Mayorkas Rejects RFK Jr.’s Fifth Secret Service Protection Request

Democratic-turned-independent presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy, whose father and uncle were assassinated during the politically tumultuous 1960s, has repeatedly requested Secret Service protection as he faces threats to his safety during the current election season.

Each time, however, his requests have been rebuffed by the Biden administration.

Most recently, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas reportedly rejected Kennedy’s fifth such petition in a letter to the candidate’s attorney, Aaron Siri.

The following day, Siri responded with a letter declaring: “If protection is not afforded, we have been authorized to commence an action on the grounds that the repeated denials have been politically motivated and are otherwise capricious.”

A list of requirements for Secret Service protection includes having been declared as a candidate, facing “general or specific threats,” and maintaining a 30-day polling average in the Real Clear Politics national average of 20% or higher. Kennedy has not cleared the final hurdle, having most recently registered at about 11% in the national polling average.

Nevertheless, the Department of Homeland Security can act on its own to provide protection as necessary, and Kennedy has repeatedly pleaded with the agency to do so.

In December, Mayorkas claimed to have “consulted with an advisory committee composed of the Speaker of the House, the House Minority Leader, the Senate Majority Leader, the Senate Minority Leader, and the Senate Sergeant at Arms,” ultimately determining “that Secret Service protection for Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is not warranted at this time.”

The candidate responded shortly thereafter with a statement asserting, in part, that his campaign spends about 30% of its resources on efforts to protect him from attempts on his life.

Several months earlier, Kennedy argued that his initial request provided ample justification for the assignment of a Secret Service security detail.

“Since the assassination of my father in 1968, candidates for president are provided Secret Service protection,” he wrote in a social media post at the time. “But not me.”

Kennedy went on to note that his “campaign’s request included a 67-page report from the world’s leading protection firm, detailing unique and well established security and safety risks aside from commonplace death threats.”