IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

Attorney General Loretta Lynch on race, policing, guns and more

In an exclusive interview, Attorney General Loretta Lynch discussed key issues facing the Justice Department — from Sandra Bland's death to the rise of ISIS.
Attorney General Loretta Lynch (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty).
Attorney General Loretta Lynch listens to President Barack Obama as he delivers remarks to reporters after a meeting in the Oval Office at the White House on May 29, 2015. 

In an exclusive interview that aired on Monday, Attorney General Loretta Lynch spoke with msnbc's Andrea Mitchell on a wide range of issues facing the Justice Department — from the death of Sandra Bland to the rise of ISIS.

Here are the highlights from the interview:

On the massacre in Charleston and the racial divide over policing

Lynch told Mitchell that the Charleston shooting, in which a white gunman killed nine black churchgoers, is a reminder that racial violence is the original form of domestic terrorism in America. The attorney general went on to discuss the racial divide over policing, and how collaboration between communities and their police departments can help bridge that divide.

On Sandra Bland, police training and the uptick in urban gun violence

Lynch said that Sandra Bland’s tragic death in a Texas jail cell — which authorities said was a suicide, though her family disputes that — has led to a productive discussion over police techniques. She noted that the federal government has provided local police departments with special grants for training in de-escalation techniques that might have prevented Bland’s arrest. 

Referencing Chicago's uptick in gun violence, the attorney general argued that when police fail to prevent high levels of homicide in urban communities, they are effectively telling young people in those neighborhoods that “they don’t matter.” 

On gun control and mass shootings

Lynch said mass shootings are a cause of grave concern for all levels of law enforcement. She talked about her frustration with Congress' failure to pass consensus gun control measures, such as closing the so-called "gun show loop-hole."

On preventing ISIS terrorism

The attorney general discussed the unique challenge posed by the ISIS' model of terrorism, in which "lone wolf" attackers are recruited over encrypted online networks. Lynch told Mitchell that she understands the need for encryption to protect citizens' private data, but that tech companies must provide data to law enforcement when that information can save lives. 

On the hack of the Office of Personnel Management

Lynch told Mitchell that the hack of the Office of Personnel Management is a case of "identity theft gone wild," and a reminder of the ongoing threat of commercial espionage. She stressed the need for companies to practice proper "cyber hygiene" to ensure all of their information is secure.