The Secret Service interviewed Eminem in 2018 due to lyrics about President Donald Trump and members of the first family that they considered “threatening,” according to a new report.
Eminem, born Marshall Mathers, alluded to being questioned by government officials in a song last year, prompting BuzzFeed to file a Freedom of Information Act request to find out if such an interview really did take place, the outlet reported Thursday.
In Mathers’ 2018 song “The Ringer,” he suggested that he'd been interviewed by the Secret Service, rapping, “Cause Agent Orange just sent the Secret Service / To meet in person to see if I really think of hurtin’ him / Or ask if I’m linked to terrorists / I said, ‘Only when it comes to ink and lyricists.’”
Although the Secret Service declined to confirm or deny interviewing Mathers when approached by BuzzFeed last year, the federal agency supplied the outlet this week with 40 pages of redacted documents confirming the interview and revealing why it took place.
The documents reportedly described Mathers as “exhibiting inappropriate behavior” that “threatens protectee,” with the “protectee” likely referring to the president. Mathers landed on the agency’s radar due to what they deemed “threatening lyrics” from the song “Framed,” which is featured in Mathers’ 2017 album, “Revival,” according to BuzzFeed.
The documents reportedly cited the following lyrics, among others: “Donald Duck’s on as the Tonka Truck in the yard. But dog, how the f--k is Ivanka Trump in the trunk of my car?”
The Secret Service was made aware of the lyrics due to a “concerned citizen” who was an employee of the popular entertainment news website TMZ, the outlet reports. The unnamed employee reportedly reached out to the Secret Service asking the agency to comment on the lyrics in question.
The documents obtained by BuzzFeed also alleged that the 47-year-old rapper had publicly made “threatening” remarks about Trump in the past.
“This is not the first time MATHERS made threatening comments towards POTUS and his family. In June 2017, MATHERS freestyled comments that were threatening in nature towards POTUS,” the documents read. That statement likely refers to Mathers’ popular October 2017 freestyle performance at the BET Hip Hop Awards, during which he called Trump “racist” and a “bitch.”
The documents state that the Secret Service’s Protective Intelligence and Assessment Division conducted a background check into Mathers and began arranging the interview with the rapper in Dec. 2017; Mathers and his legal representation met with the Secret Service the following month, on Jan. 16, 2018, BuzzFeed reports.
The pages that detail what was said during the interview were largely redacted, but the outlet reports that Mathers’ lyrics were the main point of discussion. The agency also claimed that, at one point, when an agent began reading Mathers’ lyrics to him, Mathers began to “rap along with the interviewers as the verse was read.”
The documents went on to state that officials with the Secret Service decided at a meeting held two days after their interview with Mathers not to refer the case to federal prosecutors, according to the outlet.
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