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Department of Homeland Security NewsSep 24, 2020
Opening Statement As Prepared For Delivery By Acting Deputy Secretary Ken Cuccinelli For Senate Hearing On Threats To The Homeland
Good morning Chairman Johnson, Ranking Member Peters, and distinguished members of the committee. Thank you for the opportunity to testify.

I am here to discuss the myriad of threats facing the American people and our homeland. In 2020, the men and women of the Department of Homeland Security have carried out their protective mission with professional excellence as our nation faces unprecedented and dynamic challenges.

From the pandemic, to riots, to natural disasters, the Trump Administration has ensured that our personnel have the vital support and resources they need to address evolving threats, while continuing to fulfill our enduring, no-fail missions.

DHS has a clear mandate from President Trump:

at all times, in all decisions, in all dangers, to keep the safety and prosperity of the American people as our first priority.

Today I will briefly comment on three national threats that deserve specific attention: Civil Unrest, Domestic Terrorism, and Transnational Criminal Organizations.

When we talk about domestic terrorism, we are talking about threats or acts of violence carried out against people and critical infrastructure in the U.S.

to advance an ideological agenda or coerce policy or social change.

These are generally conducted by Americans and not linked to foreign terrorist organizations.

Americans have the right to believe whatever they want, but there is no right to carry out acts of violence to further those beliefs. That is when we move from protected speech to domestic terrorism.

When the civil unrest by violent anarchists dragged on for months in Portland, Oregon; and local leadership refused to cooperate with federal law enforcement, DHS defended the federal courthouse without hesitation. Despite being pelted with IEDs, Molotov cocktails, fireworks, metal pipes, and more, our federal officers were resolute, sustaining more than 340 injuries in the course of t

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