tv Morning Joe MSNBC April 8, 2021 3:00am-6:00am PDT
but i've got to tell you, my final thought today is that the orioles are in first place. i don't know how many times i'll be able to get to say that in the next few months. thank you for getting up way too early with us on this thursday morning. don't go anywhere, "morning joe" starts right now. health officials have seen a rise in what they call vaccine hesitancy because some people feel sick after their second shot and they tell people and they go, i'm not going to go get the second shot. you know what else makes you feel sick? covid makes you feel very sick. covid-19. >> that's the bottom line there. that's the choice. good morning and welcome to "morning joe." it's thursday, april 8th. >> willie, you got the shot, right? >> i got the moderna shot on monday. christina and i went together. a little bit of a dead arm for the night, but feel fine now. >> same. >> i've heard mixed reviews on what happens after the second shot. but the worst i hear is, you feel a little fluy for a day or
so and it goes away. i'm looking forward on getting the second one on the day after my birthday, the day after your birthday, may the 3rd. >> it does make you feel fluy and kind of like -- at the same time, energetic. >> i didn't feel energetic. >> you do feel a sense of joy, a little bit? and the gratitude, of, oh, my god, i can't believe i'm sitting here a year after the world shut down that they raced to make this vaccine and i'm benefiting from it and this operation is being run so well. so some of that joy and gratitude hopefully takes over the flu symptoms. >> yeah, no, i absolutely felt like incredible gratitude. it felt like history -- i really was amazed when i got my first vaccine. and i was talking about it with the nurse and saying, this is incredible, this is history. and she agreed. and it was, you know, kind of like something i'll remember forever. at the same time, the second one is challenging. and you've got to do it. >> the thing is, we had a doctor
friend tell us, if you can, try to get it in the morning and that's what i did, got it in the morning and had chills and a little fever at, you know, maybe at 12:00 or 1:00, and, you know, by 5:59, i looked at my clock, and i said, it's time to get up and get ready for my show. and so -- as i do every morning. i got up and did the show that morning. it was -- yeah, it was a couple of hours, middle of the night. but you're right, there is a real sense of relief and especially if you have family members with underlying conditions, that's almost a sense of euphoria. i've heard so many people that have had this done in new york city at the javits center. and people walk out saying, my gosh, it was something i never really expected from new york. everybody -- it was so efficient. people were polite.
we moved and out of there. it's apparently the javits center for those who have gone there and the people that are working there and helping there, it's really inspiring. and eugene daniels, you got your first shot, right? >> i did. i actually got the johnson & johnson vaccine, so i'm done. i got it on monday. >> whoa! >> i'm all done. two weeks and i'm fully inoculated. i cried. i'm a bit of a drama queen, so i cried a little bit after thinking about, you know, how bad this year has been for all of us. >> that's how i felt. >> but more importantly, the more than 550,000 people who died in this country. that's happened. i thought about my family members who have pre-existing conditions. i get to see my grandmother for the first time in a year and a half in south carolina now that we're both vaccinated. it is kind of this marvel at
technology and science, but also a reminder of how bad it has been for all of us in this country and all over the world. >> and if you think back to where we were a year ago and what we were saying a year ago, from all the experts, they say, well, you know, there never was a vaccine for aids. there never was. this vaccine took four years, that vaccine took seven years. don't expect to see this for a long time. and even if you see it, it's probably going to have a 50% efficacy, like the flu shot. you start thinking about what's happened in the past year. and it really is, it's extraordinary. it's extraordinary. and we were saying a year ago that this is going to be like nothing in the history of science, nothing in the history of this world, where you were going to have everybody, every smart mind in medicine, in science, and i.t., they were all going to be working together.
the world was going to be racing to do this. and what an extraordinary thing, when we can work together. and i think you can look at the two administrations and look at the fact that donald trump's operation warp speed knocked down a lot of barriers. that made a lot of that possible. racing towards the vaccination. and then look what joe biden has done in his administration. and they have really excelled in an area -- >> nothing short of remarkable. >> where the trump administration just usually fell short. and that was on logistics. on operations. on using the power of the entire government to spread this out. so, you know, we can -- we can celebrate this together, as a country. because the entire country may not have come together on a lot of things, but at least our science and medical communities come together to make this happen. and mika, you actually, you were
so moved at the moment. i remember you asked the nurse, who was giving you the shot, if you could take her picture, because you said, this is something -- >> i did, i'll post it. >> -- i'll remember for the rest of my life and i want to remember it and thank you. >> i couldn't wait to hug my mom and i was so grateful for it. and i was thinking of all of the people who have been separated, especially from their elderly parents, who need support and they need contact. and, you know, it is a race now to get everybody vaccinated. and by the way, new data shows -- >> hold on, i just want to say. it was so nice, you did race over to hug your mom. that was so moving. and willie, i called all my kids and said, kids, i got the shot. they said -- i said, when you coming home. you know what they said? i don't know when, but we'll get together then. >> okay, okay. what? what is wrong with --
>> sitting up on that porch alone with your arms waiting for the kids to arrive. and they just, they never came. >> take something really nice and moving and just ruin it. >> rocking in my rocking chair, eating some dreamland ribs. i've got the 'bama. nobody comes see me -- >> i'm serious. willie, i'm going to let you come down here and sit next to him and i'm going to take a break. >> it sounds like you need a break. >> but we'll get together then, dad. >> okay. so, new data shows close to 25% of u.s. adults are now fully vaccinated against covid-19. that number is expected to grow even higher soon, with 40% of adults and 75% of seniors already receiving one dose. new mexico, alaska, south dakota leading the way, fully vaccinating almost one third of their adult populations. this milestone comes as the u.s.
passes the 31 million mark for cases since the start of the pandemic. meanwhile, the more-easily spread uk variant of the coronavirus is now the more dominant strain across the united states. the more infectious variant known as b-117 continued to spread in the fall. that continued to wreak havoc overseas despite the public health restrictions that had mitigated the spread of earlier strains. cdc director dr. rochelle walensky had this to say at yesterday's covid-19 response briefing. >> the b-117 variant is now the most common lineage circulating in the united states. across the country, we are hearing reports of clusters of cases associated with day care centers and youth sports. hospitals are seeing more and more younger adults, those in their 30s and 40s, admitted with
severe disease. data suggests this is all happening as we are seeing increasing prevalence of sars-cov-2 variants. >> and covid-19 cases are increasing significantly in states like michigan, but the white house says it has no plans to shift its vaccination rollout strategy. leaders like michigan governor gretchen whitmer have called on president biden to send more vaccine to struggling states, which would be a change from the current policy of dividing vaccines based on population. here is white house covid-19 adviser andy slavitt. >> we have a long way to go today to get the country to a place where each of our states has reached the number of vaccinations that the population can handle. so, by and large today, we are still not entirely, but by and large, we are still allocating vaccines based upon population, until we get to that point. >> meanwhile, authorities in the uk now recommend the astrazeneca
vaccine not be given to adults under the age of 30 due to growing evidence the shot may be linked to rare blood clots. that's the astrazeneca vaccine. ongoing investigations through the european medicines agency have shown some reports of clots in astrazeneca recipients, most reported in women under 60, though they are described as very rare. regulators across the uk and europe continue to emphasize the benefit in receiving the vaccine far outweighs the risks. british officials recommended the age limit out of an abundance of caution, suggesting people under 30 get an alternative vaccine to the one provided by astrazeneca. mika? president biden is expected to announce executive actions on gun violence today. he will direct the department of justice to help stop the creation of homeland guns without a traceable serial number, known as ghost guns. and to better regulate stabilizing braces, which
effectively turn a pistol into a short-barreled rifle without the same regulations. he is also expected to direct the doj to issue a new report on firearms trafficking and to publish model red flag legislation for states to follow. the administration will also invest in evidence-based community violence intervention rather than incarceration. meanwhile, biden will announce david chipman as his new head of the bureau of alcohol, tobacco, firearms and explosives. chipman is a senior policy adviser at the gun control advocacy group giffords and was a special agent at atf for 25 years. >> let's bring in right now former u.s. senator and msnbc political analyst, claire mccaskill. also historian and chair of the rogers presidency at vanderbilt, roger meacham. on occasion, he unofficially advises joe biden. he also will call me up and tell
me what netflix series to watch. we have those two things out of the way. we can start the business. claire mccaskill, as we talk about the new political era that we appear to be coming into, talking about, you know, fdr from '32 to '80 and moving past this reagan that we seem to be moving past, there are a lot of things that are passing under joe biden that are passing with 75% support that would not have had that much support ten years ago. guns, most of these gun issues, i suspect, will probably be 75, 80% supported by the american people. a new poll that was out a week ago shows that overwhelming support for background checks. background checks at gun shows. background checks at private sales. even military-style weapons,
over 60% of americans support that. this gun debate, the shape of it appears to be moving even more, moving more in joe biden's direction. but will that make any difference to any republicans? or will they still continue to be voting on the wrong side of an 80/20 issue? >> it's kind of weird. what is the republican party for right now? i thought it was really interesting yesterday that joe biden led so strongly with the message, bring us your ideas. i mean, the republican party has become the party of grievance, negativity, darkness and doom. this is so far from the profile of ronald reagan, it would give you whiplash to look at the two different models. they just are against
everything. and especially since the white house is picking issues that have broad bipartisan support. whether it was covid relief or infrastructure or some gun safety, they are staying in a safe lane where they are saying to the country, we want to do things that you support. our only problem is, we've got a republican party that's afraid of voters and is trying to make everything about a cultural grievance and that just isn't going to win elections for the republicans going forward. it's not going to work. >> you know, john, during the trump era, we would often ask the question, where are the republicans that are going to step up and speak out, and that rarely ever happened. rarely ever happened, until after january the 6th. and then a few started to step out. here, i'm just wondering, again, it's not even -- talking about political virtue here, i'm just talking about political wisdom. how much longer are republicans going to allow themselves to be set up and knocked down like
bowling pins on one issue after another? joe biden is setting them up and they're falling fitter every time. covid relief, 75% of americans support. this infrastructure plan, about 75% of americans from a poll we showed yesterday support it. these gun safety laws that we're talking about right now, i subpoena at least 75% of americans are going to support these gun safety laws. over 80% of americans support expanded nearly universal background checks. but again, republicans are on the wrong side of these issues. and let's just not even ask for purposes of this question what's right, what's wrong, let's ask what's politically expedient and what's politically stupid? why can't the republicans figure out a way to say, yes on 75/25
issues? why can't one? why can't a dozen? it's in their political interest. >> it is. and the only thing that can happen is they'll have to lose a bunch of elections, which is really hard, because of the infrastructure of incumbency, which ends up in the dorky weeds, but in those dorky weeds grow these mighty oaks. and we've talked about this a lot. my sense is the republican party has to melt down and morph into something else. it's like the wigs in the middle of the 19th century. they don't have a coherent answer to the central question of the time, which is how to build an infrastructure for a demographically diverse country in a global era. it's a fundamental question. it's really hard. no one has all the right
answers, but you have to have a coherent response to that. and i think all the time about why is it that this generation of republicans have fallen so totally into the will to power, right? that's what they want. this is entirely about power. it's not about principle. see 2015-2021 if you have any doubt about that. and my theory is that beginning with eisenhower through nixen through president reagan, through both bushes, you had a conservative base that felt they showed up on election day, they did the work, and they got earl warren has chief justice. they got the school prayer decision. they got roe v. wade out of a largely nixon court. president reagan of sainted memory, federal spending went up. george h.w. bush we all knew made a decision to do what was right for the country, knowing,
as he put it, as eloquently as he ever could, he'd be dead meat in the election, and he was. and george w. bush will tell you that there's a line from t.a.r.p. to trump. >> right. well, claire mccaskill, with this being the case. with me just stating again, fact, not opinion, that the republican party since 2009 has more often than not been the party of "no." and they've not come forward with a single major unifying plan on health care. they've said "no" to one popular bill after the other. i'm just curious, i read what my friend, joe manchin said yesterday. i know you worked with him. and joe said that he's opposed to reconciliation, he's opposed
to any sort of reform on the filibuster, that he thinks they should work with the republicans. he wants to work with the republicans. well, i want my cat, meatball, to play chopin, i really do. it would be nice as i was having an early dinner to hear meatball get on the piano and play choppin. he's not going to do it. but there is a chance he'll do it before the republican party will do anything even remotely constructive, if it remotely helps america if it helps joe biden. >> first of all, it's not just joe manchin. joe manchin is staking out this territory because it is helpful to him politically. he also believes in it, but it's helpful to him in a state like west virginia for him to be swimming upstream. keep in mind, i don't know that there are very many states that had a bigger margin for donald trump than west virginia. so that's first.
second, i think the way around this problem, and i think how you get joe manchin to move is by setting up votes, making republicans stand in a bloc against the things that most americans want. set up votes on gun safety. set up votes on this infrastructure plan. and once the republicans show themselves, then maybe i'll be surprised. biden spent a lot of time talking about how he's willing to compromise. maybe some of them will come to the stable and maybe there will be a compromise. and that would be the best result that we would get something really major through with the support from both parties in congress. but if they stand unified in a monoloathic way against these popular pieces of legislation, that's how you move joe manchin. it's not by screaming at him on twitter. >> no, no, no. nobody's talking about screaming at him on twitter. but i'm just saying, by him saying that he's not going to -- and you don't back him into the
corner. i've told a lot of democrats, don't back him into the corner or kyrsten sinema. but by joe manchin saying, let's just work with the republicans, mitch mcconnell's already said, we're standing shoulder to shoulder. we're going to all vote against the infrastructure plan, just like they all voted against the covid plan. they've got to do what's best for them. they've got to do what's best for their district. but they think that saying "no" to joe biden on just about everything. so isn't joe manchin saying, when he's in -- for no reform of infrastructure, i mean, of the filibuster, and i also really don't like reconciliation. isn't he dooming joe biden to having one bill after another going up in flames? >> no, he is, right? because if president biden can't pass anything through reconciliation, at this point, there's no -- there's nothing that he can do. the thing about the covid
relief -- and there's no other option. when the covid relief bill, it was so popular, there was also a timetable on it, right? and so it continued to be popular, because a lot of these unemployment benefits were going to run out. the white house has said, they are fine with this taking -- you know, passing in the summer, hoping to have work done on it by memorial day, maybe with republicans, but the danger there for them, especially now that you have joe manchin saying what he's saying, like you said, dooming infrastructure, is that republicans are going to have a lot more time to kind of try and get a cohesive message around it. during covid, what they were concentrating on was more of the cultural stuff, you know, dr. seuss, potato head, mr. and mrs. or otherwise. and there was ant conversation they were having and message about covid. americans lack bipartisanship, but they don't really like sausage making and the backdoor trading and this person gets
this. so what is possible now is that as republicans come in and hit infrastructure. as you have a democratic part of it that's not a united spot, maybe some of these moderate senate democrats, joe manchin, kyrsten sinema and others who don't want to do this through reconciliation, you have the american people having less tolerance for it. you're hearing, we're doing this and compromising on this and this. and that is a danger for the white house. because it may become less popular, even though the infrastructure at this point is pretty popular. >> all right. eugene, up next, you're going to tell us about the one question that's about to dominate politics through the you remember summer. plus a rare walkback from mitch mcconnell, after he told corporations flat-out to stay out of politics, former house republican speaker john boehner also accuses former president trump of inciting january's
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willie, i was surprised at the number of historians that called me up and said, the comparison of the red sox comeback to the battle of midway was spot-on and they wondered if i had a doctorate in history. but if we're going to talk about that win on monday night, i think we have to go back to the norman conquest of 1066 when we're talking about -- >> getting into meacham territory here. >> -- the actual sweep of the
rays. i mean, it's extraordinary. >> break out the red sox. >> well, you know what, you know what, it's time to break them up, because they're going to be 159-3. lemire and i already have this figured out. instead of worrying about a salary cap two year from now, let's just break them up right now. they're looking way too good. but the yankees, if the red sox game last night looked like the norman conquest of 1066. the yankees game last night with the orioles, that was more like vinny barbarino pushing around "horror shack." >> we're all over the place with our references. yes. i'll say this right now for the benefit of kasie hunt, the first place baltimore orioles beat the yankees in extra innings, 11 innings at yankees stadium. out at the plate, that was the potential game-tying run. what a gun there from right field. the yankees are mired in second
place, one game back of the might, might baltimore orioles. >> mighty baltimore orioles. and claire mccaskill, i understand you support a team in the central time zone. not sure if that's aa, the further -- the more sort of west you go, if it's aa or single "a," but i think your team is 4-2 right now. i mean, listen, i actually -- jack and i went to see the cardinals in spring training, as you know, and my god, how frightening to see goldschmidt on first bay and aaron hutto on third. just seeing those guys jog out on the field for the first time, jack and i looked at each other and were like, whoa, this is frightening. that is a team built to win. >> yeah, we just won three in a row. and we had a little bit of high emotions in cincinnati over the weekend, where we had a bench-clearing brawl.
but, carlson is really hot. we're talking about arnotto and goldie, but this guy carlson is dinging them out of the park. guess what will happen? the cardinals will be there again in october and i'll torment you with it. >> you can do that. >> she will. >> but about that whole bench-clearing brawl, at least they had the good judgment of not doing that in the middle of a worldwide pandemic. so good on you, claire mccaskill of st. louis cardinals. >> yeah, not good. not good. >> jon meacham, speaking of the pandemic lifting up, i have been following your blog posts. you're very excited about polo season coming up. tell me -- >> yeah, yeah. >> has university of the south fielded a polo team yet that you feel like you're prepared to go to east hampton and have them
compete in a -- you know, in a robust way, as you like to say. come on, fellas. let's compete -- >> a full and frank exchange. i called barnicle to try to get the best possible pems cup recipe for the actual fun and you know, it's important, because, you know, you can't harm the horses, you know. it's a cooperation, it's two wings. it's the public and private coming together. and i think that basically, we need to be a little kinder for the polo people. kinder and gentler. >> okay. >> okay. well, thank you. >> always back to 41. >> thank you, everybody, for this big waste of time. let's get to the news. former republican house speaker john boehner is pointing the blame for the deadly january 6th riot squarely at the former president. "the new york times" obtained an excerpt from boehner's new book, where he says the former president, quote, incited that
bloody insurrection for nothing more than selfish reasons. and he says the republican party has been taken over by whack jobs. according to the times, boehner writes that trump's refusal to accept the result of the election not only cost republicans the senate, but led to mob violence, adding, it was painful to watch. boehner goes on to say trump claimed voter fraud without any evidence and repeated those claims, taking advantage of the trust placed in him by his supporters and ultimately betraying that trust. in an e-mailed statement to "the times," trump responded, asking, was he drinking when he made those -- oh, god, whatever. he responded, and you can imagine imagine. john boehner will be our guest on "morning joe" this coming tuesday. john boehner, one of a few republicans who will flat-out
call out trump for the things that he is clearly responsible for. >> and if you look at the cover, if we can put that back up, the cover of speaker boehner's book, the question is answered right there, he's got a glass of merlot in his left hand and makes no apologies for it. >> yeah, there you go. >> claire mccaskill, this is fascinating to watch. obviously, speaker boehner came out and said all the things that a lot of people have beening asaying about president trump for a couple of years. when we hear from people outside of the government now going after donald trump, when they were inside the government, perhaps supporting donald trump, in the case of speaker boehner in 2016, would he be saying these things? would he have been saying these things around january 6th were he the sitting speaker and not somebody outside government writing the book? >> probably not. you know, but let's be real. outgoing congressional leaders are never wildly popular. being a congressional leader kind of ensures you a low
approval rating in the united states of america. but it is a little frustrating to have boehner speak so forcefully now. it would have been helpful. i don't know if it would have made a difference. but it would have been helpful if he would have spoken out when donald trump started talking about the only way he can lose is by fraud. that happened last spring. that wasn't something that happened after the election. he started saying the only way he could lose was by fraud months before people went to the polls. that's when john boehner should have talked about the whack jobs. that's when he should have talked about how bereft the republican party was of principle and how bad donald trump had been for the things they believe in. so i'm not totally impressed that he's speaking out now. >> so, jon meacham, john boehner was sort of pushing back from time to time and i will say that mitch mcconnell on january the
6th actually spoke out against what was happening on january the 6th. so there were some instances. we saw james langford change his vote because of what happened on january the 6th. and of course, mitt romney and a few others were speaking out. but what i find fascinating is that john boehner is criticizing this republican party, just like he was criticizing -- he's criticized ted cruz in the past and tea party -- sort of the tea party movement in the past and where it's gone. it's very interesting, when i was there, john boehner was a member of the establishment. and jeb bush, you know, it's just so interesting how the establishment itself has been pushed out of the mainstream of the republican party. that it has -- it's become a
completely different party. not just in the past 25 years, just in the past five years. >> oh, yeah, i don't think -- this idea that there's a group of sa traps, if only they could beam in and speak truth on fox, the republic would be saved. i think we're way past that. we're still fighting nascent fascism in this country, let's be very clear. and when senator mcconnell said what he said about the insurrection and said after he voted against impeachment, what he said about impeachment, it's a little like the line in tom sawyer, where an evangelist came through town, who was so good, that they said huck finn was saved until tuesday. so they get saved until tuesday, then they forget. and you know, you end up with this, i think, this joe mccarthy versus margaret chase smith probable if they care about how they're seen, which they
self-evidently do not, or they -- or i guess more to the point, they care about who's doing the seeing, as i remember, boehner ran afoul of the freedom caucus, right, which feels incredibly quaint, that the freedom caucus would be trying to undo a deal that boehner was trying to make with obama. but i do think that boehner moment, and correct me if i have this timeline wrong, that does feel like kind of a last gasp until this administration of 2013, 2014, where they were trying to legislate. this was ford and o'neal and they were actually trying to get a deal and it fell apart because the base wouldn't go along. and to me, what's interesting about that, you go back to the '41 stuff again, but go back to
1990, gingrich and everybody bolted on bush 41, but they got the bill passed. when they bolted on boehner, they couldn't pass the bill. >> let's bring into this conversation "washington post" columnist max boot. he's a senior fellow at the counsel on foreign relations. and max, your most recent column for "the washington post" is entitled, the gop can't be saved. center-right voters need to become biden republicans. and in it, you write in part this. the gop remains a cult of personality for the worst president in the u.s. history. it has become a bastion of irrationality, conspiracy conspiracymongering, racism, nativism. centrists have a binary choice. support either an increasingly extremist and obstructionist republican party or a democratic party that under president biden is working to solve our most
pressing problems. biden is governing from the new center, while republicans are increasingly catering to the far right, with shrill, divisive rhetoric and anti-democratic actions, such as bills to restrict voting. under those circumstances, those of us on the center right can't afford a third party flirtation. we need to become biden republicans. >> yeah, max, progressives certainly need to be warned and certainly need to prepare themselves for that reality, because just look at the suburbs of atlanta. the suburbs of atlanta that always voted for republicans, at least in the last 30, 40 years, always voted for republican presidents, would always lift republican presidential candidates to victory. and they're leaving. that's happening in suburbs from charlotte to phoenix. and where are those people going to go?
well, i don't know about you, i'm an independent, but at some point, they're going to have to make a decision, and chances are good as the republican party turns further and further inward on themselves and they're talking about dr. seuss and talking about mr. potato head, they're going to become conservative democrats. and when that happens, the democratic party is going to expand. there's likely going to be an fdr-style coalition. it is going to become the dominant source in republican politics, but it is not going to be a center-left party if these trends -- and i know nowhere elsewhere former republicans and conservatives who support liberal democracy go. if they're going to a party of the democratic party. so that party expands and becomes more moderate.
becomes a little more conservative than it is right now, right? >> yeah, no, i think that's exactly right, joe. this feels to me like a moment like the early 1980s. when we had the reagan democrats who we thought that the democratic party was too left wing, went to the republican party. those were the blue collar-type of voter who made the republican party more populist, provided a huge part of the reagan coalition. and i think we're seeing something very similar going on right now with a very different demographic, because you still have the people who are high school graduates, they're still staying in the republican party, white high school graduates are staying in the republican party, but you're seeing increasingly college graduates migranting towards the democrats. suburban voters are migrating towards the democrats. and i think that joe biden has an historic opportunity to accelerate and cement that transformation of american politics. and i think he's doing a very good job right now, because even though he's not winning any republican voter for his
legislation so far, like his big economic stimulus bill, he is winning a lot of support in the country at large. and you're seeing 60 to 70% of americans supporting him on his covid fighting and his economic plans. you're seeing huge support for his infrastructure bill, despite all the option and obstructionism from republicans. and you know, while biden is grappling with these major issues, he's trying to address these massive problems we face like the pandemic and the economic meltdown. as you say, what are republicans talking about? they're talking about dr. seuss and potatohead. they're trying to wage these culture wars, because they know that's what their base likes, that's what keeps the cash registers ringing and what keeps fox viewers excited. but they're increasingly tangential to the real bids of american politics and american governance. and republicans are just marginalizing themselves in this alternative universe of alternative facts, where republicans and democrats seem
much more centrist and much more pragmatic right now, which i think will further accelerate the shift in american politics. >> jon meacham is with us and has a question. jon? >> max, when you talk to people whether or not signing on immediately to your biden republican platform, what do they say? what do conservative intellectuals, individuals who have spent so much time thinking about america's role in the world, thinking about how the republican party can be an engine for liberty, not only at home, but abroad, do they see a post-trump future or at this point, is everybody just hunkered down and waiting to see if everything passes? >> well, it's hard for me to even talk about, who are the conservative intellectuals anymore, because i think there has been a massive bifurcation during the trump era. and you've some of these
so-called conservative intellectuals who have become trump lap dogs and apologists who have gone deep into the swamps of nativism, nationalism, xenophobia, and have no credibility left as true intellectual leaders of the party. and then you have others, you know, folks like bill kristol and others and myself included, who have basically thrown up our hands in disgust at the republican party and feel very hopeless right now. there are certainly some folks, i think some moderate, sensible folks like adam kinzinger and others, the congressman from illinois, who are still fighting for the future of the republican party. but right now, just looking at the trend lines, to me it looks pretty hopeless, which was this new poll that came out that showed that 60% of republicans think that the 2020 election was stolen from trump. and 50% think that the capitol attack on january 6th was led by
left-wing leaders trying to frame the president. that is what's believed by a majority of the party. on issue after issue, i think republicans under trump have betrayed everything they used to stand for. they are no longer the party of fiscal responsibility. they are no longer the party of international leadership. they are no longer the party to have free trade. they are certainly no longer the party of morality and family values. they are no longer the party of law enforcement after the way that trump trashed the fbi and other law enforcement agencies. so you know, what does the republican party stand for anymore? it's become this populist, extremist organization that really caters to, you know, to the craziest elements in american politics, folks who show up at places like cpac or watch, you know, fox news and believe everything that they hear. that's not -- you know -- that's not a mainstream view and it's also -- i don't think there's a credible intellectual position of the republican party represents anymore. they're not -- it's not the republican party of the 1980s,
i'm sad to say. >> max, is this an era of performtive grievance for the republican party? in other words, is this just one of these phases that a party goes through and maybe people like you will come back home to to a changed republican party, five years from now, a decade from now, or do you believe this is now set in cement? that this is what the republican party is in the era of donald trump? >> well, you know, nothing is forever. and obviously, the republican party and the democratic party have been around for a long time. the republicans have been around since the 1850s. and in those years, they have stood for a lot of different things. there's huge, vast differences, you know, between teddy roosevelt and herbert hoover, and you know, ronald reagan and donald trump. i mean, they have been led by many different people with many different views. so i don't want to say that the republican party, you know, a hundred years from now will look like the republican party today. but for the next few election cycles, for the foreseeable future, i don't see anything different happening.
because this just seems like a party that remains very much a cult of personality for donald trump. and republicans don't seem to care this guy is probably the worst president in u.s. history. he is responsible for hundreds of thousands of needless deaths. he's responsible for an attack on the u.s. capitol. and yet 80% of republicans continue to support donald trump. that to me is a picture of a party that has -- that can't be saved in the near future. that it's not a party that i think sensible, center-right voters can possibly support anytime soon. >> couldn't agree more. it's confounding, why they keep going back to that same well that has caused so much failure and embarrassment to this party. and changed the party. max boot, thank you very much. your piece in "the washington post," "the gop can't be saved" is a good read. we appreciate it. and speaking of good reads, eugene danielson, politico, you have a piece on the biggest
question that will face washington in the coming months. tell us what that is. >> the question is, what is infrastructure. what does it mean? what is in that definition? because they're clear -- the republicans think of it one way, and the democrats and the white house think of it as a completely different way. the way that the white house, when you look at this infrastructure and jobs plan, which is a really important piece, that it is for them, also a jobs plan, that infrastructure is basically, what does this country need to operate? right? it is not just roads and bridges and internet, it is also, you have this $400 billion for the care economy. you have $590 billion for domestic manufacturing, research, and job training initiatives. and it is a rethinking, a recalibrating of the way that we have thought about the word "infrastructure," for a very long time. and honestly, when people have
talked about infrastructure being a bipartisan issue, you know, they're talking about potholes and they're talking about fixing these huge bridges, which is a huge part of this bill. a large part of this bill is that. but the larger part of the bill is things that aren't that. and that's something that the democratic party and president biden are going to have to contend with. and i think that in 2021, you know, them talking about, after the pandemic, people are rethinking government and what government should be doing in their lives. that's republicans and democrats, right? republicans have liked a lot of this intervention from the government, if you will, over the last year. and i think this white house knows that and they are approaching every single bill that they have, every single plan that they have being something that is kind of holistic about the economy. and though the president has talked about this being an infrastructure bill, a lot of the stuff is about jobs.
you know what i mean? and i think that's going to make it a little bit more difficult for them to sell this to republicans and also a little bit more difficult for some of these moderate democrats to get onboard with that redefinition. >> i don't know. claire, i see republicans as just the party of "no" and no other ideas. and this will be another game of that. the president is trying to put forward something that shores up this country, creates jobs, obviously, addresses the basic infrastructure as we would traditionally know it. roads, bridges, everything else, but also shoring up people's lives. and that also creates jobs. i saw marsha blackburn tweeting yesterday, saying, this is not about infrastructure. i think complaining because elder care was in there. well, people in her state will be very happy to have assistance with elder care so they can work. so that they can help their
families. it seems to me like this is going to be another game where the republicans look unbelievably harsh and stupid and with no alternatives. am i speaking too strongly? >> i don't think you are. i think what joe biden is going to do -- he's laying out his wish list and he said yesterday, inaction is not an option. i'm going to listen to other ideas. and he is challenging the republican party to come with ideas. and if you go through this bill, i get it that some of this is not traditional infrastructure. but nobody is going to argue about whether or not the electoral grid -- i mean, people in texas were boiling snow in their bathtubs to be able to flush their toilets just a few months ago. this is about the electrical grid. this is about rural broadband. and some of this health care stuff is really important to rural america and that's red.
those are all represented by republican members of congress. so it's -- you're going to have to take this apart piece by piece and build it back piece by piece. maybe there'll be a haircut for some of the social networks that spending that is included in this bill in order to get it across the finish line, but this is a good place to start. and he's challenging the republicans saying, okay, tell me what you're for. don't tell me what you're against. tell me what you're for. >> just once, talk about what you're for and something that actually helps the american people. it's going to be interesting to see how this question gets answered. claire mccaskill, eugene daniels, and jon meacham, thank you very much for being on this morning. and ahead, u.s. labor secretary marty walsh will be our guest. "morning joe" is coming right back. be our guest. "morning joe" is coming right back
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welcome back to "morning joe." it's just about the top of the hour. live look at the white house this morning. we want to bring you the latest in the justice department investigation of republican congressman matt gaetz. nbc news has learned that as part of their probe, investigators are looking into his travel to the bahamas with women and specifically whether those women were paid to travel for sex. which could violate federal law. gaetz, who has not been charged with any crime has denied wrongdoing. there has been no response to a request for comment sent to his representatives. in a statement to cbs news, which first reported the story, a spokesperson said in part,
congressman gaetz has never paid for sex nor has he had sex with an underaged girl. what began with blaring headlines about sex trafficking has now turned into a general fishing exercise about vacations and consensual relationships with adults. we will keep following that story. it is just about the top of the hour now. let's bring in msnbc contributor, mike barnicle. white house reporter for the associated press, jonathan lemire. white house correspondent for pbs "newshour" and msnbc contributor, yamiche alcindor, and pulitzer prize-winning reporter covering racial injustice for "the new york times" magazine, nicole hanna jones joins us. good to have you all onboard this hour. willie? >> let's dive right now. mitch mcconnell is now softening his stance on companies wading into politics, after issuing a stark warning to corporations that have been speaking out against restrictive voting laws,
mcconnell now is walking back some of his comments. >> let me -- i didn't say that very artfully yesterday. they're certainly entitled to be involved in politics. they are. my principle complaint is, they didn't read the darned bill. they got intimidated into adopting an interpretation of that, given by the georgia democrats in order to help get their way. and what did it cost them? it looks like it cost them the all-star game. >> senator mcconnell was criticized after he told companies to stop speaking out on political issues, but of course, continued to welcome their financial contributions. we're also learning more about what tipped the scale for major league baseball's boycott of georgia politics, while governor brian kemp named stacey abrams as a factor in what he called the league's cave to the fears and lies of liberal activists. it appears actually that abrams strongly urged the league not to move the all-star game from her home state. according to greg bluestein of
the atlanta journal constitution, abrams did speak with a senior league official prior to the change of venue. in that conversation, abrams reportedly reiterated her position against boycotts. mlb officials say the league has been having conversations with politicians from both parties and the commissioner's decision was not based on a single conversation with any given political leader. so, mike barnicle, this is in line with what we were talking about yesterday. again, stacey abrams, of course, she objects to the law in georgia, did not want to see an estimated $100 million of revenue leave her state, hurting many of the people she's worked her life trying to help. so how did this go down, exactly? was it the pressure from players who were telling the commissioner's office they wouldn't show up for the game that ultimately forced them to move? >> i think that was part of it, willie, certainly, the pressure from the players association. also part of it was rob manford
himself. i think he wanted to bring baseball literally into the 21st century. baseball has always lagged behind the other professional sports, especially the national basketball association. in terms of addressing prominent social and cultural issues, especially regarding race in this country. and this is an opportunity for him to declare major league baseball on the right side of history, which he did. and he did it by himself. he didn't ask for a vote of all the owners. he had an executive committee meeting last friday morning and zoom meeting and announced he has decision after that. but the decision was uniquely the commissioner of baseball's decision. with regard to stacey abrams and senators ossoff and warnock, it's obviously, clearly, what they did was in line with who they are. they represent the state of georgia. they're running for re-election. in stacey abrams' case, she's potentially a candidate for governor. so you don't want to be saying, yeah, i gut the all-star game
out of atlanta. i deprived you, the peanut vendor, of a day's worth of work, stuff like that. that makes sense for them to have done that. and in the long haul of history, it made sense for rob manford to delay, uh-uh, we're out of here. >> but, you know, nicole, brian kemp keeps repeating in all of his public statements, it seems, in all of his written statements, that woke radicals like stacey abrams moved the game out of atlanta. time and time again, from the beginning of this, stacey abrams has made it quite clear that she fought to keep the game in atlanta. and he knows that, and yet he continues to lie in his press releases about stacey abrams. he continues to lie in his public statements about stacey abrams. >> yeah, i mean, but this is not surprising. we know that these laws are based upon lies. these laws are based upon lies
that the election was stolen, that there were illegitimate voters that led to the democrats to really sweep the state of georgia. so the least surprising thing is that now there's a continuing of that lie, because there are consequences being paid in the state for the decision to pass this voter suppression law. stacey abrams is a convenient boogie woman, so to speak, and it's effective for their base. stacey abrams is a politician. she's not a civil rights activist. she's going to be calling for something different than activists on the ground are calling for and we have to report to truth. >> mm-hmm. in a rare display of bipartisan cooperation, kentucky governor andy bashir signed legislation yesterday expanding early voting in the bluegrass state. >> voting is the bedrock of our
democracy. and i firmly believe we should be making it easier for kentuckians to vote and participate in the democratic process. this new law is a first step to protect every individual's right to make their voice heard by casting their ballots in a secure and convenient manner on the date and time that works best for them. while some states have stepped in a different direction, i'm really proud of kentucky. >> the pressure provides for three days of no-excuse early in-person voting. it also allows counties to establish voting centers, where any registered voter can cast their ballot, regardless of their precinct. >> so, jonathan lemire, kentucky, obviously, a very red state, but they have a democratic governor. does this come down to battle between states with democratic governor and republican voters? >> joe, it certainly appears that way and i think we are
seeing georgia, the governor and the state legislatures are all republicans. we have seen movements in other states to enact voting rights, in their words, reform. but of course, advocates fear that it will cut down on access to the ballot in states like texas, arizona, florida, and south dakota and a few others that are dominated by republicans. this, of course, in kentucky, a different model with the expansion of early voting. and we saw last year in the 2020 election, record turnout in terms of people who wanted to vote early. some of that was due to the pandemic. people didn't want to stand in long voting lines, potentially get sick. but it's also a trend of the future. we have seen other states, colorado among them, the new host of the all-star game, want to push that. and one note on the all-star game, if i may. talking to someone yesterday involved in the process, part of this was also major league baseball's decision, they were receiving pressure from the players, but they wanted to alleviate the burden from the players. they felt like there were going
to be high-profile stars, african-american stars among them who were going to boycott that game if it was going to be in georgia and what a mess that would have been for the sport. also, if this game had remained in georgia, there would have been every day, all-stars from every clubhouse would have been asked, are you going to go to the game, are you going to go to this game? it was already political, this person said, familiar with major league baseball's thinking, and that they wanted to sort of make the decision, even if it stirs up the headlines now, they wanted to take the burden off the players, between now and july. it's also a sport, mind you, that has labor issues, perhaps on the horizon, and they didn't want to add any other tension to already the relationship between the owners and the players union. >> and it was president biden himself who called for the all-star game to be moved in an interview with espn the next day it was. president biden also was pushing back against republican criticism of his more than $2 trillion infrastructure and jobs plan. yesterday, the president warned against inaction, urging his critics to think beyond roads and bridges. >> debate is welcome.
compromise is inevitable. changes are certain. we'll be open to good ideas and good faith negotiations. but here is what we won't be open to. we will not be open to doing nothing. inaction is simply not an option. i've heard from my republican friends say that it's too big. they say, why not focus on traditional infrastructure. fix what we've already got. we are america. we don't just fix for today, we build for tomorrow. the idea of infrastructure has always evolved to meet the aspirations of the american people and their needs. and it's evolving again today. we need to start seeing infrastructure through its effect on the lives of working
people in america. by the way, i didn't hear any of our friends who are criticizing this plan say that the corporate tax cut, whichadded $2 trillion to the debt, the trump tax cut, $1.9 trillion in debt wasn't paid for. the vast majority of which went to the top 1% of the wage earners. i didn't hear anybody hollering in this recovery, the so-called, before i became president, this k-shaped recovery, where billionaires made $300 million more during this period. where's the outrage there? i'm not trying to punish anybody, but dammitt, maybe it's because i'm from an ordinary neighbor, i'm sick and tired of ordinary people being fleeced.
>> there's that scranton versus fifth avenue argument that worked so well for him during the campaign. there's the line. i think it really shows his viewpoint in everything that he's been doing in the administration. we're americans, we don't just fix what we got, we plan for tomorrow. it's a pretty strong statement, a pretty strong argument, to pull even more people in on this infrastructure plan. >> we had secretary buttigieg on the show yesterday. and yes, they want to go out and fix bridges and roads, to be clear, but also look to creating jobs in the future. clean energy jobs, building electric cars in america. things like that. trying to look past what conventionally people have thought of as infrastructure. and in some cases, maybe pushing the bounds of that. yamiche, it was interesting to listen to president biden and secretary ramondo. both hinted they would be open to negotiations of rising the
corporate tax rate. suggesting perhaps that's more from joe manchin than for republicans who have already said they're not going to vote for this bill. where do you see that playing out as they try to rope in the remaining democrats who are still a little shaky on this. >> in some ways, as you said, they weren't really hinting at it, they were openly saying, we are happy to figure out thousand change this corporate tax rate, so we can get to a place where everyone agrees. and that idea really felt like it was messaging to their own democrats. the issue is of course, yes, maybe they'll have to debate with republicans about what's in the bill if they want to make it bipartisan. but before they can even do that, they have to get the democratic caucus on the same page, and we've seen senator manchin signal that he's for a 25% corporate tax rate, not a 28% corporate tax rate. so you already see the white house and the commerce secretary trying to really signal that they're willing to come to the terms that joe manchin seems to
be more comfortable with. when you zoom out and look at what this infrastructure plan is and what they're describing it as, they're talking about the scaffolding around which society functions. and through which society functions. they're talking about wages, they're talking about clean water, they're talking about access to broadband. all of these things are really key to the way that americans function and joe biden is saying, we have to look at that in this way. republicans vehemently disagree with him. they look at $400 billion, the home health care aide that will predominantly impact women of color, low-wage earners, saying that's not part of infrastructure, we don't want part of this bill. of course, president biden is saying, that is part of infrastructure. it's how people are getting paid. if we zoom out even more, all of this is connected to this idea that there is this pursuit of happiness that we in america talk about, about surviving and
thriving in america, and the biden administration officials tell me, that means you have to not only have access to the ballot box, which is what georgia is, but it also means that you have to be able to afford to put a roof over your head and afford to have clean water. >> you know, nicole, this appears to be another biden bill, another plan that does shift money back from the wealthiest americans to middle class americans, working class americans, and actually in a really dramatic way shifts trends of the past 40 years. and it's so -- i won't say disconcerting, it's sneaking up on a lot of us, because joe biden has such a moderate temperament. he was known throughout his career as a moderate, delaware,
middle class guy. was never seen as a progressive champion. but the past couple of bills he's proposed, ones that he's passed, really, more dramatically moves money from the wealthiest corporations to working class americans more so than anything that's happened in 40 years. >> yes, i think we have to stop thinking about the desire to take care of most americans, to take care of working class americans as a radical agenda. and i think joe biden is showing that. that this is the america that we like to imagine that we are. one that if you work hard, you can afford to pay your bills. one where, you know, we are the most unequal of the western democracies and the pandemic has only worsened that disparity, where so much of the wealthy has gone to those who don't need anymore. and so little of our efforts of government have been around trying to bridge that gap and give a higher standard of living for all americans.
and i think what we've seen is that the party has been pushed left by years of grassroots activism where we are saying, we're supporting candidates, but we're not seeing an agenda from people that is bearing fruit from those. joe biden is listening to his base. he's listening not just to his bait, but to what the majority of americans want. we know the majority of americans are supportive of this bill, that we understand, infrastructure is also human beings. you need child care workers, you need those workers who are taking care of the people who will be building the infrastructure and watching the children of those who are building the infrastructure. so it's a comprehensive bill that i think represents the best of america and what american government can do for its citizens. >> and mike barnacle, doesn't it also address something that has been important to this president, but that has been a problem now for years, which is
income disparity. and getting people to work and paying them. >> you know, mika, this discussion we're having right now is an important one and one that's going on from coast to coast, no doubt about that, about income disparity and about the needs of ordinary people and ordinary people who have been really battered during the last year dealing with the virus. but everything that we're talking about now used to be a staple of life 50 years ago. that it would be expected that the united states congress would work together in order to put together legislative packages that actually benefited people rather than some cultural cause that they had gone off to on the right hand side of the dial as nearly the entire republican party has done. so what used to be normal in american life, in the snap of a finger, when you measure it in terms of history, 50 years ago, 60 years ago, is now a
contentious fight. and joe biden, because he wants to level out some income disparities in this country, because hep wants to create more jobs, because he wants to create more wealthy for people with a couple of kids who are struggling to get college tuitions paid, because he wants to do all of that, all of a sudden is called some loony progressive. no, that's not progressivism. that's common sense in this country. and that's growing up in scranton, pennsylvania, and looking down the street and saying, hey, can i help my neighbor? that's what this government is all about now. it's not such a radical change. it's been coming for a long time, needed for a long time and it's here. and jonathan lemire, i want to ask you, in your reporting in the white house, do you get the sense that the bend, that any bend in negotiations with the republicans, that they are open to it or they have closed the door on it completely. >> on this issue, mike, there is room for negotiation. the white house sent those signals early on that they
wanted to approach this bill different than the covid relief bill, which they wanted to get done and get done urgently. and there wasn't going to be much in the way on room for compromise. on infrastructure, they recognized differing viewpoints, including other democrats, not just republicans. and they want to give this some time. the next six, seven weeks or so for memorial day, they wanted to have a robust, open dialogue. they'll have republicans at the white house, senior aides have told me. the president wants to have these conversations. they do want to get this done and put into law by the end of the summer. but that gives them some time. and there's going to be some ability to negotiate. they're still hopeful of a bipartisan solution, but they are willing to go it alone on democrats party-only vote if needed. and it's part of the bigger piece here, is how the president views his job and the office. he had a meeting of historians over at the white house a few weeks ago, and the discussions were certainly how this was a moment that could have echos of
fdr and the new deal, lbj and the great society. an opportunity -- he indicated he wants to have a presidency that creates opportunities for people rather than erecting barriers. that includes these taxes that could help bolster parts of the middle class and help alleviate policy. but it's even a simpler yet and bigger proposal he feels like this bill is necessary to prove that democracies can still work. america has had such a tough time the last few years, torn apart from within, that he feels like the nation needs to get its own house in order to prove that democracies can deliver for its citizens. >> he's going to have to do that by ramming this through, likely with just democratic votes. let's turn to yesterday's developments in the trial of former minneapolis police officer, derek chauvin, charged with the murder of george floyd. floyd's drug use was a central
focus by the defense in yesterday's testimony, along with more on chauvin's use of force. here is use of force expert jody steiger on the stand, asked about former officer chauvin's knee on floyd's neck. >> sir, do you have an opinion to a degree of reasonable and professional certainty as to how much force was reasonable for the defendant to use on mr. floyd after mr. floyd was handcuffed, placed in a prone position, and not resisting? >> yes. >> what is that opinion? >> my opinion is that no force should have been used once he was in that position. because at the time of the restraint period, mr. floyd was not resisting. he was in the prone position. he was handcuffed. he was notattempting to evade or resist. and the pressure that was being caused by the body weight
would -- could cause asphyxia, which could cause death. >> lieutenant steiger from the los angeles police department was brought in as an expert on use of force. meanwhile, special agent james ryerson from the state's bureau of criminal investigation or bca testified to both collecting evidence and photographing chauvin the day after floyd's death. he said chauvin's body weight plus equipment was about 170 pounds of pressure on george floyd. ryerson also assessed body cam video, which led to this exchange. >> did you hear that? >> yes, i did. >> did it appear that mr. floyd said, i ate too many drugs? >> yes, it did. >> have you heard it in context? are you able to tell what mr. floyd is saying there? >> yes, i believe mr. floyd was saying, "i ain't doing no drugs." >> that's a little different than what you were asked about when you saw a portion of the video, correct? >> yes, sir.
>> forensic scientist from the bca and one from a pennsylvania lab confirmed partial pills of fentanyl and methamphetamines were found upon re-examining the patrol car and the car floyd had been inside. the lab found a less than 2% content in each drugs in the pills. that trial resumes later this morning. nicole, i was talking in an interview to val demings who was the chief of the police in orlando and served for 27 years as an officer there. and we were talking about how extraordinary it's been over the last two weeks to see law enforcement official after law enforcement official, including the chief of police in minneapolis, say very clearly and explicitly that officer chauvin violated policy. use of force experts saying, that is not anything we teach, it was excessive force. we become accustomed in many cases to see police circle the wagons around an officer, but we are certainly not seeing that here. >> it's been extraordinary,
really, to watch. because it is extremely rare, as you know, to see law enforcement willing to acknowledge that any use of force is too much and what we're watching is that this particular death is so egregious. and i found the results of the global protest, that law enforcement is not willing to stand by, for all intents and purposes was a lynching on national television. and i don't use that term lightly. what usually happens in the past is that any use of force, even deadly force, can be justified by this notion of fear. and we're seeing the defense trying to bring that up now. well, he wasn't moving or resisting at the time, but he could have started resisting later on. so that's why that force had to be applied. but you're seeing law enforcement really resisting that and the parade of law enforcement witnesses has been astounding. i think it speaks to really of a nature of this video and all of us who again and again and again
have watched this nearly ten minutes of officer chauvin kneeling on george floyd's neck. >> all right, nicole hanna jones, thank you very much. we'll be following this case very closely. and yamiche alcindor, before we go here, the president is holding an event on the gun issue today. what should we be watching for with that? >> well, what the president will be announcing today is a host of actions related to the idea that it should be more hard for people to access guns in a way that would make it dangerous for our society. so they're going to be stopping, they're going to be helping stopping the creation of ghost guns, which are these guns that are created and not seen as weapons. right now, a push for red flag laws, which are states where people can go and say this person is having a problem, but they should not be able to have access to firearms.
they're going to invest in community-based violence intervention. the doj will be publishing proposed rules to change the rules that people interact with some of the guns, including ghost guns. what you'll hear from the president essentially is this robust agenda to try to impact some of the gun legislation. i think the thing we'll not be hearing about, at least this time around is what legislative push he's going to make, because a lot of the things that he wants to do, especially when it comes to assault rifles or really beefing up background checks need to go through congress. the president will be talking about, here's the executive actions that he's taking today, but there are going to be real questions still about what really congress and what states can do to really impact some of the assault rifles and weapons that we've seen used in these mass shootings that have happened. so many of them even just this year. >> got it. yamiche, thank you so much. still ahead on "morning joe," the national republican congressional committee has a new warning for donors. stick with -- >> did you see this?!
>> yeah. stick with the monthly donations or else. we'll tell trump you're a defector. >> check the box! willie, we've talked about -- >> wow. >> you know, john talked about nascent fascism that is upon us here. can you believe they're saying, check the box and give us money every night or we'll report on you donald trump and say that you're a, quote, defector. willie, does that sound a little -- i don't know -- un-american? >> a little bit. daddy's going to be mad if you don't check the box. that story when "morning joe" comes right back. that story whe"mn orning joe" comes right back
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>> what's wrong with you? he told you to go three times. i can do it if you -- >> no, it's okay. >> you blame it on t.j. >> yes. >> my favorite -- willie, what i like, when i blame t.j. i love that after t.j. had left the show for a year, year and a half, to go on a sabbatical, because really, if you're around me long enough, you've got to leave and go on a sabbatical, it's just too tough. we were blaming t.j. for things that went wrong on the show after he had already been gone for a year. >> which, as we should point out, are always our fault. but t.j. had been at cbs for a year and we would call him out. t.j. gives a great cue, always in my ear. we blame t.j. for things that are always our fault. >> he does take too many disney cruises. >> thanks for not cueing. i'll just continue myself.
the national >> he cued you -- >> no, he cued willie. >> -- is warning donors that they will be listed -- >> you were lining up your leaf blower for the afternoon. >> stop it. can you believe that. >> you were lining up your leaf blower for the afternoon when t.j. said go. >> somebody has to actually do something around here. so defectors, being called defectors if the donors opt out of monthly donations to the house gop campaign. this is a very effective way of nudging people to donate. active on the committee's donation website, right now, is a yellow box that reads, "we need to know we haven't lost you to the radical left." the subtext that they missed is, after we rioted and stormed the capitol and totally tried to destroy our democracy. "if you uncheck this box, we will have to tell trump you're a defector and sided with the dems. check this box and we can win back the house and get trump to
run in 2024." >> all right, all right, defector. willie, seriously? >> is that real? >> it sounds like something from, i don't know, east germany. >> who did that? >> in 1987. that's bizarre. >> the nrcc, as you know better than anyone sitting here is not historically some whack job website seeking donations. it's the political arm of house republicans using a term like "defector," if you don't click this box, in other words, if you don't siphon your money to us, donald trump is going to be very displeased with you. it's the kind of language we've heard, though, with donald trump jr. has talked about people being traitors if they don't support the president of the united states. this is the cult of personality that has percolated now all the way up to the nrcc. where you have, frankly, you're either with us or against us is the message that the nrcc is putting out there and using those terms like "defector."
it used to be the kind of things that would creep republicans out if they would have said that about mitt romney or george w. bush, they would say, oh, that's creepy. but now it's for what passes for politics in the republican party. >> it's that like that loyalty oath. >> it's like the loyalty oath. jonathan, this comes -- i mean, timing is everything in here, timing is bad. this comes right after the story that showed that they used checked boxes to loot peopl's bank accounts. to go after their credit. when trump was falling behind joe biden in key months and didn't have money, they all got the instruction to be even more aggressive and to make it more difficult for middle class americans who wanted to support donald trump to figure out that if they made one contribution that the trump team, they were going to keep going in without their knowledge and getting more
and more money out of there. >> yeah. let's remember that joe biden was a fund-raising juggernaut during 2020. and the president, despite having the power and the edge of incumbency, really had a hard time keeping up. and "the new york times" did terrific reporting this week noting that the offline forums made it very difficult to make a one-time donation. that these trump supporters were sort of tricked, unknowingly, into making these recurring gifts to the president's campaign, which lasted through election day and beyond, during his nonsensical "stop the steal" argument. and a number of people who really can't afford this were forced to do it. and this certainly has shades of that. and the timing also is such, right before republicans are gathering this weekend for an important conference with a lot of party leaders. where, you might ask? palm beach, florida. right down the road from mar-a-lago. and though the events won't be at the president's club, and he's not expected to journey up
the coast to the event himself, but he is holding an event himself at mar-a-lago, where a number of republicans will be expected to attend. this is yet another moment of, where there's going to be an expectation of republican party officials to show their loyalty to the president, even as some of them, of course, are uneasy about what happened january 6th, the rhetoric about the election fraud. and would like to chart a course for the party away from the president, but so many of them want to stay close, because they believe that's what their voters want. and trump is doing his best to demand that loyalty. >> wow. coming up, we've been talking a lot about georgia's voting laws. but bills to restrict voting are advancing in dozens of states. reverend william barber joins us next to talk about that. >> did you get the leaf blower lined up? >> yeah, it's all set. lined up >> yeah, it's all set.
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major league baseball caved to fear and lies from liberal activists. they ignored the facts of our new election integrity law and they ignored the consequences of their decision on our local community. georgians and all americans should know what this decision means. it means cancel culture >> partisan activists are coming for your business. they're coming for your game or event in your hometown. and they're coming to cancel everything from sports to how you make a living. >> all right, that was georgia governor brian kemp on saturday, lashing out at major league baseball for pulling the all-star game out of georgia after what he calls an inaccurate characterization of a new voting law that president biden has called jim crow for the 21st century. joining us now, executive director and founder of the center for election innovation
and research, david becker. and co-chairs of the poor people's campaign and president of repairs of the breach, reverend william barber. good to have you both onboard. so, david becker, what would be a better way to characterize this law as we move forward? if you think there would be one. >> well, the i think the georgia law and many other laws that we're seeing being proposed in the states, first of all, ef-to realize they're based on a fantasy, on the big lie that the election was somehow stolen, when in fact the election in 2020 was the most security and transparent election we've ever had with more accurate voter lists, more scrutiny of the election from the media and partisan pole observer and the courts than ever before. and i think that's why the trump doj, fbi found that the election was secure.
when we're looking at laws like georgia's, where we see some limitations on the ability to request a mail ballot, limitations on drop boxes, criminalization of providing food and water to people waiting in line, these are really troubling. but i'm very more troubled by laws we're seeing in places like texas, which was already started from well behind where georgia was in 2020. it was already hard to vote in texas, one of the least secure states to vote and they're making it harder to vote and less secure. >> we'll get more into that in just a moment. but first, reverend barber, same question to you. what would be the best way to characterize this law, if you think that the messaging could be edited a bit. >> i do. didn't just start -- this was a train that started in 2013 after is shelby decision it took four years in court and 1,200
nonviolent protesters that got arrested. and we found out that surgical racism and surgical suppression of poor and low-well voters. it's about racism, but not only racism. voter suppression is an attack on our democracy. and we have to see this, because the attacks are happening in georgia and west virginia. in alabama and alaska. and i was talking the other cay to a white woman and a black woman in west virginia. and this is what they said, mika. they just don't want us to vote. and they said, us, who? and they said, the us that believes in living wages, public education, health care, corporations paying their fair share, and listing from the bottom. we have to have a way to show how this is an attack on democracy. and you know who said this more clearly than anybody, dr. king. at the end of the selma, montgomery, march, he said, every time there is a threat of the negro and black masses to
vote, you end up with this attempt to suppress the vote. and that's why, you have to remember, in this last election, 55% of poor and low-wealth voters voted for biden/harris. and 6 million more voters in 2016. this is voter suppression, it's surgical racism. and it's surgical suppression. it's not just racism alone. >> david, as you say, there's been so much focus on the state of georgia and all the controversy swirling there with major league baseball moving its all-star game from atlanta to denver. but there's a lot going on across the country. and you're focused in on texas and sb-7. what does that bill do? >> so, first of all, texas started out as one of the states where it was hardest to request a mail ballot. you needed an excuse. it was hard to vote early. it's one of the few states that doesn't require paper ballots that can be audited and recounted like we saw in georgia, where the presidential ballots were counted three separate times, three separate ways. it started out well behind many of the other states and this law
would make it even harder. it makes it difficult for local officials to try to make it easier for people to vote, like we saw in places like harris county, texas, where ingenious local officials tried to find ways to facilitate democracy, even in the face of the pandemic and texas' already restrictive laws. for instance, it makes it very difficult to drop your ballot off. one of the things that really troubles me, if you have a disability, which is one of the few reasons you can use to request a mail ballot, you now need to actually get a note from y doctor before you go out and are able to request a mail ballot. it also empowers partisan poll watchers and only partisan poll watchers to go into the polling places to basically roam wherever they want, possibly interfering with the process, and video voters as they're voting, if they think something is fishy going on. in comparison, even the georgia law says you can't do that. this is actually unprecedented. it's something i'm really
watching in texas. the exas house is now considering this bill and we'll have to see what happens. >> david, what's the rationale given in texas and in these states with all the restrictions we've seen. what we've heard in georgia from governor kemp is, we have to secure the elections. as we've pointed out, every time we talk about this story, court after court after court stood up and in the challenges to the election process and said, no, it was free and fair. election security experts like chris krebs have said it was the most secure election in the history of our country. so what are we hearing from lawmakers proposing these laws? >> we hear the same claims of needing to secure the election, claims of election integrity. but the simple fact is, we have never had more secure elections in the united states than we do now. we're going to need to continue to build on security over time, but we're doing a really good job of that. for instance, one of the things that's a consensus recommendation that georgia accepted and put in place for the first time in 2020, it was paper ballots that could be audited and recounted. it was the first time in two
decades that georgia offered paper ballots statewide. texas is one of the last states to have paper ballots statewide. and sb-7 in texas would delay the rollout of paper ballots to 2026, making texas likely the only state in the 2024 presidential election that doesn't have paper ballots. >> reverend barber, mike barnicle is here with a question for you. mike? >> mike, good morning. >> reverend, as you know, arguably, there are 42 or 43 states all involved in new voting laws on the books, studying new voting laws on the books. my question to you is, georgia and all of the rest of the states, including texas that david was just talking about, there's been an effort in the media at some point in the past couple of weeks, to sort of try and be evenhanded in their approach and their coverage of specific georgia laws. it's not quite as bad or as repressive as we first thought.
so my question to you is, in georgia and in all of the other states you're covering in terms of these new potential voter laws, does any of them -- do any of them make voting easier, or do all of them make voting just a little bit harder for specific groups of people? >> it's interesting. none of them make it easier. all of them make it harder. and any attempt to abridge the right to vote -- we forget, the 15th amendment says, you cannot not just deny the write, but abridge the right to vote. so what we should be doing is expanding. when we fought in north carolina and won, by the way, they wanted to roll back same-day registration and early voting. what we're seeing is every attempt to suppress the vote. but it's surgical. it's surgical, because they know they just need small percentages. and one of the things we're saying in this moment. maybe we ought to call it jim crow esquire, not just jim crow.
you need to explain this is not just about black people. but what i think we need to do in this moment is any attempt to suppress the vote is wrong now in georgia, people are calling on corporations to task, and that's right. but i want to suggest that what corporations really ought ought is stop backing the senators across this nation who have filibustered restoring the voting rights act for 2,844 days today. because if the voting rights act was in place, none of these laws would make it through preclearance. we need that bill, the john lewis bill now. we needed to grandfather all of these laws being pushed and they need to be precleared now. so what we need is litigation, legislation, and corporations to stop supporting these senators that are filibustering fixing the voting rights act. it is atrocious that today in america, we have less voting rights than we had in august of 12965 when the voting rights act
was first passed. because the supreme court gutted the voting rights act of 1965 and gutted section 5 in 2013. this will not just be won state by state. it's a federal problem. we need federal laws. we need litigation. the litigation is going to have to do hard work to prove the surgical racism. there has to be a lot of data done to prove that it's surgical racism and surgical suppression of the disabled women, young people, and so forth and so on. and the poor. >> reverend william barber and david becker, thank you both very much for coming on the show this morning. we appreciate it. and still ahead, the masters tournament gets under way today without pro golfer tiger woods. what we're learning about with what caused his rollover crash in february. "morning joe" will be right back. in february. "morning joe" will be right back
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the 85th masters tournament tees off in about four minutes. dustin johnson tees off at 10:30. not there, tiger woods who remains in the early stages of recovery following february's rollover crash near los angeles that left him with serious injuries requiring a number of surgeries. woods was traveling nearly twice the speed limit when he crashed his suv. the l.a. county sheriff's department saying yesterday woods was traveling between 77 and 84 miles per hour. they found no signs of impairment and no charges will be filed. the primary cause of the accident was, quote, driving at a speed unsafe for the road conditions and the inability to negotiate the curve of the roadway. still ahead, new developments on coronavirus as the cdc says the uk strain is now the most dominant here in
the united states. what that means for our fight against the virus. plus, labor secretary marty walsh on the biden administration's infrastructure and jobs plan. "morning joe" is coming right back. "morning joe" is coming right back ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ comfort in the extreme. ♪♪ the lincoln family of luxury suvs. ♪♪
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and people go, oh, i'm not going to go and get the second shot. but you know what else makes you feel sick? covid. makes you feel very sick. >> that is the bottom line. good morning and welcome to "morning joe." it's thursday, april 8th. you got a shot, right? >> yeah. i got the moderna shot on monday. christina and i went together. a little bit ooh a dead arm for the night, but i feel fine now, felt fine right after. and i've heard mixed reviews on what happens after the second shot, but i think the worst i hear is you feel fluy for a day or so. on my birthday, may the 3rd, the day after your birthday, i get the second shot. >> an incredible birthday gift. it does make you feel fluy and at the same time energetic. it's fairley weird. >> i didn't feel energetic. >> you do feel a sense of joy a little bit and the gratitude of oh, my god, i can't believe i'm sitting here a year after the world shut down that they raced
to make this vaccine available and this operation is being run so well. so some of that joy and gratitude hopefully takes over the flu symptoms. >> yeah. no, i absolutely felt incredible gratitude. it felt like history -- i really was amazed when with i got my first vaccine. and i was talking about it with the nurse and saying, this is incredible. this is history. and she agreed and it was, you know, kind of like something i'll remember forever. at the same time, the second one is challenging. and you've got to do it. >> the thing is, and we had a doctor friend tell us if you can, try to get it in the morning. and that's what i did, got it in the morning and had chills and a little fever, you know, maybe at 12:00 or 1:00. and, you know, by 5:59, i looked at my clock, i said it's time to get up and get ready for my show. and so as i do every morning, i
got up and i did the show that morning. it was -- yeah, it was a couple of hours middle of the night, but you're right, there is a real sense of relief and especially if you have family members that have underlying conditions, it's almost a sense of euphoria. i've heard so many people that have had this done in new york city and at the javitz center and people walk out saying, my gosh, it was something i never really expected from new york. it was so efficient. people were polite. we moved in and out of there. apparently the javitz center, for those who have gone there and the people working there and helping there, it's really inspiring. >> new data shows close to 25% of u.s. adults are now fully vaccinated against covid-19. that number is expected to grow even higher soon with 40% of
adults and 75% of seniors already receiving one dose. new mexico, alaska, south dakota leading the way, fully vaccinating almost one-third of their adult populations. this milestone comes as the u.s. passes the 31 million mark for cases since the start of the pandemic. meanwhile, the more easily spread uk variant of the coronavirus is now the dominant strain across the united states. the more infectious variant known as b117 was first identified in the uk last fall. that mutation continued to reek havoc overseas, despite the public health restrictions that had mitigated the spread of earlier strains. cdc director dr. rashell wolenski had this to say yesterday. >> the b117 variant is now the most common variant circulating
in the united states. across the country, we are hearing reports of clusters of cases associated with day care centers and youth sports. hospitals are seeing more and more younger adults, those in their 30s and 40s, admitted with severe disease. data suggests this is all happening as we are seeing increasing prevalence of sars covid 2 variants with 52 jurisdictions now reporting cases of variants of concern. >> and covid-19 cases are he krsing significantly in states like michigan, but the white house says it has no plans to shift its vaccination rollout strategy. leaders have called on president biden to send more vaccine to struggling states, which would be a change from the current policy of dividing vaccines based on population. here is white house covid-19 adviser andy slavin. >> we have a long way to go today to get the country to a place where each of our states has reached the number of
vaccinations that the population can handle. so by and large today, we are still not entirely, but by and large, we are still allocating vaccines based upon population until we get to that point. >> meanwhile, authorities in the uk now recommend the astrazeneca vaccine not be given to adults under the age of 30 due to growing evidence the shot may be linked to rare blood clots. that's the astrazeneca vaccine. ongoing investigations through the european medicines agency have shown some reports of clots and astrazeneca recipients most reported in women under 60, although they are described as very rare. regulators across the uk and europe continue to emphasize the benefit in receiving the vaccine far outweighs the risks. british officials recommended the age limit out of an abundance of caution, suggesting people under 30 get an alternative vaccine to the one provided by astrazeneca, mika. president biden is expected to announce executive actions on
gun violence today. he will direct the department of justice to help stop the creation of home made guns without a traceable serial number known as ghost guns. and to better regulate stabilizing braces which effectively turn a pistol into a short barrelled rifle without the same regulations. he is expected to dress the doj to issue a new report on firearms trafficking and to publish model regular flag legislation for states to follow. the administration will invest in evidence-based community violence intervention rather than incarceration. meanwhile, biden will announce david shipman as hi new head of the bureau of alcohol tobacco firearms and explosives. chipman is a senior policy adviser at the gun control advocacy group giffords and was a special agent at atf for 25
years. >> let's bring in claire mccaskill, historian rogers chair jon meacham. on occasion, he unofficially advises joe biden. he also once in a while will call me up and tell me what netflix series to watch. so we've got those two things out of the way, we can start to business. claire mccaskill, as we talk about the new political era that we appear to be coming into, talking about, you know, fdr from 32 to 80 and sort of moving past this reagan era that we seem to be moving past, there are a lot of things that are passing under joe biden that are passing with 75% support that would not have had that much support ten years ago. guns, most of these gun issues i suspect will probably be 75%, 80% supported by the american people. a new poll that was out a week
ago shows that overwhelming support for background checks, background checks at gun shows, background checks at private sales, even military-style weapons over 60% of americans support that. this gun debate, the shape of it appears to be changing even more moving in joe biden's direction. but will that make any difference to any republicans? will they still continue to be voting on the wrong side of an 80/20 issue? >> yes. kind of weird. what is the republican party for right now? i thought it was interesting yesterday that joe biden led so strongly with the message, bring us your ideas. the republican party has become the party of grievance,
negativity, darkness and doom. this is so far from the profile of ronald reagan, it would give you whiplash to look at the two different models. especially since the white house is picking issues that have broad bipartisan support, whether it was covid relief or infrastructure or gun safety, they are staying in a safe lane where they are saying to the country, we want to do things that you support. our own problem is, we have a republican party that's afraid of voters and is trying to make everything about a cultural grievance and that just isn't going to win elections for the republicans going forward. it's not going to work. >> you know, john, during the trump era, we often ask the question where are the republicans that are going to step up and speak out. and that rarely ever happened until after january 6th and a few started to step out.
here, i'm just wondering, and, again, it's not even -- talking about political virtue here, i'm just talking about political wisdom. how much longer are republicans going to allow themselves to be set up and knocked down like bowling wins on one issue or the other. covid relief, 75% of americans support this infrastructure plan. about 75% of americans from a poll we showed yesterday supported these gun safety laws that we're talking about right now. i suspect at least 75% of americans are going to support these gun safety laws. over 80% of americans support expanded nearly universal background checks. but, again, republicans are on the wrong side of these issues. and let's just not even ask for purposes of this question what is right, what is wrong. let's ask what is politically
expedient? and what is politically stupid? why can't the republicans figure out a way to say yes on 75/25 issues? why can't one? why can't two? why can't a dozen? it's in their best political interests. >> it is. and i think the only way it's going to happen is they're going to have to lose a bunch of elections, which is really hard because of the infrastructure of incumbentsy and partisanship, gerrymandering, etcetera, in immediately what ends up in what seems to be these dorky weeds. from the dorky weeds grow mighty oaks. my sense is the republican party has to meltdown and then morph into something else. it's like the wigs in the middle of the 19th century. they don't have a coherent answer to the central question of the time, which is how to
building a demographically diverse country in a globalized era. it's a fundamental question. it's really hard. this is entirely about power. it's not about principle. see 2015-2021 if you have any doubt about that. and my theory is that begin, eisenhower through nixon, through president reagan, through both bushes, you had a conservative base that felt they showed up on election day. they did the work. and they got earl warren as chief justice. they got the school prayer decision. they got roe versus wade out of
a largely nixon court. president reagan of sainted memory, federal spending went up. george h.w. bush, we all know, made a decision to do what was right for the country knowing he would be dead meat in the election. and he was. and george w. bush will tell you there's a line from t.a.r.p. to trump. still ahead, when it comes to the democrats' agenda, would is calling the shots, joe biden or joe manchon? that conversation is next on "morning joe." n is next on "morning joe." [sfx: psst psst] allergies don't have to be scary. spraying flonase daily stops your body from overreacting
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claire mccaskill, the republican party since 20 09, has more often than not been the party of no. they have not come forward with a single major unifying plan on health care. they have said no to one popular bill after the other. i'm just curious, i read what my friend, joe manchon said yesterday. he said he's opposed to any kind of reform on the filibuster, that he thinks they should work with the republicans. he wants to work with the republicans. well, i want my cat, meatball, to play chaupin. i really do. it would be nice to hear meatball get on the piano and play chaupin. but there is a chance he will do it before there's a chance that
the republican party will do anything constructive, that might even remotely help america if it helps joe biden. >> yeah. so first of all, it's not just joe manchon. joe mancheo is stake out his territory because it is helpful to him politically. he also believes in it. but it's helpful to him in a state like west virginia for him to be swimming upstream. i don't know that there are very many states that had a bigger margin for donald trump in west virginia. that's first. second, i think the way around this problem, and i think how you get joe manchon to move is by setting up votes. making republicans stand in a block against the things that most americans want. set up votes on gun safety. set up votes on this infrastructure plan. and once the republicans show themselves, then maybe i'll be surprised. biden spent a lot of time talking about how he's willing to compromise.
maybe some of them will come to the table and maybe there will be a compromise and that would be the best result that we would get something really major through with the support from both parties in congress. but if they stand unified in a monolithic way against these popular pieces of legislation, that's how you move joe manchon. it's not by screaming at him on twitter. >> nobody is talking about screaming at joe on twitter. i'm just saying by him saying he's not going to -- and you don't back him into the corner. i told a lot of democrats don't back him in the corner. but, eugene, by joe manchon saying let's just work with the republicans, mitch mcconnell has already said we're standing shoulder to shoulder. we're going to all vote against the infrastructure plan just like they all voted against the covid plan. again, they've got to do what's best for them and for their district, but they think that
saying no to joe biden on just about everything. isn't joe manchon saying when he's in for no reform of infrastructure -- i mean of the filibuster, and i also really don't like reconciliation, isn't he dooming joe biden to having one bill after another going up in flames? >> oh, he is, right? because if president biden can't pass anything through reconciliation, at this point, there's nothing that you can do. think about the covid relief. the covid relief bill was so popular. there is also a timetable on it, right? it continued to be popular because a lot of these unemployment benefits were going to run out. the white house has said they are fine with this passing in the summer, hoping to have work done on it by memorial day. but maybe with republicans, but the danger there for them, especially now that you have joe
manchon saying what he's saying, dooming infrastructure, is that republicans are going to have a lot more time to kind of try and get a cohesive message around it. during covid what they were concentrating on was more of the cultural stuff, dr. seuss, potato head, mr. and mrs. or otherwise. and there wasn't a conversation about covid. americans like bipartisanship, but they don't like sausage making and the back door trading and the this person gets this into this bill. what is possible somehow as republicans hit infrastructure, as you have a democratic party that is possibly not in a united spot, maybe some moderate democrats who don't want to do this through reconciliation, you have the american people having less tolerance for it. you're hearing we're doing this and we're compromising on this
and we're compromising on that. that is a danger for the white house because it may become less popular. coming up, john boehner says donald trump incited the bloody insurrection on capitol hill. we will read an ex either from the former house speaker's new book ahead of his appearance on "morning joe" next tuesday. s ap "morning joe" next tuesday i suffered with psoriasis for so long. it was kind of a shock after i started cosentyx. i'm still clear, five years now. cosentyx works fast to give you clear skin that can last. real people with psoriasis look and feel better with cosentyx. don't use if you're allergic to cosentyx.
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former republican house speaker john boehner is pointing the blame for the deadly january 6th riot squarely at former president trump. the "new york times" obtained an ex either from boehner's new book where he says the former president, quote, incited that bloody insurrection for nothing more than selfish reasons. and he says the republican party has been taken over by whack jobs. boehner write's trump's refusal to accept the election not only cost republicans the senate, but led to mob violence. boehner goes on to say trump claimed voter fraud without any evidence and repeated those
claims, taking advantage of the trust placed in him by his supporters and ultimately betraying that trust. in an emailed statement to the times, trump asked was he drinking -- oh, god. he responded. john boehner will be our guest on the morning show this coming tuesday. john boehner, one of few republicans who will flat out call out trump for this things he is clearly responsible for. and if you look at the question of speaker boehner's book, he has a glass of merlot in his left hand and he makes no apologies for it. claire, this is fascinating to watch. obviously, speaker boehner came out and said all the things that a lot of people have been saying about president trump for a couple of years. i guess the question is, when we hear from people, republicans in
particular outside of the government now going after donald trump when they were inside the government, perhaps supporting donald trump in the case of speaker boehner in 2016, would he be saying these things? would he have been saying these things around january 6th werer he the sitting speaker and not somebody outside government writing the book? >> probably not. you know, but let's be real. outgoing congressional leaders are never wildly popular. being a congressional leader kind of ensures you a low approval rating in the united states of america. but it is frustrating to have boehner speak so forcefully now. it would have been helpful. i don't know if it would have made a difference, but it would have been helpful if he would have spoken out now when donald trump started talking about the only way he could lose was by fraud. that happened last spring. he started saying the only way he could lose was by fraud months before people went to the polls. that's when john boehner should
have talked about the walk jobs. that's when he should have talked about how bereft the republican party was of principal and how bad -- so i'm not totally impressed that he's speaking out now. still ahead, the u.s. secretary of labor, marty walsh, is our guest. we'll talk about the latest job numbers and the biden plan to put more americans back to work. "morning joe" is coming right back. "morning joe" is coming right back
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other side. republicans came to see me and they started off at $600 billion. and that was it. i would have been prepared to compromise. but they didn't. they didn't move an inch. >> the group of ten republicans that met with president biden released a statement saying the administration, quote, roundly dismissed their offer. and that the process of reconciliation precluded republican participation. joining us now, u.s. secretary of labor marty walsh. what did the republicans offer? i have to ask because i often don't hear of alternatives. and, by the way, welcome to the show. what is it in this bill do you think republicans can latch on to? >> first of all, thank you for being here this morning. the first part of your question, i'm not sure exactly what the
negotiation was or what the republicans offered, but there's a lot in this bill that the republicans can support. this bill is not a republican or a democratic bill. this bill is about the american people. it's the american jobs plan. there's infrastructure in this bill that almost every city in town in america are supportive of. i was on a call to talk about this plan, a bipartisan plan. i think some of the money on the clean water, there's money in there for -- to remove lead pipes. i think republicans and democrats should want to remove lead pipes in our cities and towns all across america. there's money in there for the c.a.r.e. economy. there's money in there for electric grids and increasing electric grids. there's money in there for job training. when i was going there for my nomination to this job, every person i spoke to said job training and development is important to them.
there's lots of funding in this program to help train the workforce of the future here in america. there's a lot. the president in the beginning of this segment he talked about, working across the aisle. that's what i intend on doing. i think we still have opportunities here to work with our friends in the congress to see how we can come to some agreement. >> so i know that you're well aware that the pandemic this past year has been disproportionately difficult on women. i know you have a record of pushing pay equity back in your old job. what in this jobs act addresses the brutal experience women have had over the past year? >> well, what we've seen is in the workforce 2 million women have been pushed out of the workforce last week when the unemployment numbers came in. we saw a little bit of increase, a positive number of women coming back into the workforce. but, again, this american jobs
plan, throughout it, there's opportunities. equity is an important piece of it, creating opportunities not just for one segment of people, but for all segment of people. i think that's really important. we need to get women back into the workforce. $400 billion into the c.a.r.e.s. economy is going to help with that. making investments around child care and the american rescue plan, as well, opening schools back up. that is very important to the president and very important in this country. between those plans, we have to be real intentional about getting women back into the workforce and quite honestly, people of color. women of color and men of color, we're seeing huge disparities there. so we have work to do. i saw it in my own city you and we see it all across america. it's something i know governors and mayors are focused on. >> it's willie geist. until a couple of weeks ago, you were mayor marty walsh of the city of boston. so you perhaps better than anyone can speak to what our
cities need. specifically on the question of infrastructure, we know about bridges and roads, but what would this bill mean for the city of boston? >> this boovt would be amazing for boston. i think the broadband is -- we're doing that in the city of boston now. we saw it during the pandemic. real big gaps in technology and connectivity for families in poorer communities and communities of color that quite honestly couldn't get on the zoom, couldn't get their kids consistently on zoom. that's a big one. upgrading the infrastructure for water is a big one. you know, there are 400,000 buildings that would be impacted by this legislation. we're talking about the electric grid. we're working, preparing for the future. we have companies in america that will be making electric vehicles and having a good strong infrastructure there is important, as well. and the job training. you think about for boston at
least, we have a lot of tech companies moving into the city of boston. and we want to prepare young people that are in high school right now and going to college that they can get those jobs so they're not losing out on another economy like the past. too many opportunities have come and gone. in this country, people weren't able to share in the prosperity and having job training and register to print the programs, things like that are really important. >> mr. secretary, i'm going to set up the fitchberg to dorchester question here. mike barnacle has a question for you. >> okay. uh-oh. >> marty, we missed you on opening day. but, anyway, mr. secretary, it's good to see you this morning. you know, when you -- one thing that is for certain, america is going to be rebuilt. there's too many that has to be done. you've mentioned a lot of things that have to be done and will be done or else america will just fade into the near distance. but going forward, the workforce in america, when you join the
union, it was about half the size or less than half the size of what it is now. union membership continues to decrease across the country. what can be done to grow union labor in this country which would help to build america? >> i think the first thing, the labor movement is not a dirty word. the labor movement stands for benefits, stands for good wages, health care, things like that. and i think that, you know, president biden has not been shooir shy about talking about the labor movement and using the word union, using the word collective bargaining. and people should have the right to organize. if they choose to join the union, they should have the right to join the union. if you look in this country over the last 50 years, the decline in the labor movement as far as the numbers, we've seen a decline in the middle class. and that wealth gap only continues to grow and grow and
grow. to move forward, president biden has laid down a very good aggressive plan here with the american rescue plan, the american jobs plan and everything else he's doing. he is talking about building back better, which means building back the middle class. and this country is in desperate needs of a strong middle class. people all yos cross this country are die to go be middle class. how do we get people into good jobs? i think labor union sess one of the ways of doing that. >> we have jonathan look mere next. >> good morning, secretary. i'm from allowel, massachusetts. so this whole segment should have been about the surging red sox. but instead, i wanted to ask you about something more bleak. news just now a few moments ago, u.s. jobless claims rose to 744,000, which is an uptick from what we have seen in recent
weeks. can you speak to how dire the economic outlook is for so many americans who have had trouble finding work and how important it would be to get this bill done as soon as possible. the administration suggested end up of summer. >> first of all, the american jobs plan is really important for us to get done and myself and other secretaries and the president and other people will be working on it. we also need to continue to get the coronavirus under control. one of the reasons we're seeing people not going back to work or leaving their jobs is because they're afraid of their health. the president came out with an ambitious goal. he raised the bar to 200 million vaccines in the first 100 days. we need to continue to do testing. people need to continue to wear masks. people need to continue to take care of their own personal
health. so we're dealing with a down trend in the economy, but it was basically caused by a virus that is still very much with us. so we need to get the vaccine under control, get people vaccinated. >> eugene daniel sess here from politico. >> secretary, i'm not from boston. i've never even been to massachusetts. so i apologize in advance. president biden kind of campaigned on making covid-19 guidelines into mandatory rules. you requested an additional delay on the workplace safety standards. safety experts that politico has talked to said they would protect workers and save lives. i'm curious why there is still a delay there. >> i wouldn't say there's a delay. the president signed the executive order in january. i was confirmed in march, three weeks ago. the osha folks here at the department of labor have been working on a standard. we're looking at where we are in the virus right now.
just to see before we move forward if we need to move forward a standard, we want to make sure that we get the most accurate information and we put the best possible information out there for people and businesses across america. >> mr. secretary, i just want to point out in my final question here that it's a know your value question. you're a leader in the field of equal pay. as mayor, you have the city of boston to get 250 companies to commit to the concept. you launched boston's office of financial empowerment. you pushed the massachusetts equal pay act. will this be a top priority as secretary of labor? >> yes, it is. i had a meeting with the women's bureau here.
we'll be looking for funding to build that office even larger. the main topic we talked about was opportunity. we passed legislation as a state representative. i voteded on four or five or six pay equity bills, which is great, but it's time for action now. and i'm going to do everything i can as the secretary of labor working with the women's bureau for action. it's time for action. women in this country deserve action and quite honestly need action. >> is it your goal to get to pay equity in this administration? >> it's a little hard for me to see that right now because we're just diving into it now and the first place. and obviously i'm transitioning from being mayor of boston where i have more of an ability to push people to being secretary of labor where i'm part of a bigger organization and a bigger country. but it's still -- it would be certainly a very positive step if we can make some serious gains there. i'd love to come back and talk
to you about that at some point. give me a little time here. it's three weeks into the job so i want to see what is actually obtainable and what we can make a difference on. >> all right. let's plan that. marty walsh, thank you for being here. coming up, the nation suffered through a pandemic, but most of the financial gains were by the top 1%. e financial gainse by the top 1%. vy. for anytime, anywhere migraine strikes, without worrying if it's too late, or where i am. one dose can quickly stop my migraine in its tracks within two hours. unlike older medicines, ubrelvy is a pill that directly blocks cgrp protein, believed to be a cause of migraine. do not take with strong cyp3a4 inhibitors. most common side effects were nausea and tiredness. ask about ubrelvy. the anytime, anywhere migraine medicine.
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welcome back to "morning joe." last year even as the nation embattled the coronavirus, the u.s. saw an exceptional amount of wealth accumulated but that was amok certain groups. joining us now "morning joe" economic specialist ian raptor and "forbes" media and editor of "forbes," randall lane. in a moment, we will speak with randall about the new "forbes" annual billionaires list, billionaire with a b, which reveals a record breaking number of billionaires again in a year where the pandemic devastated world economies. but first, steve rattner, show
us your charts on this rise in wealth. >> sure, mika, i'm going to start with trillions because $11 trillion of new wealth was created last year across america. that's about a 10% increase to $121 trillion of total he net worth. but as you suggested, it's not nearly evenly distributed. if you look at the first chart on the screen here, on the left side you see the top 1%, 1% of american households garnered 35% of all of the wealth that was created last year. the next 9%, coincidentally, also got 35% so 70% went to the top 10% of americans. the next 40% of americans only got 26% of the wealth created and then, of course, you have the whole entire bottom half of americans, 50% of americans, who only got 4% of the wealth created. you mentioned looking at it by race. let's take a look at that on the
next chart and what you will see here will not be totally surprising. whites who comprise 60% of the population got 84% of the increase in assets. african-americans, black people who are 13% of the population got only 5% and look at hispanics, who are 19% of the population, and they got only 2% of the game. so what does the scorecard look like when you get down with all of these gains? if you look at the next chart, you can see the next top 1% of americans had an average net worth of $30 million at the end of last year. that is a huge number. remember, it includes all of the people with $100 million or bo, jeff zuckerbergs, elon musks and so on. but $30 million is the average. they have their assets across
a mix of real estate stocks and other things like that. the next had average assets of $4 million. the next 40%, so we're still in the top half, had assets of $680,000. and 50% of americans, bottom half of americans, had average net worth of $39,000. so we've not done very well at addressing the income inequality problems we have in this country. >> that's the paradox when you look at this list, the economy cratered in this country and around the world, because of the coronavirus, rich have gotten much richer. jen bezos at the top of $177 billion. elon musk is there, bill gates and mark zuckerberg at 4 and 5. but what's interesting is how many new billionaires there were, up 30% from last year. >> 483 new billionaires.
that's 117 hours over this pandemic year march to march and in aggregate there were 8 trillion last year and this year 13 trillion so a $5 trillion gain. as steve said, the very, very rich got very, very richer over the pandemic. >> what do you chock that up to? walk us through what we are seeing with the charts, but why did they get richer? >> if you own assets, those stocks blew. all sorts of start-ups, money went into start-ups. valuation of that led way, way up. but in all of this news that a lot of people are rightly outraged about, there are a lot of good news too, willie. you see -- 20 years ago in america and across the world if you looked at the global
billionaires, half of the billionaires inherited their money. this year if you look at 493 new billionaires, 87% self-made and 90% in america. while we have this incredible concentration of wealth, we also see new opportunity for more people to join that wealthy group and there are healthy signs for all of us if you look under those numbers. >> eugene daniels has a question for you, steve. eugene? >> yes, steve, i guess i'm curious, i'm a political reporter so looking at those charts, it seems like what -- as you said, the racial wealth gap seems to be lengthening and expanding. when you talk to democrats nowadays, and even some republicans, they are more interested in taxing the wealthy. so i'm curious, if list and these numbers that are coming out, i'm interested if you think that will continue that track, that people will be more interested in taxing the wealthy
because that is something the president is looking to do with his new infrastructure and jobs plan. >> yes, i think that what you see in the president's plan, which is his commitment not to raise taxes on anybody below $400,000 with plans that he hasn't yet unveiled on the individual side to raise top race, to raise capital gain rates and so on, is all part of an effort to try to address this balance. nobody in america can possibly be happy about this kind of wealth inequality. and income inequality looks similar on an income basis. nobody can be happy about it. it's bad for society, it's bad for the economy and human rights. tax policy can and should play an important role in rebalancing that. we have a progressive tax system simply to prevent these kinds of wildly excessive disparities and wealth and income from happening and we need to make that tax system more progressive and that's what president biden is trying to do. >> mike barnicle, jump in.
>> randall, do you think all of this newly created wealth and every 17 hours a billionaire, all of the billionaires collected in this country, what do you think of their awareness is of the fact they're sitting on a lit fuse in terms of social combustion? >> i think you bring up a good point. look, individually, collectively, it's easy to put your head in the stand but individually, and i probably talked to 20 american billionaires, there's to steve's point, an acceptance and realization taxes will go up. even jeff bezos this week talked about this willingness to fund this infrastructure bill and amazon to pay more corporate taxes. but you're seeing also a lot more celebration of philanthropy, in part understanding this cannot stand
and the greatest threat to the system has made so many people successful is undermining the confidence in that system. it's tough to get any group of billionaires, but at the same time there's an understanding something will have to happen and in philanthropy, there's move towards the idea they have to give back. >> steve, randall, thank you very much. we want to remind you navalny "know your value" and "forbes" have honored people who flourished in their field and paid it forward to other women. we're shining a light on this diverse group of impactful, powerful women and achieved great significance in life and laid a runway for the rest of us. go to knowyourvolume.com for more. that does it for us this morning. stephanie ruhle picks up the coverage right now. hi, there, i'm steph