Carson, Trump authorized for Secret Service protection

GOP presidential candidates Ben CarsonBenjamin (Ben) Solomon CarsonThe Hill's 12:30 Report Congressional tax reform must include an affordable housing fix We can – and should – reduce poverty through tax reform MORE and Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpO’Malley tells Dems not to fear Trump Right way and wrong way Five things to know about the elephant trophies controversy MORE are receiving Secret Service details, a new report says.

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson authorized protection for the pair Thursday morning, according to ABC News.

ADVERTISEMENT
“As prescribed by statue, authorization for Secret Service protection for presidential candidates is determined by the Secretary of Homeland Security after consultation with a congressional advisory committee of the Speaker of the House, the House Minority Leader, the Senate Majority Leader, the Senate Minority Leader and an additional member selected by the committee,” the Department of Homeland Security said in a statement.

Carson and Trump each requested Secret Service protection previously. They will now receive the same safekeeping agents already provided for President Obama. 

Trump first expressed interest in having a Secret Service detail during an exclusive interview with The Hill on Oct. 13.

He also initially voiced frustration with the agency’s review process, blaming it on partisan politics.

“I want to put them on notice because they should have a liability,” he said during the discussion at Trump Tower in New York City.

“Personally, I think if Obama were doing as well as me he would’ve had Secret Service [earlier],” Trump said. “I have by far the biggest crowds.”

“They’re in no rush because I’m a Republican,” he quipped. “They don’t give a shit.”

Trump later softened that criticism during follow-up questioning by The Hill.

“Of course I don’t think they’d want anything to happen,” he said of the Secret Service.

“But I would think they should be very proactive and want protection for somebody like me that has 20,000 people at any time,” the outspoken billionaire said. “You would think they would want to be very proactive, but we have not heard from them.”

Trump reportedly bolstered his private security in July after a purported threat from Mexican drug cartel lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán, who escaped from prison earlier this year.

Trump reportedly contacted the FBI after receiving a malicious message from a Twitter account potentially belonging to the narcotics kingpin.

Newsmax, meanwhile, reported last month that Carson has also received a number of threats.

A source told the news publication that dangers to the retired surgeon were “off the charts.”

Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton, meanwhile, has long received Secret Service protection, given her marriage to former President Bill Clinton.

Wednesday’s announcement comes as Carson and Trump battle for the lead in next year’s GOP presidential nomination. The are separated by less than 1 percent nationwide, according to the latest RealClearPolitics average of samplings.

—This report was updated at 1:17 p.m.