steve Gillon, a historian at the University of Oklahoma, believes that President Franklin D. Roosevelt may have used the drug to treat his chronic sinus issues. Gillon recently discovered evidence that the president's doctor may have swabbed out his nose with a diluted cocaine solution. Cocaine was legal at the time, though, and doctors regularly used it for treating sinus conditions.
Richard Nixon almost became the first president to trip on LSD, but it didn't pan out. Jefferson Airplane singer Grace Slick claimed that she smuggled acid into the White House in 1970 and tried to spike Nixon's tea. Unfortunately for the country, her mission failed, and the War on Drugs continued unchecked.