Novembr 9, 2020
The Secret Service will send reinforcements to Wilmington, Delaware, starting November 6, to buttress protection for former vice president Joe Biden as his campaign prepares for the possibility that he may soon claim victory in his bid for the White House, The Washington Post reported, based on interviews with two inside sources.
The Secret Service summoned a squad of agents to add to the protective bubble around Biden after his campaign told the agency that the Democratic nominee would continue using a Wilmington convention center at least another day—and could make a major speech as early as Friday, according to the same sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe the security protocols.
In addition, there have been several media reports of threats leveled at the former vice president from followers of President Donald Trump.
Secret Service spokesperson Catherine Milhoan declined to comment— stressing that the agency does not publicly discuss security planning for the president or candidates it protects. A Biden campaign aide also declined to comment.
The additional security for Biden doesn’t give him a full protective detail that accompanies a president-elect, but it moves closer in that direction. It remains unclear when the Secret Service would provide that level of security for Biden should he win.
The agency typically ramps up protection for a president-elect immediately after that person has been declared the winner by assigning a new raft of agents to the incoming president. Historically, that increase in protection has happened late into election night after one candidate has conceded and the other has given a victory speech.
In a tirade delivered from the White House on Thursday night, Trump declared without evidence that “corrupt” state officials were unfairly counting invalid votes in the states where he is behind Biden.
His campaign has launched efforts to stop the ballot-counting process in several states and intends to continue echoing the president’s unsubstantiated claims that fraud has tainted the election, as the Post reported.
If Biden is considered the clear winner and Trump does not concede, the Secret Service could wait under agency protocol until the Electoral College meets in mid-December to certify the vote results before officially treating Biden as the president-elect.
But Secret Service would probably feel duty-bound to ramp up protection before then, a former agent said.
Research contact: @washingtonpost