In a startling turn of events, an armed man posing as a U.S. Marshal attempted to breach security at a campaign event featuring Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. The incident unfolded on Friday during a campaign event held in Los Angeles, raising concerns about the safety of political candidates and the need for heightened security measures.
Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., who is currently running for office, revealed that a man armed with two holstered weapons and carrying what appeared to be a legitimate U.S. Marshals badge and federal ID approached him during the event. The impersonator boldly claimed to be a part of Kennedy’s security detail, attempting to gain close access to the candidate.
However, Kennedy’s security team acted swiftly and astutely, identifying the man as an impostor. They promptly detained him until the Los Angeles Police Department arrived on the scene to apprehend him.
Expressing his gratitude for the alert and quick response of his protectors, Kennedy took to social media to share his relief, saying, “I’m very grateful that alert and fast-acting protectors… spotted and detained an armed man who attempted to approach me at my Hispanic Heritage speech at the Wilshire Ebell Theatre in Los Angeles tonight.”
Los Angeles Police confirmed that the impersonator was indeed arrested for falsely posing as a federal agent at the campaign event. Fortunately, the man did not brandish his weapons or pose a direct threat to anyone present.
Kennedy’s plea for Secret Service protection resurfaced in light of this alarming incident. He has consistently advocated for such security measures, claiming that the denial of his request by the Biden administration serves as evidence that his primary challenge is not being taken seriously.
In a statement, Kennedy expressed his continued hope for Secret Service protection, stating, “I’m still entertaining a hope that President Biden will allow me Secret Service protection.” However, the Biden administration had previously denied Kennedy’s request for Secret Service security back in June, a decision Kennedy has criticized.
Typically, the Secret Service provides protection to major presidential and vice-presidential candidates within 120 days of a general presidential election. This practice is usually reserved for candidates deemed “major” by an advisory committee consisting of House and Senate leadership, making early protection for a primary candidate unusual.
Kennedy’s primary challenge against President Biden has faced setbacks in recent months. Despite a brief surge in interest during the summer, recent polling indicates that only 9 percent of Democrats are currently inclined to vote for Kennedy.
This incident serves as a stark reminder of the security challenges faced by political candidates and the importance of vigilant security measures in safeguarding public events and those in attendance.
The impersonator’s audacious attempt to infiltrate the campaign event underscores the need for candidates, especially those without Secret Service protection, to remain vigilant and rely on the expertise of their security teams to ensure their safety and the safety of their supporters. As the primary season progresses, the issue of candidate security is likely to remain a topic of concern and debate.