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tv   The 11th Hour With Brian Williams  MSNBC  February 11, 2021 8:00pm-9:00pm PST

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bad advice around him. michael j. moore, thank you very much for joining us tonight. i'm sure we're going to be hearing from you again on this case. we really appreciate it. >> i'm always glad to be with you, thank you. >> thank you. that is tonight's "last word." "the 11th hour" with brian williams starts now. well, good evening once again. day 23 of the biden administration. house impeachment managers wrapped up their case against donald trump ahead of schedule today. and in just over 12 hours the trump defense lawyers will begin their defense. today the democratic managers drew a straight line from trump's incendiary rhetoric to the rioters' actions. and they warned the senators who make up the jury that failure to punish the former president would leave the door wide open for future political violence. >> the insurrectionists acted at
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donald trump's direction. they said so. they were invited here. they were invited by the president of the united states. >> we were invited by the president of the united states! >> the siege of the michigan statehouse was effectively a state level dress rehearsal for the siege of the u.s. capitol that trump incited on january 6th. trump knew exactly what he was doing in inciting the january 6th mob. >> but it doesn't take a prosecutor to understand that president trump was not showing remorse. he was showing defiance. you know, i'm not afraid of donald trump running again in four years. i'm afraid he's going to run again and lose because he can do this again. >> to hear his lawyers tell it, he was just some guy at a rally expressing unpopular opinions.
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president trump wasn't just some guy with political opinions who showed up at a rally on january 6th and delivered controversial remarks. he was the president of the united states, and he had spent months -- months using the unique power of that office of his bully pulpit to spread that big lie. he struck a match, and he aimed it straight at this building. >> the world is watching us wondering whether our constitutional republic is going to respond the way it should. is there any political leader in this room who believes if he's ever allowed by the senate to get back to the oval office donald trump would stop inciting violence to get his way? so if he gets back into office and it happens again we'll have no one to blame but ourselves.
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>> politico and "the washington post" both reporting tonight trump likely knew exactly how much danger his own vice president was in on that day. both outlets reporting republican senator tommy tupperville of alabama spoke with trump on that day and told him directly on the line that mike pence had just been evacuated from the chamber. "the washington post" points out the trump tweet attacking pence for, quote, lacking courage to overturn the results of the 2020 election had been sent 11 minutes after pence was seen being hustled off the senate floor. as impeachment managers were wrapping up their case today, new federal court filings reveal the plot by the militia group, the oath keepers, to attack the capitol. the feds say it included a plan, to quote, ferry heavy weapons in a boat across the potomac river into washington. prosecutors added that oath keepers member jessica watkins who was at the capitol on 6 january wrote in a text message
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to an associate back in november, quote, if trump asks me to come, i will. as we mentioned trump's defense lawyers bruce castor and davis shoen start their defense tomorrow. earlier this evening he gave us what that might take. >> maybe three hours or so. >> when do you think this could all be over? >> you know they were shooting for tuesday night but i think now it's moving much more quickly, so i think that -- i would think it could be over saturday. >> both defense attorneys were widely criticized as you saw for their performance on tuesday, and their client was reported to be unhappy. tonight the two lawyers met with three members of the jury. republican senators cruz, graham and lee, to talk about strategy for tomorrow's presentation. their client hasn't been seen
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much since he left office though cameras did catch him on the golf course in florida today. tonight "the new york times" has new reporting on trump's covid infection back in october. says he was much sicker than the white house doctor originally let on. quote, he was found to have lung infiltrates which occur when the lungs are inflamed and contain substances such as fluid or bacteria. their presence especially when a patient is exhibiting other symptoms can be a sign of an acute case of the disease. "the times" adds trump's oxygen levels had plunged, and officials were indeed worried he would need to be put on a ventilator. we asked dr. vin gupta about this new development. >> things sounded pretty dire but yet he had access to the best therapies. and let me point out he had access to therapies people to this day rarely have access to.
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we're not utilizing these lifesaving therapies because it's hard to access them. people don't know how to access them so people are unfortunately dying that don't have to. a lot of the former president's supporters listen and hang onto every word of his. and after he had this experience sounds like a very serious experience with covid-19, he continued to minimize the virus and its impact. imagine how many people could have been saved if he decided to do something different with his messaging. >> all of that somehow brings us to our lead off guests on this thursday night. carol leonnig, pulitzer prizewinning investigative reporter for "the washington post." jonathan lemire, white house reporter for the associated press. and andrew weissman, former elite prosecutor during the russia investigation working under special counsel robert mueller. these days distinguished fellow at the nyu school of law. and indeed, counselor, i'd like to begin with you as today was
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squarely in your bailiwick. what was the most effective case you heard today against the former president? >> i think there were two points that were very, very well-done. one was to use the incidence in charlottesville and michigan as a precursor to what was going on. and it showed the president's knowledge of the propensity for violence and the risk of violence that led up to january 6th. and then i thought the way they dealt with the president's reaction when he knew what was going on january 6th because that is just so telling as to what his intent was. because if you think what would an innocent president have done who suddenly was shocked by what was going on in congress they would have of course immediately called in the national guard. they would have gone to twitter. they would have spoken publicly
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to quell the violence. and the fact he didn't do that and all the questions that jamie raskin asked all went to that issue, which is if he was so innocent and this was something he didn't intend then where was he? and his absence on january 6th really spoke volumes. so i thought that was pretty devastating today. >> carol leonnig, as you know there are digital video screens throughout the white house complex that show the exact locations in realtime of the top secret service protectees. donald trump had every reason to know where mike pence was, where he wasn't. certainly the people around the president knew his exact location. the men and women around the vice president often have the machinery of government with him in case of a national disaster. your colleagues at "the post" have reported the degree to which trump might have known the
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jeopardy pence was in. how does that match up with the case laid out today by the democrats? it is a damning line of evidence. >> that's right, brian. and i think there's no question that at the minimum the president knew that pence was in the line of sight of a lot of dangerous people. i mean, keep in mind that the chief of police knew that his barricades had been breached at 1:00 p.m. and was calling for an emergency. keep in mind that pence was hustled off the senate floor one minute after the capitol realized and sent out an all alert radio alarm that the building had been breached. he was hustled off the floor. keep in mind that president trump was on the phone with tommy tuberville and he said to him, mr. president, they just took pence off the floor and they're going to roll me out of here soon, i've got to go. so at the minimum he knew what
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was happening. people were scammering inside that building, and he knew that pence was in their sights. i think there's another element that's important to remember here also well-written and reported by my colleagues. and that is that when donald trump is telling a angry mob, which turns out many of them were armed with weapons of war -- when he is telling this angry group that he hopes pence will do the right thing and they should go to the capitol and make sure, he knows because vice president pence has told him that he's not going to stop the count of the electoral votes, that he does not believe the law allows him to do that. so the president is not being honest with his unruly mob. and he sends them off on a mission in which they then learn, oh, my goodness, the traitor has turned his back on the president.
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we've got to do something. and they indeed enter that building chanting, traitor and we've got to hang this guy. >> indeed they did. jonathan lemire, from your perch did you see evidence today of a slightly more political argument on behalf of the democratic managers, and have you seen evidence perhaps in slow motion shifting? if you're not going to get 17 to walk to the other side of the senate chamber, well then you shift your focus to all of us, the television audience watching at home. >> there's no question, brian. it felt today in particular the democrats were aimed at the voting public. i think there is no real optimism that 17 republican senators will vote to convict donald trump. and therefore the focus and we've heard this from some of it managers today is 2024, the idea of donald trump potentially
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running again. if he were to be convicted, of course, there's a sense another vote would be taken to bar him from ever holding national office again, from ever holding federal office again. even if that can't happen, there's some hope here to leave him so damaged, so tainted by these proceedings it would be -- it would be just inconceivable democrats hope for republicans to nominate him again. whether not that happens remains to be seen. the former president's approval rating in the republican party still remains pretty high though it slipped some. and i will say my colleagues and i have been reporting tonight the sense from trump camp that they know that tuesday and wednesday with the searing videos including the surveillance footage from inside the capitol, which was so tough for everyone to watch, that was indeed damaging to the former president. they recognize a number of senators republicans included were really shaken by that. and even if there is a sense he still will be acquitted and they are confident of that, that he has definitely taken a hit here. they felt like perhaps though
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momentum slowed a bit today, they know this has obviously not been a good week for donald trump. they have defense tomorrow expected to be brief they worry about damage going forward. >> andrew, where do you come down on witnesses? it's still not too late to call them, but what kinds of shenanigans can graham at all get into on the republican side if the democrats go that route? >> so i don't think for the democrats they're thinking if i call witnesses i'm going to get to 67. i think their issue of calling witnesses is really going to be a political judgment. i've always thought that they should have actually subpoenaed former president trump because the questions that jamie raskin asked at the end of the presentation were really good. these were the questions that he wanted the defense to answer,
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and it was sort of where were you on january 6th, you know, if you didn't intend this? why were you not calling in the national guard? why did you tweet, you know, disparagingly about your own vice president after you knew that he had to leave congress because of these people rioting? they were all really good questions. and one way to just really put the defense in a tough position is to put donald trump, you know, in the dock so to speak to have to answer questions like that as well as to answer the direct question do you still contend that president biden did not win the election? you know, that's something that i think most republicans really don't want to have to take a vote on that. so i think it would be useful, but i don't think it would change the result. >> carol, to take andrew's point donald trump is in the dock
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though not the dock of old english law or early u.s. law that we think of. the dock of public opinion. and i guess if you can't get 17 does the argument now shift to what's left of this former president's legacy? >> absolutely. i mean those images sort of seared in peoples minds of, you know, the law and order president bringing this group to the icon of our democracy, the peoples house where the law and order president urged them to essentially engage in, you know, a fight. what did rudy giuliani call it? a trial by combat? the words and encouragement led to those videos where you see a police officer crying out for his life. you see an officer on the ground being -- his body camera his
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only weapon, and his body camera is capturing him being pummelled by hockey stick. you see a vice president being hustled out a back door after the president has tweeted something pretty disparaging about him and rushing to an undisclosed secure location further down in the building where he, his daughter, his wife and his staff hope they'll be safe there. but they're actually -- they don't leave the building. it's hard to imagine a law and order president maintains that aura, that claim that he made when he was campaigning for office and when he was campaigning for the second term. >> jonathan lemire, i want to play for you a bit of the current president from today when asked how closely he's following these proceedings. >> i've been watching a lot of the hearing live because i was
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going straight through tonight a little after 9:00, but i watched this morning. i think the senate has a very important job to complete, and i think my guess is some minds may have been changed, but i don't know. >> so jonathan, that's a guy being president of the united states. have you any reason to take him -- to not take him at his word he's doing the job and this is going to come out however it comes out? >> certainly this trial has captivated the nation, but at least publicly the white house is studiously not watching. and i was in the oval office today with president biden as part of the press pool when he said that. and he has been steadfastly suggesting he wasn't going to watch it. he said that again today, acknowledged he saw some of the news clips and voiced an opinion on the trial, which he's really tried not to do same with the white house press secretary jen
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psaki who as my colleagues and i have reported today there is indeed some awareness of what's going on. there's intelligence across the west wing. aides are keeping an eye on it. biden has been briefed, and there is preliminary work for the president who is not going to be talking about it much during the trial but to weigh in afterwards knowing what the verdict whatever it might be is only going to deepen the divides in this nation particularly if trump is acquitted, claims of vindication, exoneration whatever it might be, that president biden is going to step into the breach there and lower the temperature across the nation. he's really focusing beyond that in the business of government and we seen him today with a visit to nih and discuss the vaccines, to announce there should be 300 million americans could be indeed vaccinated by the end of the summer thatch that's what he's trying to telegraph to americans his number one priority, the pandemic the covid relief and certainly a ramped up vaccination distribution program.
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>> much obliged to jonathan lemire and carol leonnig and joining us tonight. we're going to hold mr. weissman over for a couple legal questions. he has kindly agreed to stay a bit longer. coming up for us, more on trump's defense and potential legal liability even after this trial is over. all of it as our special coverage of the second impeachment trial of one donald trump continues on a thursday night. s on a thursday night. i have the power to lower my blood sugar and a1c. because i can still make my own insulin. and trulicity activates my body to release it like it's supposed to. trulicity is for type 2 diabetes. it's not insulin. and i only need to take it once a week. plus, it lowers the risk of cardiovascular events. trulicity isn't for people with type 1 diabetes or diabetic ketoacidosis. don't take trulicity if you're allergic to it, you or your family have medullary thyroid cancer, or have multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome type 2. stop trulicity and call your doctor right away if you have an allergic reaction, a lump or swelling in your neck,
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the defense argued in their briefs, and they argued again here on tuesday that the insurrectionists were acting on their own, that they were not incited by president trump or acting at his direction. but that's not just what the case. it's not actually what the insurrectionists actually said. they said they came here because the president instructed them to
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do so. >> the house impeachment managers took great pains today to dismantle trump's potential defense. his attorneys are expected to wrap up their case tomorrow. and we can expect to hear this argument repeated. >> i happen to think if you analyze that speech, first of all in no circumstances is incitement. it's a powerful speech. but when he uses the word fight it's clear he's talking about legislators fighting for our rights. >> as we mentioned remaining with us is our legal analyst veteran federal prosecutor andrew weissman. i'm going to ask a cynical question, but i have never seen a more cynical exercise. trump's defense has yet to argue that he's innocent. we likely won't hear that line tomorrow. they're apparently going to use 3 hours of 16 hours allotted to them. it looks likely they're going to
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prevail here. why take 3 hours? >> i think what they are going to try to do is give some fig leaves that will allow senators who are not going to vote to convict an excuse. so one obviously is a legal hook to say i find it is unconstitutional to try a former president. that's already been rejected, but that's one basis. the other will be that the former president used the word once i want you to go peacefully to the capitol. so that gives us another hook. a third will be that there's no direct evidence, meaning that the president didn't out of his own mouth say i want you to find and kill the vice president, i want you to enter and attack the capitol. but of course, you know, that
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kind of direct evidence you rarely have even in a criminal trial where you get ready convictions. most defendants are smarter saying something like that, and certainly former president trump is smarter than that as well. so i think that's the strategy i think is to come up with enough fig leaves, and it doesn't have to be very good because this is one where it's not like a normal criminal trial because let's just put it this way, there was no jury selection here. you know, the jurors all have strong positions, and i really think this case is about the enablers in the senate who are really the ones who are on trial here. and the question is whether they're going to uphold their oath of office and use those fig leaves to pretend they're not actually violating their oath of office. >> yeah, i hope this is not a
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normal jury because three of the jurors tonight met with the defense counsel. and during the day upwards of 11 to 15 of the republican jurors were simply missing from the chamber for long stretches of time. i'm glad you mentioned your second point. it is also on the mind of mr. hannity over on fox news tonight. we'll take a listen, discuss on the other side. >> he told his supporters to fight-like hell, and in the same speech it turns out he says to be peaceful and patriotic and let your voice be heard. the president's speech i guess doesn't qualify as incitement, does it? >> so, andrew, no one need tell you the symbiotic relationship between trump and team fox. what comes out on hannity has a funny way of coming out of the former president the next day or in this case his lawyers. how do you counter that because there is that one use of the word in there?
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>> first, brian, i'm very aware of that symbiotic relationship from my work in the special counsel investigation where we saw, you know, lots of examples of that. so i have to say i think that if i were the democratic house managers i would really latch onto the use of the word "peaceful" because that is such a telling example of what this president did. he would very often say something like that. think about the first impeachment where you'd say essentially there's no quid pro quo here. i'm just telling you if you want your $400 million this is what you need to do. that is a quid pro quo, and in fact all these people around the president understood it to be a quid pro quo. so the president to me that use of the word is because he knows where the line is. so he knows that he does not want to be prosecuted. he needs to, you know, throw out
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some words and say, of course, i don't want you to do anything that's harmful. but the idea that it was unanticipated for the president that this was going to happen is completely belied by the fact that when the riots happened, he did not take the actions that you would expect for someone who was actually shocked by what was going on. why wasn't he immediately tweeting and going out saying don't do this? so i actually think that that use of the word "peaceful" shows the president's state of mind, and he knows where the line is and that he crossed it. >> well, we officially offer that to our viewers as a preview of something we're going to see and hear tomorrow. andrew weissman, thank you for having us into your beautiful home. thank you for staying up with us after the day we all witnessed. greatly appreciate it. a break for us, and coming up no matter what the senate decides, the public could issue
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we humbly, humbly ask you to convict president trump for the crime for which he is overwhelmingly guilty of. if we let it go unanswered who's to say it won't happen again?
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>> superb reviews for these democratic house managers. remember they all have day jobs. today's closing argument from house manager joe neguse, democrat of colorado. with a conviction unlikely in the u.s. senate "the new york times" reports democrats are aiming their arguments now as we were talking about at the top of the broadcast right at the american people. peter baker writes it this way. "the managers are using their moment in the national spotlight to make the searing images of havoc the inexpungeable legacy of the trump presidency. rather than let the outrage subside the managers are seeking to ensure that mr. trump is held accountable even if he is acquitted." . well, let's talk about that and back with us tonight is one of our favorite guest duos. baratunde thurston, author, activist, comedia. these days host of the podcast how to citizen. and back with us tonight bill
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kristol, author, writer, thinker, editor at large over at the bulwark. gentlemen, good evening to you both. bill, just to complete the peter baker-susan glasser access susan writes this today. "this is the third presidential impeachment trial of my lifetime." this is susan glasser writing in "the new yorker." i've walked close to all three. never have i seen anything as riveting as the dramatization as the capitol violence and trump's role in it that the house managers put on this week. so, bill, it strikes me. i saw you did some hopeful maybe wistful nose counting on twitter today how the republicans could come out to 17. it strikes me this would be a vote to acquit to say pay no worship to the garish video of the insurrection. this would be a vote to acquit that would also mean we're handing our party to donald
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trump for four more years. am i wrong? >> yeah, you're right, brian. as a wise man you really are right. they did an excellent job recapturing the drama, terrible drama of the tragedy that day. and they also did a good job the hosmanagers explaining it was two months donald trump tried to overturn this election. he tried to overturn it seek krtly and publicly, and tried to call the georgia secretary of state and have his vice president reverse the election returns, et cetera, et cetera. that's what led to the rally. that's why the people were there on the 6th. he didn't just give a speech to the crowd, the crowd got out of hand and the speech was prudent to reckless. this was the culmination of something trump had been working on for two months. and then as andrew weissman said to you the two hours or so, two hours, four hours in the afternoon when trump does nothing to call the crowd off, that's so revealing of his
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intention. he doesn't automatically say what you would say if you were an innocent person, if you foolishly looked at people and said, stop, you shouldn't do that. he didn't do that. the three hours, two hours in the afternoon when trump does nothing i think the house managers have done an excellent job of presenting that whole case. they could always acquit. of course they probably will, but i was struck that mitch mcconnell's close associates scott jennings on tv earlier were talking about how if was a secret vote it would be 90-10. it was his closest political advisers saying this. what is he implying? he implying mitch mcconnell isn't going to vote in public as he believes to be true in private, having taken aen oath he'll judge impartially? doesn't he bring a few more senators with him, maybe not the full 17, but i think it's a little more in doubt than people are thinking.
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>> all right. at worst it's an interesting parlor game, i'll give you that. baratunde, i have a prediction about tomorrow. tomorrow i am guessing we're going to see video of black people. tomorrow i'm guessing we're going to see video of a police precinct in minneapolis in flames. and i am guessing this is going to be part of an olympic level bout of what aboutism in the well of the senate. do you agree? >> brian, first thanks for having me back. bill, good to see you. nice to be here on the "b" team. i brought a new jacket on this new night and i'm glad to be here with you. i am concerned about predicting the exact moves of incompetent, unfocused team. i want to echo the kudos to the house managers for excellence in
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story telling and putting this in the record. this should be easy. as jamie raskin said, this should be common sense, but some republican senators fear the president more than they love america. and maybe because they're conflicted. maybe because they were assisting this effort, too. maybe because so many of them were unworthy to represent us because they were also stoking violence and spreading lies and trying to undermine the election that this was all about. so what happens tomorrow we will see, but i am so proud of what has happened through this day, and i hope we follow through. as for the gop, it's on them now. it's on them now. and will they fall the way the capitol police did? will they lose the line? we all depend on them trying to do the right thing on this. >> i'm going to sneak a break in. we're going to talk about the gop among other topics. when we come back both of these gentlemen are going to stay with us. so far from the "b" team, this is "a" team all the way. coming up, joe biden, the
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within three weeks around the clock work with so many people, people standing behind me and in front of me, we've now purchased enough vaccine supply to vaccinate all americans. >> day three of his predecessor's second impeachment trial. you don't see that often. and president biden continues to go about the job of being president. however unaccustomed we are to having someone in that job full time. still with us tonight are our friends baratunde thurston and bill kristol. this is "the new york times" combination of carny and haberman. quote, the trial for at least a week brought the worst consequences of mr. trump's language back into the public eye in a way and served as a reminder of the change many americans sought during the presidential election in
quote
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november. baratunde, i would argue for a lot of people anxiety levels have come down. they've been heightened somewhat in relitigating and reliving the horror of 1/6, which actually looks worse the farther away we get from it. we imerse ourselves back in those pictures and realize how close we came. but to take a cue from the title of your podcast, it appears joe biden is showing how to president. >> that's good, brian. you keep surprising me, man. and i should not be surprised by you anymore, but you bring it. thank you. he is doing the job we sent him there to do. no one has to coach joe biden on not inciting insurrection. no one has to coach joe biden on taking a pandemic that comes once every 100 years seriously. he's trying to get money in our pockets and vaccines in our arms. that's what a president should
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do. the bar is so low for the former president who's on trial, where the one actually doing the job is living up to the oath, living up to the flag, living up to us. i'm very proud. i'm very excited. >> and bill kristol always the optimist, tell us what you know about these talks we've been reading about this week among republicans, among conservatives, looking perhaps to start a new brand, a new organization, perhaps a new full-on political party. >> first i'm kind of speechless by baratunde's fantastic praise of you, brian. that was really terrific. i guess the check's in the mail, right. i think when baratunde said we were the "b" team, weren't you thinking of our names? >> i got that. >> i don't think you were saying we were the "b" team, right? >> no, the best time. >> you've got your baratunde,
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your bill, your brian. >>, yeah, it's the "a" team. i was on a call with people friday, a lot of interesting talk could there be a new party, could you fight within the republican party? a lot of interesting discussion. i was probably the one who said my little contribution was to say you know what, let's try to help joe biden be a good president as much as we can for now. we'll cross and jump off whatever bridges we have to years from now, what we won't know for a couple of years whether the republican party is irredeemably trumpest. we can help joe biden be more successful as we see it than a less successful president. win more support, work well, we should make that case. actually i'm echoing what baratunde was saying earlier. it's important for the country joe biden be a reasonably successful president we get the virus under control and get the
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economy going again. for people like me i think that's my top priority. as well as seeing a true accounting of what donald trump did. that's very important for the country not just for the republican party. >> baratunde, i'm curious personally how you process the cynicism that we've seen on display this week, these -- these very emotional appeals by the house democrats to your point perfectly curated. member of congress after member of congress, each of them brings a specific skill. they're all terrific speakers. but there's a cynicism to this because they look out on a senate chamber where they pretty much know this guy's going to get acquitted. so how do you process that? how do you deal with that? >> sometimes with great
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difficulty, brian. i'm not just automatically optimistic. i look at history and what people have been through before. i remember, look, tomorrow this amazing's movie is coming out about [ party chairman fred hampton of illinois. he said where there's people, there's power. we are the people. we have the power. so when i'm feeling my lowest i try to remember it's always up to us at the end of the day. we can rewrite the rules. we can swap out who has the privilege of representing us, and we can try to be the nation that we have never quite been. to quote valery coria, that multiracial multiethnic dem ockraes that could be, that should be. over the long run i just believe in us. it's that simple. >> bill kristol, same question. >> that was awfully well said.
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i'll say this i don't know many of the house impeachment managers. i worked for the republicans over the years, some of the democrats and some of them are fairly new. it was moving as an american to see them i would say. they were very impressive people making heartfelt cases, well-argued cases. you felt proud -- i felt proud as they made those arguments. the republicans will refuse to do the right thing, but two years from now, 20 years from now, 15 years num now we'll lead those arguments this is a country in which the people tried to hold the president of the united states accountable for what he did, and that doesn't happen in every country. >> you gentlemen have both lifted me up tonight through your answers and your -- your eloquence. i appreciate it very much. baratunde thurston, bill kristol, this is always a pleasure. we'll continue to meet like this regularly. thank you both very with much. coming up for us, how
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an update tonight on the effort by the biden forces to get a handle on this vaccine rollout that they inherited. they're trying to get the upper hand on supply challenges, on people's eligibility, and vaccination sites. for those fortunate enough to have an appointment, transportation getting there is often a big issue. well, tonight nbc news correspondent gabe gutierrez shows us how american companies like uber and lyft are filling that transportation gap. >> reporter: after struggling to make a vaccine appointment online, harvey and gayle smith had another problem. how to get there. >> i think that it's very difficult. >> it's important because i'm a
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high risk. >> reporter: today uber gave them a free ride, one of 12,000 promised in jersey city alone, to make it easier for seniors and those who live in lower income communities who might not have easy internet access to have a shot. >> this takes a lot of stress out of it, and the anxiety of getting the vaccine because we're a vulnerable group. >> reporter: 45% of americans have no access to public transportation. one study estimates 6 million delay or miss medical care each year because they don't have a ride. >> the majority of people in jersey city don't have cars and that's even a higher percentage when you talk about seniors, and lower income communities. >> reporter: across the country, companies like uber, lyft, meals on wheels and other organizations are stepping in to bridge the accessibility gap. >> good morning. >> reporter: today in chicago, lyft driver crystal pinckney helped a woman who had been skeptical of the vaccine until her family insisted. >> they really care about her,
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and they don't want anything to happen to her with underlying health conditions. >> reporter: harvey and gayle smith also finally got their shot. >> takes a lot of pressure off my shoulders, and i can relax a little more. >> reporter: they'll be back for another ride in four weeks. gabe gutierrez, nbc news, jersey city, new jersey. >> that's how it's supposed to work. coming up for us, it was that rare moment today when words from the american revolution echoed through the senate chamber. and this time it was not part of an effort to overthrow the government.
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hey, i got you. guy fieri? let's do what thomas payne told us to do, use our common sense. the common sense we have as citizens. if we don't draw the line here, what's next? what makes you think the nightmare with donald trump and his violent making mobs is over? >> last thing before we go tonight. that's jamie raskin, the lead house impeachment manager. he is a liberal democrat from maryland, a law professor by training, educated at harvard and harvard law school. his son tommy, named after thomas payne was at harvard law school, second year student when he took his own life this winter after a long struggle with depression. the raskins buried their son the day before the insurrection.
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the congressman has been grieving his son during this whole process. and today while wrapping up his argument, he proved that he yields to no one in his mastery of the words of the -- [ inaudible ]. >> these are the times that try men and women's souls. the summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will shrink at this moment from the service of their cause and their country. but everyone who stands with us now will win the love and the favor and the affection of every man and every woman for all time. tierney like hell is not easily conquered, but we have this saving consolation. the more difficult the struggle, the more glorious in the end will be our victory. good luck in your deliberations. >> congressman jamie raskin to take us off the air this
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evening. and indeed, that is our broadcast for this thursday night, with our thanks for being here with us. on behalf of all my colleagues at the networks of nbc news, good night. i will tell you right now our first guest that we are going to have tonight is somebody who you are going to want to see. we've got an interview tonight with somebody who is in an absolutely unique status as a national news maker. tonight i will explain who she is, and you will want to see this interview coming up in our next segment. but it has been a remarkable news day today. president biden announced today that the u.s. government has found a way to purchase another 200 million doses of coronavirus vaccine. this is moderna and pfizer, the first two vaccines that have been approved here. they're both

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