"We're working on a safe transition, not just the inauguration, but all ways of it," Cuccinelli told CNN's Cuomo Prime Time. "I spent three hours today with a good chunk of the incoming Biden Cabinet as we walked through emergency scenarios that they might face to try to help them have the benefit of our experience."
Cuccinelli, the senior official doing the duties of DHS deputy secretary, said he "can't imagine in a million years that [Trump would] be calling people to violence next week" but that the federal government was taking proactive actions to impede and respond to threats.
"We are absolutely ready to deal with every threat that comes, no matter who brings it. And no matter who's violent, we will advance prosecutions against those people just like we're doing for Jan. 6," Cuccinelli said.
"Violence is never acceptable — left, right, middle, or anywhere else."
The former Republican attorney general for Virginia added that all who act or threaten violence nationwide need to be prosecuted but that the United States "created a bit of an environment" where "it seems like sometimes it's OK."
"You commented on things that we were saying in the summer," Cuccinelli told host Chris Cuomo. "We had the same line then that I've had in the last week. It hasn't changed in terms of the principles at stake and how we condemn the people committing violence."
Last summer, in the wake of a police conflict outside Minneapolis of an unarmed black man, George Floyd, people across the country protested in dozens of cities over the unfair treatment of black people and other minorities by law enforcement. Protests in some cities, including Portland, turned tumultuous and lasted months. DHS sent federal agents and officers from border and immigration agencies, as well as federal law enforcement from the Justice Department, to watch over federal buildings and support local police.
The move was scrutinized by Democrats, including Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler and Oregon Gov. Kate Brown, as an overreach by the Trump administration. Cuccinelli said Tuesday that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's comments at the time, comparing the federal employees to "stormtroopers," was also wrong but that people moved out of their own will to carry out violence.
President Trump denounced the violence which took place last week at the U.S Capitol and asked his supporters to be united and trust the system.