President-elect Joe Biden candidate for National Intelligence Directorate Avril Haines speaks at his interim headquarters at the Queen Theater in Wilmington, Delaware on November 24, 2020.
Joshua Roberts | Reuters
President Joe Biden urged his intelligence chief to conduct a “comprehensive threat assessment” of domestic terrorism following the deadly unrest in the Capitol, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Friday.
The invasion of the Capitol by supporters of former President Donald Trump “underscored what we have long known: the rise of domestic violent extremism is a serious and growing threat to national security,” Psaki said at a press conference.
Biden asked the office of the director of the National Intelligence Service, led by his recent Senate-approved election of Avril Haines, to coordinate with the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security to collect fact-based analysis from across the government on domestic violent extremism, Psaki said.
A man urges people to raid the building while Trump supporters clash with police and security forces as they attempt to storm the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC on January 6, 2021.
Joseph Prezioso | AFP | Getty Images
The Biden government is “obliged to develop strategies and strategies based on this analysis,” taking into account “our respect for constitutionally respected freedom of speech and political activities,” she said.
“This is the first step in the process,” she noted.
The government is also working to improve the National Security Council’s ability to counter domestic extremism, Psaki said, adding that other parts of the government will coordinate to “step up and accelerate” efforts to counter these threats.
The White House did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for additional information.
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