Securing the 2012 GOP presidential nominees

An inside look at how candidates are protected on the campaign trail

Maez characterized the relationship between candidates and the Secret Service as a partnership and said that they don't want to be an impediment to their campaign. However, when a candidate decides to take a course of action that could endanger their safety, Maez said that agents won't shy away from informing them about the potential dangers. He recalled a story in which a candidate wanted to go to a certain event, but the Secret Service hadn't done any advance work in the area and the security detail leader, following a heated discussion, eventually dissuaded them from going.

"It has to be a collaborative effort between the candidate and the secret service," he said. "We know what they want. They want exposure. We want to give them that exposure. We don't want to be an impediment to their campaign, but we want them to be safe."