Acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan stated that domestic terrorism is “absolutely” a bigger threat than international terrorism on Sunday.
“Is it fair to say that you want to change the priority–that your priority needs to be domestic terrorism?” NBC host Todd asked during an interview with McAleen. “Is that a greater threat, right now, than international terrorism?”
“Absolutely,” the acting DHS secretary replied, adding that the DHS “has to balance threats.”
McAleenan said that his department’s emphasis is providing support for “prevention, awareness, and response capability” regarding domestic terrorism on a local and state level.
Though CNN reported last week that the White House had been rejecting the DHS’ attempts to prioritize domestic terrorism for over a year, McAleenan told Todd on Sunday that he’s “getting all the support I’m asking for.”
President Donald Trump has downplayed the rise of white nationalism, claiming it’s only “a small group of people.”
The recent shootings in El Paso, Texas and Gilroy, California that left a combined 25 people dead are both being investigated as domestic terrorism cases.
Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI), the chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, said on Wednesday that the DHS was the only agency that responded to the committee’s letter to federal law enforcement agencies asking about efforts to combat domestic terrorism.
According to Johnson, the Justice Department nor the FBI have responded to the committee’s inquiry, even after the shootings.
Watch McAleenan below:
Acting DHS secretary says domestic terrorism is a great threat than international terrorism pic.twitter.com/nPTeEtKjsA
— TPM Livewire (@TPMLiveWire) August 11, 2019