This year’s drawn-out presidential vote count is also delaying Democratic nominee Joe Biden’s Secret Service protection.
While Biden is receiving Secret Service protection as a major-party candidate, he’ll get a higher level of protection if he’s projected to have won the 2020 presidential election. But agency protocol dictates the current president concede the race before the Secret Service acknowledges a transfer of power, possibly delaying Biden’s ramped-up protection for another month, The Washington Post reports.
Usually the Secret Service assigns a slate of agents to protect the president-elect after a late-night concession from the losing candidate and a victory speech from the winner, the Post reports. But this year’s lengthy vote counting has delayed that process, and President Trump also isn’t expected to concede anytime soon if he loses. So while additional security for Biden is expected to start Friday if he’s projected the winner, Trump’s lack of concession means Biden likely wouldn’t get “a full protective detail that accompanies a president-elect,” the Post writes.
Instead, the Secret Service could wait until the Electoral College meets in December to confirm the vote before increasing Biden’s protection. That’s what happened in 2000, when the Secret Service maintained Al Gore’s protection as the vice president while protecting George W. Bush as a major party candidate. Still, a former agent tells the Post that the agency would “probably feel duty-bound to ramp up protection” for Biden before the Electoral College meets.
The Secret Service declined to comment to the Post, as did a Biden campaign aide. Kathryn Krawczyk