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August 10, 2016

All Threats Towards Candidates Should be Investigated and Treated Equally

(WASHINGTON) – Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, sent a letter to United States Secret Service (USSS) Director Joseph Clancy regarding recent statements by the Republican presidential nominee. Any personal threat to cause harm, along with the encouragement of others to cause harm, is a serious offense. In fact, United States Code 18 U.S.C. § 879 states that anyone who knowingly and willingly threatens to inflict bodily harm upon a major candidate for the office of President shall be subject to a fine and/or imprisonment.

In the letter, Congressman Thompson writes:

“This matter warrants much more than a tweet. The comments made by Trump should not be dismissed as a joke or considered careless. Statements such as those made by Trump have the potential to inspire other possible bad actors to plan and attempt to carry out violence. Incendiary rhetoric by Trump should be given the same attention as other threats made against the USSS protectees. All threats, especially a threat made in a public forum with international media presence, should be taken seriously and thoroughly investigated. Therefore, I expect you to investigate this particular threat made by Trump and any other subsequent threats made toward either presidential nominee.”

Link to letter

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Media contact: Adam Comis at (202) 225-9978