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tv   PBS News Hour  PBS  January 20, 2022 6:00pm-7:01pm PST

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judy: good evening. i'm judy woodruff. on the "newshour" tonight, the first year -- on this anniversary of president biden's inauguration, we look at what's gone well, and what hasn't over the past 365 days, and ask if anything needs to change as he begins year two. then, tensions rising -- disagreements between nato allies prompt widespread uncertainty as the threat of a renewed russian invasion looms over ukraine. and, on trial -- the federal case gets underway against three former minneapolis police officers charged in the death of george floyd. all that and more on tonight's "pbs newshour." ♪
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and with the ongoing support of these individuals and institutions. this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. stephanie: i am stephanie sy with newshour west. we will return to the full program after the latest headlines. there's fresh evidence tonight that the omicron spike in covid-19 infections is hurting the u.s. job market. new unemployment claims jumped 55,000 last week to 286,000.
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all told, more than 1.6 million people in the country are now collecting jobless benefits. the congressionacommittee investigating the january 6 capitol riot asked today to interview ivanka trump. members said they want the former president's daughter and adviser to discuss her actions and conversations on that day. meanwhile, a district attorney in georgia asked for a grand jury to help investigate whether mr. trump tried to interfere with state election results. president biden marked one year in office today with a new focus on passing at least some of his domestic agenda. his build back better bill, worth some $2 trillion around health care, education, and climate was blocked in the u.s. senate. so, on wednesday, he promoted action on any chunks of it that can win enough votes. today, the speaker of the house, nancy pelosi, responded. rep. pelosi: what can we agree upon? and i'm sure that we can agree upon something significant. call it a chunk if you want, but
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whatever you call it, we want it to be able to make a difference in transforming the workplace by honoring work, by respecting the fact that there are families that have to make decisions between home and work, and, again, protecting the planet. stephanie: we'll take a look at the president's first year, after the news summary. starting this weekend, non-u.s. citizens traveling across the northern and southern borders will be required to show proof that they are fully vaccinated for covid. migrants attempting to enter the u.s. illegally will continue to be expelled under title 42. a federal appeals court found two california counties violated the second amendment when officials shut down gun and ammo stores along with other businesses they deemed non-essential in 2020. authorities in los angeles and ventura counties had won lower court decisions, saying gun stores were not exempt from the
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pandemic shuown, but this decision overturns those rulings. similar restrictions were imposed in 10 her states. police in britain arrested two new people in connection with the standoff at a texas synagogue last saturday. it's unclear how they might be linked to the british gunman who held four people hostage near dallas before authorities killed him. meanwhile, a recording posted online showed the gunman ranting against jews and u.s. wars in afghanistan and other muslim nations. the cia has concluded that most cases of so-called "havana syndrome" were not caused by a foreign government attack. investigators studied reports of headaches, dizziness, and nausea among u.s. officials, starting in cuba, in 2016. they found most resulted from environmental factors and other medical conditions. two dozen cases are still under review. the first disaster relief arrived in tonga, five days after an undersea volcanic
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eruption. flights from new zealand and australia were finally able to deliver much-needed drinking water and other supplies after ash was cleared from the airport. katie: the runway being open and able to acceptlights in with essential relief items is one of the very good news stories of this disaster response. we had hundreds of volunteers come out and manually clear the runway of debris and ash to ensure that those flights could land. stephanie: across the pacific, peru declared an emergency as it ttles a huge oil spill caused by rogue waves from the volcano's eruption. the spill has fouled nearly 7000 square miles of islands and fishing waters. u.s. federal prosecutors charged four officials in belarus with air piracy for diverting a ryanair flight last year. the plane was crossing belarusian airspace when authorities used a false bomb threat to force it down, a pretext to arrest an opposition
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journalist on board. it's not clear if those charged will ever stand trial. the ncaa has announced a new policy on transgender athletes in college sports. eligibility will now depend on each sport's assessment of athletes' testosterone levels. the previous requirement was the same across all sports. still to come on the "newshour”" we examine the biden administration's handling of the immigration issue. a new report alleges former pope benedict failed to act against abusive priests. director adam mckay discusses his allegorical film, "don't look up." plus much more. >> this is the "pbs newshour" from weta studios in washington and in the west from the walter cronkite school of journalism at arizona state university. judy: president biden enters his second year in office fighting
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to pass his signature legislation in a divided congress and facing the lowest approval ratings of his tenure. joining me now to assess the last 12 months of the president's term and where he goes from here are two democratic party's strategists. faiz shakir is an adviser to senator bernie sanders. and he managed sanders' 2020 presidential campaign. and matt bennett worked for both of bill clinton's presidential campaigns. he is now a co-founder of the think tank third way. hello to both of you. great to have you with us. faiz shakir, i'm going to start with you. we heard president biden say yesterday that, yes, it was a year of challenges, but there was also enormous progress. how would you size up his first year in office? faiz: one of the most important accomplishments of this biden administration is empowering workers. i mean, he lifted the income floor at a time when millions of people were losing jobs, out of work, with stimulus checks, with unemployment benefits, with child tax credits, small business payroll support.
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what happened? workers gained power. they got the ability to change jobs, move jobs. and as a result, if you look at household wealth and wage gains among the people in the bottom 50% of america, they are increasing. that ia huge accomplishment. it reverses decades of a trend of working-class people losing. and so that is one of the most major accomplishments. obviously, there's still business left unne. we haven't done the structural changes to provide things like paid leave, address climate change, expand health insurance. those are the economic challenges experienced during covid that still have yet to be fully completed. and i'm hopeful that they will be. ju: matt bennett, how do you see the firsyear? matt: i agree with faiz. i think those were real accomplishments. i think there were some other things too. i mean, if you look at the rescue plan, and the bipartisan infrastructure bill, they, combined, were $3.1 trillion. that is the size of the new deal in real dollars. that is an enormous accomplishment. and he's going to be addressing
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these infrastructure problems for the first time really since the 1960's in a big and concerted way. that's going to change people's lives in really fundamental ways. it will create jobs, but it will also change the way people are using roads, and their water is going to be cleaner, and broadband is going to be expanded. it's going to be a fundamental difference for americans. so i think he had some really significant accomplishments. i think one of the problems, though, is that, in the first year of a presidency -- and this is true of every president -- your reach often kind of exceeds your grasp. every new president tries to do something that they're unable to do. when i served with president clinton, it was health care. president obama couldn't get cap-and-trade legislation done. president trump tried to repeal the aca. it always happens. but i think now, in this year, it's time to talk about the accomplishments. judy: so, faiz shakir, is that the main explanation for why the president's public opinion ratings are down? we know that's certainly not the only measurement of what's going on.
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but the fact that it has been a noted, notable drop, and especially among independent voters, is it mainly because he tried to do more than he could get done? faiz: i think the president is dogged by perception of weakness, and it hurts him. and i think part of that comes from the legislative strife, inability to manage -- get a vong rights bill across, but it's particularly bbb, the build back better act. and in that -- in my view -- i have a difference with matt on this -- is that joe manchin, more than any other person in america, has been responsible for biden's falling political standing, because, with the perception of biden being seen as weak, it looks like joe manchin is in charge, it's president joe manchin that we have to cater to. and, as a result, we haven't had votes in the senate on this critical piece of legislation. we have had months and months of negotiations. and that doesn't help joe biden. when he's unable to deliver, it looks like you have got a weak president. obviously, he is also afflicted
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with covid. but if you were acting, if you were able to pass build back better, it would also show that i'm taking on the biggest challenges we have got in covid as well. judy: well, it's interesting you should say that, because i want i want to pick up on something president biden said at his news conference yesterday talking to the reporters. he said, you guys have been trying to convince me that i'm bernie sanders. he said, i'm not. i like him. but i'm not bernie sanders. i'm not a socialist. i'm a mainstream democrat. but, of course, that doesn't assuage what republicans are saying. and i want you to listen just to a short clip of what the republican minority whip in the, senate john thune, had to say at a news conference they had. sen. thune: pretty much on every level -- you can go right down the list -- this administration has been a failure. and i believe the only way they can fix and cure that is to quit listening to the far left, to get away from the radical agenda that is driving their decision-making process, and come to the middle. judy: so, matt bennett, i don't expect you to necessarily agree
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with the republican line of thinking, but does -- but is there a seed of a problem? how do you see whether the president has been leaning too far to the left or not? matt: well, first of all, just to be clear, i definitely do not agree with senator thune or what the republicans are saying about joe biden or about democrats. but it is true that joe biden inherited a very, very broad coalition and a very narrow congressional majority. i mean, he has no margin at all in the senate and a three-or-five vote margin, depending on the day, in the house, which means he has to kind of negotiate between people as far apart ideologically as folks like bernie sanders and joe manchin or congresswoman ocasio-cortez and joe manchin. that's a pretty tough thing to do when you can't lose any of their votes. and i think, during that first year, when he was trying to do really big things legislatively, and he achieved some, and he
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might achieve more, that's where he kind of ended up. i think, now, though, is a moment to pivot and to start to talk to the american public in ways that he was talking in 2020. and, as he said yesterday, he's a mainstream democrat. he's very good at talking to folks about the problems in their lives in a way tt really resonated. and i think that's what he will do. judy: faiz shakir, is that going to work? i mean, is that the formula for 2022? faiz: the formula would be, in my mind, two major things. one is, it needs to be a year of executive actions for joe biden. if congress can't act, he will. he will do everything in his power to address climate change, health care, immigration reform, criminal justice. but, simultaneously, in the senate, in the legistive arena, it's got to be a year of votes. and i think we have been dogged by this. i mentioned, judy, that we haven't had any votes on build back better, right, for months and months. and i'm glad that senator schumer took a vote on voting rights. now it needs to happen on build back better. and if it were to fail, i think we continue with breaking that out, as the president suggested,
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and having votes on each piece. you want to reduce prescription drug prices, let's put it up for a vote. let's see where they stand. and i think that also serves a political benefit, judy, as you head into the 2022 midterms to say, make the choices clear for the american public, who stands where, and call people to the carpet, because, otherwise, manchin is basically talking behind the scenes and sometimes in the press, and we don't know where he would actually vote. and it's time for some votes. judy: so, matt bennett, is that a formula, to hold the votes, to know where everybody stands, even if they go down and don't pass? matt: i'd say i'm not a fan of that. i think i land where speaker pelosi does, which is, you don't take votes very often that you know you're going to lose. look, i think that had to do that on freedom to vote and the lewis bill, which are very important. and i think senator schumer was right to bring those up. but i don't think you want to have a series of votes in either house of congress where you're in the majority, and you keep losing. i do think, though, that there will be behind-the-scenes negotiations that continue with senator manchin over build back
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better. faiz and i actually agree, we should pass that bill. we hope that senator manchin comes around on that. but i also think that president biden needs to get out there and start talking to people about the things that you were talking about at the top of this broadcast, about inflation, about covid, about the things that they are struggling with. i think he's very good at doing that. and i think that's what he will do. judy: so much to consider. we thank the both of you, faiz shakir and matt bennett. we appreciate it. matt: thank you. judy: today, president biden clarified and corrected comments he made yesterday and said any russian incursion into ukraine would lead to a severe and united response by the u.s. and its allies. in berlin, secretary of state antony blinken also presented unity. but, as the president himself acknowledged yesterd, the transatlantic alliance is not
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unified over how to punish russia. nick schifrin explains. nick: in the city once-divided by the cold war, america's top diplomat warned a that new war risked the values the west had won. sec. blinken: to allow russia to violate those principles with impunity would drag us all back to a much more dangerous and unstable time, when this continent and this city were divided in two, separated by no-man's lands. nick: secretary of state antony blinken met with german foreign minister annalena baerbock and french and british diplomats to try and present a united front. minister baerbock: any further aggressive behavior or aggression would result in serious consequences. this is nothing less than a question of maintaining peace in europe. for us, it is existential. sec. blinken: that unity gives
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us strength, a strength, i might add, that russia does not and cannot match. nick: but the unity rhetoric doesn't match the reality over how to punish russian president vladimir putin, as president biden acknowledged yesterday. pres. biden: russia will be held accountable if it invades. and it depends on what it does. it's one thing if it's a minor incursion, and then we end up having a fight about what to do and not do, et cetera. nick: that acknowledgement of a fight among allies was a rare public admission of what's been privately clear. in germany, the nord stream 2 pipeline would double the natural gas the european union imports from russia. it was completed last year, but germany has indefinitely paused the certification process. the white house wants to use that pause as leverage over russia. privately, german officials say they would kill the pipeline, but, publicly, they won't admit that. earlier this week, german chancellor olaf scholz made his most definitive hint, which still only went so far. chanc. scholz: it is clear that there will be high costs, and everything has to be discussed if there is a military intervention against ukraine.
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nick: other european countries are worried about u.s. sanctions because theyave their own business ties to russia. the e.u. is russia's largest trading partner. in countries along russia's border, including finland, lithuania, and estonia, russian goods make up about a third of imports. in contrast, russia is the united states' 26th largest trading partner. and, in france, president emmanuel macron further broke western unity yesterday when he said the e.u. should hold its own talks with russia, rather than support the u.s.-russia and nato-russia talks from last week. pres. macron: for both us and russia, for the security of our continent, which is indivisible, we need that dialogue. we have to, as europeans, lay out our own demands and put ourselves in a position where we can make sure they're respected. nick: today, ukraine's president volodymyr zelensky demanded his own respect. while visiting poland's president, he tweeted a rejection of president biden's comments yesterday.
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there are no minor incursions in small nations, he wrote. today, president biden tried to clean up his own remarks. pres. biden: if any, any assembled russian units move across ukrainian border, that is an invasion, but -- and it will be met with severe and coordinated economic response. nick: so how united are the u.s. and its european allies amid this crisis? for more, we turn to constanze stelzenmuller, senior fellow at the brookings institution, a washington think tank. constanze stelzenmuller, welcome back to the "newshour." as we heard, president biden let slip yesterday that there would be a -- quote -- "fight among allies" over how to respond if putin launched something short of a full invasion. today, president biden promised a -- quote -- "coordinated response." which biden comment is more accurate? constanze: you know, i think the problem re is they're both accurate, nick. by the way, thanks for having me on again. i think, the more outrageous the kremlin's demands and rhetoric are -- and they really have been
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outrageous, both in those two papers they suggested we shoul sign immediately and the comments afterwards -- the more united we are. but the suggestion that the russians might try something that's sort of hybrid, sort of mixed, with a little bit of military aggression and perhaps more disinformation, that's where it becomes technically, actually, quite difficult to define, what is aggression? what kind of response should that trigger, and what would be proportional, and who does it? nick: so, for example, if russian troops invaded in the donbass in eastern ukraine, where they invaded in the past and where they continue to support an insurgency, or if we see special forces, so-called little green men, inside ukraine, but not an infantry, the allies would be less unified? constanze: i don't think so. i think, at this point, our trigger levels are pretty low. i think anything that looks like an actual military response that is not little green men would, i think, create a very unified response.
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what i'm worried about is sort of maybe if the kremlin leaves us hanging, and then continues with a disinformation onslaught and cyber-campaigns and that kind of thing. i think that is what the president meant with something minor, really. nick: let's go into some of the divisions that we laid out in the piece. in addition to europe's dependence on russian oil and gas, there are business ties between the continent and russia. how much does that restrain european capitals from supporting economic sanctions against russia? constanze: well, the truth is that really forceful economic sanctions would have a lot of blowback on the european ecomy, because of the interdependence ofuropean economies and their interdependence with russia. that is much are less significant for the u.s. economy. it just has to be said. that is a real difference. and then there are differences within europe. probably the most vulnerable is germany.
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then comes italy, i'm told. and i think the question for us all is, how do we mitigate those differences in vulnerability, so that the russians can't exploit us to strike a wge in alliance cohesion? nick: one of the places the u.s. says russia is trying to exploit the division is, of course, nord stream 2. so why can't the german government say in public what german diplomats say in private, that there will be no nord stream 2 if russia invades? constanze: yes, everyone's favorite pipeline. the -- my theory is this. it's that -- i think, if you talk to german officials in private, as you said in your report, they areretty clear that is one of the biggest albatrosses around the neck of german foreign policy ever. but this is a private undertaking. it's actually factually correct to say that, if the chancellor does that. and if the government stops the
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suspension process and says, this will never go online, that would be in legal terms an exercise of eminent domain. german courts take that kind of thing very seriously. and it happened after angela merkel took germany out of nuclear power after the nuclear catastrophe in japan in fukushima in 2011, after the tsunami. and so my suspicion is the legal advisers are being super careful here and saying, what we need is a clear case of force majeure, in other words, a clear-cut case of russian attack, to be able to move to this without incurring legal damages in the billions, literally, probably 10 billions. nick: in general, russia's neighbors, including former soviet states, are more concerned about russian actions, are more calling for aggressive deterrents, despite some of the trade ties that we have mentioned, than are western european countries. is there a divide between western and eastern europe when it comes to how to treat russia
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in this moment? constanze: you know, i don't actually think so. i mean, obviously, i watch the debate in my own cntry, germany, most closely, but i do speak french and i watch other countries' debates. and i think that, in germany, the mood towards russia darkened significantly already after russians -- the russian attack on georgia in 2008. and the real turning point, the game-changer was the illegal annexation of crimea in 2014. yes, there are people who will sort of talk russian talking points, but, usually, these are people who have -- where you know there's a reason they do that. but they're in the minority, and they are, with some exception, not senior -- not senior policy-makers. and there is actually some agreement within this three-way coalition that now runs germany on this. the disagreement is really between the left wing of some of those parties and the people who are in the cabinet.
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that's an important distinction. can i say something about macron, the speech yesterday? nick: just only in about 10 seconds. sorry, constanze. constanze: well, he has a point that we need to do more as europeans. that was where he was right. it was unhelpful to suggest that we need a new european union security order, including the russians, this week, with 100,000 troops on russian borders and new russian troops moving into belarus. nick: we will have to leave it there. constanze stelzenmuller, thank you very much. constanze: you're very welcome. thanks for having me on. judy: one year into president biden's tenure we are taking a look at the status of some of his key campaign promises. today, we dive into immigration. president biden came into office promising to undo the aggressive policies of the previous administration and usher in a more humane approach.
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amna nawaz is here to lay out how he's doing on those fronts. so, amna, as we're suggesting, big promises from then-candidate joe biden. how, as president biden, has he made a difference on those promises? amna: judy, you're absolutely right. he came into office saying he's not just going to undo what the previous president had done. he's also going to create and work toward a more fair, more humane overall immigration system. and to that point, some of his earliest executive actions as soon as heame into office were immigration-related. take a look at just some of them. in his first days in office, president biden stopped construction of the border wall. he ended the trump era travel bans. he created the family reunification task force to find and reunify those families separated under the trump administration. and he reinstated daca, that deferred action for childhood arrivals program that shields dreamers from deportation. but, judy, he also started to lay out a broader groundwork and strategy for how to address some
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of the changes that, quite frankly, people have been calling for, for decades, in a system that really hasn't had meaningful reform in over 30 years. judy: and, specifically, let me ask you about at the southern border. i mean, we know this has gotten so much attention. 's been the subject of so much political debate. the in -- migration into the country has continued. what changes has president biden made? amna: well, judy, as you know, as our viewers know, every modern president has - president has grappled with managing migration there. and we should note the numbers at the southern border were rising even before president biden came into office. after he was sworn in, they really did start to dramatically rise, up to a 20-year high last year. but, as a candidate, mr. biden was very, very forceful about speaking out about the trump policies at the border, specifically some that kept asylum seekers to -- forcing them to stay in mexico while their cases here unfolded, and also one pandemic rule that essentially shut down border traffic altogether.
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in fact, here's how mr. biden talked about that back in august of 2020. pres. biden: we're going to restore our moral standing in the world and our historic role as a safe haven for refugees and asylum seekers. my lord, we have never -- we have never made asylum seekers stay -- seek asylum outside the united states of america. amna: judy, since then, some of those promises have run up into some real-world realities. he did try to end mpp. that was the program that forced asylum seekers to wait in mexico. it went to the courts. the courts ruled against him. they h to put that back into place. so that rule remains in place. but president biden has also not tried to end title 42. that's that pandemic rule that forced people basically to be expelled immediately after they tried to cross the border. he created some carve-outs for children andamilies. but that rule from the trump administration also remains in place. perhaps one of the biggest changes we have seen, though, when it comes to the border is something that happens hundreds of miles away from the border. and that was the biden administration's decision to
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prioritize and invest in root causes, the reasons that people leave their countries in the first place. vice president harris was put in charge othat. they have already secured over a billion dollars in private sector and other commitments. it's potentially huge change, judy. but that's the kind of change that will take a while to ow up. judy: so that's immigrants. we're talking about people outside the country. but what about the undocumented people who live inside, who have already moved to this country, the dreamers, for example? what promises has the president made for them? and has he fulfilled them? amna: well, candidate biden was very forceful and specific about his plans for that popation. here's how we talked about it back in october of 2020. pr. biden: within 100 days, i'm going to send to t united states congress a pathway to citizenship for over 11 million undocumented people. and all of those so-called dreamers, those daca kids, they're going to be immediately certified again to be able to stay in this country and put on a path to citizenship. amna: so, judy, day one in
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office, president biden did reinstate daca. but that, of course, is temporary. there is still no permanent solution. that would have to come through congress. we actually asked a young undocumented woman by the name of eva santos about what she thinks the president biden's record so far. here's what she had to say. eva: he also pmised to protect and expand programs like daca and provide a pathway to citizenship for 11 million undocumented people like me. and we remain under limbo. so, i think it is more than obvious that he has fallen short on each of his promises. amna: judy, the other big change, of course, was changing the enforcement guidelines for i.c.e. he raised the bar, meaning people aren't arrested and deported unless they're considered security threats or they have committed crimes. that's a big change from the previous administration. judy: all this, amna, reminding us what a complicated set of issues is involved around immigration. it couldn't be hotter politically. so, to sum it up, i mean, what does this first year under president biden tell you about what could be done in coming years? amna: well, judy, perhaps the
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biggest change from this administration to the last has just been the way they talk about immigration. there's been a rhetorical reestablishment that immigration is central to this country as a core value. but, again and again, president biden has run up against some of the same challenges as previous presidents have. and that is to say, until congress acts on a lot of these issues, until the laws are changed, a broken immigration system will largely remain broken. judy: no question, one of the toughest set of issues confronting this president. amna nawaz, thanks very much. a jury was selected today in the federal trial of three former minneapolis police officers charged in the killing of george floyd. john yang has more. john: judy, this is the next chapter in efforts to hold minneapolis police officers accountable in the death of george floyd. what began as a call to a convenience store more than a
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year-and-a-half ago touched off protests around the world for racial justice and police accountability. special correspondent fred de sam lazaro begins our coverage with a reminder of how we got to this point. and a warning, some of the images in this report are disturbing. fred: one down, three to go. that was the message above the minneapolis intersection known as george floyd square in the weeks after derek chauvin's conviction last year. it was a reference to the three other former minneapolis police officers, tou thao, j. alexander kueng, and thomas lane, who were at the scene on may 25, 2020, and now face federal civil rights charges. almost a year after floyd's death, chauvin stood trial on state murder and manslaughter charges. for weeks, inside a heavily fortified minneapolis courthouse, often emotional witnesses recounted the events of that day, including darnella
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frazier, the teenager who filmed the viral cell phone video of floyd's death. darnella: it's been nights i stayed up apologizing and apologizing to george floyd for not doing more, and not physically interacting, and not saving his life. fred: the jury found chauvin guilty on all counts after just 10 hours of deliberation. he was sentenced to more than 22 years in prison. many in the twin cities rejoiced. now the fencing is back up, this time around the federal courthouse in st. paul. and some of those same witnesses will be called in once again to testify. thao, kueng, and lane are charged with depriving george floyd his civil rights while acting under government authority. chauvin has already pleaded guilty to the federal charges and awaits sentencing.
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kueng and lane, both rookies on the force, arrived first at the convenience store where floyd was accused of passing a counterfeit $20 bill. they took floyd out of his car and attempted to arrest him. thao, who'd been a full-time minneapolis police officer for more than eight years, arrived with chauvin a short time later. and after the officers struggled with floyd, bringing him to the ground, chauvin knelt on his neck, kueng near his back, and lane held down his legs. thao kept bystanders from intervening. on body camera footage, lane can be heard twice asking chauvin, the senior officer on scene. thomas: should we roll him on his side? derek: no, he's staying put where we got him. fred: at one point, lane and kueng appear to discuss whether floyd had a pulse. thomas: you got one? >> is he breathing right now? check his pulse. check his pulse.
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check his pulse. j. alexander: i can't find one. fred: the trial will not be broadcast publicly. the judge in the case expressed concern about the proceedings -- quote -- "getting out of proportion." he urged lawyers to limit the number of witnesses and move quickly to avoid delays caused by covid. thao, kueng, and lane still face a state trial for aiding and abetting murder and manslaughter. it's now been delayed twice, awaiting the conclusion of the federal case. for the "pbs newshour," i'm fred de sam lazaro in st. paul, minnesota. john: the charges and issues in this federal trial are different from those in the earlier state trial that ended in the conviction of derek chauvin. angi porter is a research fellow and adjunct professor at the georgetown university law center. thanks so much for being with us. help us understand these federal charges. depriving george floyd of his civil right, what does that mean? angi: absolutely. thanks, john. i want to emphasize that, in federal court, we're really
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thinking primarily about a person's constitutional rights. and, in this case, we're thinking about george floyd's right to reasonable seizure, i.e., a reasonable arrest, and also his right to due process, his right to not be deprived of his liberty without getting medical attention for a serious medical need. so those are the two areas that are infused in the charges in the federal case. john: in the state case, you were talking about what derek chauvin did. what are the challenges in proving that the federal precutor is going to have in proving this federal charge? angi: you know, i think the challenges will really be to focus the jury in on the issues, because laypeople come to these cases thinking about the overall incident. and so the prosecutors are really going to want to narrow
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their focus on what each of these defendants did and on their role. so, even though chauvin is out there, they have a role vis-a-vis chauvin. they have a role in processing what he was doing and thinking about how they should behave under law to prevent george floyd's deprivation of rights. john: so could they be looking at things they didn't do? angi: absolutely. absolutely. the first charge actually is failure intervene with the deprivation of rights. so, by failing to tell chauvin or to insist that chauvin get up off of george floyd's neck and back, they are violating george floyd's constitutional rights. so, it's absolutely about the omission there and not the action. john: one juror was excused after saying he was worried about the influence of race in this case, and he couldn't be impartial. what role does race play in the prosecution of these charges?
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angi: yeah, i was actually very disappointed in the statements of the judge in response to that juror who raised concerns about race, because, as we all know, race is absolutely at the heart of the underlying incident that gave rise to this trial. so, even while race is not relevant to the charges, the judge responded by saying race in no way, shape, or form has a part in this case. you know, that, to me, is a delusion. that is aspirational, perhaps, for him to say that, but it's not the truth. and i think there shld be an acknowledgment that this case was the springboard for the racial reckoning, as people called it, after george floyd's death. race is always a factor, and it's absolutely going to play a role in the minds of these jurors as they're looking at these three police officers. and, as you mentioned, john, we're pulling from the whole state for this jury.
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we're not just pulling from hennepin county. and so the demographics are going to look different. they're going to look more white. it's going to be more homogeneous in terms of race. tha's definitely going to be important. and i think by understating the role of race in this case and in our reality, as a communit as a state, as a country, i think the judge really did a disservice here. and it was not reflective of what a lot of people are thinking in terms of this death and the actions surrounding it and the inactions surrounding it. john: derek chauvin -- as fred said in the piece, derek chauvin pleaded guilty to these federal charges, of course, convicted in the state trial. to what extent do you think his presence is still going to be felt in the courtroom? is he going to be sort of looming over this case? angi: oh, absolutely. absolutely.
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as we discussed before, these charges are related to whether thesofficers intervened and whether they followed the lead of derek chauvin. they are certainly going to use him as part of their argument, saying, oh, he was the field training officer. he was more senior to us. we were following his lead. they will try to disavow themselves from derek chauvin. note, however, derek chauvin ok that plea. and, as part of his plea, he said he didn't force these other three to do anything or to not do anything. and so they're going to have to contend with that. john: angi porter of the georgetown university law center, thank you very much. angi: thanks so much for having me.
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judy: a new repo finds the retired pope, pope benedict, failed to deal adequately with sexual abuse cases when he was the leader of a german diocese decades ago. stephanie sy has the latest on these revelations and what it says about the vatican's leadership. stephanie: judy, the report found that former pope benedict xvi failed to act in four cases of child sexual abuse by roman catholic priests. this was during his time as archbishop of munich and freising between 1977 and 1982. and it was the german archdiocese which commissioned this independent investigation. benedict's spokesperson says he is reviewing this lengthy report. but the law firm that conducted the investigation with written testimony from the former pontiff says he denied any wrongdoing. the report identified nearly 500 sexual victims in the archdiocese between 1945 to 2019.
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chico harlan is the rome bureau chief for "the washington post" and has been writing about this. chico harlan, thank you so much for joining the "newshour." so, really, from boston to munich, we have seen church leaders at the very top over and over again turn a blind eye to sexual abuse, cover up sexual abuse, commit sexual abuse. how bad is what former pope benedict is accused of doing in this report? chico: how bad is it? i mean, there is a way to measure it against the standards of the time and what was known, but i think viewed at it through the modern lens of the proper way to handle sexual abuse, the only way to consider this is that he failed. he did not value the victims and the safety of young people, the safety of people attending church against the reputation. and that has been the tripping
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point for leaders for all the decades. that's what all the scandals have in common. and you see that, even before this had exploded into public knowledge -- this was in the late 1970's and early 1980's -- the same problems were at the root, and, this time, it involved the man who would become pope. stephanie: and, specifically, this report spends a couple of hundred pages, i understand, on reverend peter hullermann, who was accused of molesting -- sexually abusing children in the late 1970's. what does that have to do with cardinal joseph ratzinger? that's what -- the position he held before he was elevated to pontiff. chico: right. so, this -- of all these four cases, this is the one that had been the most known publicly beforehand. and the question was, ok, there was this -- a known abuser who entered ratzinger, or benedict's, archdiocese. he was given some therapy and then put back on the job and continued to abuse in the subsequent years. so, the question always was, how much did benedict know about this? and, at the time, 10 years ago,
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when this first came out, it was -- the blame was cast on a deputy. the deputy says now that he believes it was improbable that benedict didn't have some knowledge about this guy's past when he was ought in and rehabilitated. stephanie: and benedict, thus far, according to the law firm, has denied that he was at this meeting. is this the closest, this high-ranking of a vatican official, all the way at the top, even though he was cardinal at the time, has come to being linked to a case of sexual abuse? chico: this is, i guess, what you would put -- categorized as mishandling or cover up, negligence. and, yes, the accusations have been made in a very high-profile case even three years ago by this character who is famous to any catholic, archbishop vigano, who was talking about the way that benedict and pope francis failed in properly excavating
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the truths with cardinal mccarrick. so that was a case of cover-up. but i guess what we have seen today in the german case is something much more fitting with the pattern, the normal pattern. these were cases that at the time weren't getting attention. these were not famous priests that were involved. this was the day-to-day running of the church. and, at the time, benedict was a cardinal, but nobody knew he'd become pope. so this was very much what -- how do you behave when no one's watching? how do you behave when the attention isn't there from the media? and we got the answer in the form of this report. stephanie: and, really, what you're talking about is a form of inaction, but also the fact that they were transferring these accused clergy members from dioceses to dioceses, right? chico: yes, always with the transferring. it was better to deal with the priests by changing their job than by disciplining them. stephanie: and we should say that, before he was elevated to the papacy, cardinal ratzinger was actually in charge of the
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vatican office that was meant to oversee sexual abuse cases. so, he, more than almost anyone in the catholic church, was responsible for overseeing these cases for quite some time. chico: so, if you're thinking about what figure of the last decades knows the most about abuse, it's probably him i mean, he was the very face of this secretive organ that dealt with the discipline and dealt with cases. he had his finger on that body like nobody since. and then he became pope. so, negligence is not an excuse. he knew the problem, and it was defining his job even before he became a name known to all catholics. stephanie: chico harlan is the rome bureau chief for "the washington post." chico, thank you for joining the "newshour." chico: thanks so much, stephanie. appreciate it.
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judy: climate change and comedy might not seem like a natural pairing, but a new film combines the two to create a parable about how our society is responding to the climate crisis. william brangham recently spoke to adam mckay, director of comedies like "anchorman" and "the big short," about his current hit, "don't look up," for our arts and culture series, canvas. >> this is not real. william: it's a classic disaster movie premise. >> tell me this isn't really happening. william: two scientists, terrified by their discovery of an imminent, mortal threat to the planet, try to sound the alarm. >> what dr. mindy is trying to say is that there's a comet headed directly towards earth. william: but in the netflix satire "don't look up," no one seems to care.
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>> it will have the power of a billion hiroshima bombs. there will be magnitude 10 or 11 earthquakes. >> like, you're breathing weird. it's making me uncomfortable. >> i'm sorry, i'm just trying to articulate the science. >> i know, but like it's, like, so stressful. i'm like trying to like listen and like. >> i don't think you understand the gravity of this situation. >> this comet is what we call a planet killer. william: least of all, the u.s. president. >> i say we sit tight and assess. >> sit tight and assess? >> sit tight? >> and then assess. the sit tight part comes first. and you got to digest it. that's the assessment period. william: while director adam mckay says his planet-killing comet is a metaphor for climate change. >> it's real and it's coming. william: he's more interested in how society as a whole responds to the threat. >> how big is this thing going? like, can it destroy my ex-wife's house? is that possible? william: while "don't look up"
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was panned by many critics as preachy and obvious, it has been a huge hit here in the u.s. and internationally, breaking some weekly streaming records for netflix. the star-studded cast includes leonardo dicaprio and jennifer lawrence, meryl streep and jonah hill, ariana grande, and cate blanchett and tyler perry. i spoke with adam mckay recently from his production office in los angeles. the central struggle of this film is these two scientists who see the threat and then try to communicate that threat to a world that does not seem to want to pay attention. but they also struggle a great deal with how to talk about the threat. i have been covering climate change for 20 years, and i have seen this repeatedly. the scientists believe at the beginning that simply presenting the data will be persuasive to people. adam: yeah, i mean, that's the central emotional thrust of the movie, is, what do you do when you have a clear truth in this society we live in right now? and a lot of people have applied the movie beyond even the climate crisis, to covid, to democracy teetering on the edge in the u.s. and other countries.
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and i think that's all completely applicable, because it becomes very difficult to just communicate a simple truth. william: i mean, it does seem that that is, i mean, for lack of a better word, the central villain or the central struggle against this media/entertainment complex, that they cannot find a way to punch through that thick curtain. adam: yeah, and i think that's really the way the movie works as a direct allegory for climate. and it was amazing to see the reaction from climate scientists to the movie, people just right away, climate scientists, saying, yes, that's exactly what we have been through. >> i will, but, in all fairness, i actually paid for the house. >> i'm sorry. >> are we not being clear? we're trying to tell you that the entire planet is about to be destroyed. >> ok.
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>> well, it's just something we do around here. we just keep the bad news light. adam: so, the movie is doing a couple of different things. it's dealing with the climate crisis and all these problems that we're not solving, but also, just on a raw, emotional level for me, even as the filmmaker, good lord, it was so nice to laugh. >> i will get two more glasses of white wine. and i don't need the judgy face. william: do you think that -- i mean, as opposed to the comet in your film, which everyone can see it with their own eyes at the end, it's got a clear deadline as to when it's going to hit the planet, vs. actual climate change, which is this slow-moving, rolling, incremental thing -- we are seeing damages from it already. but do you think that the difference between the comet and actual climate change is why we have been so slow to react? adam: yeah, i think so. think, to some degree, we're wired to deal with immediate threats. and i think the idea of a
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slow-moving, massive macro-change is hard for a lot of us to deal with, especially in a society we're living in now, where there's so many bright colors and shiny objects and distractions, which get me as well. so, yeah, i do think that's the problem. and i think that making it a comet helps compartmentalize it a little bit. and, once again, the point of the movie is not really about the threat. it's about our reaction to it. >> do you know how many "the world is ending" meetings we have had over the last two years? william: your president in the film sees acting against the comet as a way to goose her political standing in the midterms. but there has been no political leader that has successfully ridden action on climate change to electoral success. adam: yeah, i think we have really collided with this great challenge at probably the worst time that we could have, because there's just so much big money that is flowing through our political system, through our
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social system, through our media. if you turn on most news, you will see them ignore giant climate stories, and then go to an ad for a gas-powered car or an oil company. and i don't think anyone's consciously ignoring it because of that, but that kind of conflict of interests just creates a culture around it. and when everything is so profitized -- i mean, the very way that we talk to each other with social media is completely driven and cranked to create conflict and misunderstanding, so these companies can make more money. and it's tough. i mean, we are really looking at a nuanced, difficult, immediate threat to billions of lives at exactly the time where we have broken the way we communicate with each other. william: the film is "don't look up." it's on netflix right now. director adam mckay, so good to have you on the "newshour." thank you very much. adam: thank you, william. pleasure to be here, man.
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judy: we are covering climate change. and go see the movie, if you haven't. and that's the “newshour” for tonight. i'm judy woodruff. for all of us at the “pbs newshour,” thank you, please stay safe, and we'll see you soon. >> major funding for the "pbs newshour" has been provided by. >> for 25 years, consumer cellular has been offering -- our u.s.-based customer service team can help find a plan that fits you. to learn more, visit >> johnson & johnson. the ford foundation, working with visionaries on the front lines of social change worldwide. and with the ongoing support of these institutions.
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and friends of the "newshour." this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. >> this is "pbs newshour" west from weta studios in washington and from our bureau at the walter cronkite school of journalism at arizona state university. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy.] >>
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- i never heard of cheesecake until i came to the united states. when my brother first came to see me, i made a cheesecake for him. he loved it. and since then, each time he came, i made a cheesecake. here is my way of doing that famous american dessert. butter an 8-inch round cake pan very lavishly with soft butter. place about half a cup of fine graham cracker crumb over the base. shake and roll the pan so that the graham cracker cover both the bottom and side of the pan. dump out any excess crumb. for the cake, place four package of soft cream cheese, about 32 ounces, into the food processor. add a cup of sugar, a good teaspoon of vanilla, the freshly grated zest of one lemon,


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