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tv   CNN Newsroom With Brooke Baldwin  CNN  January 25, 2021 12:00pm-1:00pm PST

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i'm brooke baldwin. thanks for being with me. this hour president biden will sign another executive order. if you are keeping track, he has signed more than 30 thus far in his first five days in office. this one today is aimed at strengthening the government's rules to buy american products, but over on capitol hill you have two battles unfolding that could really set the tone for the president's relationships with republicans in his first 100 days in office. this evening the house is set to deliver the article of impeachment against former president donald trump to the senate. trump's second impeachment trial is scheduled to start in just two weeks but the number of republican senators opposing that trial is growing, as is the number of moderate republicans pushing back against president biden's stimulus plan, the $1.9 trillion on the line for americans struggling financially during this pandemic. >> the president himself has conveyed the urgency of moving this package forward, and that's
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certainly he has also conveyed privately to democrats and republicans, and it's not just him. there's urgency to the american people for this package to move forward. >> so let's start there with our chief congressional correspondent manu raju. manu, i know there was a call yesterday between a group of bipartisan senators. where do things stand right now with the stimulus bill? >> well, it's going to take some time for it to come together, because in order for anything to get through the united states senate it requires 60 votes if they go through the regular orders. that means 50 democrats, 10 republicans, and right now there's just not 10 republicans who are behind this $1.9 trillion package on that call yesterday. a number of republicans pushed back about the scope of the package saying they need to first assess how the $900 billion in covid relief passed in late december how that will be spent and a number of them saying they need to limit the scope of the relief, particularly for some of those relief checks that would be going out under president biden's plan, so the democrats have a strategic choice to make.
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do they continue to try to move and try to win over some of those republican skeptics, or do they plan to move it on their own, and if they do move it on their own they can do it through the budget process and in the budget process that can be approved in the senate by a simple majority and can't be fundamentalist yesterday meaning 50 senators plus the vice president to break a tie could pass that legislation, but that process takes some time, brooke. it would require several complicated and arcane legislative steps in order for them to finally get legislation through and they would have to, of course, unite their divided democratic caucus to get a bill through, so it's going to take some time for this process to play out. at the moment the white house is signaling they still do want to get the republicans on board but we'll see how that courtship works out and how quickly democrats decide to go on their own but even that is no sure bet, brooke. >> how about just even more immediately on impeachment tonight. i mentioned, you know, the house
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impeachment managers will walk the article of impeachment over to the senate this evening and procedurally what happens next. >> right away the lead manager, jamie raskin, will read aloud the article of of impeachment. that donald trump was inciting the insurrection that led to the riots here on capitol hill. a summons will be sent out to president trump. the managers in the house will write their briefs to the jurors who are the senators and the president's defense team will write their own briefs and the week of february 8st when we expect the trial to begin. the questions is still how long this trial will take place? will it go two weeks, three weeks in the expectation is that it will be less than three weeks for the president's 2020, the former president's 2020 impeachment trial and instead it will maybe be around two weeks or so, but we still don't know exactly and one reason why we don't know is the question of
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whether they will pursue witnesses who may testify. that could prolong things, but also could provide more insight into the president's, then president's thinking while the riot was going on, so we'll have to see how that plays out and then, brooke, will 17 republicans break ranks and join with 50 democrats to convict donald trump? at the moment that seems highly unlikely but we'll see if things change when had the trial takes place. >> 17 the number they need. two weeks for mid-february. let's talk about all of this with two political analysts, a national political reporter for the "new york times" and ron brownstein is the senior editor over at "the atlantic." gentlemen, welcome. ron, i want to start with you just what we were talking about with manu on impeachment. what do you think is driving the republican decision-making on impeachment? do you think it's a fear of losing re-election because of all the trump supporter votes? is it the fear of trump and all this talk of maybe creating this third party, this patriot or maga party, or -- or is it that some of these republicans really actually believe that trump did
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not incite the violence? >> i don't think there are many who believe that trump did not incite the violence the connection is so obvious. they may feel it's inappropriate to impeach a former president, but i think there's no doubt of trump's culpability. the focus on fear, this is the point, the idea that republicans are deferring to trump as they have throughout his presidency solely because they fear that he will inspire a primary against them too narrow an interpretation. the fact is that every republican now is facing the same electoral equation that trump has imposed on the party. almost all of them are losing ground among white collar suburbanites who used to vote for them. facing very bleak numbers among young people and as a result they all need the trump voters to survive. you saw that with kelly loeffler and david perdue. they try to appear like
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trump-style populists to jgin up the turnout >> you say they are already thinking about themselves, ron brownstein, as she said dripping with sarcasm. >> i am indeed. >> instead, if you are mitch mcconnell you are weighing how important it is to get trump out of the republican party and retake the party. you have just evidence in the form of rob portman saying he's not running for re-election because of all the gridlock, adam kizinger who on our air today is threatening to leave the party versus, you know, this notion of mitch mcconnell's republican senators being put in these precarious positions as ron just outlined for re-election. that's a lot to weigh. where do you think he is on all of that? >> certainly, i mean, he's balancing competing concerns here. one is his natural instinct to protect the party and incumbents, but that is made heard by the kind of problems that trump has put them in. you know, it is one that was
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evident when we look at the numbers from election day. both -- there is no doubt that trump juices a certain type of vote their republicans need to turn out in this election, but there's also no doubt coming -- that he bleeds another type of voter, that they also need going forward, and so at some point you can see the kind of outlook after november as one that's a really tough one for republicans to solve because there's the singular figure that was able to kind of play in one type of playbook, has motivated the base around a certain type of politics but there's no clear replacement or successor who can do the same thing so the republicans are in a deep tough spot. i think when we think about the senate, it's obvious from even the statements we hear so far, we have not heard really people say that what donald trump did was defensible or the kind of merits of impeachment. it is all about whether it is an appropriate thing at this time for a former president which gives them a get out of jail free card to vote no on a
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technicality and gets them in a place where they want to be with their base. >> speaking of your point about a successor because, ron, this is what i'm wondering. you make the arguments that republicans have really enhanced trump's capacity to threaten them. >> yes. >> who in the gop has the most power right now? >> still trump because they have put themselves in the position where he has the most power. i mean, by failing to push back against his narrative that he -- that, you know, that the election was stolen, that he didn't really lose, three-quarters of republicans still believe that, and polling each as late as out today and that means it's harder for them to go back and say trump led us into a dead end. he lost the house, the senate and the presidency. most republicans believe it was stolen and in all of that, brooke, you see the inherent tension in biden's approach as he starts. definitely he clearly wants to try to find ways to build more cooperation with republicans. >> yeah. >> but he's got an agenda that leans left and he's got a party,
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both in congress and in the associated interest groups, that are extremely dubious that a republican party under the thumb of trump is going to cooperate with them on anything so as manu nailed it in his report. very quickly on a whole series of issues they are going to face the choice of how far do you let this string along in terms of trying to find republican support and when do you use legislative tools starting with the budget process known as reconciliation and ending with eliminating the filibuster. when do you use those tools to try to pass your agenda with democrats only and 51 votes in the senate in the. >> to that point in his agenda, i want to talk about this 1.9 trillion stimulus plan because in running for president and in the last couple of days, you know, you hear joe biden saying, hey, i work across the & i want to unify the country, you know. people thought it wouldn't be business as usual on the hill, but, you know, then you have members who are saying, you know, not so fast, especially when you talk to the mitt romneys of the republican party saying, i'm not so sure i'm
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ready for this $1.9 trillion stimulus plan. let's see how the last one landed among americans. what do you do if you're joe biden? >> it's a challenge. i think we should acknowledge the things that have changed for biden and the things that he's coming up against. one, it's the kind of break worth noting that the democratic president is leaning further into kind of a big stimulus package and not relying on the deficit hawk wing that existed among democrats, that he's kind of broken free of and kind of forcefully defended the need for deficit spending. that's put him at odds with some in his own party. others including mitt romney that he would need for the 60-vote threshold but i think this is as position that democrats are somewhat comfortable in. they think they can position themselves as the party of checks and stimulus and the time for american need and struggle economically and they think republican positions against that is one that cannot hold. they point to things like georgia and saying there is actually a coalition looking for this economic investment so the themes of unity of
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bipartisanship and togetherness, you know, is going to be what biden means by that. does he mean that he needs -- that he needs republican involvement on these pieces of policy, or will he become more comfortable with using legislative maneuvers to force the agenda that he says has wide -- and polling says, has broader american support even in our kind of 50/50 partisan divide. >> that's what we'll watch for here in the young days of the biden administration. gentlemen, thank you so much. good to have boast you on. as for covid in this country, coronavirus cases dropping. great news, obviously today, but deaths also beginning to stall, but california is now lifting the stay-at-home orders. the total u.s. case count is now over 25 million. the vaccine rollout is still very roque. let's get into all those new pieces of information today. also, dominion investigate systems is filing this massive $1.3 billion lawsuit against this guy, rudy giuliani. why they say his repeated false
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election claims actually hurt the company. the and a new investigation is now under way to see if anyone at the department of justice tried to interfere with the presidential election. you're watching cnn. i'm brooke baldwin. we'll be right back. and in an emergency, they need a network that puts them first. that connects them to technology, to each other, and to other agencies. that's why at&t built firstnet with and for first responders the emergency response network authorized by congress. firstnet. because putting them first is our job. start the year smiling at aspen dental where new starts happen, every day. get exceptional care at every step, unparalleled safety at every visit, and flexible payment options for every budget. now, during the everyday smiles event new patients get a full exam & set of x-rays with no obligation. no insurance? no worries, it's free.
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welcome back. you're watching cnn. i'm brooke baldwin. thanks for being with me. positive news in the coronavirus pandemic. new cases and hospitalizations across the country are down, but several important questions remain about the nation's vaccine supply. the race to quickly inoculate as many people as possible is even more urgent now because of new variants that doctors say are more highly transmissible and
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possibly more deadly. all of this is happening as more states are beginning to ease safety restrictions. nick watt is our cnn national correspondent in los angeles where the governor there just lifted a regional stay-at-home order. >> reporter: is that more contagious coronavirus variant first found in the uk also more likely to kill you if you catch it? i'm pretty convinced that there is a decrease of in seriousness of the actual infection which we have to keep an eye on. >> good afternoon. >> today, president biden hoping to slow the spread of that and other variants reinstated travel restrictions for non-u.s. citizens coming from much of europe and brazil, also adding south africa. >> the vaccines that we have now do work. >> reporter: against these variants though moderna says its vaccine works though not quite as well against the south africa strain. they will test if a third vote
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or variant above thor might help. >> for now in the raw numbers there is some optimism. first time since mid-december fewer than 115,000 americans in the hospital with this virus. the these past two weeks averaged daily case counts have fallen 30% but the country still adding more than 1 million infections a week. on average more than 3,000 deaths still reported every day and -- >> if the variant that has a greater degree of transmissibility becomes dominant we'll be faced with another challenge. >> and six weeks since the first vaccine shot only around 1% of the population double dozed. team biden says hamstrung by a team trump hangover. >> i can't tell you how much vaccine we have and if i can't tell it to you i can't tell it to the governors and state health officials. if they don't know how much vaccine they are getting, not just this week and next week and the week after they can't plan.
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>> there are more disturbing insights now into how hard it was to fight a pandemic and save lives when donald trump was in charge. >> i saw the president presenting graphs that i never made, so i know that someone or someone out there or someone inside was creating a parallel set of data. >> there was a considerable amount of mixed messaging about what needed to be done from the top down and that really cost us dearly. >> there is optimism in the air. >> tens of millions of us here in california now have a little bit more freedom. they have lifted that stay-at-home order across the entire state, but two things. we all do need to carry on with the masks and the distancing so this virus doesn't bounce back and, brooke, these variants really could be a curveball. >> back to you.
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>> could be a curveball. how will haul these veras vaccines help us again them. >> nick, thank you in l.a. numbers are down. states are beginning to ease restrictions. you just heard there. there are major concerns about new variants. a cnn analyst and emergency room physician at brown university joins us. nice to sigh, and the i want to jump in with what he was reporting out of california, that, yes, some of these cases are down, but we are hearing about these warnings about this variant. is now the right time for california to be lifting the restrictions? >> you know, it's really tough, brooke, because people are exhausted by the restrictions, and there's a point at which they are not going to follow them any longer. most of us in public health have been advocates for doing staged lifting of restrictions as space opens up in the hospitals and as case counts drop and that only works if people keep mask and keeping avoiding the indoor unmasked get-together.
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they are doing it too soon, mostly universally across the state and there's some areas not yet ready to come out of restriction like sacramento and if they are going to see another rise in cases soon after. just like happened in the south last summer, and we do have these new variants out there. there was a variant identified in l.a. we have the variants identified in south africa and the uk that are just waiting beneath the surface to start spreading again. >> what about this massive question mark around the vaccines. hearing the director of the cdc saying she doesn't know how many vaccines we have in the u.s. why doesn't she know that. >> that is the million dollar question. i've been in conversations with public health officials and colleagues from across the country over the past few days trying to figure that out. you know, back in november many of us said the logistics aren't there. we tried to sound warning bells and the trump administration simply did not take it seriously. they didn't build out the data
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systems. they didn't build out the logistics system. they didn't build out the playbooks for the state and as a result we don't have data. every state is going at it at its own way and weave seen what people happen. people stuck on the phone trying to get vaccines. we've seen appointments cancelled, and i worry at some point americans will just give up and not keep trying to get their vaccine. >> which we cannot allow to happen, so this new administration needs to address this asap to the point about what nick referred to as variant boosters with regard to modern ark. the moderna vaccine is expected to protect against the variants or developing this variant booster that will cover you all the way around. what does that mean for everyone who has already been vaccinated? >> so the good news is so far the current versions of the vaccine seem to work against all of the variants that are present here in the united states, including that variant, the b-117 that was first identified
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in the uk. there is some question as to whether it will be as effective against the new variant that was identified in south africa, but for most of us we can sigh a deep breath of relief and just keep trying to get the vaccine out because the more of us that get vaccinated the greater our protection against these variants. the piece of good news there is that moderna has a solution and i'm going to say, brooke, this variant from south africa is not the last variant we're going to hear about. this virus is going to keep mutating. we're in a race against time between vaccine administration and virus mutation, and so we may fix the south african one. it might be okay but the next one might not work so that's why we have to put such an emphasis on fixing the system and getting people vaccinated now. >> so to your plan about the good news. the fact that moderna is working and have this booster shot able to cover us from the various variants. doctor, thank you so much for all of that. >> rudy giuliani is now facing a $1.3 billion defamation lawsuit
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after spouting several baseless conspiracy theories about dominion voting systems and why this system says rudy giuliani damaged their business and what giuliani has to say about that next. y. new neutrogena® rapid tone repair 20 percent pure vitamin c. a serum so powerful dark spots don't stand a chance. see what i mean? neutrogena®
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accountability may be coming for some of the people who helped promote the big lie about the 2020 presidential election. dominion voting systems is suing donald trump's personal lawyer rudy giuliani for defamation and is asking for $1.3 billion in
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damages. in the d.c. court filing this is what dominion has to say, the harm to dominion's business and reputation sun precedent and irreputable because of how millions of people believed the big live. giuliani has lied that the suit will allow him to investigate dominion's history, finances and practices fill and completely. joining me now is cnn correspondent thom foreman. tom, i know that dominion's attorneys talked to dominion this morning. what did they say? >> what they said is listen to rudy giuliani's words. dozens and dozens of times during this election promoting this lie that there was massive fraud, so listen. the. >> the company counting our vote with control over our vote is owned by two venezuelans who were alice of chavez. this dominion company is a radical left company, one of the people there is a big supporter of antifa and has written
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horrible things about the president for the last three or four years. dominion sends everything to smart matic. can you believe it, our votes are sent overseas? they are sent to some place else. some other country. one of the experts that have examined these crooked dominion machines has absolutely what he believes is conclusive proof that in the last 10%, 15% of the vote counted the votes were deliberately changed. >> >> reporter: dominion lawyers say all of that is simply not true and a lot of fact checkers said that's not true either and when you talk about this claim for $1.3 billion they are saying that rudy giuliani knew it wasn't true. the. >> he knew from the outset. the complaint alleges that there was no evidence that the election was rigged, and that's why even mr. giuliani didn't make those claims in court, but he made them on television and
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online where they would do maximum damage to dominion but face minimal scrutiny. >> reporter: so that's the problem, brooke. he knew it and others close to the president knew it but because it was popular with the base and fired up the base they kept saying it each when dominion put out a warning and said this isn't true. you need to stop. >> so they are going after rude rude. the question i wanted to ask is has dominion said that they plan to go a step further against the former president and members of his own family. >> that was my first question and they said no one is off the table and they included fox news, oan, epoch times, is sean hannity, maria bartiromo, no one is off the table yet because many of these people they believe had every reason to believe this was false information and they kept spreading it. now ghoul anything, you mentioned his response to all of this. he said that what he wants --
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the amount being asked for, $1.3 billion is quite obviously intended to frighten people feint heart. it's another act of intimidation by the hate-filled left wing to wipe out and censor the exercise of free speech to which they are going to say no, no, no. you had lots and lots of free speech. now it's time to pay the piper. >> they have some legal analysis on all of this for all the reporting in the setup. elliott will jams with me, cnn legal analyst and former deputy assistant attorney general under the obama administration. the elliott, the filing is full of examples of giuliani and we heard tom playing giuliani's words himself, right, for his thoughts on dominion. hearing is all, what stand out to you? >>ia. so, look, you might hear the $1.3 billion figure and balk, right. >> a lot of money. >> however, the suit -- it's a lot of money but the suit isn't frivolous, and, look, we're
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about to get a semester of law school in about 30 seconds here so stay with me, but to win a defamation -- that's why you watch cnn. the to win a defamation suit what they would have to establish is three or four things. number one, that there was a false statement made, that the speaker knew or at least should have known was as false statement and, number three, that they suffered some sort of harm. now, all of those things are met in this case where rudy giuliani has every reason to believe that these are false statements and the most interesting thing in the pleadings is that they need that he says this about 50 times between tweets and on fox news and all the other places but never says it in a court filing which is striking because by putting it in a court filing he would have been jeopardizing his law license if he knew he was lying. it's one thing to say it in a tweet and another thing to say it in court and they point to that as evidence that they think that rudy giuliani is lying and finally on the damages point.
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look, they are a company that exists to make voting machines. saying that the voting machines are themselves instruments of fraud and don't work strikes at the very hard of their business, and they have had to put in hundreds of thousands of security measures and they have gotten threats and so on. >> how do you get to $1.3 billion? that's a lot of money. >> again, brooke, it is. however, they exist to make voting machines. their entire business is voting machines. the entire brand value is voting machines. for instance, if someone were -- if rudy giuliani were to go out there and say levi strauss jeans immediately fall apart when you put them in the wash, that claim go to the integrity of the product. fecan't be profitable if the public believes their products don't work.
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perhaps, even if their -- i don't know what the total value is as a company. the they can use that figure to go into court and negotiate with rudy giuliani in a settlement and, look, they are not going to collect $1.3 billion from him. it's not likely to go to trial but if they win they will definitely get something own if it's just their reputation black. >> if you're rudy giuliani and his lawyers right now, what are you doing? >> lying which is what they have done all along. the they are claiming that they are going to countersue and they are claiming that they are going to use this lawsuit to get evidence about all the fraud and venezuela ties. it's just nonsense and it's simply not -- they should be careful because, again, as i said a little bit earlier f.lawyers knowingly make files on courts that they know to be untrue or frivolous, they can face sanctions. rudy giuliani is himself a lawyer. his lawyers are themselves lawyers, and they ought to be very, very careful here. >> elliott williams.
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thanks for my jd today. appreciate it. >> you got t. >> you get an "a," brooke. the. >> thank you, thank you. super, super interesting and helpful as we see this unfold with this mega voting systems machine. we have breaking news this afternoon on an investigation into whether anyone at the department of justice was plotting with president trump to thwart the will of the american people and overturn election. new details next. research shows people remember commercials with nostalgia. so to help you remember that liberty mutual customizes your home insurance, here's one that'll really take you back. it's customized home insurance from liberty mutual! only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty. liberty. liberty. liberty. ♪
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in a matter of hours, the nine house impeachment managers will formally walk over to the senate, single article of impeachment against former president donald trump charging him with inciting an insurrection. they will have two weeks before the trial begins on february 9th but several republicans say the chances of president trump being convicted of inciting that riot that left five dead including capitol police officerch brian sicknick nil. joining me now is congresswoman sheila jackson lee. nice to have you back on. let's jump to impeachment. i was -- republican senator marco rubio has said a few things about this upcoming impeachment trial. he's called it arrogant, called it stupid and said, quote, we already have a flaming fire in this country in that this trial would be a bunch of gasoline. your response to that.
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>> well, brooke, i don't think the family of the deceased police officers or those others, unfortunately, that were part of the insurrection who are now dead might think of any accountability as being stupid. clearly the president of the united states -- >> forgive me, congresswoman. we've got to listen to president biden. >> last week we immediately got to work to contain the pandemic and deliver economic relief to millions of americans who need it the most, and today we're getting to work to rebuild the backbone of america, manufacturing, unions, the middle class. it's based on a simple premise, that we'll reward work, not wealth in this country, and the key plank of ensuring the future will be made in america. i've long said that i don't accept the defeatist view that the forces of automation and
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globalization can't -- can -- can keep union jobs from growing here in america. we can create more of them, not fewer of them. i don't bip for one second the -- that the vitality of the american manufacturing is a thing of the past. american manufacturing was the arsenal of democracy in world war ii and it must be part of the engine of american prosperity now. that means we are going to use taxpayer money to rebuild america. we'll buy american products and support american jobs, union jocks. for example, the federal government every yore spend approximately $600 billion in government procurement to keep the country going, safe and secure, and there's a law that's been on the books for almost a century now to make sure that that money when spent spent taxpayers dollars for procurement, spent to support american jobs and american businesses. but the previous administration
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didn't take it seriously enough. federal agencies waived the buy american requirement without much pushback at all. big corporations and special interests have long fought for loopholes to redirect american taxpayers' dollars to foreign companies for the products -- where the products are being made. the result, tens of billions of american taxpayer dollar supporting foreign jobs and foreign industries. in 1918 -- in 2018 alone the department spent $3 billion, the defense department, on foreign construction contracts leaving american steel and iron out in the cold. it spent nearly 100 million in foreign engines and on vehicles instead of buying american and engines from american companies, putting americans to work. under the previous administration the federal government contract awarded directly to foreign companies went up 30%.
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that is going to change on our watch. today i'm taking the first steps in my larger build back better recovery plan that invests in american workers, unions up and down the supply chain and i know the previous president entered office instituting a buy america policy and here's why it's different and not the same. i'll be signing an executive order in just a moment tightening the existing buy american policies and go further. we're setting clear directives and clear explanations that we're going to get to the core issue with a centralized coordinated effort. look, today i'm creating a director of made in america at the white house office of management and budget who will oversee our all of government made in america initiative. that starts with stopping federal agencies from waiving
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buy american requirements with impunity as has been going on. if an agency wants to issue a waiver to say we're not going to buy an american product as part of this project, we're going to buy a foreign product, they have to come to the white house and explain it to us. we're going to require that waivers be publicly posted, is someone seeking a waiver to build a particular vehicle or facility and it's going to buy the following foreign parts. that waiver, the request for it is going to be posted. then we'll work with small american manufacturers and businesses to give them a shot to raise their hand and say, yeah, i can do that here in my shop, in my town. it's -- as you heard me before used to have a friend that was a great athlete that said you've got to know how to know. your small businesses don't even know that they can compete for making the product that is attempted to be waived and being
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able to be bought abroad and i'm directing the office of management and budget to review waivers to make sure they are only used in very limited circumstances, for example, when there's an overwhelming national security, humanitarian or emergency need here in america. this hasn't happened before. it will happen now. here's what else we're going to be doing. under the build back better recovery plan we'll invest hundreds of billions of dollars in buying american products and materials to modernize our infrastructure and our competitive strength will increase in a competitive world. that means millions of good-paying jobs using american-made steel and technology to rebuild our roads, our bridges, our ports and to make them more climate resilient as well as make them able to move faster and cheaper and cleaner to transport american made goods across the country and around the world, make is us more competitive. it also means replenishing our stockpiles to enhance hour
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national security. as this pandemic has made colleagues, we can never again be in a position where we have to rely on a foreign country that doesn't share our interests in order to protect our people during a national emergency. we need to make our own protective equipment, essential products and supplies, and we'll work with our al toys make sure that they have a resilient supply chain as well. we'll also make historic investments in research and development, hundreds of billions of dollars to sharpen america's innovative edge in markets where global leadership is up for grabs, markets like battery technology, artificial intelligence, biotechnology, clean energy. the federal government also owns an enormous fleet of vehicles which we're going to replace with clean electric vehicles made right here in america by american workers creating american autoworkers jobs and
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clean energy and net zero emissions and together this will be the largest mobilization of public investment and procurement infrastructure and r & d since world war ii, and with the executive order i'll be signing today we'll increase buy american requirements for these kinds of projects and improve the way we measure domestic content requirements. for example, right now if you manufacture a vehicle for the federal government you need to show at least 50% of the components of that vehicle were made in america, but because of loopholes that have been expanded over time you can count the least valuable possible parts as part of that 50% to say made in america while the most valuable parts, the edgins, the steel, the glass, the manufacturing -- are manufactured abroad so basically -- basically we're batting 0 for 2. the content threshold of 50% aren't higher enough and the way
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we measure the content doesn't account for u.s. jobs and economic activity. we're going to change that as well. the executive action i'm signing today will not only require that companies make more of their components in america but that the value of those components is contributing to our economy measured by the number of jobs created or supported. at the same time, we'll be committed to working with our trading partners to modernize international trade rules, including those related to government procurement, to make sure we can use -- we can all use our taxpayer dollars to spur investment that promotes growth and resilient supply chains. here is what else the action does. when we buy america, we'll buy from all of america. that includes communities that have historically been left out of government procurement, black, brown, native american, small businesses and entrepreneurs in every region of
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the country. we will use a national network of manufacturers called manufacturing extension partnership that's in all 50 states and puerto rico, to help government agency connect with new domestic suppliers across the country. this is a critical piece of building our economy back better, including everyone, especially small businesses that are badly hurting in this economy. the executive action i'm taking also reiterates my strong support for the jones act, and american vessels. you know, our ports, especially those important for america's clean energy future. and the development of offshore. america can't sit on the sidelines in the race to the fewer. you are competitors aren't waiting. to ensure it's made in america
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we need to win not just the jobs of today but the jobs and industries of tomorrow. and we know that the middle class built this country. and we also know unions built the middle class. so let's invest in them once again. i know we're ready, despite all we're facing. i've never been more optimistic about the future of america that i am today. given even just half a chance, the american people, the american worker has never, ever let the country down. imagine if we give them a full chance. that's what we're going to do. i'll stop here, sign the executive order, and come back and take your questions. this executive order is entitled "ensuring the future is made in america, by americans, all american workers."
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there you g i'll be happy to take your questions. >> thank you, mr. president. jonathan muchlir, associated pr. you've made reopening schools an essential part of your first 100 days agenda. you long portray yourself as an ally to the teachers and unions. right now the chicago teachers union has refused, defied an order to return to in-person classrooms because of a lack of vaccinations. do you believe, sir, that teachers should return to schools now? >> i believe we should make school classrooms safe and secure for the students, for the teachers and for the help in the
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schools. we need new ventilation systems in those schools. we need testing for people coming in and out of the classes. we need testing for teachers as well as students and we need the capacity, the capacity to know that, in fact, the circumstance in the school is safe and secure for everyone. for example, there's no reason why the clear guidance will be that every school should be thoroughly sanitized from the laboratories to the hallways. and so this is about making -- none of the school districts i'm aware of, there maybe some public school districts -- have insisted those pieces be in place. and i might add it's the same kind of thing i hope we can do with small businesses and businesses, making sure they have the capacity to test their workers when they come in, to
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make sure they have plastic dividers between their booths and in their restaurants, et cetera of the to make sure they can sanitize. it's not so much about the idea teachers aren't going to work. the teachers i know, they want to work. they just want to work at a safe environment and as safe as we can rationally make it. we can do that. we should be able to open up every school kindergarten through eighth grade if, in fact, we administer these tests. we'll have the added advantage, i might add, of putting millions of people back to work. all those mothers and fathers who are home, taking care of their children, rather than go to work when they can work. they're not able to do it unless they have the luxury of working distance wise, like many of us do. they're not able to do it. this is about generating work.
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>> thank you, mr. president. i'm alex from reuters. i wanted to ask about navalny. are you considering putting sanction on anyone involved in his attempted poisoning and arrest when he returned to from germany? if not, is that potentially derailing your new start extension? thank you. >> i find we can both operate in mutual self trf our countries as a new start agreement and make it clear to russia that we are very concerned about their behavior, whether it's navalny, the solar winds or reports of bounties on the heads of americans in afghanistan. i have asked the agencies in question to do a thorough read for me on every one of those issues, to update me precisely where they are, and i will not
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hesitate to raise those issues with the russians. >> a question about your covid relief deal. you said the nation is in a national emergency and we should act like it. given the severity and scale of the need how long are you willing to get sufficient republican support before you would green light democrat attempts to use reconciliation, for example, to pass that bill? >> look, the decision on reconciliation will be one made by the leaders of the house and the senate. here is the deal. i have been doing legislative negotiations for a large part of my life. i know how the system works. and what i'm not -- i can't guarantee anything at all, but i can say that what i'm going to be doing, and we've already begun, is making it clear to the leadership and the house and the
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senate, as well as the group of 16, bipartisan group as well as republican individuals who have an interest in the issues that are in my package, and saying here's what i'm doing. here is why i want to do t here is why i think we need to do it, and what kind of support can you or can't you give to that? then we go on to the way in which we deal with legislation all the time. you know, we didn't have any votes for the recovery package when barack and i came in to office. we were short three votes. we didn't know we had the votes until the day of the -- the day of the -- of the -- bringing it up. but here is the deal, you know. it's interesting, and i know you ask a lot of these questions. you know the answers but to help educate the public as well. i'm not suggesting you don't know what i'm about to say. no one wants to give up their
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position until there's no other alternative. they have to make a decision that they don't do what they -- they don't support what is being proposed or they insist on what they have, or they -- the decision to use reconciliation will depend on how these negotiations go. let me make clear about negotiations. i've always believed part of negotiation, part of a president and/or a chairman of a committee, trying to get a major piece of legislation passed is about consultation. it's not enough for me just to come up to you and say, i like this. i expect you to support it. i want to explain to you why i think it's so important in this package that we have to provide for money for additional vaccines. why i think it's so important
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why we provide for money to extend unemployment benefits, why i think it's so important we provide money to provide for the ability of people not to be thrown out of their apartments during this pandemic, because they can't afford their rent. and to make the case to you why i think, and what i think the priorities within this piece -- we think the priorities are, i apologize. within this legislation. and i don't expect we'll know whether we have an agreement and to what extent the entire package will be able to pass or not pass until we get right down to the very end of this process, which will be probably in a couple of weeks. the point is, this is just the process beginning. >> thank you, mr. president. annie linski with the washington post. >> annie. >> your major themes of your campaign and how you sort of intend to measure and enact it