Secret Service Protection of Presidential Candidates
In regard to presidential campaign, the Secret Service is authorized by law (18 United States Code § 3056) to protect:
- Major presidential and vice presidential candidates and their spouses within 120 days of a general presidential election. As defined in statute, the term "major presidential and vice presidential candidates" means those individuals identified as such by the Secretary of Homeland Security after consultation with an advisory committee.
The Secret Service has no role in determining who is to be considered a major candidate.
The Secretary of the Homeland Security determines who qualifies as a major candidate and when such protection should commence under the authority of Title 18, United States Code, Section 3056. This determination is made in consultation with an advisory committee comprised of the following individuals:
- Speaker of the House
- House Minority Whip
- Senate Majority Leader
- Senate Minority Leader
- One additional member chosen by the committee