Texas Republican and Judiciary Committee member Ted Cruz pressed U.S. DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas for an explanation as to why presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. was denied Secret Service protection under the administration of President Joe Biden.
According to internal Secret Service documents acquired by government watchdog organization Judicial Watch, after 88 days of no response, the DHS determined in July that Secret Service security for Kennedy was “not warranted at this time,” despite several documented threats. The standard processing time for such an order is approximately two weeks.
“The records also indicated that the Secret Service was aware that Mr. Kennedy received increased media attention after accusing the Central Intelligence Agency of involvement in the assassination of his uncle, John Fitzgerald Kennedy, and advocating for the release of the individual currently imprisoned for assassinating his father, Robert F. Kennedy, and speaking out against COVID-19 vaccines,” Cruz wrote in a letter Tuesday.
Cruz requested various explanations by October 31 on the delay in responding to Kennedy, the reason for the denial of service, and the details necessary to warrant Secret Service protection if not for the threats Kennedy reportedly faced.
“How do you address the fact that previous major presidential candidates, such as Donald Trump, Dr. Ben Carson, then-Senator Barack Obama, and Senator Ted Kennedy, received Secret Service protection well over 120 days before the general election, setting a clear precedent for exceptions to the general rule as provided by law? Was then-Senator Obama under more threat during his campaign than Mr. Kennedy is today?” Cruz also asked.
Cruz added, “I ask that you act swiftly to provide this major presidential candidate the protection his exceptional circumstances so clearly warrant.”
Not long after the request was denied, an armed man was arrested at the Los Angeles campaign rally of Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. The man was charged with harboring a loaded firearm, concealing a weapon, and impersonating a United States Deputy Marshal.
Two weeks later, Secret Service records revealed credible threats against Kennedy, including threatening letters and emails, leading to concerns of potential assassination attempts based solely on his Kennedy affiliation.
Cruz noted that the Judicial Watch assessment uncovered disturbing statements, with one individual describing a desire to discuss their sins with Kennedy, warning of a potential terrorist act by a madman. Another individual sent threatening emails, professing to bury Kennedy, cause harm to everyone, and make him suffer.
In a July post on X, Kennedy wrote, “Since the assassination of my father in 1968, candidates for president are provided Secret Service protection. But not me.”
In the 1960s, Kennedy’s father, former Democratic New York senator and U.S. Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, former President John F. Kennedy, and his uncle were assassinated.
Kennedy announced his independent bid to run for president against President Biden last week.