tv Inside Politics With John King CNN July 28, 2021 9:00am-10:00am PDT
hello. welcome to "inside politics." i'm john king in washington. senators strike a deal. the bipartisan infrastructure framework is done, the top negotiators say. tonight, a possible test vote that could dictate the shape of a biden agenda. and the covid numbers force a major biden reset. now, a call for most americans to mask up indoors again. new york city today says it will pay you, yes, pay you, to get the shot. >> when you get your first dose, you will get a $100 incentive.
$100 for any new yorker who goes to a city-run site to get vaccinated. plus, the january 6th committee sets the stage for a giant confrontation. a fulurry of subpoenas includin for everyone who talked to donald trump on insurrection day. up next, the urgent covid white house reboot. president biden will announce tomorrow all federal employees and contractors must be vaccinated or get regularly tested for covid. that mandate comes after the cdc changed mask guidance for vaccinated americans, urging more caution because of a surge in covid cases tied to the more transmissible delta variant. phil mattingly is traveling with the president. a mandate is a big deal. >> reporter: no question about it. i think it underscores a really dramatic shift we've seen from the white house when it comes to
the pandemic. it's a shift the white house officials say bluntly is driven by the data tied to the delta variant. it's one that basically reverses all of their policy and messaging positions they've held for the better part of the last several months. on the messaging front they've been very careful. you've heard a stark shift from the president on down, making clear they believe the reason why there's a backslide is because of unvaccinated individuals. it's something you are likely to hear from the president when he gives remarks on this issue tomorrow. on policy side, the white house has been so cautious on mandates, making clear they don't believe that's the way they twwant to go. that is shifting as well. what you're going to see tomorrow, according to sources familiar with the plan, is the president will lay out that federal mandate.
federal employees and contractors have to attest to vaccination status. all of this underscores the urgent moment the white house now finds itself in. if we don't solve covid, we don't get anything done in this administration. they're now back to trying to solve covid. >> the optimism of weeks ago seems to be missing. let's look more closely at some of the numbers. here's the main reason for it. look at this map right here. you see the red. that's high transmission. the gold, that's substantial transmission by county across the united states of america. two-thirds of the american population today covered by this revised masking guidelines that if you are indoors, you should wear a mask if you are in a place with high or substantial covid transmission. that is one of the reasons for the about face. 61,000 new infections reported yesterday. you go back a year ago, it was
65,000. why is that relevant? remember, we were at about the peak of the summer height then a year ago. we came down a bit. never shoved the baseline all the way down. then we went through that horrific winter. with vaccinations, most people think there's no way we can get this high again, but we're going up. we were flattening out last summer. we're still going up right now. the seven day average of new coronavirus cases when the cdc relaxed masking guidance back in may we were at 35,000 new pinfp infections a day. now we're at 61,000 new in infections. let's bring in dr. leana wen. phil mattingly was just talking about the white house did not want to do mandates. is the president right given the course of where we are right now
to say if you're a federal worker or contractor you have to get a vaccinate or get tested a lot? >> absolutely. i fully support president biden in this anticipated vaccine mandate tomorrow for federal workers. this is exactly the right step at this point in the pandemic. we have hit a wall when it comes to vaccinations. we've now seen the consequence, which is that we have surges across the country. we can't keep doing more of the same. of course, we should keep doing education and outreach, but we have to do something dramatically different. vaccine mandates are important. i don't think people should be using this argument of individual choice when it comes to this public health matter. you can have a choice to stay unvaccinated but the administration is saying in that case if you still want to come back in person, you need to get tested because nobody should have the right to infect others with a potentially dangerous disease. i also think the biden administration's move will really pave the way to private employers and other local and state jurisdictions doing the
same for their employees too, which is important to curbing the surge. >> you mentioned the vaccination, how much it has slowed down. when the vaccines first started to come out, 2% in february. it's more or less flat lined. the administration has seen a slight uptick. we're at this moment because of this. two-thirds of americans are covered by these new revised masking guidelines. even if you're vaccinated, if you live in a place with higher substantial community spread, you should put a mask on when you go inside. you thought they got too optimistic too soon. my question now is, is this the right policy and are they talking about it right? >> i know this is not a message america wants to hear. the science that prompted this guidance is just days old. >> the science changed. even though putting your mask on is an annoyance and we hoped we
were going to leave it behind, it is one step that will prevent transmission. >> nothing changed about the science. it was the virus that changed. we're dealing with fundamentally a different virus. >> those are two questions. right policy, be tougher on masks again? and are they communicating it cl clearly? >> great policy, terrible communication. i'm confused and i think most people are confused about what happened and why. the biden administration should have said the issue is not with the vaccinated, the issue is with the invaccinated. the reason we're having to go back to mask mandates indoors is because the unvaccinated didn't abide by the honor system. the honor code didn't work. now we want to protect from spreading to one another.
that's why we need mask requirements. in addition, there are some individuals who may be living at home whom, even if they're vaccinated themselves, may be living at home with unvaccinated family members or immuno compromised family members. those individuals should take precautions. now the message from the cdc sounds like there's something wrong with the vaccine or the vaccinated. neither of those things are true. the vaccines are still good at protecting you. >> the vaccination rate across the country by age group. if you look at older americans, 50-65, 60-75, pretty substantial vaccination rates. school age children, 12-15, only 20% fully vaccinated. 16, 17-year-olds, about 40% vaccinated. 43% in the 18-24 group. the new mask guidance also
says -- remember, just a month ago they were saying if you're vaccinated in school, you can maybe not wear a mask. now they're saying everybody in k-12 should wear a mask. is that the right retreat, if you will? >> yes. this is exactly the right policy. i was very concerned at the time when they released the cdc school guidance because it sounded like school administrators or teachers would have to be figuring out who was vaccinated in a classroom. if you teach middle school or high school and half the people are not wearing masks, how do you know it's the half who are actually vaccinated? right now it's the safest thing to say, yes, we need for our schools to come back in person, we can do this safely, but everybody needs to be masked. i really hope school officials across the country are listening to this urgent plea. our children are still at risk. many children are not yet eligible to get the vaccine. they're at risk. to protect them, we need indoor mask requirements to stay in
schools. >> there's a problem right now with younger americans being open to getting the vaccine. school is about to start again. new york city, you heard the mayor at the top of the program saying, come get a shot, we'll give you $100. is that the way to do this? >> i don't think so, although i will commend mayor de blasio in new york for the work he's done to require vaccination for city workers. we should look to see what france and italy and other countries are doing. basically saying you can stay unvaccinated if you want, but if you want to engage in public spaces, then you need to either be vaccinated or get a test. i hope that more cities step up and do things like this, because ultimately this is about protecting the public's health. up next, republican negotiators say there's an agreement now on infrastructure
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expedia. it matters who you travel with. big breaking news in washington today. just moments ago republican negotiators announcing they've reached a bipartisan infrastructure deal with democrats. they'll have the language written in time for the senate to take a test vote that could come tonight. >> senators continue to make good progress on both tracks of legislation. members should be prepared to vote again on cloture on the motion to proceed to the bipartisan infrastructure bill as early as tonight.
>> remember, schumer's first try at that test vote failed a week ago because republicans said there were still too many things to be worked out. now they say they have a deal. manu raju on capitol hill. do they really have a deal? >> reporter: we have yet to see the details but the change in tone is significant. this negotiating group can shake hands and say they have reached an agreement here. the respective caucuses on the senate side, the republicans and democrats, will each get their own briefings this afternoon about exactly what is in there. at the moment it does sound like there's at least enough support to open debate on this proposal as soon as tonight. a number of republicans who voted against moving ahead last week are now telling reporters they are supportive of opening debate on this. then there are a number of hurdles ahead. there are votes that have to be
taken to eventually close off debate that still require 60 votes, ten republicans joining with all 50 democrats if democrats rei remain united. there's concerns about transit funding that democrats had. and then what happens if it does pass the senate when it comes to the house? just moments ago i asked the speaker if she'd commit to allowing the senate plan to pass the house unchanged. she said no. she said she has to look at the language. expect some discussion between the house and senate. >> some discussion. diplomatically put. kai kaitlan collins and lauren fox. how did they get here? it's been dead, it's been back to life. >> i think one of the meetings
that happened last night, that was crucial. it was important. those two men both view this as a long-term legacy agenda item. this is not something they think is just about political moment or just about scoring points right now. they wanted a deal. they sat down. they went point by point. there is still a little bit of a trust fall happening here. until we see legislative language, i am not convinced we have a deal. the reason is because we've seen this show before. they did this last month at the white house. they said they had a deal in principle. we never got legislative text. portman said we are going to have it ready for the vote tonight. we'll see. >> they're going to bring this to the floor. let's assume they have the votes tonight to proceed and let's assume the senate actually has
something. house progressives don't like the idea that the senate goes first. they especially don't like that a whole bunch of people they think are too conservative for their liking, if this passes the senate, it still faces obstacles in the house. >> that's congress speak for whoa, look out. speaker pelosi is telling people privately they are going to change this bill. you have this group of senators who really worked on everys semi semicolon. there are people who think why should we let susan kcollins an rob portman write our legislation. >> if a bill has a long way to go, one way to keep it moving is a president who is engaged on both sides.
will the president call speaker pelosi and said we're going to give you what we want in the second piece, the reconciliation. you're going to get your climate stuff there, the health care stuff there. you have to vote for this. >> i think that remains to be seen. he has been on the phone a lot with negotiations. steve ra shetty is one of his closest advisors and has been dealing with portman and some of the republican negotiators on this. whether or not he tries to use that muscle on the house speaker remains to be seen. speaker pelosi has her own caucus to answer to. they've also got to keep democrats on board when it comes are to later on down the road. nancy pelosi is well aware this is a priority for president biden. >> it's a big step today that they have this deal, big step they might actually start debate in the senate tonight. the longer anything like this is on the vine, the more likely
somebody will find a way to take it out. the big question is what about the former president. the other day he issued a statement attacking republicans for even negotiating this deal. rob portman says he's been on the phone with the president. good luck. can trump sway enough republican senators to back them off? or if portman is for it, collins is for it, is that enough? >> there's no indication the former president would want to do that. he's made quite clear that anything they would be discussing that comes close to the 2017 tax cuts, that he's not going to have anything to do with those. if you look at reconciliation, that budget bill, that is exactly what they're going to be touching. you can try to delink them if
they're president biden, but they still are linked together. >> they're starting the process. that's significant. up next for us, a close look at one of the states driving the covid surge. louisiana adding new infections at 3 1/2 times the national average. only 6% of us retail businesses have a black owner. that needs to change. so, i did something. i created a black business accelerator at amazon.
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there is an alternative to debating whether we should be wearing masks again or be required to get a covid vaccine. >> we have 100 million people in this country who are eligible to be vaccinated who have not gotten vaccinated. if you want to end all of this back and forth, let's get the overwhelming proportion of the population vaccinated and all of this will go away. >> all of this will go away. dr. fauci says let's take a look at one of the states involved. you see the states in the southeast. louisiana, 37% of its population fully vaccinated. what happens when the vaccination rate is so low? this is what happens. in louisiana they call them parrishs. they might be counties where you live. all of louisiana's parrishs reporting high community
transmission of covid. then you get a high case count. look at the jump. june 22nd, 285 cases. tuesday, more than 3600 cases, the highest since back in january. we all lived through january. dr. joseph cantor, grateful for your time. why is this happening in your state? this case couldn't has to be st scary to you? >> it is scary. it feels similar to each of our three previous surges here. the slope is very steep. we have a perfect storm going on. we have unacceptably low vaccination coverage. we've had more delta variant circulating in this part of the country than the national average for a good month. we know delta is much more aggressive. what happens down here in the summer time is analogous to what
happened in the north in the winter, which is the weather drives people indoors. it's 90 degrees or higher this week. that increases transmission. you put all that together and we find ourselves where we are now. it is a kick in the gut to feel like we have effectively have lost six or seven months of progress. >> it's horrific to hear you say that. when you have higher cases, sadly you get higher hospitalizations as well. more than 1100 people in the hospital this. your governor trying to convince people you have this in your power to turn this around. the governor tweeting out for anyone asking the question, when will this end, the answer is simple, when we decide to end it, meaning get the vaccine. the "new york times" reported in a shreveport security council where a woman got up and warned the biden administration is
sending people door to door to document unvaccinated americans and said the vaccine was an experimental gene theorapy that has killed thousands. that's simply not true. >> we hear it all the time. look, i would never fight someone for falling victims to these myths or deliberate misinformation. everything about covid has been fast paced and confusing. it's hard for people. but for the folks who are deliberately spreading this stuff knowing better, shame on them. what gives us optimism is we still have people saying, you know what, i've been on the fence about getting vaccinated, i'm doing it now. we're on track to quadruple our daily vaccinations over the past two weeks, i think because people look around and realize how serious it really is. you can't give up. there still are a lot of people
who will get vaccinated. they've not dug in their heels. i think they can get vaccinated sooner rather than later if we meet questions with facts and confidence. >> there are people who say you see at least some modest progress in recent days. why? is there a key? is it communicating a different way? is it doctors getting on the phone? is it fear when people see the case count going up like it is? >> i really think it's all of the above. we've done a good job engaging trusted messengers. we're going to continue that work. our physician community has stepped up. hospitals have spoken loud and clear about what they're seeing on the front lines. it's terrifying. people now know people who are sick. it's a relatively small state. we have a very exciting lottery incentive program. i think all of that combines to increase vaccinations now.
what's good news is it continues to go up, which is going to help protect us down the road. >> i hope that continues. grateful for your time today. up next, team biden was upbeat about its covid progress back at the 100 day mark. it is facing a mounting crisis as day 200 approaches. [john legend's i can see clearly now] ♪ ♪ ♪ make your reunion happen with vrbo. your together awaits. vrbo ♪ when you have nausea, ♪ ♪ heartburn, ingestion, upset stomach... ♪ ♪ diarrheaaaa. ♪ pepto bismol coats your stomach with fast and soothing relief. and try new drug free pepto herbal blends.
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the biden white house right now staring down a most inconvenient truth. covid is surging. mask debates are back and a once remarkable vaccine rollout is stalled. a president who prides himself on being an optimist betraying some clear frustration. >> only one thing we know for sure. if those other 100 million people got vaccinated, we'd be in a very different world. get vaccinated if you haven't. >> the panelists back with us now. the president there, you cover him every day. maybe you're not as smart as i said you were is what he's saying to the unvaccinated. that's not a happy camper. >> just last week they were saying we are not going to blame the unvaccinated. we don't think that's the right route. we're starting to see that shift. i think the white house is realizing they have a real issue here with the delta variant.
obviously that is what led to this change in the guidance from the cdc yesterday. also, this guidance has never been clear. it has always been kind of muddled. i don't think it makes sense to a lot of people. this idea that the cdc says vaccinated people need to be wearing a mask indoors in areas to have high transmission, that's not easily communicated. i don't think most people know what high transmission means. this idea that people are going to start following the cdc guidance when the ones who have been being ignoring it are the problem, i think that's a real challenge for the white house. they now are dealing with a new reality of mask wearing and everything that comes with this. >> this is his calling card. this is why joe biden is president. he said donald trump disrespected science, i will follow science. you do see some of the impact right here. this is the president's approval rating. it's not just covid. there are other things.
inflation, a lot of things in washington don't seem to be moving quickly. that's trending in the wrong direction. you don't want to be here. if you look in terms of how the american people view covid, 63%. that was 72 last time they took this same poll. you're beginning to see the president slide which is why what they're doing isn't working. >> progressives would say there are potentially other political republicans for why the president's approval rating, at least among democrats, have seen a little bit of slippage. when it comes to covid, the white house is torn. they are not ready yet to require that federal employees all get vaccinated. at the same time they said today they are having serious discussions today about mandating masks for federal employees and documents whether or not federal employees have potentially had the vaccine. they are trying to look for other ways to provide this
additional guidance. i'm hearing from medical experts that they do want to hear more guidance from the white house, from the cdc about what vaccinated individuals should do, including how often they should be testing. >> one of the questions is how much presidential time should go into this? the president did a couple times a week early on talk about covid. doug brinkley who tracks these things says why can't biden be more mobile and out there talking to people? no president can be above the fray in a pandemic. he wants to get the economy back on track, he's trying to be involved in these infrastructure negotiations. should it be covid, covid, covid? >> these are all connected. if you don't get covid under control, you're not going to get the economy under control. we're giving you these bridges and roads and social benefits.
you know, they don't want to be in this mask fight. it's a muddled mask fight, as you say. i think this is bad politically and biden really does need to get out in front of it somehow. their messaging has not been good in the last few days. >> there are a lot of republican governors out there who could look in the mirror themselves at their own record on covid. governor doosy of arizona. if you took this in historical context, might be a little rich but welcome to politics. republicans see an opening. >> that's exactly right. you are seeing this play out on capitol today in a very micro environment which is that house speaker nancy pelosi said masks need to come back because of the spread of the delta variant and the fact that there are still several republicans that have not said if they're vaccinated
or not. that's a concern. you hear all these republicans on the hill saying this isn't following science. you heard mccarthy say that early today. the bottom line is then you have to get erveryone vaccinated. at this point we don't have answers on whether 90 plus members of the republican conference are vaccinated. >> this is the speaker of the house today. >> leader mccarthy says it's against the science. >> he's such a moron. >> it gets to there's trust, there's no respect, there's no bipartisanship even on a pandemic facing the country. >> yeah. in fact, it gets worse and worse. you had the january 6th hearing this week. that further divided people. that's one of the reasons
everyone is struggling so hard to move this legislation. that is pretty tough language from the speaker directed toward the head of the other party. i can't remember certainly publicly hearing anything like that over the years. >> we need to end on that point, i guess. >> do we? >> do you want to keep going? up next, the january 6th committee holds an emotional first hearing and says it will move quickly now to demand testimony from key witnesses.
the january 6th select committee opened with a dramatic retelling of the insurrection from four of the heroic officers on the front lines. now the committee moves to assemble the facts. listen to the chairman benny thompson. he wants a minute-by-minute accounting of what happened inside the trump white house as the rioters tried to overthrow the american government. >> nothing is off limits in this investigation. we are absolutely committed to getting to the bottom of what happened. as you know, i have subpoena power.reluctance whatsoever in issuing subpoenas for information, telephone logs to the white house, especially during the times of january 6th. >> does the committee have a plan? first you ask politely.
we expect the answer from team trump will be no, if not stronger than that. then you use subpoenas. then you end up in court. how fast? >> yesterday thompson said they're going to skip the first step, the ask politely step. they're straight to subpoenas here. that is significant and shows they don't want to waste any time. seven months past the insurrection, they know they have to move to get the answers they want. a minute-by-minute accounting, that's going to be tough to come by the you drag your feet. >> a minute-by-minute accounting would include a phone call with the house republican leader kevin mccarthy. what was discussed on that call? it could include a phone call with another trump supporter in the house, jim jordan, who was asked about this yesterday. several accounts have noted he spoke to the president. he was asked about that yesterday quite directly. >> did you talk to the former president that day? >> i've talked to the former president umpteen times,
countless times. >> i mean on january 6th. >> i never talk about what we talk about because i don't think that's appropriate just like i don't talk about what happens in republican conferences. i talked to the president numerous times. >> i mean on january 6th, congressman. >> yes. i mean, i've talked to the president -- i can't remember all the days i've talked to him but i've certainly talked to the president. >> may have been a yes at the end there. a potential witness. normally they're nice to each other in congress. they get deferential. are they going to end up in the chair? >> i think there's certainly going to be an effort to make that happen. we'll see how it plays out in court. leader mccarthy said he would gladly talk about what went on that idea. >> before he tried to blow up the idea of having my cany comme at all. >> sure. i'm not sure congressman jordan is going to be in a big hurry to get in there and talk about his
phone calls, obviously was reluctant to admit they had been talking. i hope they do get a minute-by-minute accounting of president trump's actions that day. >> that's a lot of deflection in that answer. he obviously did speak to the president that day. that's why this call log situation will be so interesting. we have talked about this since impeachment. this has been floated. there was a concern we heard from a lot of people who spoke to the president that day or in the white house that they were going to have to speak about what they knew, what they saw, what they witnessed. call logs could be difficult to get. obviously there's a presidential call log and they are covered by the presidential records act. right now the white house says the log of people who were there that day is with the national archives. typically they don't start to release that information until five years after they've left office. whether or not that changes this investigation remains to be seen. the call logs would be the most interesting. we know who was with trump that day, same or similar circumstance, ivanka trump, pat
cipo cipollone, mark meadows. that could be fascinating if that does happen. >> part of it is this is all part of the republican effort to rewrite what happened that day or wipe away what happened that day. congressman clyde said it was tourists. if you watched yesterday, compelling testimony about the horrors that day and the risks they took to save lives. congressman raskin was in a meeting with congressman clyde who said they were a bunch of tourists. they had an interesting exchange. >> did you watch the testimony or not? >> it's irrelevant. >> if you didn't footage was video from january 6th, you would actually think it was a normal tourist visit. those are your words.
>> aptd i stand by that exact statement as i said it. >> the congressman stands by the statement, which is ludicrous. but it gets to the point of the rawness between the democrats and republicans about that day. >> and what was effective about yesterday's hearing and hearing from those officers was that lawmakers including liz cheney had the opportunity and used it to go through all the things the former president has been saying and ask the officers who were there that day if they found those to be accurate, whether or not there was more that could have been done beforehand. one of the things they've done to deflect blame is to shift it on to fnancy pelosi. it was not antifa, it was not blm. even people who weren't brandishing weapons that day, it was flag poles and other items. >> mitch mcconnell is the republican leader in the senate.
this effort essentially to say this doesn't matter. why? >> you know, the senate republicans have been really candid about this. they think it's just playing to the advantage the democrats in the midterms. they've been clear about that. that's why they kind of wish that it would go away. but it's not going away. i think that yesterday's hearing shows this is a serious effort. i think the unanimous opinion among most people, except maybe house republicans on capitol hill was that they made a really big mistake by not participating in this hearing. up next, is donald trump losing sway with voters? mm. [ clicks tongue ] i don't know. i think they look good, man. mm, smooth.
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texas voters defy donald trump. cnn predicts republican jake elsy will win, beating the trump endorsed candidate susan wright. she was running to replace her late husband ron who died earlier this year after contracting covid. trump did call into two wright town hall events and he recorded a robocall for her company. a democrat house colleague is suing brooks over comments the alabama republican made back
on january 6th. congressman brooks argues he was acting in his official capacity as a member of congress when speaking to trump supporters on the ellipse. the doj says these comments were not within the scope of brooks' duties as an elected official. >> today is the day american patriots start taking down names and kicking ass! >> appreciate your time today. see you tomorrow. ana cabrera picks up right now. ♪ hello and thanks for being with us. vaccinated or not, the cdc is now urging all americans to wear a mask indoors in areas with high or substantial covid transmission rates. now, that covers about two-thirds of countyies in the u.s. right now. not even 50% of americans are fully vaccinated. the reality is that america is