DHS Secretary Kelly: FBI Investigating Terror in all 50 States

DHS Secretary Kelly: FBI Investigating Terror in all 50 States

Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly said Tuesday at George Washington University that lawmakers should either change the law or "shut up" and allow DHS employees to do their job. "The costs to the United States is over $250-B a year", General Kelly said.

Kelly elaborated that threats to the U.S. are "more than bombs and guns" however, and warned that there are cyber threats from both lone wolves and state actors, saying "we are under constant attack by a wide range of adversaries with an even wider range of capabilities".

Kelly said as the agency expands its border-patrol staffing, he advocates curtailing the use of polygraph tests. About a quarter of those arrests were immigrants who had no criminal history, according to Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

"Even if you support 'extreme vetting, ' password for entry is an extremely bad idea that sacrifices privacy and digital security for political posturing and 'security theater.' We're launching this campaign today to make it clear to Secretary John Kelly that we will not tolerate discrimination or a reckless disregard for privacy and cybersecurity". He said unsafe criminals are being arrested or are hiding, fearing that Immigration and Customs Enforcement is looking for them.

Without naming former President Barack Obama, he said that the drivers of the morale issues that have plagued his department were "stopped on January 20".

On the topic of human smuggling - which Kelly discussed as a partial defense of tougher border security - the Homeland Security chief invoked Dante's journey to hell. He'd suggested the solution to fighting drug use in America is "not arresting a lot of users" but rather a "comprehensive drug-demand-reduction program" - a position that aligns with the Obama administration's "second chances" strategy, which aimed at fairer and lighter sentences for low-level drug offenders. He also noted that "there's about 600 miles of barrier already in place". He hinted that the restrictions could grow.

There isn't a single state that the FBI doesn't have open terror investigations in, he said, adding that since 2013 there have been 37 plots to attack the USA linked to ISIS. He did not say how or when such changes might happen.

Kelly's address touched on the various security challenges facing the USA - the threat of terrorism both homegrown and foreign, the many facets of critical cybersecurity, drug demand in the US and drug trafficking and human smuggling, to include people with malicious intent.

"Most of those countries are visa waiver countries", Kelly said.

Kelly also admitted there have been "36 homegrown terrorist cases in 18 states" in the a year ago. Even if border patrol intercepts all the illegal substances coming from outside the United States, the demand for narcotics will be fulfilled by replacement drugs like Crack Cocaine or other designer drugs.