Dan Bongino

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Dan Bongino
Bongino Senate.jpg
Personal details
Daniel John Bongino

(1974-12-04) December 4, 1974 (age 45)
New York City, New York, U.S.
Political partyRepublican
Spouse(s)Paula Martinez
EducationQueens College (BS, MS)
Pennsylvania State University (MBA)
WebsiteOfficial website

Daniel John Bongino (born December 4, 1974) is an American political commentator, radio show host, author, politician, former congressional candidate, and former U.S. Secret Service agent. Bongino ran unsuccessfully for Congress as a Republican in 2012, 2014, and 2016.

Professional career[edit]


Bongino worked for the New York City Police Department from 1995 to 1999.[1]

Secret Service and book release[edit]

Bongino joined the United States Secret Service in 1999 as a special agent,[1] leaving the New York Field Office in 2002 to become an instructor at the Secret Service Training Academy in Beltsville, Maryland. In 2006, he was assigned to the U.S. Presidential Protection Division during George W. Bush's second term. He remained on protective duty after Barack Obama became President, leaving in May 2011 to run for the U.S. Senate.[1]

Bongino's first book, Life Inside the Bubble, about his career as a Secret Service agent, was released in 2013. The book discusses his experiences protecting presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama and investigating federal crimes along with his 2012 run for the U.S. Senate in Maryland.[2]

Bongino was criticized by former colleagues at the Secret Service for using his Secret Service background as part of his run for political office and for his claim of having secret information based on conversations he overheard in the Obama White House.[3][4][5] A former colleague criticized him for trying to use his proximity to President Obama in his political career: "He's trying to draw attention to himself and he's hijacking the Secret Service brand. That's all he's got going for him." Bongino said he had access to "high-level discussions" in the White House. Unnamed former colleagues said he "tends to exaggerate his importance on the presidential detail and exaggerate his proximity" and that "We don't sit in on meetings at the White House. We don't sit in on high-level meetings."[3] In response to the criticism from an anonymous former colleague, Bongino stated "There's nothing confidential in the book" and "It's not a tell-all. It's my tale of the Secret Service."[6]

Bongino has rejected claims that Barack Obama was born outside the United States.[7]

Bongino's second book, The Fight: A Secret Service Agent's Inside Account of Security Failings and the Political Machine was published in January 2016.[8]


Bongino has been a radio host and commentator on both local and national radio programs. He has been a guest host for both the Sean Hannity and Mark Levin radio shows and sometimes fills in on WMAL-FM talk radio in Washington, D.C. and WBAL in Baltimore. He was a paid contributor to NRATV,[9] until December 2018.[10][11]

Bongino has frequently appeared on Fox News' opinion programming and on the conspiracy theory website InfoWars.[5] He guest-hosted Hannity's Fox News show in December 2018.[12]

Bongino is a proponent of Spygate, a conspiracy theory alleging illegal spying on the Donald Trump 2016 campaign was perpetrated by Barack Obama's administration in his book Spygate: The Attempted Sabotage of Donald J. Trump.[13][14]

In December 2019, Bongino launched an alternative to the Drudge Report known as the Bongino Report.[15] Prior to the site's launch, he criticized Drudge for having "abandoned" Trump supporters.[16]

Political views[edit]

In 2018, Bongino said of himself, "My entire life right now is about owning the libs. That's it."[17][5] He is a staunch supporter of President Donald Trump.[12]

Bongino has called the investigation of the alleged Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections a "total scam,"[18] and is a proponent of the Spygate conspiracy theory.[19] In May 2018, Bongino was quoted by President Donald Trump in one of his tweets, as Bongino attacked former CIA Director John O. Brennan. Bongino was quoted as saying Brennan "has disgraced the entire Intelligence Community. He is the one man who is largely responsible for the destruction of American's faith in the Intelligence Community and in some people at the top of the FBI."[20] Bongino was also quoted as alleging that Brennan was "worried about staying out of jail."[20]

In May 2018, after Republican Congressman Trey Gowdy and some conservative legal experts challenged Trump's claims that the FBI had spied on his 2016 presidential campaign, Bongino claimed Gowdy had been "fooled" by the Department of Justice.[21] In February 2019, Bongino accused Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein of attempting a coup against President Trump.[22]

Bongino is a member of Groundswell, a coalition of conservative and libertarian activists working to advance conservative causes.[23]

In 2019, Bongino published Exonerated: The Failed Takedown of President Donald Trump by the Swamp. It was on The New York Times Best Seller list with an asterisk noting that the book benefited from bulk sales.[24]

Political campaigns[edit]

2012 U.S. Senate election[edit]

Bongino ran unsuccessfully for the U.S. Senate in Maryland in 2012.[25] Former gubernatorial candidate Brian Murphy was his campaign chairman.[1] Bongino won the Republican primary on April 3, 2012, with 33.8 percent of the vote, defeating nine other candidates. He finished a distant second with 26.6% of the vote against incumbent Democrat Ben Cardin.[26]

2014 House of Representatives election[edit]

Bongino ran for the U.S. House of Representatives seat from Maryland's 6th Congressional District in the 2014 election against incumbent Democrat John Delaney. Bongino lost to Delaney by two percentage points. While Bongino carried four of the district's five counties, he could not overcome a 20,500-vote deficit in the district's share of Montgomery County in the outer suburbs of Washington.[27]

2016 House of Representatives election[edit]

Bongino speaking at an event in February 2016

After moving to Florida in 2015, Bongino contemplated running for the United States Senate and Florida's 18th congressional district in 2016.[28][29] However, in June 2016, Bongino declared that he would seek the Republican nomination for Florida's 19th congressional district.[30] He faced Chauncey Goss, a Sanibel City Councilman who sought the seat in 2012, and Francis Rooney, a businessman and former United States Ambassador to the Holy See, in the primary.

In an August 2016 interview with a Politico reporter, Bongino went on a profanity laced rant against the reporter, who asked about a story in the Naples Daily News that Bongino said was dishonest.[31] The recorded phone call was published by Politico.[32] He later explained that he was under stress due to his wife's illness and said that the reporter had goaded him.[33] Bongino placed third in the August 2016 primary, losing the nomination to Rooney.[34]

Personal life[edit]

Bongino was born in Queens, New York City.[5] Bongino graduated from Archbishop Molloy High School.[35] Bongino attended Queens College in the city, where he earned both a bachelor's and master's degree in psychology, and Pennsylvania State University, where he earned a Master of Business Administration.[36]

Bongino is married to Paula Andrea, née Martinez, who was born in Colombia. They have two daughters. In 2012, Bongino and his wife operated three businesses from their home, selling martial arts apparel, designing websites, and consulting on security and risk management.[37] While running for office in 2016, Bongino resisted talking about his business interests and said he and his wife had shut them down.[38]

In 2015, Bongino moved from Severna Park, Maryland, to Palm City, Florida.[39][38]

Electoral history[edit]

2016 Florida's 19th Congressional District Republican Primary[40]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Francis Rooney 46,800 52.73
Republican Chauncey Goss 26,520 29.88
Republican Dan Bongino 15,434 17.39
Total votes 88,754 100.00
2014 Maryland's 6th Congressional District General Election[41]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic John Delaney (incumbent) 94,704 49.7
Republican Dan Bongino 91,930 48.2
Green George Gluck 3,762 2.0
Total votes 190,536 100.00
2014 Maryland's 6th Congressional District Republican Primary[42]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Dan Bongino 23,933 83.5
Republican Harold W. Painter, Jr. 4,718 16.5
Total votes 28,651 100
United States Senate election in Maryland, 2012[43]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Ben Cardin (incumbent) 1,402,092 55.41 +1.20
Republican Daniel Bongino 674,649 26.66 −17.53
Independent Rob Sobhani 420,554 16.62 N/A
Libertarian Dean Ahmad 30,672 1.21 +1.21
N/A Others (write-in) 2,583 0.10 +0.05
Majority 727,443 100.00
Turnout 2,530,550 68.23
Democratic hold Swing
United States Senate Election in Maryland, 2012 Republican Primary[44]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Daniel Bongino 66,561 33.8
Republican Richard J. Douglas 55,907 28.4
Republican Joseph Alexander 17,567 8.9
Republican Bro Broadus 10,503 5.3
Republican Rick Hoover 10,241 5.2
Republican John B. Kimble 10,088 5.1
Republican David Jones 8,002 4.1
Republican Corrogan R. Vaughn 7,869 4.0
Republican William Thomas Capps, Jr. 6,768 3.4
Republican Brian Vaeth 3,602 1.8
Total votes 204,268 100


  1. ^ a b c d Pershing, Ben (June 1, 2011). "Ex-Secret Service agent Bongino enters race to unseat Cardin". The Washington Post.
  2. ^ Smith, Emily (November 13, 2013). "Former Secret Service agent blasts 'toxic' administration". Page Six. New York Post. Retrieved October 1, 2014.
  3. ^ a b Goldman, Russell (November 7, 2013). "Secret Service Agent Turns on Obama, Runs for Congress". ABC News.
  4. ^ "The Insiders: Republicans should boycott former Secret Service agent's book". Washington Post. Retrieved October 12, 2018.
  5. ^ a b c d Tani, Maxwell; Suebsaeng, Asawin; Markay, Lachlan (October 10, 2018). "Dan Bongino Devotes His Life to 'Owning the Libs.' Trump Hangs on His Every Word". The Daily Beast. Retrieved October 10, 2018.
  6. ^ Joynt, Carol Ross (December 4, 2013). "What It's Like Protecting the President: Former Secret Service Agent Dan Bongino Tells His Tale". Washingtonian. Retrieved August 11, 2014.
  7. ^ Schwab, Nikki (December 9, 2013). "Conservative Former Secret Service Agent Defends Obama at Heritage Foundation". U.S. News & World Report. Retrieved March 2, 2018.
  8. ^ "New York Times Best Sellers Espionage". March 2016.
  9. ^ Wilstein, Matt (February 21, 2018). "Fox News Mainstreams Conspiracy Theory About Parkland Students". The Daily Beast. Retrieved May 7, 2018.
  10. ^ "NRATV Official Statement on Dan Bongino". Twitter. December 11, 2018.
  11. ^ Markay, Lachlan (December 10, 2018). "Dan Bongino Out at NRATV". The Daily Beast.
  12. ^ a b Schwartz, Jason. "Conservative media turns on Trump for going wobbly on the wall". Politico. Retrieved December 23, 2018.
  13. ^ Da Silva, Chantal (August 16, 2018). "Trump Tears Into John Brennan in Tweetstorm After Revoking Former CIA Chief's Security Clearance". Newsweek. Retrieved May 16, 2019. Dan Bongino, a former Secret Service agent and author of a new book, Spygate: The Attempted Sabotage of Donald J. Trump
  14. ^ Bergengruen, Vera (April 19, 2019). "The Mueller Probe Made Them Famous. They Plan to Keep Cashing In". Time. Retrieved May 16, 2019. Dan Bongino, a former Secret Service agent and frequent Fox News commentator, parlayed his bombastic defense of Trump into a book: "Spygate: The Attempted Sabotage of Donald J. Trump."
  15. ^ "Media split: Bongino Report, Drudge alternative, competes in news aggregator space". Washington Examiner. December 6, 2019.
  16. ^ Vella, Lauren (December 4, 2019). "Conservative Dan Bongino launches alternative to the Drudge Report". TheHill.
  17. ^ Amatulli, Jenna (October 5, 2018). "NRATV Host Says 'My Life Is All About Owning The Libs Now'". Huffington Post. Retrieved October 6, 2018.
  18. ^ "Dan Bongino: Trump-Russia collusion story a 'total scam'". Fox News. May 19, 2017.
  19. ^ "There Are Two Separate Impeachment Hearings Happening Right Now — And Republicans Are Winning Theirs". BuzzFeed News. Retrieved November 21, 2019.
  20. ^ a b Shelbourne, Mallory (May 21, 2018). "Trump shares quote ripping Brennan: 'This guy is the genesis of this whole debacle'". The Hill. Retrieved May 21, 2018.
  21. ^ Cheney, Kyle (May 30, 2018). "Trump 'spygate' offensive loses steam". Politico. Retrieved May 31, 2018.
  22. ^ "Why allegations of a 'coup' against Trump are unfounded". The Washington Post. 2019.
  23. ^ Corn, David (July 25, 2013). "Inside Groundswell: Read the Memos of the New Right-Wing Strategy Group Planning a "30 Front War"". Mother Jones. Retrieved October 1, 2014.
  24. ^ "Dan Bongino Loses It Over Bulk Sale of NYT Bestseller Book". Mediaite. December 13, 2019. Retrieved December 23, 2019.
  25. ^ "Bongino wins Republican primary for Maryland Senate seat". WMAR-TV. Archived from the original on October 29, 2013. Retrieved October 1, 2014.
  26. ^ "Maryland Senate Election Results 2012 – Map, County Results, Live Updates". Politico. Archived from the original on November 10, 2012. Retrieved October 1, 2014.
  27. ^ "Maryland House results -- 2014 Election Center -- Elections and Politics from CNN.com". CNN.
  28. ^ Derby, Kevin (May 20, 2015). "Conservative Dan Bongino Mulls Bid for Patrick Murphy's Seat". Sunshine State News. Archived from the original on May 26, 2015. Retrieved May 21, 2015.
  29. ^ Derby, Kevin (November 6, 2015). "Conservative Dan Bongino Ponders Entering Senate Race". Sunshine State News. Retrieved August 11, 2016.
  30. ^ "Dan Bongino Ready to Run for Congress in Southwest Florida". Sunshine State News. June 6, 2016. Retrieved August 11, 2016.
  31. ^ Phillps, Amber (August 22, 2016). "Florida Man loses his cool on the campaign trail, drops more than one f-bomb on reporter". The Washington Post.
  32. ^ "Florida congressional candidate goes on tirade against reporter". Politico. August 22, 2016.
  33. ^ Goins-Phillips, Tré (August 23, 2016). "Dan Bongino Explains Why He Went on Profanity-Laced Rant Against Politico Reporter". TheBlaze.
  34. ^ Glorioso, Alexandra (August 30, 2016). "Francis Rooney wins GOP primary for Southwest Florida House". Naples Daily News. Retrieved August 30, 2016.
  35. ^ Bongino, Dan [@dbongino] (January 24, 2019). "I attended St. Pancras for grammar school and Archbishop Molloy for high school" (Tweet). Retrieved April 14, 2020 – via Twitter.
  36. ^ "Learn About Daniel Bongino for U.S. Senate". bongino.com. Archived from the original on August 8, 2012. Retrieved November 6, 2012.
  37. ^ "Getting to Know Dan Bongino – Crofton, MD Patch". Archived from the original on April 13, 2012. Retrieved November 6, 2012.
  38. ^ a b Glorioso, Alexandra; Williams, Amy Bennett (August 23, 2016). "Former Secret Service agent Bongino makes third bid for political office". Naples Daily News. Retrieved August 31, 2016.
  39. ^ Turque, Bill (May 21, 2015). "Bongino moves to Florida, where political outlook may be sunnier". The Washington Post. Retrieved May 31, 2015.
  40. ^ "Florida House Races Results". Politico. Retrieved August 30, 2016.
  41. ^ "Unofficial 2014 Gubernatorial General Election results for Representative in Congress". The State Board of Elections. Maryland State Board of Elections. Retrieved November 19, 2014.
  42. ^ "Official 2014 Gubernatorial Primary Election results for Representative in Congress, Congressional District 6". The State Board of Elections. Maryland State Board of Elections. Retrieved August 11, 2014.
  43. ^ "Official 2012 Presidential General Election results for U.S. Senator". The State Board of Elections. Maryland State Board of Elections. Retrieved November 21, 2014.
  44. ^ "2012 Presidential Primary Election Results". The State Board of Elections. Maryland State Board of Elections. Retrieved November 21, 2014.

External links[edit]

Party political offices
Preceded by
Michael Steele
Republican nominee for U.S. Senator from Maryland
(Class 1)

Succeeded by
Tony Campbell