A man carrying two firearms with extra ammunition and impersonating a United States Marshal showed up at a campaign event for Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. in Los Angeles 38 days after the Democratic presidential contender’s campaign manager Dennis Kucinich publicly berated President Joe Biden over his administration’s refusal to order Secret Service protection.
In July, Kennedy revealed that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) denied his request for Secret Service protection, and the following month, Kucinich lambasted Biden in the wake of the assassination of Ecuadorian anti-corruption presidential candidate Fernando Villavicencio.
Kucinich, a 16-year member of Congress, said the Kennedy campaign submitted to Biden administration officials several months ago a 67-page document that established the escalating threat environment.
“I call upon President Biden to recognize his responsibility, not only for the safety of all presidential candidates but for the protection of the political process itself,” Kucinich said. “In a democracy, it is supposed to be voters, not political assassins, who decide who shall take office. Candidates must be able to campaign free from threat and fear.”
On Wednesday, Aug. 9, 2023, the same day the presidential candidate was assassinated in Ecuador, FBI agents killed a Utah man who allegedly threatened Biden.
“Typical turnaround time for pro forma protection requests from presidential candidates is 14 days,” Kennedy wrote. “After 88 days of no response and after several follow-ups by our campaign, the Biden administration just denied our request.”
Daniel Dale, a senior reporter in CNN’s Washington Bureau who ‘fact-checked’ Kennedy’s claim, argued that the Democratic presidential contender “baselessly suggested Friday that the Biden administration is singling him out” by denying him Secret Service protection but the mounting likelihood of political violence and the prominence of the Kennedy family makes it seem ridiculous to assume that Biden’s rival is undeserving.
Most mainstream media outlets disparage Kennedy because the candidate has called for a ban on direct-to-consumer pharmaceutical advertising, which could cost TV networks upwards of $8 billion per year—although the majority of Democrats want someone other than Biden to be their nominee and a series of polls show the incumbent is likely to lose to just about any Republican nominee, including disgraced former President Donald Trump.
When the candidate’s uncle, Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, was considering a 1980 primary challenge to President Jimmy Carter, he was granted Secret Service protection before he launched his campaign.
Carter ordered the Secret Service on September 20, 1979, to provide protection for Ted Kennedy, whose mere consideration of a presidential campaign had raised the fear of an assassination attempt such as those that struck down two of his brothers.
Secret Service agents began guarding Kennedy at about 6 p.m. on the same day Carter issued the order, according to a report in the New York Times.
The action was not prompted by a specific threat to Kennedy’s life, but by an apprehension for the senator’s safety, according to Carter’s White House press secretary Jody Powell.
Senator Kennedy’s press secretary, Tom Southwick, said mail to the Massachusetts Democrat’s office included threats on the senator’s life, with an average of one a week considered serious enough to refer to authorities.
The Biden challenger’s father, former US Attorney General and Sen. Robert F. Kennedy, was a Democratic presidential candidate when he was shot and killed in 1968, and his uncle, President John F. Kennedy, was assassinated in 1963.
When Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agents attempted to serve search warrants at his residence and arrest Craig Robertson in Provo, Utah, south of Salt Lake City, the law enforcement officials shot and killed the man who allegedly made threats against President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, and Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, ahead of a scheduled presidential visit to the state.
Craig Deleeuw Robertson, a 74-year-old woodworker, was shot and killed during an FBI raid in Provo, Utah, on Wednesday after allegedly making death threats against Biden and other high-profile Democrats.
“I hear Biden is coming to Utah. Digging out my old Ghille suit and cleaning the dust off the m24 sniper rifle. welcom, buffoon-in-chief!” Robertson wrote in a Facebook post just days before Biden visited the state.