tv Morning Joe MSNBC March 16, 2021 3:00am-6:00am PDT
is a lot of skepticism. there's a lot of worries about vaccines, just as there is in the states. it's part of an anti-vaxxer movement that really is global. >> remarkable. nbc's matt bradley, thanks so much for being here. really appreciate it. just to underscore that point, ask your local doctor. these vaccines, we know, have been shown to be safe and effective and are going to get us thankfully out of this pandemic. thank you so much for getting up way too early with us this tuesday morning. don't go anywhere. "morning joe" starts right now. and then i see the disinfectant, where it knocks it out in a minute, one minute. and is there a way we can do something like that by injection inside or almost a cleaning, because you see, it gets in the lungs and it does a tremendous number in the lungs. it would be interesting to check that. so that, you'll have to use medical doctors with, but it sound interesting to me. >> that moment, obviously, there's a lot of tape on that.
you can see how extraordinarily uncomfortable i was. frankly, i didn't know how to handle that episode. i still think about it every day. it's something dr. fauci and i talked about all the time, is how to correct the record. >> wow. i still think about it every day. dr. deborah birx, the former white house covid response coordinator under president trump in a new interview with abc news. good morning and welcome to "morning joe." it's tuesday, march 16th. >> so let's talk about that for one second. you know, willie, at the time, dr. birx was getting abused -- >> oh, yeah. >> and criticized and you know, there are some things she said and did that were concerning to me, but you know -- >> it was mostly what she didn't say. >> she was trying to stay in to have some influence on a guy who was erratic and crazed on this issue.
and people can say, well, she -- people are saying, she should just quit. and you're like, okay, how could it get worse if she just quit? well, dr. scott atlas could come in. the thing we learned with trump, it can always get worse. and all of these people were having abuse heaped on them like dr. birx to try to stay in the game to have some sort of influence, we see what happens when they give up. you then get a dr. scott atlas or a rick grinnell, who are at the bottom rung of the bureaucracy and would never be in any position for any other president. and do really, really bad things once they're given power. >> yeah, what happens is, you're right, that person leaves, former president trump would see someone on fox news or fox business channel and hire them to an evaluated position that that person shouldn't be in. scott atlas is a great case in
point. he saw him talking on tv. you can only imagine who a doctor, like dr. birx, who is a real doctor and should be there and understands this disease, sitting and listening to those comments from the podium. it's good to hear her actually talk about what that was like. you hear them again almost a year later and it shocks you all again, he was talking about injecting disinfectant or shooting powerful light into people's bodies in the hope this would miraculously go away. we have dr. fauci on the show in a little while. he's another case in that point, that he hung despite often what he was hearing from that podium because he thought he could do better for the country on the inside than by walking away. >> and it's so ridiculous, but if there wasn't such carnage, such death and destruction attached to this, it would be some comedy show. it was ridiculous the things the president would say from the podium. and it was probably painful for these people trying to hang in there like dr. birx, who by the way, didn't say anything ridiculous, it's what she didn't say.
she didn't stop him. but many would ask, what was she supposed to do, because she would lose her job, and like joe said, the next would come in and it would be a very bad fate for the country. along with joe, willie, and me, we have columnist and associate editor for "the washington post," david ignatius, member of "the new york times" editorial board, mara gay is with us this morning. and senior columnist for the daily beast, matt lewis joins us. great to have you all. our top story this morning, two men arrested and charged on sunday with assault on capitol police officer brian sicknick, who later died from injuries sustained in the january 6th attack on the capitol. julian cayter of pennsylvania and george tanios of west virginia are accused of working together to use bear spray on sicknick, but according to court documents, authorities are stopped short of charging them with killing him. the search warrant application
says there is video of cayter reaching into tanio's backpack and later holding a can of chemical spray. a body camera of one officer captured a video of one of the man holding a can in his right hand and aiming it in the officer's direction while moving his right arm from side to side. both men made court appearances yesterday and were ordered to remain in custody. joe, if you follow the fbi, they are slowly trying to arrest anyone and everyone who was involved in any violent away in the capitol riot. and they're still looking for people, but these two men, it appears, according to those who are, you know, charging them, had something to do with the death of a capitol police officer. >> well, we don't know that. that's david ignatius, one of the things they wanted to bring up with you is, there may not be a direct link there. we originally were told, i think
it was "the new york times" told us that he died from being hit by a fire extinguisher a couple of times. then the capitol police pulled back and haven't -- nobody's talked specifically about how he has died. there hasn't been a follow-up. there are questions surrounding that. was it this bear spray that somehow caused a condition. so we have that question. we had pentagon officials come before congress a couple of weeks ago, but not the pentagon officials that didn't send the national guard straight over. there are all of these questions that continue to hang around the worst attack on the united states capitol since the war of 1812. and yet, we still have no 9/11-type commission. we're not moving in the right direction. nancy pelosi is proposing something that republicans will
never agree to, that has a 7-4 split between democrats and republicans. isn't it time for the biden administration to reach back to some former republican leaders, like maybe tom ridge and mike mukasey and others and some former democratic leaders and just get a 9/11-style commission inside the executive branch? >> i think it would be good to have that commission. the record that the country needs to go forward has to be established in a way that people think is fair and impartial, but i'm impressed, joe, by the fact that this investigation continues to roll forward. it's true, we don't have the coroner's report, i don't believe, on the death of officer sicknick, so you can't charge him yet for murder when you're not sure exactly how to charge these two suspects for murder when you're not sure how he
died. but the investigation goes forward. there's no sign of a split within the fbi about carrying it out. there's less reaction to the investigation than i feared there might be around the country, fbi offices, state and local law enforcement are going out there, knocking on doors, putting together complicated conspiracy cases against these people. so, yes, it would be good to have that commission with a lot of distinguished men and women who would come with a final judgment. but for me right now, it's the inexorable pace of tracking down and charging and then eventually trying the people who were involved that day. and that having public support, and it does. so that's my takeaway, is actually, this is probably right now exactly what we need. >> well, and willie, the fbi just continues to do an extraordinary job searching out these people, trying to get help
from the public. finding them and bringing them to justice. >> there were a lot of people in that building. this is a methodical effort. it's been less than two months and they're using all the technology at their disposal to capture images, to use facial recognition, to matchup insignia they may have seen on their clothing to something they're wearing in other social media posts. they're doing the best they can. but mara gay, when you read the details of this charging document against the two men, who are not charged with the murder of officer sicknick, but charged with assault, and you realize they were calling for the bear spray. for people who don't know, bear spray is exactly what it sounds like. if you're out walking in the woods in montana, you carry bear spray so you can neutralize a 6-foot grizzly bear. so these people came prepared. but to hear some people in the media and some republican senators to downplay this wasn't an armed insurrection, it was a few bad apples and people
strolling through statutory hall, this charging document is another piece of evidence of what people came with. >> people came in tactical gear and with zip ties and bear spray. with anybody who has ever gone camping in the presence of any kind of bear knows, you don't use on another human being. that's to protect you instead of having a gun, a rifle. they also came and put a noose outside the capitol. so these were not people who came to have a conversation. and lest we forget that you had members of congress who were terrorized and terrified without any plan for their own safety or the safety of their staffs. not just police officers who were also there to serve the public and our democracy, but also those members of congress and journalists. so in all, it was a massive failure. and i can't say enough how important it is that as these perpetrators are brought to
justice in the criminal sense, that also we have a 9/11-style commission that is, wherever possible, to the extent possible, you know, that the public can actually understand and see. i think there's an important part of this process that needs to be public, to whatever extent that's possible. the fbi is engaged in a nationwide search. i mean wifb friends who live in cities across the country, new orleans, who are sending me pictures of billboards, right, in their cities that say, we're looking for these individuals. the fbi is hunting these people down as it should, to bring them to justice. but the american public needs to see that this is adjudicated before them, as well. we need to know what happened. we need to know who failed and who needs to be held accountable. and i think we haven't seen that yet. there's a transparency here that really is important. >> and what's really important, too, and i'm going to go back to the 9/11-style commission that
needs to be launched, we need to know, were there actually members that were giving tours the day before? were there members that were calling during the terrorist attack, i.d.'ing the location of nancy pelosi and other members of congress that the mob would be interested in abducting and possibly killing. they certainly were looking for mike pence to kill him. and yet, despite all of this, you have republicans who went ahead and voted and voted to not count millions and millions of votes. and you have others who were trying to downplay this mob. still trying to downplay this mob, mika, like ron johnson, who said he wasn't concerned, because they were law-abiding people. no, they were bashing police officers' heads, they were jamming police officers' heads in doors.
they were bear spraying a police officer who later died. >> he's dead. >> these are terrorists. i will say, if ron johnson saw these people -- he's a bigot, if you judge him by his words, he's a bigot -- he said, if these were black people, he would have been scared. as i said the day after, if they were black people, they would have all been shot in the face. if they were muslims, they would have been sniped from the top of the building. they were white people. so -- >> no one knew what to do? >> this bs was allowed to continue for too long. the national guard wasn't called in. police officers didn't move as quickly. some capitol cops were letting them move in and out freely, opening up the gates, letting them run through it. this is grotesque. and it is an insult. it is an insult to the police officers who died that day and who were hurt that day that a
united states senator is saying that these were peaceful law-abiding people who he wasn't worried about. would have been worried if they were black, but they weren't black, so, this didn't bother him. >> yeah, there are reporters and people -- staffers, people who work there who are still suffering from ptsd from this day. as you mentioned ron johnson, joe, the republican senator is defending his comments, if this is possible, that he made about black lives matter protesters and the deadly capitol riot. here's what he said late last week followed by his defense yesterday. >> i knew that even though those thousands of people that were marching the capitol were trying to pressure people like me to vote the way they wanted me to vote, i knew those were people that love this country, that truly respect law enforcement, would never do anything to break a law, and so i wasn't concerned. now, had the tables been turned,
joe, this could mean trouble. had the tables been turned and president trump won the election and those were tens of thousands of black lives matter and antifa protesters, i might have been a little concerned. >> there was nothing racial about my comments. nothing whatsoever. this isn't about race. this is about riots. and i was -- you know, i have been attacked and criticized because i pushed back on the narrative that, you know, there were thousands of armed insurrectionists. and that's just part of a -- a small part of the 74 million americans that voted for president trump that also need to be suspect of being potential domestic terrorists or also potentially armed insurrectionist. this is a false narrative. i wasn't surprised, but it's still pretty shocking that it would take what i consider completely innocuous comment and turn it into, you know, use the race card on me. >> an innocuous comment. >> good lord. >> an innocuous comment where he said, i'm going to get in trouble for saying this. >> yeah, so he knew.
>> he knew exactly what he was doing. >> he had an op-ed in today's "wall street journal" entitled, joe, "i won't be silenced by the left." no, keep talking, honestly! the left is good. >> let me tell you, ron, the left doesn't want you to be silenced, because the more you say bigoted things like the other day, the more you actually help the left. >> and the world sees who you are. >> and the more you hurt republicans. so, yes, ron, they don't want you to be silenced. and of course, you aren't silenced, because you actually wrote an op-ed in one of the largest newspapers on the planet, wasn't of the most important newspapers on the planet. we keep hearing this, willie. i will not be silenced, as people write op-eds in "the new york times" and "wall street journal" and go on national news networks and get more access to the american people than anybody else. it's just a stupid, stupid
argument. but again, ron johnson said he was going to get in trouble for saying this, but these people truly respect law enforcement, unlike black lives matters marchers and they would never break the law. what the hell -- how does he say that when several cops are dead and scores of cops were beaten, battered, and abused by donald trump supporters that day. they were going around, wanting to hand mike pence and chanting it. had a noose for mike pence. they were calling for nancy pelosi, wanted to get her. and there were republicans just as scared of this mop as democrats. so how does ron johnson saying that people's lives being endangered and police officers being killed is not as worrisome
to him as black people marching? >> it's astounding. we joke about ron johnson, because so many of his colleagues, not us, so many of his colleagues, current and former, tell us how limited he is, but this is clearly something different. but this is the game now, matt lewis. this is, go on to a friendly radio show, say something inflammatory, wait for opponents on the left to react to it, and write an op-ed in the "wall street journal" saying, i'm being silenced by the left. i would ask senator johnson to approach officer sicknick's family or approach the family of officer fanone was lying on the capitol steps who was being beaten and wondered what was going to happen to his four daughters when he was gone, when he was redesigned to his fate. i would ask him to go to those officers' families and ask if the rioters that day support law
enforcement. an outrageous statement by ron johnson. >> ron johnson is obviously an idiot. i'll say that myself. i think anyone who saw the video knows it was utterly document. there was a scene in one of those documentaries that show them rifling through ted cruz's papers, about to turn on him saying that, you know, he had sold them out. they were looking for mike pence, not that going after nancy pelosi would have been okay, but it's not just democrats that they were after, ron johnson, and i'm not sure that they could have recognized you as one of the quote/unquote good guys if they found you. but listen, i think that this is the best case study i've ever seen. ron johnson's comments were the best case study i've ever seen or the best evidence of systemic racism and subliminal racism. i honestly do not think that he was trolling us initially to try
to get attention when he went on that radio show. i honestly do not think that ron johnson believes that he is a racist. in he has mind, these protesters are our people. you know, they're good, patriotic white americans in his mind. i honestly think he believes that. he doesn't get it. and so i think he really proves the point that a lot of us, over the years, also didn't grasp. which is the fact that a lot of people, a lot of republicans, sadly, who maybe are just unconsciously racist. you know, they're harboring this bias, and out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks. i think that's what just happened. ron johnson just told us who he is. >> well, matt, you and i both republicans for the past quarter century, yeah, we were wrong about a large swath of people who were in our party and fooled
ours and kidded ourselves. but mara, ron johnson, what he said, that was not subliminal racism, that was overt. what i found most disturbing about what he said is that he knew it was racist. he knew what he was saying was racially charged. he said, this is going to get me in trouble. but everybody, i want you to know that i'm less concerned with a white mob that's going around screaming "hang mike pence" and is actually committing sedition against the united states of america than ron would be if there were black marchers going down pennsylvania avenue for black lives matters. i mean, that is not subliminal. that is overt racism and he wanted his listeners to know that he was racist.
>> right. we have donald trump to thank for this wonderfully disgusting and grotesque outpouring of open racism, the likes of which we really haven't seen in this country, you know, in a mainstream cultural sense, i would say, since the 1950s, if not the 1920s, before that. so we do have donald trump to thank for that. and trumpism. but i think he knew exactly what he was saying. and you know, it's funny, because i think -- it's not funny, it's actually really sad, but if you ask any black american of any age, they will tell you what it means to be a black american is sometimes just to be gaslit by the rest of the country. to be told that you aren't seeing what's in front of your face. what the rest of the country has seen. that it didn't happen. that despite the fact that your people have been oppressed for
generations, that you are the threat, right? so you can literally have a white mob attack the seat of democracy, bash the heads of police officers, and still you are the threat, because you're black. and so it is the blackness and the whiteness that is just the screaming elephant in the room in this case. and i think that we're really confronted now with the fact that a majority of the country, not just black americans, is now being gaslit, saying, how can this be? how can they be telling us that we didn't see what we saw before our faces? wherever in the course of american history of you have petty, lazy, small, small-minded politicians who don't want to show real leadership or build real coalitions or offer real solutions to the american people. wherever they are desperate for power, they turn to racism.
so this is really a sign, in my opinion, of the desperation of the republican party in this moment. this is really the easiest, lowest-hanging fruit. when all else fails, blame black people. and that's what this is about. >> well, it's going to be very interesting to see how the voters of wisconsin respond to this. i know -- i go all the way back to early december 2015, after the muslim registry, after donald trump's statements about muslims and talking about how that was what nazi germany must have been like in the early 1930s, talking about registries for people based on their faith. and bemoaned the fact that it would probably help donald trump in the polls. and it did. you had other people saying racist things.
the former -- now former hud chairman -- secretary, saying things that actually helped him, racist things that he said about muslims helping him. it would be very interesting to see in the state of wisconsin if somebody making just blatant racist statements, bragging about how he had the courage to make blatantly racist statements, bragging about how, this is going to hurt me, but i'm going to say it anyway. the people who brutalized police officers with american flags. people that shoved american police officers' heads in doorways. the people that spread feces throughout the united states capitol. people that desecrated that capitol and were guilty of sedition. they're good people who truly, quote, says ron, truly respect law enforcement, because they're white. now, the people ron would be scared of were black people
marching. i think that says it all. and now it's up to the people of wisconsin whether they want to reward a bigot who represents them. is that what wisconsin wants? >> and defends the people that attacks the capitol. >> and calls the people that hold down police officers and bash their brains in with american flag and bear sprays an officer who dies and leaves a family behind, calls them good americans, who truly respect law enforcement. so, yeah, i would be very curious to see how the people of wisconsin respond to that. still ahead on "morning joe," a new hurdle in the global fight against the coronavirus. a growing number of european countries are suspending use of the astrazeneca vaccine. we'll talk to dr. anthony fauci
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31 past the hour. live look at times square in new york city. >> it's bustling. >> not really bustling, but it is really early in the morning. sun's not even up. we'll move now to the story rocking new york politics right now involving allegations of sexual harassment against governor andrew cuomo. new polling shows half after new yorkers say cuomo should not immediately resign from his position. the latest siena college poll found that 50% said he should
not resign, while 35% said he should. 15%, undecided. the poll also found that 57% said they were satisfied with how the governor had addressed the allegations while 32% said they were not. we should note that the poll was conducted last week, largely before the surge in calls from democratic elected officials for his resignation. >> so willie, interesting numbers. those polls taken last week, it will be interesting to see the latest updated poll. but he had already -- he had already been charged with lying about nursing home deaths from his political opponents and the media. and there were already some of the allegations coming from women who had worked with him or who had run into him in social events like the wedding. so those -- the pictures and tv -- >> those numbers are higher, i think, than most of us would
expect, but it certainly reminds me right now of what's going on in virginia, where you have a lieutenant governor and governor who faced scandals of their own, not exactly like the cuomo scandal, but didn't listen to all the calls to resign and are still there and now -- >> are flourishing. >> in virginia, at least, you have people asking ralph northam to campaign for them in state legislative races. >> and there's no question that governor cuomo and his io aidese looking at the northam coming out talking about, just put your head down and powered through despite all the calls for his resignation and we're two years away from it and he has a high approval rating and getting good marks for how he's handling the job in virginia. those numbers we just put on the screen, that is why governor cuomo is hanging in.
if he looks at the numbers and sees only 35% of new yorkers want him to go, he's going to say, i'm not leaving if the majority of the people in my state want me to stay and 57% of the people are okay with the way i've been handling this, what about i, like ralph northam, what if i put my head down and power through. i think the question will be, is does he run for re-election again, maybe, as a carrot to say, i'm going to hang in, but won't run again. we'll see if that's how it plays out. the white house is being asked about this all the time now. white house press secretary jen psaki asked again about those allegations against governor cuomo. >> new developments seem to happen every day. we find them troubling. the president finds them troubling, hard to read. and every woman who steps forward needs to be treated with dignity and respect. the investigation needs to be both quick and thorough, consistent with how serious these allegations are. >> let's bring into the conversation "new york times"
national political reporter, shane goldmacher. his new reporting entitled, can biden stay on the sidelines of the andrew cuomo saga. shane, good morning. good to see you. what's the answer to that question? obviously, the white house is being asked every time there's a new allegation what the president thinks about it, has not said one way or another if he thinks whether cuomo should resign. how long can they hold that position? >> i think the answer is, they're going to try to hold that position, but what joe biden has is a unique role here, which is one of real possibly only two people who could bring this to a resolution. right now you have almost the entire democratic congressional democrat from new york. you have chuck schumer, kirsten gillibrand, all calling for andrew cuomo to step down. these are calls he's made clear he plans to resist. how do you bring to this an end or come up with some kind of resolution? there's the state legislature, which could potentially remove him and impeach him. you already have a majority, a
majority of the state assembly who have signed letters or announced that they would support asking him to be removed from office and for him to resign. and you have joe biden, who's been a friend to andrew cuomo and who could nudge him, step in, it has happened before. it's happened before in new york, with a new york governor and democratic president, with david patterson, say, you need to announce that you're not going to run again in 2022. so far, andrew cuomo, as you just said, he's not just staying in office despite these calls for resignation. he has not said that he's not going to run again for a potential fourth term next year. >> shane, david ignatius has a question for you. david? >> shane, i wanted to ask how the state of politics in new york state got so bitter. the relationship between the governor and mayor de blasio seem poisonous. the increasing polarization of the state. has this been developing for years and years and it just wasn't visible a few months ago?
what's going on? >> yeah, i mean, certainly, new york politics has always been rough and tumble. but look, i think a lot of what's happened with andrew cuomo speaks to who andrew cuomo he is and what kind of leader he is. i did a story over the weekend about his rise and the impieriousness of his rise because he's made so few friends along the way. especially with mayor de blasio, you've had him on the program, you know how he feels about andrew cuomo, because wherever a big initiative comes up, if de blasio has a way to nudge cuomo out of the way and take credit for it, he has. and that's been very successful for andrew cuomo, who has retained a great deal of support for the broader public, new york -- some resiliency so far during this scandal. but what he hasn't retained is the support of his fellow democrats. you know, this is really the
opposite of what happened with donald trump and the republican party. where the party leaders would not get ahead of the voters to say, look, it is time for this guy to step aside, even in 2016. what you have here is democratic leaders getting ahead of the democratic electorate. they're saying, it's time for andrew cuomo to go, not after the voters are saying that, but before the voters are saying that. >> and shane, i remember actually when andrew cuomo was first running and was first governor. we were commenting around the table about how how blunt he was, how rude he was to people, hoe members of the press. how thin skinned, i think is how we termed it back then. and i remember asking how a guy like that was going to survive in new york state, having as sharp as elbows as he had with absolutely everybody and not liking the press and not like talking to the press.
and here we are three terms later. he somehow kept everything together for over three terms. >> yeah, i mean, there's a parallel that folks have drawn with eliot spitzer, who came in also with sharp elbow, also angering his fellow democrats and he didn't last two years in the governorship. there's something uniquely skillful in the way andrew cuomo has wielded his power and the fear that he has created. he squashed his political enemies over the last decade, over and over and over again, and it has allowed him to continue to rule, you know, with a really unique political coalition in the state. he has the broad support of black voters, especially in new york city. and he's cut a more moderate portfolio, so out on the suburbs and long island, he needs to retain support of white voters. that has been a lethal combination in the democratic primary and a pretty powerful combination in the general election. and i think there's no surprise that the events that he has done, the few events he's done in the last two weeks have been
surrounded with black clergy leaders and one yesterday on long island. >> all right. thank you so much, shane. we greatly appreciate your reporting. mara, your thoughts on those numbers that remain again for new yorker stubbornly high. it does remind us that whether you're looking at virginia with ralph northam or justin fairfax, the lieutenant governor there, or the attorney general in virginia or donald trump, or bill clinton, you name it, chief executives, we hear time and again, they're going to be run out of office and more often than not, they cling to power. >> yeah, well, it tells us a couple of things. first of all, it's a sign of hope for andrew cuomo, who is a very talented politician, but who is running out of chess pieces, frankly. and i think his best hope of staying in office and certainly of running for a fourth term is
taking his case directly to new yorkers throughout the state. and that's clearly what he's hoping to do to pull off, just as governor northam has successfully. but i also, when i say that there's a lot of time, as you know, joe, it's a lifetime in american politics between now, say, and this time next year, when that campaign would really get underway. and so i think one thing to look for is whether, as we get farther away from the trump administration and the trauma that that administration caused to new yorkers throughout the state, whether that vacuum actually creates more space for new yorkers to take a harder look at governor cuomo. because i think a lot of cuomo's success, especially with black voters, but not only within the past year and a half of the pandemic, has really been defined by him being this, this -- the anti-trump, in some
ways. so whereas donald trump was making fun of people for wearing masks, governor cuomo was holding these press conferences, like holding court, you know, and there's a joke within new york politics, that says he should win an emmy for them. but truly, he was talking about the importance of science in this and this importance of protecting all new yorkers. so i think that profile is still really helping the governor in this moment. and it might be a while before the nursing home scandal or really kind of the lack of support among other democrats really percolates. one thing i would say that i would be very surprised to see this broad support for him stepping down among the new york delegation, not just in congress, but also in the state legislature. if these lawmakers didn't think that they could convince their own voters that that was the right thing. >> yeah. you know, big picture, mara, i
just wonder what you think, because he has apologized, he's had these lengthy apologetic statements. but there's something missing. and it obviously, you know, triggers the women even closely involved in some way, who have complained, who have stepped up, and the complaints speak to a pattern, they speak to a culture. and i just wonder, what is it more that he could say or do that would change that culture? because i'm thinking of, of course, you don't act that way, that sounds horrible in so many ways. and a lot of men have learned the hard way that's not how you act in the workplace. but what kind of culture has a young girl going to a powerful man's house or a young woman going to a powerful man's house to help him with his phone -- i mean, there are culture situations when it comes to the workplace and what is
appropriate and what isn't. and i think there are certain things that are not anymore, because they set up a bad scenario of power and people who are put in very, very awkward positions and it ends badly. what could he do or say that would change things? >> well, that's a great question, mika. i mean, one thing to consider is that this is, you know, the culture in albany did not give with andrew cuomo and it certainly won't end there. you know, just for folks outside of new york, albany is hundreds of miles away from new york city. and you know, what happens there in some cases, unfortunately, stays there. it's like vegas in this way. and so, anybody, including myself who's been a reporter in albany or who has spent any amount of time there knows that, you know, it's not just a
governor who is able to act this way if he so chooses, it's state lawmakers. it's lobbyists. it's in some ways a true cesspool for this kind of behavior. so that's kind of what's being spoken about. and i think also, it's important with the governor -- i mean, it's not just about sexual harassment, although that's an extremely serious and important issue. it's also about the culture of fear and bullying and terror that he has created. you know, everybody knows that if you step out of line with the governor, you will get a phone call from him or one of his aides that will put you back in line very quickly. and so that's part of what has gone on here. and that's why the governor has so few friends right now in the state legislature and outside of it. >> yeah. yeah. mara gay, a lot more we can talk about with this. thank you so much for coming on this morning. a new study finds that 3
feet of social distancing in schools could be just as safe as 6 feet. it's a finding that dr. anthony fauci says may be enough to justify reopening schools. dr. fauci joins us ahead. "morning joe" is coming right back. s us ahead "morning joe" is coming right back hi. so you're the scientist here. does my aveeno® daily moisturizer really make my dry skin healthier in one day? it's true jen. this prebiotic oat formula moisturizes to help prevent dry skin. impressive! aveeno® healthy. it's our nature.™ try the body wash, too.
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voila! maybe a couple throw pillows would help. get a strategy gut check from our trade desk. ♪♪ all right. welcome back to "morning joe." it is 50 past the hour. a live look at the capitol and that daylight savsings time has made everything so dark so early in the morning. >> we're not going to lie. we're still adjusting. we're still adjusting. david ignatius, so, at the beginning of the obama administration was marked on foreign policy side with this wringing of hands from a lot of people inside of the obama white
house, trying to figure out how many troops to add to the afghanistan fight. generals back and forth, took them a long time. we're at the other end of that now and the question is whether all the troops are removed out of afghanistan or not. and you say they're running out of time to make a decision. >> joe, the funny thing about the 2009 decision, when they did add substantial additional numbers, 30,000 more troops president obama approved was that joe biden was one of the few people at senior levels who said, don't do it. this is a counterterrorism mission. keep it small. don't overdo it in terms of troop numbers. and look back, he was probably right. the number we've got now in afghanistan is 2,500. a very small number focused on counterterrorism. there is a may 1 deadline that was negotiated by president
trump for removal of all of those troops. and the problem that biden faces, and i think this is the toughest problem yesterday for his presidency, is that if he pulls those 2,500 out right now, cia, other analysts say, afghanistan is likely to fall right back into civil war. it's going to be a mess, the government's probably going to fall. so biden has got to make up his mind. and they're running out of time in the sense that you need -- ideally, you need 90 days to get all of the people and equipment out so you don't leave anything behind for the adversary. we've already passed that mark. that would have been february 1. you can still get the people out, but it would be a ragged departure. and there's growing concern that it's just not possible now to meet that may 1 deadline. so interestingly, what the biden administration the going is asking for help. asking for help in -- wait for
it -- moscow. this week, our negotiator is heading to moscow. he's going to meet there with the chief taliban negotiator and the chief representative from the government of asher afghani and the russians are going to be the mediators and brokers. and it's a sign, i think, of how difficult this decision is for biden that they're willing to turn to russia, our principle adversary, for help in trying to negotiate an exit ramp, a way out and they're going to have to do it soon, because that deadline is coming week by week. may 1 is the date all american troops are supposed to be out. >> so david, why is there the necessity of removing those troops? we had a small footprint in syria that you knew about very well. you went there and you saw how that small footprint held russia
at bay, held the iranians at bay, held the turks at bay, held the syrians at bay. a lot was done with that very small footprint. i suspect we're in the same situation in afghanistan now. a small footprint that could be making a big difference. is there no choice but to remove all of those people from afghanistan and allow afghanistan to go straight back into the taliban's hands or at least into the hands of some other terrorist group? >> reporter: the ideal situation, joe, obviously, would be to get a power-sharing agreement and a cease-fire that reduced the terrible violence that's broken that country apart. that's a long shot. it's not a country where power sharing agreements tend to work very well. so our military leaders are arguing just the same case that you just did.
that we ought to leave this small number there for counterterrorism purposes, prevent al qaida from ever rebuilding a safe haven that could attack the united states. here's the problem with that. and i think that's in the end, probably the most sensible course. people have to understand that those troops will have to be there a long time. and that the taliban's going to start firing on them again. we've been through a blessed period of last year, where the violence has continued in afghanistan, but it hasn't been hitting our troops, our men and women in uniform. that would change. i think they would become targets again. and the prospect of america's longest war being even longer, a lot longer, is one that's not appetizing, especially if you're president biden. so he's being told by the military, keep this small force. it has impact on american security at low cost. we've got 5,000 nato troops that want to stay there with us. so work with them, stay, you know, stay the course.
if you're joe biden and you felt this was a mistake way back when, ten years ago, this is a hard pill to swallow. >> well, and latin american, we need to stop calling it america's longest war. we've had troops in germany for 76 years. we've had troops in north korea for over six decades. and it's actually been an insurance policy that sometimes, if you're the indispensable power in the world, you just have to do that. but again, that debate goes on. and we'll see what happens. and another debate going on right now has to do with the $2 trillion covid relief bill, inflation, and debt. and here to show us some charts, wake up the kids, because they're going to want to hear about inflationary pressures put on the u.s. economy by the $1.9 trillion covid relief bill, it's time for uncle steve's charts.
steve, what have you got? >> uncle steve's chart. well, joe, deficit hawks have become nearly an extinct species, but as you and i at least think, we need to keep an eye on this. so let's take a look at what's been going on out there. we all know we've been spending a lot, but maybe everybody doesn't know what the impact of that is on our fiscal balance. what you can see on this chart, those two big bars down at the bottom there, of course, are what we've been doing the last two years. $3.4 trillion of deficit this year, slightly less last year, a total of $6.5 trillion of deficit over two years. and just to put that in perspective, that is about 50% more than all the deficits that we accumulated from 1965 to 2005. and another way to put that in perspective is to look just to the west, where you see some other parse that are not nearly as far down, but come down a bit. that is our response to the financial crisis under president obama. and those four years of deficits
are also only about two-thirds of what we've put on in these two years. and you can see going further to the left, of course, we had very few deficits and even the clinton surpluses. but if you look to the right of the $3.4 trillion, even though those numbers seem to get a lot better and they do, you're still looking at trillion-dollar deficits out as far as the eye can see and deficits that start to get even worse. we've entered the year of $1 trillion plus deficits as a matter of routine business. let's take a look at how that compares to what other countries have done, and this data goes back before covid, but it's only gotten worse since then. and out of 37 countries around the world, all the way over on the left, there's the united states in 2019 with the worst deficit of any, australia is the country next to us. but look at some of the other countries. columbia -- that have done better. columbia, belarus, slovakia,
lithuania, and even greece which had its own near-bankruptcy in 2010. all of those countries in black, the right half of that screen are actually operating in surplus, even as we run these massive deficits. now let's take a look at what that means for our national debt, which is something, of course, that should be important to us. so just to put this again in perspective, all the way on the left is world war ii. that is our previous high point of national debt in relation to the size of the economy, just over 100% of the size of the economy. and then we worked it down and in fact, the low point in the middle there is in the late '70s, early '80s, when we had other economic problems, but nonetheless, a good debt ratio, and now you see it climbing all the way back up. and it's just about to get back to 100%. right about to get back to that world war ii peak. and even worse than that, it will keep growing under current projections. the dotted red line is what it would have been without covid.
the dotted light blue line is what it looks like now. and as we sit here today or we'll sit here in a few months when the books close, we'll be at about $72,000 of debt per american worker, and that is roughly twice what an american worker earns in a year. so we're amassing an awful lot of debt. it hasn't yet led to inflation, the deficits and the deficit spending, but a lot of people, including, famously, larry somers and myself, for what that's worth, worry about putting this amount of stimulus into the economy at this moment. and we worry about what this does for our overall debt loads going forward and what happens to our children, what happens to our ability to fund other important government needs, because interest costs will be high. and so, joe, that's what we have to worry about today. >> all right. and all the kids have slowed down chewing their tricks and captain crunch, because they've been watching these charts. they're a little worried right
now. matt lewis is with us. he has a question. matt? >> let me ask this question. do you think that part of the problem is that in most of the last 30 or 40 years, we haven't had inflation. and so there's a lot of americans today who in their living memory, this is something that you can keep spending money and it never matters. there's never a price to pay. the bill never comes due. how much of this is a failure of experience or of imagination? >> matt, certainly, you're right. it's very interesting to me as someone who lived through and reported on the late 1970s, early 1980s, how that has disappeared from people's memory. there's really two risks we run. one is that inflationary risk. and as you say, the institutional memory is kind of gone. and therefore, it's very hard for those of us who remember it
to really make a case. and we've also had examples like the financial crisis, where we did spend a lot without rekindling inflation. i personally think there is a point at which that can happen. the amount of stimulus we're talking about is really massive. and is probably in excess of what we actually need to get the economy back. so i do worry a lot about that. but whether you have inflation or not, you're still going to have debt. and you're still going to have interest costs. and if interest rates rise, which inevitably, we think they will do, the cost of that will just mount. and already, we spend more on interest on the national debt than we spend on things like veterans affairs and military retirement and housing and science and transportation. way more on interest that on all of those things. so more and more debt means more and more interest, crowds out all of those other kinds of equally more important spending. >> all right. steve rattner, thank you so much. and matt lewis, thank you, as well. it's great to have you both on
this morning. it is just past the top of the hour. now to the latest in fighting the pandemic. yesterday, we heard optimism from president biden and caution from the cdc director. >> help is here. and hope is here. in real and tangible ways. we're just days away from 100 million shots in the arms of millions of americans. 100 million checks going into the pockets and/or direct deposits going into the pockets of americans on the way to a million more, millions of more americans. that's real progress. we've a lot more to do. we have to prove to the american people that their government can deliver for them and do it without waste or fraud. >> with the coming warmer weather, i know it's tempting to want to relax and let our guard down. particularly after a hard winter that sadly saw the highest level of cases and deaths during the
pandemic so far. i'm pleading with you for the sake of our nation's health. these should be warning signs for all of us. cases climbed last spring, they climbed again in the summer, they will climb now if we stop taking precautions when we continue to get more and more people vaccinated. >> all right. joining us now, the director of the national institute of allergy and infectious diseases, dr. anthony fauci. he's chief medical adviser to the president. it's great to have you back on the show. let's start where we just heard the cdc director and her comments there about how bad this could get. this amid hearing studies about social distancing maybe going from 6 feet to 3 feet being okay. and that could be the answer to getting kids back to school. how do you assess the danger that americans are in right now as we try and get everybody vaccinated, but this pandemic is still out there? >> well, if you look at the
numbers, they're still at a level that are really quite risky. we have that major surge over this past winter, where the numbers of cases went up extraordinarily high. we were up to 300,000 to 400,000 new cases per day and up to 3,000 to 4,000 deaths per day. and then it started to sharply decline, which is really good news. it went down very sharply. but now it's kind of plateaued, you know, anywhere between 45, 50, and 60,000 per day. that's much better than the few hundred thousand per day, but it's still at an unacceptably high level. so as the director of the cdc, dr. walensky was saying just on that clip now, we've really got to be careful that we don't claim victory and pull back on all the public health measures that we know work in keeping a lid on these surging of infections. so although there is good news in the sense of the vaccine continues to get rolled out, we've gone between 2 million to
3 million per day, that's very good news. keeping that up, we are going in the right direction. but if all of a sudden we declare victory, we can risk a surge. they're seeing that in europe. in fact, europe is generally a few weeks ahead of us in the dynamics of the outbreak. and they had a plateauing and then they pulled back a bit on their -- in their mitigation methods, and all of a sudden, it started to surge again. we want to make sure that that does not happen here in the united states. >> dr. fauci, it's willie geist, good morning. good to see you. as we sat here a year ago, you and others told us to look to europe, obviously, to see what may be coming two weeks later. they're undergoing a third wave now, as you said. i'm curious to ask you about what's happening with the vaccine there. it's a different vaccine, we want to point out to our audience, astrazeneca. but many of the countries in europe have paused using it, because some people who got the vaccine experienced problems with it. they talk about blood clots, astrazeneca and the world health organization both have said
those are unrelated to the vaccine. but what can you say about the safety or any concerns you may have about the vaccines being used here in the united states? >> well, right now, if you look at what's gone on, we've had, you know, about 110 million doses have actually gone into people about 11 to 12% of the population is fully vaccinated and a little over 20% have received at least one dose. thus far, and you have to keep following these things very carefully, there are no safety signals that turn out to be red flags. we've had some allergic reactions that we're well aware of, some anaphylactic reactions to the moderna and pfizer product. it ranges somewhere between 2 to 4 per million vaccinations. that's still quite a low level of an adverse event. other than that, there does not
appear to be anything that what we would call a red flag. but this is something that's followed very carefully by the cdc and by the fda. but so far, so good. >> and what does it mean if you believe the polls that 20% of americans or maybe even more say, i'm not going to get the vaccine. whether it's, i don't trust it, i've heard some of these stories online that it's not safe, i don't trust the government, whatever it is. what does it mean to the overall health of our country. actually here, it says 30% of all adults say, no, they will not choose to receive the covid vaccine. what does it mean to the overall health of the country if those 30% ultimately don't get the vaccine? >> well, if you talk about a veil of protection or a blanket of protection over the community, namely the country, sometimes referred to as reaching a level of herd immunity, that if you do not get the overwhelming proportion of
the population vaccinated, you're still going to have the virus have the capability of circulating in society, because there are so many vulnerable people. and we've learned that with other infections. we've learned that measles, particularly, when you get below a certain critical level of people getting vaccinated, you have the risk and the danger of outbreaks. so the approach we would like to take and we are taking is to try to reach out and explain to people and ask, what are the issues that make them hesitant about getting vaccinated and try to address them with good, solid, scientific facts is the reason why we reach out a lot to try to explain to people what the process was of the development of the vaccine. all the things that went into it. you know, why it was such a quick, in the sense of rapid time frame from when the virus was first recognized to the time that we had doses into people's arms was a really a big
reflection and a good reflection of the nature and the extraordinary scientific accomplishments that went into our being able to do that. those are the kind of things that we continue to try to explain to people. >> dr. fauci, we talked last week about the video that all the presidents put out, the living presidents, imploring people to go get the vaccine. there was one missing. president trump was not in that video. taking politics out of this completely, president trump had 74 million people vote for him. a lot of people listen to his every word and follow him. have you been able to reach out to the man you worked for for a year and say, mr. president, boy, it would be sure helpful to our cause and to the cause of the country if you just came out publicly and said, i got the vaccine and you should too. >> no, i have not reached out directly to him. but, you know, i do it so many ways indirectly, including the conversation that you and i are having right now about the what
the importance is of getting the overwhelming majority of the population vaccinated, that's very important when you're right to contain a pandemic. >> by the way, hi, donald! hope all is well and you need to get on and actually tell people to get the vaccine. >> get the vaccine. >> yeah. >> so dr. fauci, about one in two republican men who supported donald trump are saying they're not getting the vaccine. if president trump is not going to go out and talk about that, the need to get the vaccine, what are some other ways to reach these americans? >> i just think, joe, what i've been talking about over the past couple of minutes, to continue, you know, not getting what political persuasions are are not doing, but just to get out and to continue to be talking about the facts, about what we know. about the importance of getting people vaccinated. as you look at the history of
vaxinology, as you get a good vaccine, an extraordinarily efficacious vaccine, we've put down and really crushed things like small pox and polio and measles. we are capable of doing that with two things simultaneously going on. one is adherence to the public health measures that we talk about all the time, at the same time as getting as many people as we can possibly get as quickly as we can vaccinated, because this is a high efficacious vaccine. >> can you talk about the process of reaching out and helping other countries with their vaccines? sort of vaccine diplomacy, as "the new york times" are talking about this morning, the chinese are doing it right now. when do we get to a stage where we're comfortable that we have enough vaccines that americans can be taken care of that we can move on and start worrying about
other countries, since this is obviously an international crisis and an international pandemic? >> i think we'll get there in a reasonable amount of time. what the united states is doing regarding vaccine diplomacy as you correctly designated it is two things. one is, first, making distributions to covax, the consortium of organizations and nations that are sensitive to and trying to do something about the lack of available vaccine for countries of low and middle income. what we're doing is that we have $4 billion that we will be giving to covax. and also, as you well know, we've contracted for more vaccines than we actually would need, and we did that because we wanted to make sure we had some backup in case things went wrong. when we get our population vaccinated -- and it's very important to emphasize that, you know, joe, we were essentially with one other country, brazil,
the two worst countries that were hit by this pandemic, with over 525,000 deaths in this country. an historically terrible toll on life and suffering in this country. we've got to make sure that we get our citizens vaccinated. and when we do, we will have enough vaccine, and the president has mentioned this, to be able to help out other countries by giving them some of our surplus. that will happen. it's not going to happen next week or next month, but it will happen. >> you know, dr. fauci, i love reading leadership books. whether by people in all fields, and i would love to read a book on leadership by you. but i think you're going to be too busy to write that for a while. so i wanted to ask you a question. there's a picture of dr. birx -- there's an interview of dr. birx from yesterday, who i personally
always thought she was in a terrible position. but i wanted to ask you about working through difficult situations in a difficult management structure and what lessons you've learned over the past year. because this is applicable not only if you're working for a ceo who may be taking a company in a path you're concerned about or whether you're working at the state department or whether you're working in the pentagon or even on the battlefield. what -- do you mind -- i hope you don't mind us asking you this side question. what did you learn over the past year going through some difficult challenges that you were going through, balancing so many things at the same time, that you could pass along to other americans and people across the world who may find themselves in a position not quite so dramatic, but in a position that's similar in some ways? >> you know, joe, the thing i knew even before getting into
this situation with covid-19, various versions of it and different experiences i've had over the almost 37 years that i've been director of the institute dealing with these types of outbreaks, often in charge of situations, is that you've just got to be completely honest and true to yourself and to your principles, even though you're going to have to tell people some things that might be inconvenient truths. and inconvenient truths might put you at odds with people. but if you are consistent and go by the science and the data -- i'm a scientist. the thing that drives me as a scientist and a public health figure is someone who looks at data, looks at the evidence, and makes any kind of statement or policy or what have you based on the evidence as you see it. one of the things that people get confused about is that when you're dealing with an evolving situation like a pandemic, you may have to make a decision
based on what you know in january or february, but the situation changes. the evidence changes. and the data changes. and you have to be flexible enough, humble enough, and honest enough to realize that what you knew a few months ago does not necessarily completely pertain now. but you've just got to be honest and true to yourself and not be afraid of the consequences. once you're afraid of the consequences of telling the truth, you're done. because then your own credibility is gone and you'll never be effective. >> a great lesson in leadership, for sure. back to the science of it. is there any concern in your mind that if we don't get vaccinations across the world in place, in arms, that with the different strains of the coronavirus making their way to different countries or just a lack of vaccination, that we could be back at square one?
>> you know, that's a very good, highly relevant point. a global pandemic needs to be addressed as a global problem. and the response needs to be global. if we do very well, as well as other countries, maybe, the developed countries of the world, as it were. if we get this pandemic under good control with a very low level of infection, yet there is a high dynamic of infection throughout other countries of the world, there will always be that threat that a variant of the virus will come back and might elude the vaccines that we might successfully have used to put down the pandemic in our own country. so you're absolutely correct, which is the reason why when we talk about responding, we've got to take into consideration that this has to be a global response, because an outbreak of this particular terrible virus, anywhere in the world, is a threat to everywhere in the
world. >> dr. fauci, i know you have to run, but i want to ask you before you go about that july 4th date that president biden put on the calendar in his prime-time address on thursday opinion everyone celebrated that idea of getting together, but when he said small groups, a lot of people in the country said, wait a minute. i thought the point of all of this historically fast work by the government and by doctors and by scientists and pharmaceutical companies was that if we all got the vaccine, which is the timeline you all have the country on, why couldn't we have our town fireworks? why can't we get to normal by the fourth of july? so do you see any chance that maybe that guidance changes between now and the summer where you say, okay, everyone is vaccinated, the trends are looking good, we'll open it up beyond small gatherings by the fourth of july? >> you know, that's entirely conceivable and possible that that was happening. what the president was saying is that we traditionally have, at the fourth of july, the kind of barbecue in the backyard, the kind of things that we treasure as americans, as part of our
tradition. he was saying, we're going to have that, if we do all the things that he mentioned. if we go beyond that, because we have such a low level of infection, all the better for it. i don't believe he's ruling that out. but he's saying, this is at least what we're going to be able to do by the fourth of july. and i think it's a quite reasonable projection. >> all right, dr. anthony fauci, thank you, as always, for being on the show. we really appreciate it. >> thanks, doctor. >> yeah. still ahead on "morning joe," there are new charges stemming from the alleged assault of officer brian sicknick, who died after the january 6th capitol riot. kasie hunt joins us with new reporting on that. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. ♪ ♪
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24 past the hour. let's bring in msnbc contributor mike barnicle, pulitzer prize-winning columnist and associate editor of "the washington post" and msnbc political analyst eugene robinson. and nbc news capitol hill correspondent and host of "way too early," kasie hunt is with us. she's got new reporting on the two men who were arrested and chandler on sunday with assault on capitol police officer brian sicknick, who later died from the injuries sustained in the january 6th attack on the capitol. kasie, what can you tell us? >> so these two men are behind bars this morning, mika, pending additional hearings. and they haven't been charged with the death of officer sicknick. that investigation is still ongoing. but federal authorities are releasing chilling new details about the alleged assault on sicknick and two other officers during the mob attack.
>> reporter: this morning, two men now facing federal charges for assaulting police officers with an unknown chemical substance during the violent siege on the capitol on january 6th when a mob attacked officers. one of those officers, brian sicknick died next day. later, lying in honor in the same building he served to protect for 13 years. the defendants julian khater and george tanios facing charges. the cause of death still under investigation. the fbi piecing together the defendants' actions using digital evidence, including surveillance videosen and officer's video camera. one video shows the two men were working in comment. give me that bear expletive. this screen shot showing one defendant holding a canister. minutes later, as rioters try to break through a metal barrier, khater is seen aiming that canister at officers, including sicknick from only 5 to 8 feet
away. this screen shot shows the officers retreating. all three officers injured, requiring medical attention. one suffering facial scabs for week. video presented by the house impeachment manager last week shows others showing the crowd using bear spray. >> they have bear spray in the crowd! >> in a statement, capitol police writing in part, quote, those who perpetrated these heinous crimes must be held accountable. if convicted, the pair who are childhood friends could face up to 20 years in prison. the sicknick family isn't saying anything publicly at this time, but earlier this year, officer sicknick's father, charles sicknick said, quote, i'll never get over this when he talked to reuters. and he told them that his son loved his job, joe. >> so kasie, let me ask you, in the script, we said that he
later died from injuries sustained in the assault. we're still murky there, aren't we? again, it obviously, that's an assumption that the layman may make. but i'm just, i'm just curious, because the capitol hill police haven't really come forward and talked about the exact cause of death, have we? do they know? and if we don't know, why do we still not know? because the story for the first couple of weeks was, they got bashed in the head with a fire extinguisher, and that ended up, i think, again, we don't know, but i don't think that ended up being true. >> none of us know, joe. and you've hit on all of the right questions, and unfortunately, we don't have any answers. and one of the things that's been really frustrating about reporting on everything that's unfolded, that unfolded that day and that's unfolded since has been the lack of transparency from capitol police and from other authorities about what
actually went on here. it's clear federal authorities went as far as they could with the information that they have and have been able to confirm in leveling these assault charges. there has been some speculation that this bear spray was inhaled and perhaps that was what ultimately led to officer sicknick's death. but right now, we simply don't have enough information to actually make that connection. and we should note, and as you saw in the piece that you just put together there, the authorities haven't released the video evidence yet that shows exactly what happened that day. we've got some screen shots and some pieces of all of the things that they're looking at, but we know they used surveillance video and body cam footage and we just haven't seen any of that yet. and some of this goes back to the fact that the capitol police are only accountable to members of congress. they're not accountable to anybody else. and members of congress could have demanded that they come out and hold press conference. they could write a new law that demands they come out and explain exactly what happens. and i think maybe it's not easy to understand, but clearly, it's
not in the interest, i don't think, for some of these members of congress to demand that as a general rule. and they simpy haven't. and so that leaves the public, all of us in the dark. >> yeah, but, kasie, i mean, first of all, this whole 9/11-style commission has just died. nobody is talking about it anymore. because nancy pelosi talked about, you know, having seven democrats on the commission and four republicans. that was a nonstarter from the beginning. but in this case, have they filled out a death certificate for the officer? i'm sure they have. what did they state the cause of death was on that death certificate? why do we still not know? this. i mean, this is not hard. who is stopping us from knowing the truth about what happened to the officer. what the cause of death was on his death certificate. why these charges are coming forward and we still don't know the answer to what the specific
cause of death was? i mean, it's just like, again, we have a hearing with pentagon officials that came over on why the national guard wasn't called in a timely manner, and everyone said, i don't know. i wasn't there at the time. really? what's going on? this is over two months after the most violent attack on any u.s. institution since the war of 1812. what's going on on capitol hill? why can't the speaker of the house and the majority leader push to get this information out today? >> joe, again, you've asked all the right questions about this. and i think for those of us who have covered it, for those of us who were there and want some answers about what happened, are baffled as to why we don't have more information. now, the way that this has played out, politics just got, you know,infested, invaded this
investigation very, very quickly, i think in a way that has surprised many of us who were there. you spent half an hour this morning talking about ron johnson who said he was never scared. like, i beg to differ. everyone who was in that building that day was terrified. it was terrifying. no one ever imagined that the walls of that capitol would be breached. and to now have a situation where we can't sort through the information, they can't even come to an agreement on the need to investigate this in a serious way, it does take buy-in from both republicans and democrats to do a 9/11-style commission. and you're right that pelosi sat down a more partisan path than i think some people were expecting and that caused some problems. and on the other hand, you have some republicans who were basically trying to pretend it never even happened in the first place. and all of this overlaid with the fact that we can't figure out, from officials, exactly those questions about what actually even happened that day. and the officials that are, you
know, getting dragged in front of congress are not even the officials in some cases that members of congress want to hear from. some of these people were people who were working for them in the sergeant at arms offices. they perhaps deserve a lot of the blame. but there is just a level of political focus and shaping of what's going on here that i think is astonishing considering, as you pointed out, the gravity of what happened on january 6th. >> exactly and joe, what kasie pointed out, just trying to figure out the basics of what happened that day, still a question is crazy, when you see tiger woods getting into an auto accident and a press conference hours later and days after with far more information, far more transparency. >> it is really -- it's really stunning. and these charges against the people who assaulted a police
officer, just, again, brings the question forward again. why can't we say what the cause of death was. why can't we have a straight answer on who stopped the national guard from coming to the capitol in a timely manner to stop this from happening and perhaps saving these officers' lives. gene robinson, help me out, as a reporter. >> what are we missing? >> with decades of experience, why the lack of transparency? why doesn't the speaker's office, why doesn't the majority leader's office, why doesn't the minority leader's office in the senate, why doesn't the minority leader's office in the house of representatives. why don't they demand answers? why aren't we getting answers to these questions? >> well, this should be something, obviously, that they all agree on, because they are -- their lives were all put in danger on january 6th. they were all under attack on
january 6th. so you would think that all would be motivated to not only investigate, but to get information out. you would think they would want to know. you would think they would want to know brian sicknick and how. the lack of accountability by capitol police is stunning. it is stunning how little they have said. from the beginning. >> but gene, why aren't they more curious? what are some of the answers as to why they aren't more curious about this? why aren't they pushing? and if they're not going to do a 9/11 commission, what type doesn't joe biden and his administration do a 9/11 commission. we need a commission for 1/6 every bit as much as we needed a warren commission, every bit as much as we needed a 9/11 commission. what are they doing in the capitol? and if they're not going to do it, why doesn't joe biden force his administration to do it?
>> well, you know, it happened in the capitol -- congress ought to do it, if they don't do it, i have to agree with you that joe biden should do it. somebody needs to do it. and we're at the point now, two months after, i realize that criminal prosecutions continue. we will learn more from those criminal prosecutions as they proceed. but in terms of the big picture, in terms of getting our arms around what happened on january 6th in any sort of comprehensive way, which no discreet criminal prosecution of this defendant or that defendant is designed to do. i -- you know, i don't know how that's going to happen, joe. and i think, you know, two months after the fact, it seems to me that it becomes less likely, not more likely, that
we're going to get the sort of full, comprehensive accounting that is not only -- that we not only want, but that we need. that is necessary for this incredible attack on our democracy, the likes of which we haven't seen since 1814, when the british sacked the capitol. this is -- look at these images. this was just an outrageous and unprecedented attack on the citadel of our democracy. and yet, we've seen strangely incurious about what happened. >> mike barnicle, as for officer sicknick, the fbi, according to many reports, has been focused on a chemical irritant for some time now and said there were no signs of blunt force trauma. so where that fire extinguisher story came from, we don't know. but it appears that this bear
spray is what they've been looking at for some time, although as kasie points out, the two men arrested yesterday were not charged in officer sicknick's death, but were charged with assault. more broadly, though, to another point that kasie made, mike, this is sort of, as we get a little distance from it, and we're hearing it from people like ron johnson and other republicans, we're hearing a lot of caveats to it, well, it wasn't really an armed insurrection, there were a few bad apples, it was people who were upset and we had to listen to their questions about what happened in the election, giving voice and credence to what happened. no, what happened on that day is a bunch of people were killed and people sacked the capitol of our democracy based on a lie. so there does need to be an accounting for it. there does need to be an investigation in one final public report to explain what exactly happened that day. >> certainly, willie, there's no doubt about that. i think what we're talking about here for the last several minutes, though, has to do with who is in charge of the
investigation? and it's my belief that the fbi is in charge of the investigation. and thus i think probably the lack of information and the lack of answers that we've all been talking about, that joe has raised and that all of us have raised with regard to what happened on january 6th lies in the hands of the federal bureau of investigation. this is a massive, massive criminal investigation. it involves hundreds, if not thousands of suspects, potential suspects. in the case of the capitol police officer, i think the fbi would probably tell you that it's actually internally right now a homicide investigation, but they're not going to say that out loud. so all of the facts that we're looking for, the cod, cause of death, what's on the death certificate, all of that is being contained by the investigative process itself. it's not the capitol police who are investigating this. it's the federal government bureau of investigation. and i have to tell you, from people i've spoken to, it's not only a massive investigation,
but it's an unbelievably thorough investigation. we've all seen the anecdotal evidence on television of the fbi asking us, the public, to send in pictures, if they recognize people who are potential suspects in the riot that occurred in the invasion of the capitol and the destruction of basic liberties that we've all thought and took for granted. and it's ongoing. and it will be ongoing. and the answers will eventually, i'm hopeful, will all be coming out, all of the answers. how did officer sicknick die? what was the cause of death? and who killed him? and that's a critical question. not who attacked him, who killed him? and, you know, we're just going to have to wait. we're going to have to wait and see. we're not a very patient country, and joe biden can't do anything about it right now and the speaker of the house can't do anything about it right now. it's just plain, good old-fashioned professional police work, investigative work that's being done.
>> well, mike, i mean, the fbi, are they going to tell us why the pentagon took too long -- sure, they're going to tell us zplp to send national guardsmen over. is that not the -- >> that i don't know. >> -- the committee that has jurisdiction over the pentagon? i mean, they send up people that weren't even there. i mean, i want to know what donald trump's hand-pointed flunkies to the pentagon after he fired esper, i want to know what they said on that day. i want to know, did they get phone calls from donald trump? did donald trump tell them to drag their feet when it was time to send out the national guard? or were they just so scared from what happened on june 1st that they weren't going to send it -- these are questions that i think americans need to know. and some of these answers are going to have to come, i believe, from the committees that have jurisdiction over whether it's over the pentagon or whether it's over the funding
of the capitol police, or whether it's over the funding of other institutions that failed them that day. >> yeah, i totally agree with you. i don't know why the house armed services committee and the senate armed services committee haven't had the joint chiefs up and demanded answers, demanded accountability. that's what the armed forces are all about. accountability. and yet, we've had very little accountability from either -- from out of the pentagon on why were they like four hours late in getting to a critical scene, a climactic capitol hill riot, an invasion of the capitol. why were they four hours late getting there when they're literally right across the river. they could see on television, as they were in the decision-making process. what did they miss? why did they miss it? what took so long? let's find out. we deserve to find out. we deserve to find out well before this. >> for sure.
nbc's kasie hunt, thank you for your incredible reporting on this. gene robinson, thank you, as well. >> wait, wait, wait, gene, before we go, we've got to talk about your piece today. >> i was just about to read it, yeah. >> because ron johnson, ron johnson said out loud what a lot of racists keep inside their head, but ron was actually proud of saying it and he said, i'm going to get in trouble for saying this, and then he said it. >> then he said it. yeah, then he said it. then he said, well, these -- he wasn't particularly worried because these rioters, well, they loved their country and they would never break the law. and they respect law enforcement. a very strange way to show your respect for law enforcement and your love of country to club an officer senseless with a pole bearing the american flag. but. had they been black lives matter
protesters, well, that would have been a different story. it's unbelievable, you know, i feel like i'm back, you know, 50 years ago. in south carolina, listening to politicians who said the quiet part out loud back then. and the thing is that nobody is coming out to denounce -- no republicans are coming out to denounce what ron johnson said and said, well, hold it, this isn't us. we don't agree with this. this is not us. they're just letting it stand. so, you know, in this case, if you're not going to -- you're either going to denounce it or you're going to own it. and the republican party is owning it. >> all right. gene, thanks. coming up, we'll go live to the southern border as the u.s. struggles to handle the surge of
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welcome back to "morning joe." last week, we told you about the decision by prominent christian leader beth moore to no longer be a member of the southern baptist convention. the nation's largest protestant denomination. the influential bible teacher and author tells religion news service, quote, i am still a baptist, but i can no longer identify with southern baptists. i love so many southern baptist people. so many southern baptist churches, but i don't identify with some of the things in our heritage that haven't remained in the past. moore had been at odds with the denomination about speaking out against sexism in the church, for advocating for sexual abuse victims, and for rejecting
trumpism. she most recently spoke out about against the type of christian nationalism that played a role in the january 6th attack on the capitol. a month before the attack, she tweeted in part, i have never seen anything in these united states of america i found more astonishingly astonishingly seductive to god than trumpism. this is not of god. move back from it. a powerful tweet. >> for those that aren't familiar with beth moore, i grew up in the southern baptist church and the evangelicals in the south. beth moore is the type of person that would hold on event at a basketball arena and fill it up. she has a huge, massive following among evangelicals, and when she started raising some very tough questions early on about the worshiping of political leaders over jesus,
she was condemned roundly by a lot of the same people that filled up those arenas through t years. but she has, mika, stayed focused on what she's always been focused on, while a lot of people around here have scattered in the breeze. >> joining us now, father james martin. he is editor at large for "america" magazine and author of the new book "learning to pray. a guide for everyone" and we'll talk about that in just a moment. welcome to the show. i want to ask, what your reaction is to what bemg moore has done and especially that tweet, because for her it was really standing up to a community, a religious community, a faith that for some reason has been taken by the former president against its core values. >> well, i admire her for her
convictions and for her following her conscience. she felt that the denomination didn't reflect her values or belief any more and i agree in terms the tweet, that christian nationalism has no place in the christian church. it is supposed to be about jesus christ not about a particular political party or candidate. >> why is it, father, that many christians, not just evangelicals, have fallen for christian nationalism, have, in fact, replaced their faith with a political tribe? >> and i'm not speaking for any individual, i don't know what they're motivations are, but i think it is easier in a sense. instead of following jesus, it's hard. it requires helping the poor and forgiving your enemies and loving your enemies and being a democrat or republican is relatively easier. and i think that they were seduced in a sense by a lot of the leaders who told them that
donald trump was the only christian alternative on the ticket. and i have a hard time, as you could hear, from figuring out why that is. the gospel is pretty clear, you follow jesus, you don't follow anybody else. >> yeah, so tell me, why did you write this book? >> well, i wrote "learning to pray" because so many people, i think, feel that prayer is not for them. that they've sat down and they've tried to close their eyes and feel like nothing happens so what i wanted to do was to let people know that prayer is for everyone and talk mainly about what happens when you pray, to kind of demystify it in a good way. >> mike barnicle? >> father martin, it is good to seeing you this morning, speaking of prayer, are you praying for the vatican in wake of the ruling that gay marriage unions can't be blessed? >> yeah, i'm always praying for
the vatican. it is a decision that i think took a lot of people by surprise and what i'm hearing from my lgbtq friends, it demoralized them. >> father, yesterday the jesuits made a stunning announcement, not for them because they do surprising things within the church, but the idea of raising a large sum of money, was it $100 million that they were going to raise -- >> i think so -- >> to deal with -- explain that please. >> they've been working with descendants of enslaved people owned by the jesuits in the old maryland province and associated with georgetown university to make things right and we contributed i think $15 million to a fund that we want to get up to $100 million to help the descendants of those enslaved people that we owned and it is a way of our asking for forgiveness and making
reparations. >> i want to ask about your book, which i think will help so many people, especially during these very challenging times. "learning to pray: i guide for everyone" and let me read the reasons that people don't pray. they're not taught to, considered it is reserved for holy people, told they're doing it wrong, they've never been encouraged to think about it, they've had a bad prior experience and feel they failed at it, they don't see the point, since god knows what they are thinking, they are too busy and to lazy and they fear change. what are the reasons people should pray, but most importantly, show us how. >> sure. why should they pray, to be in relationship god. and because god wants to be in relationship with you. there is a lot of different ways to pray. i talk about them in the book. i think the easiest way to think about prayer is as a conversation with god. and part of it is just being
honest with god in your prayer, but also, as i say in a book, speaking to you, not actually hearing voices, but through your life and in your prayer. and it is for everyone. it is not just reserved for the holiest of holy people. >> father martin, it is willie geist. as you know many peoples faith has been shaken over the last year and they think what kind of god would allow this kind of suffering that we're living there, around the world right now in terms of death, in terms of loss of jobs, in terms of kids losing time in school. so what do you say to people whose faith has been shaken over the last 12 months? >> well first, i try not to say this is how you should think about god, i try to listen to their experience of god. but part of it is this question that mystery of suffering has no satisfactory answer and that is a god that we don't understand but could you still be in a
relationship with a god that you don't fully understand. for the christian, it is being with jesus. and knowing that jesus, when he was on earth, suffered through the same kinds of things and pain even through a pandemic. so when the christian prays, he's praying to someone who understands him or her, not just because he's divine and understands all things but because he's human and really experienced all of these things. so a lot of it is about being honest with god and being in connection with jesus. >> the new book is "learning to pray: a guide for everyone." father james martin, thank you for coming on and sharing the book for us. still ahead, live to london as more and more european countries consider new restrictions amid surging infections. and as we go to break, we want to replay something that dr. fauci told us moments ago when we asked about the challenges he faced over the past year. his answer was about leadership and it was right to the point. something that some members of
congress might want to put into practice. "morning joe" is back in a moment. >> you've just got to be completely honest and true to yourself and to your principles, even though you're going to have to tell people some things that might be inconvenient truths and that might put you at odds with people. t odds with people in the romo household we take things to the max oh yeah! honey, you still in bed? yep! bye! that's why we love skechers max cushioning footwear. they've maxed out the cushion for extreme comfort. it's like walking on clouds! big, comfy ones! oh yeah! how great is it that we get to tell everybody how liberty mutual customizes your car insurance so you only pay for what you need? i mean it... uh-oh, sorry... oh... what? i'm an emu!
and then i see the disinfectant, that knocks it out in a minute. one minute. and is there a way we can do something like that. by injection, inside or -- or a cleaning. because it gets into the lungs and it does a tremendous number on the lungs so you'll have to check that. you'll have to use medical doctors, but it sounds interesting to me. >> that moment, obviously, there is a lot of tape on that. you could see how extraordinarily uncomfortable i
was. frankly, i didn't know how to handle that episode. i still think about it every day. it is something dr. fauci and i talked about all of the time, is how to correct the record. >> wow, i still think about it every day. dr. deborah birx, under president trump, in a new interview with abc news. good morning and welcome to "morning joe." it is tuesday, march 16th. >> so let's talk about that for one second. willie, at the time, dr. birx was getting abused and criticized and, you know, there are some things that she said and did that were concerning to me. but -- >> it was mostly what she didn't say. >> she was trying to have some influence on a guy that was erratic and crazed on this issue. and people could say well, she
should just quit. and you're look, okay, how could it get worse, dr. scott atlas could come in. with trump, it could always get worse and all of these people that were having abuse on them like dr. birx to have some sort of influence, we see what happens when they give up. you get a dr. scott atlas or a rick grenell, who are at the bottom wrung of the bureaucracy, and would never be in a position for any other president and do really bad things once given power. >> what happens is your right, that person leaves. former president trump would see someone on fox news or fox business channel and hire them to an elevated position that that person shouldn't be in. scott atlas is a great case in point. you saw him talking on tv. you could only imagine a doctor
like dr. birx who is a real -- and who should be there and listening from the podium, it is good to hear her talk about what that was like. you hear them again almost a year later, and it shocks that he was talking about shooting injectant or powerful light into the bodies to hope this would miraculously go away. >> if there wasn't such carnage and death anlt and destruction attached to this, it would be a comedy show. it is ridiculous the things the president would say from the podium and it was probably painful for people trying to hang in there, it is what she didn't say, she didn't stop him, but many would ask what was he supposed to do and the next would come in and it would be a very bad fate for the country. along with joe and willie, me we have columnist for "the washington post," david ignatius. member of the "new york times"
editorial board,a gay is with us this morning. and senior columnist for the daily beast, matt lewis joins us. great to have you all. our top stories, two men arrested and charges on sunday with assault on capitol police officer brian sicknick who later died from injuries sustained in the january 6th attack on the capitol. julian of pennsylvania and george thani of west virginia are accused of working together to use bear spray on sicknick but authorities have stopped short of charging them with killing him. the search warrant application said there is video of him reaching into the backpack and later holding a can of chemical spay. a body camera of one officer captured one of men holding a canister in his right hand and aiming in the officer's
direction while moving his right arm from side to side. both men made court appearances yesterday and were ordered to remain in custody. and joe, if you follow the fbi, they are slowly trying to arrest anyone and everyone who was involved in any violent way in the capitol riot and they're still looking for people. but these two men, it appears according to those who are charging them, had something to do with the death of a capitol police officer. >> yeah, we don't know that. that is -- david ignatius, i wanted to bring up with you, there may not be a direct link there. i think "the new york times" told us he died from being hit by a fire extinguisher a couple of times an then the capitol police pulled back and haven't -- nobody has talked specifically about how he has died. there hasn't been a follow-up.
there are questions surrounding that. was it this bear spray that somehow caused a condition. so we have that question. we had pentagon officials come before congress a couple of weeks ago, but not the pentagon officials that didn't send the national guard straight over. there are all of these questions that continue to hang around the worst attack on the united states capitol since the war of 1812. and yet we still have no 9/11 type commission. we're not moving in the right direction. nancy pelosi is proposing something that republicans will never agree to that has a 7-4 split between democrats and republicans. this is a time for the biden administration to reach back to some former republican leaders like maybe tom ridge and mike kasie and others and some former
democratic leaders and just get a 9/11 style commission inside of the executive branch. >> i think it would be good to have that commission, the record that the country needs to go forward has to be established in a way that people think is fair and impartial. but i'm impressed, joe, by the fact that this investigation continues to roll forward. it is true, we don't have the coroner's report, i don't believe, on the death of officer sicknick so you can't charge them yet for murder when you're not sure exactly -- charge these two suspects for murder when you're not sure how he died. but the investigation goes forward. there is no sign of a split within the fbi about carrying it out. there is less reaction to the investigation than i feared there might be around the country, fbi offices and state and local law enforcement are going out there and knocking on
doors, putting together complicated conspiracy cases against these people. so, yes, it could be good to have that commission with a lot of distinguished men and women who would come with a final judgment, but for me, right now, it is the pace of tracking down and charging and then eventually trying the people who were involved in that day. and that having public support and it does. so that is my takeaway. this is actually probably right now exactly what we need. >> well, and willie, the fbi just continues to do an extraordinary job searching out these people, trying to get help from the public, finding them and bringing them to justice. >> there were a lot of people in that building. this is a methodical effort, this is less than two months and they're using technology to capture images and capture
facial recognition and insignia to something they are wearing and other social media posts. but mar a gay, when you read the details of this charging document are not charged with the murder of officer sicknick but charged with assault and you realize they were calling for the bear spray. it is exactly what it sounds like. if you're out walking in the woods in montana, you carry bear spray to neutralize a six foot grizzly bear. some came prepared. and some tried to downplay this is not an armed insurrection, it was a few bad apples and people strolling through statuary hall. this is another reminder of what people came with this to event. >> people in tactical gear, they came with zip ties, they came with bear spray, which anybody who has ever gone camping in the presence of any kind of bear knows, you don't use on another
human being. that is to protect you instead of having a gun, a rifle. they also came and put a noose outside of the capitol. and so these were not people who came to have a conversation and lest we forget that you have members of congress who were terrorized and without any plan for their safety and the safety of their staff. and the officers that were there to serve our public and members of democracy and congress and journalists, it was a massive failure and i can't say how important it is that as these perpetrators are brought to justice in the criminal sense, that also we have a 9/11 style commission that is wherever possible to the extent possible, you know, that the public could actually understand and see, i think there is an important part of process that needs to be
public to whatever extent that is possible. the fbi is engaged in a nationwide search. i have friends who live in cities across the country, new orleans, are sending me pictures of billboards looking for these individuals. the fbi is hunting these people down as it should, to bring them to justice. but the american public needs to see that this is adjudicated before them as well. we need to know what happened, we need to know who failed and who needs to be held accountable. and i think we haven't seen that yet. so there is a transparency here that is really important. >> and what is really important, too, and i'm going back to the 9/11-style commission that needs to be launched. we need to know were there actually members that were giving tours the day before. were there members that were calling during the terrorist attack, giving the location of nancy pelosi and other members
of congress, that the mob would be interested in abducting and possibly killing. they certainly were looking for mike pence to kill him. and yet, despite all of this, you have republicans who went ahead and voted, and voted to not count millions and millions of votes. and you have others who were trying to downplay this mob. still trying to downplay this mob, mika. like ron johnson who said [ technical difficulties ] bear spraying a police officer who later died. these are terrorists. i will say if ron johnson saw these people, and he said this because he's a bigot, if you judge him by his words, he's a bigot, if these were black
people, then he would have been scared. as i said the day after, if they were black people, they would have all been shot in the face. if they were muslims, they would have been sniped from the top of the building. if they were white people, so this b.s. was allowed for too long. the national guard wasn't called in. police officers didn't move as quickly. some capitol hill cops were letting them move in and out freely, opening the gates, letting them run through it. this is grotesque and it is an insult, it is an insult to the police officers who died that day, and who were hurt that day that a united states senator is saying that these were peaceful law-abiding people who we wasn't worried about, if they were black, but they weren't black. so this didn't bother him. >> up next, we'll show you exactly what the senator said
about black lives matter. if his comments were so innocuous, why did he preface them by saying, quote, this will get me in trouble. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. 'll be righ. ♪ limu emu & doug ♪ excuse me ma'am, did you know that liberty mutual customizes your car insurance so you only pay for what you need? thank you! hey, hey, no, no, limu, no limu! only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty. liberty. liberty. liberty. ♪
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♪♪ as you mentioned, ron johnson, joe, the republican senator is defending his comments, if this is possible, that he made about black lives matter protesters and the deadly capitol riot. here is what he said late last week followed by his defense yesterday. >> i knew that even though those thousands of people that were marching the capitol were trying to pressure people like me to vote the way they wanted me to vote. i knew those were people that love this country, that truly respect law enforcement, would never do anything to break a
law. so i wasn't concerned. now had the tables been turned, joe, this could mean trouble, and had the tables been turned and president trump won the election and those were tens of thousands of black lives matter and antifa protesters, i might have been a little concerned. >> there was nothing racial about my comments. nothing whatsoever. this isn't about race, this is about riots and i've been attacked and criticized because i pushed back on the narrative that, you know, there were thousands of armed insurrectionists and that is a small part of the 74 million americans that voted for president trump that also needed to be suspect of being potential domestic terrorists or also potentially armed insurrectionists. that is a false narrative. i wasn't surprised but it is still shocking that it would take what i consider completely innocuous comment and turn in into, use the race card on me. >> and an innocuous comment
where he said, i'm going to get in trouble for saying this. >> so he knew. he has an op-ed entitled, "i won't be silenced by the left." no, keep talking, honestly, the left is good. >> let me tell you, ron, the left doesn't want silent. because the more you say bigoted things like you say the other day, you more you actually help the left. >> and the world sees who you are. >> and the more you hurt republicans. so, yes, ron, they don't want to you be silenced. and of course you are not silent because you wrote an op-ed in one of the largest, most important newspapers on the planet. we keep hearing this, willie. i will not be silenced as people write op-eds in "the new york times" and the "wall street journal" and go on national news networks and actually get more access to the american people than anybody else.
it is just stupid, stupid argument. but again, ron johnson said he was going to get in trouble for saying this, but these people truly respect law enforcement, unlike black lives matter marchers and they would never break the law. what the hell? how does he say that when several cops are dead, and scores of cops were beaten, battered and abused by donald trump supporters that day. they were going around wanting to hang mike pence and chanting it. had a noose for mike pence. they were calling for nancy pelosi, wanted to get here. and there were republicans just as scared of this mob as democrats. so how does ron johnson say that people's lives being in danger, and police officers being killed
is not worrisome, as worrisome to him as black people marching. >> it is astounding. we joke about ron johnson because so many of his colleagues, not us, so many of his colleagues current and former tell us how limited he is. but this is something different. it is clearly something different. but this is the game now, matt lewis. this is going on to a friendly radio show, say something inflammatory, wait for your opponents on the left in this case to react to it, and then write an op-ed in the "wall street journal" saying i'm being silenced by the left. i would ask senator johnson to approach the family of officer sicknick or one who had a heart attack and had a stroke and wondered what was going to happen to his four daughters when he was gone, go to those officers and see if he believes that the rioters, the attackers that day respect law enforcement. an outrageous statement by
senator johnson. >> willie, ron johnson is obviously an idiot. i'll say that myself. i think anybody who just saw the video you were showing or watched the insurrection knows it was utterly violent. there was a scene in one of the documentaries that came out that showed them rivaling through ted cruz papers, about to turn on him, saying that he had sold them out. they were looking for mike pence. getting nancy pelosi would have been okay, but it is not just democrats that we were after, ron johnson, and i'm not sure they would have recognized you as one of the quote/unquote good guys if they found you. this is best case study i've ever seen, ron johnson comments were the best case of evidence of systemic rakeism and subliminal racism. i honestly do not think that he
was trolling us initially to try to get attention. when he went on the radio show, i honestly do not think ron johnson believes that he is a racist. in his mind these protesters are people. they're good patriotic white americans in his mind. i honestly think he believes that. he doesn't get it. and so i think he really proves the point that a lot of us over the years, i think also didn't grasp which is the fact that there are a lot of people, a lot of republicans sadly, who maybe are just unconsciously racist. they're harboring this bias and out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks. i think that is what just happened. ron johnson just told who he is. >> coming up, the latest on andrew cuomo and the role
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we're going to move now to the story of rocking new york politics right now involving allegations of sexual harassment against governor andrew cuomo. new polling shows half of new yorkers say cuomo should not immediately resign from his position. the latest siena college poll found that 50% said he should not resign. while 35% said he should. 15% undecided. the poll also found that 57% said they were satisfied with how the governor had addressed the allegations while 32% said they were not. the poll was conducted last week largely before the surge in calls from democratic elected officials for his resignation. >> so willie, interesting numbers, those polls again taken
last week. it is interesting to see -- >> if they adjust, yeah. >> but he had already been charged with lying about nursing home deaths from his political opponents and the media and there were already some of the allegations coming from women who had worked with him or who had run into him in social events like the wedding. so those -- >> pictures and tv interviews. >> those numbers are higher than i think most of us would expect. but it certainly reminds me right now of what is going on in virginia where you have a lieutenant governor and a governor who faced scandals of their own, not exactly like the cuomo scandal, but didn't listen to all of the calls to resign and are still there and now -- >> and flourishing. >> in virginia at least, you have people asking ralph northam to campaign for them in state legislative races. >> and there is no question that governor cuomo and his aides are
looking at the model, there was a photograph that came out that was alleged to show governor northam in black face and in a year book and he apologized and thensy don't think that is me and i'm not going to resign and put his head down and despite the calls for his resignation and now we're two years away and getting good marks for how he's handling the job in virginia. so the numbers that we just put on the screen, that is why governor cuomo is hanging in. if he looks at the numbers and sees only 35% of new yorkers want him to go, well he's going to say i'm not leaving. if the majority of the people in my state want me to stay and 57% of the people are okay with the way i've been handling it, what if i, like ravel northam, charges are different and what if i put my head down and power there and the question is does he run for re-election again as a carrot to say i'm going to run again and we'll see how it plays
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if you see wires down, treat them all as if they're hot and energized. stay away from any downed wire, call 911, and call pg&e right after so we can both respond out and keep the public safe. childcare aren't a democratic issue or a republican issue. it is a family issue. and it's urgent. there can be no recovery without a place for working parents to send their children. >> the first lady, dr. jill biden yesterday promoting the american rescue plan at a new jersey elementary school. joining us now is someone who was at that event, democratic
congresswoman mikie sherrill, a member of the house armed services committee. great to have you. >> congresswoman, thanks for being here. you tweeted out yesterday it is over a year since my four kids have been in person at school, it is time we brought our students back. i think you speak not only for parents in new jersey but parents across america. what is holding us back from doing that? >> well, at this point, now that we've passed the american rescue plan, not much. we put money into schools to make sure that our schools could open safely, and as you heard from dr. jill biden, this isn't just an issue of the learning loss, we've seen some studies saying the results in math are 30% lower than we would expect and 10% lower in english and communities of color have been impacted by children not in in-person school. but it is also about working moms. we've seen how damaging this coronavirus pandemic has been to moms especially. working parents in general, but
it is especially hard-hitting for working moms and we've seen that in our economic numbers as well. >> congresswoman, for a year or so, we were very critical of republicans who didn't follow science, very critical of the president for not following science. over the past several months, on this set, we've been very concerned about democrats who are not following science. when you have head of the cdc and dr. fauci say children need to be back in school. you're saying the same thing. let me ask you, why aren't children, why aren't your children back in school? why aren't people in your town making sure that those schools are open? what is in the way of that happening? if not today, on monday of next week? >> hopefully, like i said, not much at this point. there are really to further arguments for not getting children back in school.
we see governors moving to get our teachers vaccinated. i know here in my county we're working very hard, opening up sites for our teachers, getting them vaccinated. we know that we put money forward in the american rescue plan to make sure that schools have the resources they need for sanitizing the schools, and creating more classroom sizes. so that we could socially distance. but when we're seeing all of the reporting saying how damaging this is to our kids, the mental crisis, and the social and emotional crisis, how damaging it is, as well as how we haven't seen the types of outbreaks in schools that we were worried about at the beginning of all of this. this is important. so we've got the support out to the schools. we have support out to small businesses with the american rescue plan, we have really the biggest input into addressing childhood poverty. we see that this american rescue
plan could bring down childhood poverty by half. i can't tell you what a great day it was yesterday in new jersey to have the first lady here. we consider her a jersey girl because she was born in the garden state. so to have her here talking about the fact that help is here. she's on the help is here tour and with this american rescue plan we're not going to just be able to take care of people throughout the coronavirus pandemic, but build a better america for so many families for generations to come. >> congresswoman, it is willie geist. it is good to see you. let me ask you about small businesses in terms of american rescue plan, in a town where you live or in new jersey where i grew up, what does money mean to the business fighting its way through the last year or perhaps one that had to close for last year and furlough workers, how quickly could they expect to see relief to get open again and start getting people their jobs back? >> well, willie, now that we've been unfortunately doing this for a while, they should see the
relief out very quickly. i remember at the very beginning of this, as congress was putting money out, having round tables with local business leaders, and how troubling and how difficult it was to get money targeted to the people that needed it. but now, i think we've solved a lot of those problems and we'll get the money out very quickly. because, as you know, the heart of our main street here in new jersey, it is our small businesses. and just yesterday it was my daughter's birthday, so after she came with me to see the first lady and she was a little tired so i said it is your birthday, we'll go to the bakery and get you a treat there and i went up to the door and it was closed. normally it is open all week and now it is only open from wednesday through the weekend. so we're seeing our small businesses struggle. but with this money, with the american rescue plan, it is my hope that all of our small businesses are going to be able to hold on just a little bit longer, that we're supporting
them to stay open, to keep paying their employees so that when we fully open, hopefully in not too long, as joe biden said i hope i'm hanging out with my family on fourth of july, we could see those businesses still in tact, still open for business as we start to see the crowds come back. >> i think i know that bakery and happy birthday to your daughter. >> it is a little daisy bakery, it is fantastic. >> i think i know that one. let's talk about your daughter other kids as joe is asking you about schools and what this plan marines to -- means to them. and if you're talking about putting in ventilation into schools, that is going to take some time. but dr. fauci said if we could put in masking and distancing and maybe the distancing is only three feet now according to one study and you could get the teachers vaccinated, there is just no science according to pediatricians and others that say we cannot have our schools open. so does the bill actually do anything in the short-term, like
immediately to get schools open? >> well, i think what is going to immediately get schools open is the push for vaccinations. and i'll tell you that the biden administration came on board and day one was working to get everyone vaccinated. we have seen an up tick in many state from going from finding it very, very difficult to find a vaccination and now it is becoming better and better and better and we're prioritizing teachers. this is something i've advocated for since december so we're prioritizing teachers in line. and here in the northeast, it is getting warmer, we could keep our windows open now and get kids back to in-person school because the science hasn't shown us that these are the sources of outbreak, but the science has shown us how critically damaging this is to our kids to not have them in school. and i've seen it with my own children. we've struggled to keep them
engaged and they're not socializing with their friends and having all of the activities. i joke, when i think about my own high school experience and when i think about algebra class, i remember fondly that the cute boy down the hall that i wanted so see after algebra class. so it is all of the interactions that keeps kids engaged or how excited i was after school to go to the big game or a big game on the schedule and meeting with my friends and getting on the bus and going, all of the interactions that keep kids so excited and so engaged in school are missing right now. and they're not just missing for our kids, they're missing for our educators. my sister is an educator and that trying to keep kids engaged, trying to keep -- i've watched it here, try to keep an eighth grader engaged in zoom schooling. i hear a lot of, you well lincoln, what do you think about that? it was good. it is very, very difficult.
so our educators are worn out as well. >> that is a great example. congresswoman mikie sherrill, thank you very much. it is great to have you on show. >> it certainly is. and willie, i know that you, i've got two kids in school right now, i know you have a couple of kids in school right now, you could relate to that as well. i can't relate to the happy memories from middle school or high school. i remember going home with my report card and having to get my parents to sign it. and nick sony an flop sweat coming up on my head as an 11, 12-year-old kid. but you know, willie, at this point, dr. fauci said today we have to look at science, the science moves, and when the science moves, we have to move with it. man, the cdc is already come out and said get kids back in school. dr. fauci has already come out and said get kids back in school. there is no question that kids
should be back in school if you're interested in the science, if you're interested in the medicine, i've got to say not three months from now, not after ventilation gets in there, not after every person has a shot, like now. if you're listening to science, they need to open up the schools now. >> and this isn't a crisis on some small level that you and i could help our kids get through. this is a massive generational crisis that so many students without wi-fi or laptops, for a year they have lost school and mostly in communities already behind the eight ball and they can't afford to fall another year behind and that is what devastates you, thinking about all of the kids because your right, doctor after doctor, and i said mainstream pediatricians and leader as mong childcare and doctors and facilities who have
said schools ought to be open plain and simple. and we want teachers to be safe. of course. teachers and kids need to be safe. that is paramount. but we're getting enough vaccine into the system where it could happen and dr. ashish jha and others have said outloud if you could distance, if you could mask and get teachers vaccinated, you're good to go. and this idea of the all of the deep cleaning, that is theater that is -- not on surfaces, it is airborne. so schools should be open and we want our teachers and our kids to be safe but this is a crisis that is in front of us that has gone on for a year now. and moderna the drugmaker has started studding the vaccine in children in canada. in a study children age 6 months to less than 12 years of age will aves vaccine safety and effectiveness of two doses given 28 day as part. moderna intended to enroll 7,000 children in the study being conducted in collaboration with
the national institution for allergy and infectious diseases and division of health and human services, no timetable was given for completing the study. so we'll see what happened with that. as things stand, schools over the last several months, have proven to be among the safest places in the entire country. >> yeah. >> and again the medicine said, the cdc said, dr. fauci says, will be safer in schools than they would be in -- in general populous. and by the way, testing the kids and moving vaccines on to children, that is really good news for a lot of parents who have children who have diabetic, children who have asthma, children with upper respiratory issues. that is hopeful news as well. >> so let's turn now to the setback in europe's fight against the coronavirus as new cases rise. more countries impose new
restrictions and now a pause on the astrazeneca vaccine due to possible side effects. nbc news senior international correspondent keir simmons has joined us this morning from london. kier. >> we're only beginning to see the geopolitical impact of the coronavirus on this side of the pond. that means europe being tested in ways not seen this century. imagine what it is like to be a european leader in the months after brexit and find that your vaccination rollout is stumbling and struggling while here in the u.k., a third of the adult population has been vaccinated. and it is criticized as cautious and slow and even now they've decided to pause the astrazeneca vaccine over health fears. >> reporter: this morning half
of italy under lockdown. now high risk red zones. streets deserts, schools and shops closed again. exhausted italians back where they began when the pandemic was first declared a year ago. >> it is pretty painful. things were starting to open up, we're painful. things are starting to open up, we're starting to have some hope, and now completely shut down. >> reporter: in germany cases surging. france's hospitals already under pressure, attending to cases in paris, relocated to other regions. europe, triggered by more infectious coronavirus variants. dr. fauci says europe's struggle is a warning for america. >> that's one of the issues that when you plateau, there's always the risk of a surge. that's exactly what the europeans have experienced. >> reporter: europe's covid crisis has been fueled in part by a stumbling vaccine rollout and now germany, france and spain, among the countries pausing astrazeneca's vaccine.
over a small number of vaccine recipients experiencing blood clots, although the company and european health officials say there's no evidence a shot is to blame. a review under way while experts worry fewer vaccinations would mean even more coronavirus across this struggling continent. just to give you a picture, guys, in germany they vaccinated 1.7 million people with the astrazeneca vaccine, seven people have suffered from serious consequences as a result of blood clots. that is a far lower risk, if you like, than there is now in germany from the coronavirus, where the virus is surging again. one of the issues for europe though is just trying to reach agreement with countries making their own decisions and yet at the same time the vaccine rollout is supposed to be a continent-wide rollout. it was supposed to be a kind of symbol of how well europe could work. it's really not turning out that
way. guys? >> nbc's keir simmons, thank you very much for that report. up next -- senator john manchin now calling for what's happening on the southern border a crisis. we'll go live to el paso as the biden administration struggles to handle the surge of migrants seeking asylum. and tomorrow on "morning joe," how speaker nancy pelosi will be our guest. we're back in just a moment. ome. allergies don't have to be scary. spraying flonase daily stops your body from overreacting to allergens all season long. psst psst you're good alright, i brought in ensure max protein... ...to give you the protein you need with less of the sugar you don't (grunting noise) i'll take that. yeeeeeah! 30 grams of protein and 1 gram of sugar drink, play, and win big in the powered by protein challenge!
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now to the growing surge of migrants at the u.s./mexico border and mounting political pressure the biden administration is facing to solve the problem. joining us live from el paso, texas, msnbc correspondent garrett haake. garrett? >> hey, mika, good morning. the secretary of homeland security second this morning border patrol is on pace to encounter more migrants at the border this year than any time in the last two decades, and so many of them are these unaccompanied minors fleeing desperate conditions in their home countries arriving week after week here at the border. this morning the biden administration scrambling to find shelter for more migrant children arriving by the day, opening this facility in midland, texas and eyeing larger spaces like the dallas convention center and even a nasa research facility in northern california to handle the influx. the border patrol detaining a
record 3,200 unaccompanied children in jail-like facilities not designed for kids. >> it's a complicated problem, no doubt about it. we're sending the message clearly in the region, now 0 is not the time to come. >> reporter: they say the policy is muddled and should be reversed. >> the crisis is created by the policies of this new administration. there's no other way to claim it than a biden border crisis. >> reporter: since taking office, president biden ended a trump administration policy requiring would-be refugees to remain in mexico during their asylum application process. while most are still barred, unaccompanied children are admitted. moving them between crowded border patrol stations a growing challenge. mr. biden criticized the trump administration for holding the
children in harsh facilities. >> those children are alone. nowhere to go. it's criminal. >> reporter: in may of that year the border patrol apprehended 144,000 immigrants, including 11,000 unaccompanied minors. last month the border patrol apprehended a little over 100,000 immigrants, including nearly 9,300 minors. as winter turns to spring, more my and grazie are expected to arrive in the passing week, with washington divided how to handle them. >> what should happen to those children making the trip? >> stop them before they get here. >> the administration argues they inherited a totally broken system and they're trying to put the pieces back together but these spring surges are somewhat predictable. we know more and more migrants will come and, willie, it's sort of like putting the plane together while you're already in the air. >> garrett, you wonder how long this administration can get along with blaming the trump
administration for this as we're 60 days into it. this is a signal, as senator manchin said the other day, look, whatever the message during the campaign was, it sure was interpreted the wrong way. this is a crisis. it is a crisis, saying the campaign messaging from the biden campaign is immigrants could come to the border, migrants could come and seek refuge here in the united states. so what does the biden administration do from here? >> the administration and congressional democrats, frankly, ran on a more humane immigration policy and that means they're going to let these accompanied minors into the country while they apply for asylum but what they have to do now is rapidly scale up where they're going to house them. that's why they're looking at the convention center in dallas, this nasa facility in the bay area in california. they have to find a face and humane way to shelter people in this country or the problem only gets worse, frankly. mika? >> msnbc's garrett haake live in
el paso, thank you very much. >> i've got to say john manchin is right about the permissive message that has been sent. this is a crisis and they need to alter that message. if you look back to what happened in jimmy carter in 1980, you know, it's important that they fix that message. you have a clubhouse event later today. >> yes, i do, 6:00 tonight with danielle perrer of bravo and stephanie. that's it for us. stephanie ruhle picks up the coverage now. hi, there, i'm stephanie ruhle live at msnbc headquarters here in new york city. it's tuesday, march 16th, let's get smarter. we start with the massive effort under way to change how we vote in the united states of america. as we speak, republicans in more than 40 states are pushing laws to restrict voting. civil rights activists and even big companies like coca-cola and home depot are pushing back. all of this after an