The Secret Service said yesterday that Democratic Sen. Barack Obama was being placed under its protection, the earliest ever for a presidential candidate.

Federal law allows candidates to seek protection if they meet a series of standards, including public prominence as measured by polls and fundraising.

In a Feb. 12 interview with the Associated Press, Obama dismissed concerns about his own security but would not answer directly when asked whether he had received death threats.

The Rev. Jesse Jackson drew early Secret Service protection because of violent threats during his campaigns for president in the 1980s.

Can’t say I’m surprised, given the vile hate spewing from the wingnuts towards Obama. Not only does Obama have to deal with the racist nuts who would threaten Jesse Jackson, he has to deal with the efforts of the right-wing media to essentially label him a terrorist (“Hussein”, madrassa school, etc). Who knows what unhinged loon might use that as justification to attempt to kill the man.

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