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tv   Inside Story  LINKTV  April 29, 2021 5:30am-6:01am PDT

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>> real figure is believed to be much higher. >> the fbi has raided an office for rudy, part of a probe into his dealings for ukraine by his lawyer denies that he broke the law. giuliani's lawyer says he did nothing wrong. >> antigovernment with thousands defining restrictions to protest the proposed tax hikes.
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the country's economy has taken a hit due to the pandemic. the uk's prime minister denied any wrongdoing in the flat makeover scandal. tabora johnson says he covered the cost of the refers from that's refurbishment himself, although he did not clarify who paid. they launched a full investigation into johnson about a possible violation of finance rules. after not michael collins has died at age 90. collins orbited the moon while his crewmates took their historic first steps on the surface in 1969. he died on wednesday after a battle with cancer. those are the headlines, and the bottom line is up next on al jazeera. >> i am steve clemons and i have
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a question. joe biden promised a lot in his first 100 days in the office. how much did he deliver, let's get to the bottom line. ♪ >> if you ever needed proof of that time lot -- time flies, look at washington, d.c. in january, we had thousands of fans of donald trump scaling the walls of congress to stop the guy who won the election, joe biden. 100 days later, many items on biden's wish list have been fulfilled. extra cash in the hands of hundreds of millions of americans. half of the population has been vaccinated and now the u.s. is talking about getting the vaccine to other countries that are in worse shape. but not one republican voted for about biden stimulus package, and all the promise of bipartisan politics seem far-fetched. rolla biden's nice talk -- all of biden's nice talk, there is
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not much to show for it yet. and then there is climate change. infrastructure print health, education, and don't forget foreign policy. today we are giving the president a report card on his first 100 days in office and we are talking to 200 people. a spokesperson for the republican national committee, and editor and publisher for the progressive reading site. let me start out with you, liz. when you are grading joe biden my what comes up as the most important steps that he has taken that you think he is moving the needle, and what has not he done? liz: i think the most important things that we are grading him on and the things that are most important to the electric are one, how is he doing to covid response, and number two, how is he doing at not being donald trump or at the end of the day,
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a lot of people voted for him because he was not donald trump her on the first point, he is doing well. we've a president now who we do not have to think about all the time, that is a major contrast. when you look at covid response, it seems we are doing well. the u.s. is doing very well when you compare to the rest of the world when it comes to vaccination rates, our case numbers are not great, but i think those will come down. the one caveat that i would offer is that joe biden has a habit of lowso he is kind of alg himself to be graded on a particularly favorable curve and we will see how long that works out. my personal view is that the electorates may start tiring of that or may start factoring into their assessments, but when i ask friends and family, they keep telling me as long as he continues to not be donald trump, he can basically do what
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he wants. >> i would love to get your take on it, but if donald trump had won the election, would we have had kind of final four competing and the winners get the covid vaccines, but i would be interested to know what you think about the biden picture. what you think he is winning and where you think he is losing? >> there is a lot i agree with liz about. the two main things out of the gates are just returning some semblance of normalcy and perhaps, just stability. kind of affective stability to the white house, and just in the way in the united states, the president sees sort of casts -- sets the tone, over the country. if you have someone like donald trump president, that is a very
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destabilizing wild kind of thing. people were ready to be done with that. even a number of trump supporters were kind of ready to be done with that. other overwhelming thing is covid. i think that, i would disagree a little bit with liz, when he ma the projection of 100 million shots in the first 100 da, a lot of people did not think that would be possible or is it was a stretch. he has doubled that, so that is going well for him and he got through the covid relief package, which not only did a lot on the immediate covid front, it also addressed a lot of things that people from his party were interested in. interested in and found very important. the main thing that he is succeeding with so far, which was perhaps not easy to right ta
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lot of the most forward leaning elements, youngest elements of his parties -- party. matching a lot of things that they have wanted, putting those on the table. he has gotten some of those passed already in the covid relief bill, some of it is coming up with the jobs and infrastructure plan. he has managed to do that, and basically stay on about as on the right side of public opinion in the country at large as is possible in the polarized error that we live in. kind of take that for granted now, and i think that one from t perspective, where a lot of these things were popular. how he is able to do it. he has done some of those things, he has pushed pretty hard on some of those things and some he has hung back from, and there is something very odd and
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improbable about this late life act of joe biden. this is not, at almost any point in joe biden's career which goes back 50 years in american politics, this is not something that someone would have ever predicted. that he is this -- at least trying to be kind of an fdr, lbj -type presidential figure, and in many ways, in the initial months, as having some luck. >> i find it fascinating depiction that joe biden, whom we have all known, everyone in washington has known joe biden. they have known him for decades and he was a guy who ran for president any number of times, did not quite make it. basically was vice president of the united states and told by the president obama essentially to take a pass while hillary clinton tried to run.
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this is someone coming in who sort of mama many people perceived to win at the margins, and as josh said, to now look at him trying to do something on the scale of it the new deal or the great society, i am interested in how you see it. do conservatives look at joe biden as potentially that consequential? liz: i don't know. i think that is an open question. i think there are a lot of conservatives, and i would point out that i call myself a libertarian, so i am not quite on the same page as them with this. but a lot of conservatives have been slightly surprised how progressive biden has been. what they expected to be was that he would be ideologically moderate but this positionally more out there, but they are seeing the reverse. for those of us who have had to
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pay more attention to biden from when he was the vice presidential nominee in 2008, so i was going through information about him, i am not terribly surprised by this, nor am i terribly surprised by where he ended up in the trajectory of his career. yes, he is very, very old, but he achieved success at this point. i think compared to the majority of electorates, i am an outlier. we will wait and see where conservatives come down on him. at the moment, the thing that is interesting to me is on some things, he appears to be more left-leaning than president obama was, but he just does not really enrage conservatives to nearly the degree of president obama did, and i am sure that josh has theories about why that might be, but i think that is interesting, because he may be in a position to get away with little bit more than what people expected. josh: i would say on almost every front, not just one with
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obama. one would be hired -- one would be hard-pressed to find any major facet of process -- politics in which joe biden is to the left of president obama basically at any time in his presidency. steve: it is remarkable, it is a remarkable comment that josh just shared. even along foreign policy lines, you think about economic policy, you think about climate, and obama was there on climates. but in that area of looking at where they are on this scale, biden does seem to come out. liz: i think that is generally correct. one thing that is a little bit different, i think that biden from his years of experience in washington, d.c., he has not succeeded in getting bipartisan votes on things yet. he did promise to put a republican in his cabinet, then did not do it.
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one thing that is different between him and obama, that actually does make him look a little bit more moderate is while the policy he is pushing is much more left-leaning, i think in general, he has proved a lot more willing to conduct a basic outreach and do some of the healing to republicans, so that started during the campaign with a lot of outreach to suburban republican women who did not want to vote for trump. but i also think, when you look at his career and his record of deal cutting, i can kind of see how he ends up with more success. i think where obama had this sort of ethos about him being a little bit superior coming off to people of being a little egotistical, biden does not have that i think that is something that is important to take note of. this -- he looks a
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little more middle-of-the-road than what obama was. steve: i am trying to think in the chamber when the president is speaking to the joint session of congress, talking about the various boxes he's checked off, dealing with getting leaders together to look at that. the american recovery act. looking at infrastructure. but another dimension is foreign policy. he said basically, his two top national security officials to be tough on china, to have a very candid talk on china. i thought he was going to be much more focused on the domestic, less on the international. but he has been able to chew -- i should say walk and chew gum at the same time. i am interested in whether that chamber is going to find moments where he was tough on putin, tough on xi jinping, and get the whole chamber applauding his foreign policy. what do you think? josh: it is possible.
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for reasons we all know, russia is very complicated, multivalent issue in american politics now. obviously, you sort of have both parties moving in similar directions, looking at, looking at contests between the u.s. and china, so that is possible, there is a lot ways that china policy has become deeply connected with domestic policy in the united states because of covid, because of trade issues, because of lots of different things. on the point we were making about biden versus obama, one thing worth remembering is that in many ways, biden got the job precisely because he seemed too old to ever run again. it was as much as bush had with
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dick cheney, sort of disrupting that model of the vice president having future political interest of their own. the big thing about joe biden in my mind, joe biden has always been a consensus democrat. he will basically be where the democratic party is wherever it goes. in that sense, i agree with liz. it does not surprise me that this is where he has ended. i was telling people during the primaries that this is where i thought that, where i thought he would be. there are some obvious things with joe biden, and joe biden is old, he is an old, white, catholic man who has a very genial personality. even people who are trying to demonize him now have a hard part getting past that. barack obama was a young black man with a foreign sounding name
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rooted in arabic. very different people. it is not surprising to me at all that things, he is a different person, american politics reacts to does two different people differently. that is obvious. the other thing is, and this is one of those examples -- some time, a flawed person, a flawed person meets their moment. and the signature thing about joe biden to his political career has been politics of empathy. and at many points and our history, that is of only limited political currency. he managed to come residents -- president anna. -- eve managed to become president -- he managed to
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become president because he was exceeding a man who is the signature characteristic of a radical lack of empathy and a signature of predation. in many ways, there are things with joe biden, as a person, which gave him particular grounding, particular resonance to sort of connect with people that is unique to right now. steve: another bit of the drama in america these last few years has been police issues. the death of george floyd, we have efforts on the table in gun reform, and also other dimensions in that space, but also broadly. as a libertarian, what does that do for you? this i give you certain concern? liz: it is a mixed bag on
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policing. overall, i tend to align more with what most democrats are on that. i am someone who has always been very skeptical of government power in all of its forms. as a younger person, i certainly had negative interactions with the police. i do not think that is something that is confined to after american males. it is something that certainly makes me -- to african-american males, but it is something that makes me empathetic to something they find themselves in every day. i certainly think the direction that people seem to be going in on that front is a good one. i think biden in particular, the fact that he has rejected a the proposals to defund the police, and the stuff that is coming from the hard left in the democratic-socialist's of the world, i think it is smart. putting more money into policing so you can have better training
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to address some of these underlying issues. that is something that is fairly appealing to me as a libertarian even though i do not like spending money. i am quite sure whatever he puts forward to, i will want to projectile vomit across the room and i will probably be mouthing off on twitter about it. but that is also true, with regard to what he has done on immigration. i certainly prefer where he is on immigration to donald trump, but as someone who is pro-immigration, my problem with joe biden's i am one of those people who would fall into the disapprove of the job he is doing. but not because i think he is not deporting enough people, or i think he is not being tough or border security minded enough. i think he has kept too much of what trump did on the books, and i think it will cause him problems. he is going to be a mixed bag.
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certainly the amount of spending, i am not happy with. probably a lot of the regulation, i will not be happy with. we will see what actually happens on taxes, i am always a little incredulous on taxes. but there are some good things for sure. steve: senator marco rubio says he will not attend a joint session of congress. some issue about seating but senator joe manchin will be there who is a moderate member or a conservative wing of the democratic party, and he has been a guest before on "the bottom line." i sometimes wonder if joe manchin were not there, would joe biden need to create him. he does create a different kind of dynamic in the party, a live are very frustrated. i would love to get both of your snapshots on the role and presence and meaning of joe manchin in these times. josh: i would say, it is possible that joe biden would need to invent him because he
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does allow him to sort of create some leverage back and forth with these different wings of the party that so far, he has done a pretty good job holding together with him. the real people who would need to invent him are probably the seven or eight democrats who, in a lot of these cases, have similar qualms on issues of substance and in me cases, on these meta-issues of filibuster, bipartisanship, collegiality, all this kind of stuff. it is clear. you have kyrsten sinema who to my mind, is often just up there for the optics. the kind of position herself and what she finds to be her sweet spot in arizona, kind of a blue trending purple states. you clearly have whether it has two b minimum wage or a of different issues, you clearly have got seven or eight
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other democrats who are kind of happy to not be the one taking the incoming on twitter, but still having him kind of run that. steve: joe manchin is anchored there. josh: and it is for him, as he says very openly sometimes, having the left wing of his party coming after him is good for him in west virginia. even though some of them don't realize it, no one is ever going to have a primary against him. he is the one who paradoxically it is good for whom may be a mark warner, it is not great for them. steve: let me get a quick snapshot on the role and meaning of senator joe manchin. liz: i think that generally, people tend to sort of step into this role if there is a void. a couple of years ago, we certainly would not have thought that senator mitt romney potentially being like the swing vote on anything in the senate.
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he would have been considered a mainstream conservative. but fast forward, and here we are. when you have a void, people do tend to step into it and fill it. joe manchin is a fascinating political character and i agree with a lot of what josh said. when you look at everything that surrounds minimum wage, there was this discussion about how this was all about the filibuster. and it was not. it was about senator cinema, mark kelly, all of these democrats who were absolutely not going to go for $15 minimum wage. but joe manchin was the one who stood out front on that. i do wonder if you are somebody like tester in montana, potentially being seen as being manchinide. i think the difference is that joe manchin, the lengthy political career that he has in west virginia, i didn't experiment once where i went through a cracker barrel in west
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virginia, and i asked every single table what people thought of joe manchin. i think because of the lengthy political career he has there and the name recognition he has, he has some capacity to get away with things whereas probably, tester does not actually. maybe in like eight years we find that he does, but he might not be there quite yet. steve: i have been in some of those same cracker barrel's in west virginia, and i have largely felt the same thing. this is been a great discussion. the president will be speaking to the nation, and we are a little bit more than three months in. what grade would you give joe biden? josh: a or a-. given the range of challenges, not just an policy terms, but also keeping his rather fractured party together with him, it is hard for me to think how he could have reisticall do much better tn he has at
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this point. steve: liz? liz: i am going to say incomplete and two rsons why >> i did not know that was an option. liz: i am a libertarian, i create my own rules. he has not done what he promised to do with refugee numbers. they are saying that they will do it in a month, but until they do, i cannot give him anything other than an incomplete. and the other thing, he still has a ton of investors ships -- ambassadorships that have yet to be filled. the u.s. does not have an ambassador to the european union. that is crazy. and i say that as someone who is british and just had to give away the european union. it is a huge trading block, it is a huge economic bloc and the fact that we do not have that position filled, i think that is a little bit of an oversight on this part, a pretty significant
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one. i know he has had his hands busy, but by goodness. but he is continuing to get an incomplete. steve: there we have it. a, a-, and an incomplete. we will be back with both of you i am sure to take the measure on the biden administration later on in its tenure. communication strategist, liz mair, and josh marshall. steve: so what is the bottom line. maybe the most important change we have noticed is not the trillions of dollars pouring into the economy to end the pandemic or fix america's infrastructure, or the great competition between washington and beijing on the world stage. maybe it has nothing to do with money and power for now. i think it is a temperature. not the temperature of global warming, but the political temperature in america where every new policy initiative would start a new round of culture wars, or where every american looked at their neighbors and suspicion wondering if they were quietly
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destroying -- it is in just a feeling, but it is kind of a good feeling. to better than constant rage as president trump once said he was trying to provoke. for now, a decrease of toxicity, it is a good first start, and that is the bottom line. ♪
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- hey i'm valerie ne. comi up on reel south . - [valerie] in the wake of the vietnawar, etnameseefugees wereelo the tes gulf cst. languagend cultul rriersept thempart om their new neibors d disput over fiing hadire csequens. - we we tryingo stop a violen before happed. - [verie] "sdrift" on re south - [narrator] major funding for reel south was provided by: etv endowment, the national endowment for the arts, center for asian-american media, and by south arts. additional funding for "seadrift" was provided by the corporation for public broadcasting, a private corporation funded by the american people,

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