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tv   The 11th Hour With Brian Williams  MSNBC  April 8, 2021 11:00pm-12:00am PDT

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that can respond with compassion and entirety to the people at the border. >> we'll have to hear more from you about that is on the program. >> sister simone gets tonight's last word. "the 11th hour" with brian williams starts now. good evening once again, i'm ali velshi in for brian williams on this, day 79 of the biden administration. florida congressman matt gaetz is now facing a new and potentially much more serious level of legal jeopardy. he's under federal investigation for potential sex trafficking, possibly involving a minor, and that case grew out of a broader probe involving a close associate and ally, a man named joel greenberg who's facing an array of federal charges himself, also including sex trafficking. it appears tonight that
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greenberg may be ready to strike a plea deal with federal prosecutors, a move that presumably would bolster their case against matt gaetz. greenberg was not in court today but his lawyers say his client will likely take a plea and avoid a trial although he said the deal was not yet finalized. that possibility was revealed during a brief court hearing in orlando, florida. after the hearing greenberg's lawyer offered this ominous and somewhat cryptic assessment. >> i'm sure matt gaetz is not feeling very comfortable today. >> does joel consider matt gaetz a friend or has he cut ties? >> in any case i have, if there's other potential co-defendants, or, you know, i preclude my clients from talking to them. >> joel greenberg's lawyer would not say specifically what his client knew but "the washington post" reports he added, quote, his client was uniquely situated to help prosecutors and was seeking a deal, quote, with the
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least possible exposure. gaetz is denying any wrongdoing and earlier today an unsigned letter of support was released by, quote, the women of u.s. congressman matt gaetz's office, praysing him as a principled and morally grounded leader who has treated each and every one of us with respect, thus we uniformly reject these allegations as false. tonight "the new york times" reports a second senior aide to gaetz quit late last week hours after his communications director resigned according to three people familiar with the decision. tomorrow gaetz is scheduled to appear publicly for the first time since news broke about this federal investigation. he'll be speaking to a pro-trump women's group at the former president's doral resort in florida. at the white house today the focus was all about curbing gun violence. president biden took the initial steps toward gun control with a series of executive actions, and his announcement
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coming just a day after one deadly mass shooting in south carolina, and just hours before another in bryant, texas. biden's order includes a crackdown on so-called ghost guns, which are firearms assembled from kits that don't have traceable serial numbers. it also calls for the justice department to publish model red flag legislation for states. it lets police officers and family members temporarily remove firearms from people who present a danger to themselves or others. the president is also asking the department of justice to issue a report on firearms trafficking. >> gun violence in this country is an epidemic. let me say it again. gun violence in this country is an epidemic, and it's an international embarrassment. >> biden also made it clear that actual legislation and not just executive orders would do the most to stop gun violence. >> this is just the start. we've got a lot of work to do. but all these bills that had support of both democrats and
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republicans in the house. and universal background checks are supported by the vast majority of the american people. and i might add the vast majority of responsible gun owners. and i'm willing to work with anyone to get these done. >> the president today also announced the nomination of david chipman, this man, a gun control advocate, to lead the bureau of alcohol, tobacco, firearms and explosives. the bureau has not had a permanent director since 2015 and chipman is expected to meet stiff resistance during the confirmation process. the white house is also keeping a close eye on the continuing rise in new covid cases. the situation in the upper midwest of the united states has been particularly concerning. at least five states are reporting a 50% increase in cases over the past two weeks. also, there was more stunning testimony today in the trial of derek chauvin as a lung and critical expert described in great detail how he believes
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george floyd died. >> we see here that he reaches a level of zero of oxygen at 20:25:41. at that point there's not an ounce of oxygen left in his body, in his entire body at 20:25:41. >> so was the knee then lifted off of his neck at the point there was no oxygen in his body? >> no, the knee remained on the neck for another 3:02 after we reached the point where there's not one ounce of oxygen left in the body. >> we are going to have much more on day nine of testimony in the derek chauvin trial just ahead. with that let's bring in our leadoff guests on this thursday night. katy benner, justice department reporter for "the new york times." she's been reporting on the gaetz controversy since
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"the times" first broke the story. jonathan lemire, white house reporter for the associated press. cynthia oxley. katy, we've been hearing from you since the night you broke this story. tell us the latest news on matt gaetz. >> what we saw today in the trial of his friend joel greenberg, who's been accused of many crimes, including child sex trafficking, mr. greenberg's lawyer and the prosecutors in the case said they're working toward a plea deal. clearly mr. greenberg faces a lot of jail time, a mandatory of 12 years, many decades more if he's not given some sort of break. looking at the facts all sides agree it would be best for him to come to an agreement, to plead guilty, and to cooperate in the investigation. this is really difficult for mr. gaetz because joel greenberg is uniquely situated as his lawyer said to provide information particularly about a 17-year-old girl who both men are thought to have had sex with and provided hotels and other things. that's child sex trafficking, a mandatory ten years in jail.
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>> cynthia, tell me about this potential deal, his lawyer joel greenberg's lawyer has alluded to it, he said they're working on one, it hasn't been finalized. what can we surmise with respect to joel greenberg and the more than 30 felony charges against him and whether or not he may be cooperating in a larger probe into matt gaetz? >> well, i think we can surmise that sitting in jail awaiting trial has focused his mind and inspired him to make a deal and we know that based on sort of the colloquy in the courtroom and also all the little bread crumbs his lawyer left outside the courthouse suggesting there was a deal. let's just think about that. all of the transactions, the financial transactions between them would then be available and easy to find by the federal prosecutors. for example, tonight the daily beast is reporting that matt
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gaetz at one point venmoed greenberg $900 and the next morning greenberg is venmoing young women. and all -- he can explain all those things. i mean, it's just shocking that matt gaetz had a venmo account that was public. and here's a little tip for future defendants, when you can get a venmo account in the little corner and you can pick either private or public, pick the private one. it's just amazing he had a public venmo account. anyway, all of the details between their relationship will come out and greenberg will give that information. he will not be a witness in any case because he doesn't really have any credibility at all because, let's face it, he's a scum bag, and what will happen is the prosecutors then can track and the fbi can track all of his information, get it corroborated and get independent witnesses to tell the story of what these men were doing if, in fact, they were having sex with underage girls, or flying people
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to the bahamas, essentially, for prostitution. >> we haven't been able to independently confirm the venmo part of the story, but the other way you could look at this, cynthia, you could not make it private and just not commit crimes when you're venmoing people money. katy, your newest story dropped less than an hour ago, and i was reading it and it was lengthy and detailed, and there was a another turn it took. something i was not aware of, had to do with a ghost candidate running in an election. can you give us a sense of what this part of the story is about? >> absolutely. so as investigators have delved deeper into allegations of sex-related crimes, a witness did tell investigators that they heard a conversation between matt gaetz and a lobbyist in florida named chris doorworth, who is very well known in the state. he a trump administration allied
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lobbyist and risen to prominence. the two men talked about running a sham candidate in a state senate election in florida last year. the candidate would exist basically to siphon votes off of the democratic candidate handing the election to the republican. and we did reach him for comment. he points out that running a third party candidate who might impact the democrat is not illegal but it would be illegal if the third party candidate was paid to run specifically to spoil the election. he claims he did not pay anybody in that election to run and spoil the race. however, the fbi is looking into this. the interesting thing about it is if the fbi continues down this path and finds more evidence related to this conversation, it could really open up the investigation beyond what we have so far which is an investigation into a variety of sex crimes. >> i would encourage people to read this story. it is very detailed with respect to this other part of the story that many of us didn't know
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about, thank you for that, katie. jonathan lemire, we've been wondering what republicans are going to do about this, and it seems that most people have been keeping mum until something that looks like a formal charge or more information comes out. but on the strength of this reporting including katie's reporting tonight, we have got a tweet from representative adam kinzinger. calling for gaetz to resign. it's quite simple. it says "matt gaetz needs to resign," not a lot of love lost between adam kinzinger who stood up to donald trump as well, and matt gaetz. >> no. and, first of all, ali, sage advice when it comes to public versus private venmo accounts. this is not a surprising take from congressman kinzinger who has been one of the few republicans to sort of break with president trump and former president trump and his disciples of which congressman gaetz is certainly one of the
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more ardent ones where he's really patented himself as an heir to the trump throne. kinzinger has founded a group to try to unseat these republicans and replace them with more moderate members, ones willing to occasionally work across the aisle with democrats. but so far his voice is fairly lonely. gaetz, of course, as you noted is going to be in florida this week at president trump's former club and also this weekend there's a gathering of top republicans at, where else, palm beach, florida, just up the road from mar-a-lago, the former president's estate, and there is expected to be an event there, which underscores what a shadow he still casts over the republican party. it will be interesting in light of these new revelations if there are other republicans who say enough is enough and start calling for congressman gaetz' resignation but we have seen them not do that when one of their own members is embroiled in a scandal. one has to assume that congresswoman liz cheney who of course congressman gaetz so publicly targeted not that long ago because she went after
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former president trump, i imagine she is enjoying this -- these developments, even if she hasn't commented publicly just yet. >> yeah. he's referred to her as part of the cheney legacy or something like that. cynthia, let me ask you about a story that was published in "the washington post" tonight, saying the ex-daughter-in-law of former president trump cfo allen weisselberg has turned over more documents to the manhattan d.a.'s office, the story says the subpoena, a copy obtained by a "washington post," ordered jennifer weisselberg to produce all of the records she possesses for her ex-husband's accounts and tax filings. tom winter interviewed her some weeks ago. it's not clear she would have needed a subpoena to do this. she seemed quite willing to produce these. what do you think she's got having to do with her husband that's tied to her father-in-law and donald trump? >> well, financial records are,
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you know, mother's milk of american political prosecutions. and if she has financial records that can be helpful and can be used to flip lower level or other family members, that's very important and that slowly and slowly, and slowly encircles trump. so that's what -- i'm sure that's exactly what's happening. and then the more records they get, the more information they have, the more likely they are to start flipping people. >> and, jonathan, this is key to the point you were just making, and that is that in these attacks on donald trump, whether they're from people who wanted to see him prosecuted or people who thought he was on the wrong side of the election fraud story, matt gaetz, for people who were not following him, is as loyal as loyal gets to donald trump. >> oh, no question. he was one of his loudest defenders, and at every opportunity sort of has almost
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patterned himself after the former president. he was a staple as an opening act in a number of the president's rallies last year. he is someone who has adopted a similar sort of strategy with the media. we remember he, of course, in the early days of the pandemic really downplayed it. alienated a lot of his colleagues, wearing a gas mask on the floor of the house making fun of the other members in the early days of the virus. we know that he was defending former president trump earlier this year when he even went to wyoming to hold a rally to oppose congresswoman liz cheney, again, because, cheney had denounced trump for what had happened on january 6th, the insurrection at the capitol, fueled by the former president's words. he is someone who, indeed, has sort of tried to shape himself as a disciple of the former president, one who is a frequent guest on conservative media, in fact, there had been some talk
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that he might even leave office to go make -- cross over and join the conservative media ranks, these stories perhaps have complicated that. but as a final point loyalty with president trump often is a one-way street. the former president put -- offered a pretty tepid defense of congressman gaetz in the last 24 hours so just simply noting that gaetz denied the allegations. but that's the standard line the former president has used a number of times when there are powerful men accused of misconduct by women. so i don't think we should -- >> including the crown prince of saudi arabia when he was accused of -- yeah. when the crown prince of saudi arabia denied involvement in jamal khashoggi's, you know, killing, he used the same thing. donald trump said the same thing. interesting, though, that he had a stronger defense for roy moore when roy moore was first criticized for some of his activities. katie benner, i feel guilty
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asking you about this, i can tell you you've been busy on the matt gaetz story, but you're a justice department reporter and today we saw the attorney general make his first public appearance with joe biden, joe biden talking about guns today. and executive action. what did you sense about merrick garland and how things are going to go at the justice department from his first appearance? >> it was a great first public experience for merrick garland. i think it told us everything we need to know about the new attorney general. he was extremely measured. he talked about doing things like gathering data, running studies, trying to evaluate the problem. he said that they were going to propose draft legislation. what all of this says is that he understands the justice department has a lane, it can only do so much when it comes to gun regulation, only so much when it comes to gun control but at the end of the day it will be congress that will either take up the draft with legislation and run with it and pass a law, or not, in the meantime he feels his role, very measured, is to look at the
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problem, evaluate it, and make recommendations. there were no bombastic statements, this was not trump's justice department. there was nothing surprising, and it was very, very right down the middle, and that's what we're probably going to see from merrick garland for his entire time as attorney general. >> which is why he was thought of as a potential supreme court justice at one point, someone who would have bipartisan support until things got complicated. thank you to all three of you. katie, thank you for your newest reporting on this. jonathan lemire, katie benner in, cynthia, stay with me. we have to continue our conversation. even more troubling details of george floyd's death emerge, we're asking our legal team if there's any reasonable doubt left about what happened in plain sight. later, texas, home to the nation's deadliest -- latest deadly mass shooting in the spotlight over guns and voting rights. "the 11th hour" is just getting under way on a thursday night.
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mr. floyd died from a low level of oxygen. the cause of the low level of oxygen was shallow breathing, small breaths. the main forces that are going to lead to the shallow breath are going to be that he's turned prone on the street, that he has the handcuffs in place combined with the street. and then that he has a knee on his neck, and then that he has a knee on his back and down his side. >> according to today's compelling testimony from
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renowned pulmonologist, dr. martin tobin, george floyd died from a low level of oxygen. in excruciating detail he described to the jurors how floyd struggled to breathe, handcuffed and pushed against the asphalt under derek chauvin's knee. >> on the left side of his lung it was almost like a surgical humanectomy. it was almost to the effect as if a surgeon had gone in and removed the lung. you see his knuckle against the tire. this tells you that he has used up his resources, and he's now literally trying to breathe with his fingers and knuckles. when you have to breathe through a narrow passageway, it's like breathing through a drinking straw but it's much worse than that. >> much worse than breathing through a drinking straw. for more we welcome to the broadcast maria hinojosa,
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a veteran journalist who covered police violence for years as both npr and cnn, a former colleague of mine, she's a founder of fatudo media where she hosts and is executive producer of the podcast in the thick. focusing on america's shifting cultural and political landscape. and the author of "once i was you" a memoir of love and hate in a torn america. still with us, cynthia alksne. that was but a taste of the testimony we got from two doctors today who were unequivocal about the fact this wasn't ant fentanyl, which is what the defense would have you believe but it was, in fact, that he was suffocating. he could not take in breaths. the remarkable detail dr. tobin presented was literally breathtaking. what do you make of how this affects the case? >> wow, i thought he was one of the most amazing experts i've ever seen and very credible with the jury. it's going to be almost
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impossible to overcome his opinion. first of all, just his manner with the jury, and he would turn and talk to them. he would undo his collar and explain to them the anatomy. and then he would say to them, go ahead and put your hand on your neck. and then put your hand here and feel your this and feel that and he went through it. i found myself sitting in my little kitchen feeling my neck and doing exactly what he said. he was that mesmerizing. and what he did was, he erased all of the work of the defense of yesterday and erased any future defense coming up. you know, yesterday, if you remember, the defense attorney spent a lot of time trying to prove that maybe his knee wasn't always on his neck. maybe it moved down to his shoulders. maybe it was on his traps and he just basically said that doesn't matter. he had no oxygen. all of that -- no, doesn't matter, has nothing to do with anything. he died from the lack of oxygen. and then going forward one of the big issues is that there are two prosecution autopsies, one
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which basically says he died when his heart stopped because of the neck compression, and the other, he wasn't -- he died after the lack of oxygen because of the neck compression, and he sort of brought those together in a way that the prosecution really needs and made it all so simple that it's going to be very hard for the defense attorney to make much hay with those different autopsies. and then he finally just finished off the defense by saying the fentanyl had nothing to do with it, which was then supported by another expert. it was a devastating day for the defense. i thought the case was overwhelming from jump street. but this -- this is -- makes the case almost impossible. i mean, it really is impossible to go forward for the defense at this point. >> cynthia, you always make it so clear to us what's going on. maria, our friend dr. kimberly crenshaw talks about a concept and coined this concept of intersectionality, the idea that it's never really one thing
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when you have difficulty in society or economically or with the justice system. and george floyd is really a picture of that. he was black. he was urban. he was not wealthy. he had a drug addiction, all of which was pointing towards not just his death at the hands of police but has been something that has pointed to a lot of people and their death at the hands of police in america. >> george floyd was from texas. george floyd had a girlfriend who was white. george floyd worked at a gunja bar surrounded by latinos and latinas dancing and speaking spanish. to us, george floyd represents exactly that. that total humanity. and for me, i think when i think about today's testimony, cynthia's right, it was riveting, i think this notion, the humanity that the doctor brings when he says george floyd was trying to breathe through his knuckles.
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there's nothing like that image there that makes it clear why george floyd died because of the knee on his neck. for me the bigger issue, ali, is how do we deconstruct 402 years of essentially making black men a threat? so we're seeing a trial here, but we're really trying to deconstruct the narrative that has existed from the first time a black man was brought here in chains and, therefore, the notion created that they were a threat, that they were a problem, that they had to be controlled. and as i was thinking about this segment, ali, i was thinking, you know, i would never have my husband, who is afro-dominican, speaks with an accent, an american citizen, but an immigrant, i would never have him engage with the police under any circumstances except to say good day. i'm the one who can take that power and challenge it. but the fact that i -- >> is there someone --
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>> george floyd represents that threat. and that's what we're trying to see here, his humanity versus chauvin's fear, alleged fear. >> does this trial, regardless of the justice that may be served at the end of it, does that humanity, does that prosecution telling the story of who george floyd is, do you think that's resonating across america with people who were saying our story's not being told and it finally is in a court of law in pursuit of justice? >> i think it is. and i think part of what we also have to recognize is that there was solidarity that was happening on the street there. there were people who were trying to come to his aid who were of a diverse background. right? i was talking about the fact that actually in the midwest, i grew up in chicago, and in working class communities, yes, there is a lot of red lining but in working class communities there is a lot of cross cultural
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amistad. there is defending each other. and i think that that is part of the lesson that we're seeing, right, is that, in fact, we have to attempt to save our lives because, you know what, in the end it wasn't just george floyd who died there. right? the people who witnessed that are going to be scarred for life. i haven't seen the video because i have respect for his life. but i'm telling you that this has changed the country. and i'm with cynthia, i think this is going to be very difficult for the defense to win. >> it's a discussion for another day. but we will discuss the fact that the defense is actually trying to make those people who were trying to come to george floyd's defense peacefully and recording it on video, making them into a threat as well. thank you to both of you for joining us. maria hinojosa and cynthia alksne, thank you.
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coming up, president biden says he's going to work with anyone to get new gun laws. but are republican lawmakers listening? we'll ask two people who might know when "the 11th hour" continues. unstopables fabric finds, neutralizes and eliminates tough odors trapped in hard-to-wash fabrics, like couches or smelly sports equipment; leaving an irresistibly fresh scent. and for a tropical burst of freshness, try new paradise scent. stop sneaky odors from lingering in your home, with febreze unstopables.
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i've fought my entire career to end this violence and to pass reasonable gun safety laws. time and again as progress has stalled, we've all asked, what are we waiting for because we aren't waiting for a tragedy. i know that. we've had more tragedy than we can bear.
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>> vice president kamala harris in the rose garden on a day we learned of two more mass shootings. this time in texas and south carolina. politico reports republican senator pat toomey of pennsylvania wants a long-term solution writing, quote, toomey who is retiring in 2022 is eager to reach agreement on a targeted guns measure that can outlast biden's presidency and said he appreciates president biden's expressed willingness to work with both republicans and democrats to achieve this goal. if done in a manner that respects the rights of law-abiding citizens, i believe there's an opportunity to strengthen our background check system. with us for more tonight, cornell belcher, a democratic pollster who worked on both of president obama's campaigns and with a number of house and senate democrats as well as mark mckinnon, former adviser to george w. bush and john mccain, one of the co-hosts of "the circus" on showtime.
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cornell, starting with you, president biden going up your alley, talking about sort of the popularity of gun control measures, he has now hinted a few times that he's wanting to do stuff that republicans and democrats want, and sort of drawing a bit of a distinction between republicans in congress and democrats in congress. but he did say that he would rather do this through legislation than executive action because it's more long lasting, it's more durable. >> well, that's true. i mean, the president only has so much power to change these gun laws and make gun -- and make sort of the gun laws more stricter. but he also points out something that has been -- that is true now, that's been true -- that was true when obama was talking about these measures and look at the gallup polling, these americans want to make it more difficult, want to have stricter gun laws. right? so you do -- so we have this conversation about bipartisanship, and can we get republicans on board?
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when you have 57%, approaching 60% of the american people wanting something out in the real world, ali, this is actually bipartisan. in the real world you have middle america, moderate, conservatives and liberals want some action on what's happening here around guns. only in washington, d.c., with republicans playing a zero sum game about power that you see that you can't get any sort of partisan -- bipartisan movement around that. look, god bless toomey, but i've got to think that if he were running for re-election and had to face a republican primary, he might not be talking about finding compromise on this rather because it is deadly for republicans to try and talk about compromise today with democrats. >> so that's -- always, cornell, you make some interesting points. but, mark, let's talk about the devil in the details. an overwhelming majority of americans want something to be done but you travel around the country. you talk to conservatives all
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across the country. what does that something on guns most look like to you? >> well, it's a split universe really, ali. when you poll something like background checks on guns, it polls 97% approval. now that means you've got to have a lot of republicans to get 97% of the entire country. so, you know, more than 50% or 50% -- way more than 50% of republicans are supporting things like background checks and red flag laws and i'm sure on ghost guns. we had the nra, which just had a hostage hold on the republican party for years that's going bankrupt now due to their -- you know, indiscretions and profligate spending and insider dealing. but the fact of the matter is that if you're a republican, it's a cultural thing, not political. republicans believe, thanks to donald trump and many others, that it shows weakness if you support any kind of measure on the second amendment. they think that any measure,
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even including background checks is, quote, an imposition on your second amendment rights. well, background checks are an imposition on second amendment rights in the same way that seat belts are an imposition on your rights to drive a car. it's absolutely ridiculous. >> cornell, if the president were asking your advice as a pollster, what's the road forward here because it is very, very hard to get this done at a federal level despite the fact that both of you agree that some things can be done quickly and easily. the fact is, the president wants to do more than just some basic things like background checks, although red flag laws are also, you know, people have more time to listen to at least a conversation about that. but what would you tell the president can actually get done? >> you know, i would tell him he's got to take this outside of washington and take it to the streets. i think, you know, and mark knows this better than i that once upon a time, you know, the gun issue turned on democrats in
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a really tough way, and it put democrats in a real tough bind. if you go to 2018 and look at -- get inside the data from the 2018 election, which was a sea change election for democrats and what you see is those voters who were voting on the issue of guns were actually voting overwhelmingly for democrats. so you see a sea change happening here and you look at those suburbs that biden won in 2020 that democrats certainly didn't win in 2016 and even my guy, obama, didn't do as well in 2012. and there's a moment here for biden to talk common sense gun legislation, gun reform with moderate middle suburban america in a way that makes it politically untenable for republicans to continue to hold this position. they have to pay a price for holding this gun position that is way outside the mainstream americans for too long. i think democrats have not made them pay a price for it. i think biden has a unique
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opportunity this time to make them pay a price for it. democrats shouldn't run away from the gun issue going into this next election and make republicans pay the price for being on the wrong side of this. >> gentlemen, stick with us for a little bit longer. coming up, i want to have a discussion with these two gentlemen about an update on efforts to, in texas, to make new voting restrictions law. announcer supermodel cindy crawford doesn't just walk the red carpet. she rocks it! and today, at over 50, she still steals the show. even vogue magazine exclaims, “at 52, cindy still looks as good as she did at 25!” us weekly calls it “proof that cindy does not age” what's cindy's secret? meaningful beauty supreme!
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voter does not request it first. still with us cornell belcher and mark mckinnon. mark, the lieutenant governor of texas, dan patrick, so for people who don't know, you know this well, the lieutenant governor is a particularly strong position in the state of texas. they preside over a lot of legislation. this lieutenant governor has been on a search for election fraud countrywide, in particular in his state. you had a conversation with him in october of 2020, before he put out a bounty for election fraud. this is from "the circus." i want to play a little of this, please. >> we had 11 days of early vote. we now have 17 days of early vote. before you could only turn in your ballot on election day if it was mail-in. now you can turn it in any of those 17 days. >> you have a situation here where people are saying you guys want to have one drop box per county, that means 136 people gets one box and harris county with almost 5 million gets one box. >> right. >> optically that's kind of
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problematic, isn't it? >> no, are we going to follow laws or not going to follow laws? are we going to throw all the laws out the window because of covid? >> do you think it's a good law you have? >> yeah, and it's been fine, and no one's ever said a word about it. i don't trust the democrats one inch of not trying to get every vote that they can get. >> that interview has aged interestingly. what would you take away then and how has it changed? >> well, you know, when you really draw the lens back and figure out, you know, when you get out of the weeds, you know, what is he really saying? he doesn't trust democrats because he thinks they're trying to get every vote you can get. what the hell is the matter with getting every vote you can get. the law he's passing now, as you noted, would make it a felony to solicit an absentee ballot application or solicit the submission of an application if the voter does not request it first. well, in colorado we just -- where i live now, they mail out
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those applications to everybody because they want everybody to vote. what in the hell is the matter with wanting people to vote? they're making it a criminal offense to give somebody an absentee ballot if they don't request it. my view is, shouldn't we have more people voting rather than less? and, by the way, dan patrick, the lieutenant governor of texas who presides over the senate, after the election said that he had a million dollar fund that he would reward people to give him any evidence of voter suppression. and he hasn't paid out a nickel. he hasn't had one example and, by the way, the people who said there was no voter suppression, include the united states attorney general under donald trump, bob barr, and his chief elections officer. >> yes. interesting one of the claimants for that money is the lieutenant governor of pennsylvania who's found four instances of fraud in the state of pennsylvania, trump supporters voting a couple times.
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he keeps claiming that money. he says he's looking forward to getting it. cornell, play this out for me. what's the end game because in the end mark makes a good point. the competition here is supposed to be in the field of ideas and it is to get all the votes you can actually get. can republican legislatures and state governments, can they restrict enough votes to make a difference in the end? >> let me tell you, this is -- the end game is as old as american politics itself, ali, the historian once wrote, we ought not look for the origins of racial issues in american politics because racial issues predate american politics, you know, racial issues are the root -- aren't at the root of american politics, they are the seat of american politics and that's no more clearer than the three-fifths compromise where they tried to nullify the political potential of black bodies. that is as american as apple pie and we see that here today. you know, there's a saying that my father used to say, who is from the south, and i know
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others did as well. look, you know, black and whites can always get along in the south. blacks just couldn't have power. and what you see right now is you see what the diversifying of our electorate and of our political system, you see people of color, you know, having more political power and those who play this zero sum racial political game, that's an absolute threat to them and it's a threat to sort of our democracy. and really for me, ali, it's about this one simple thing. are we going to have a democracy in the next decade? are we going to have one person, one vote in the next decade? and i wish, ali, that we would have republicans who would instead of trying to block the votes of black and brown people, come to the black and brown communities, if you believe in a free market of ideals, come to the black and brown communities and put your ideas on the table and compete for those votes as opposed to trying to block those votes because that's going to lead to disaster.
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>> what a great world that would be. we can get there one day. and liberals and conservatives can argue in that arena of ideas. guys, it's fully two hours after my bedtime but between your collection of hats, mark, and your collection of jackets, cornell, you have kept me up this evening. thank you, and good to see you to both of you. our thanks to cornell belcher and mark mckinnon. coming up, mask mandates are down, the counts are up. the latest on the pandemic when "the 11th hour" continues. why choose proven quality sleep from sleep number? because a good night's rest is where muscles
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alabama and utah are about to join the 21 states that have already dropped their statewide mask mandate, but health officials are continuing to warn that it could come from variants. a "new york times" analysis says overall the country has seen a 14% rise in new cases over the past two weeks. nbc news correspondent miguel almaguer has an update on the pandemic. >> reporter: as the nation adds
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another 74,000 new covid cases in a single day, tonight the numbers are the most concerning for the young. new infections among 10 to 19-year-olds are climbing. in minnesota, they account for one in every six new cases. dr. vin gupta is seeing young patients were serious lung patients. >> once it wreaks half shook on lungs it doesn't matter if you're older or younger. >> no one and no region is immune. for 16 straight days michigan has seen over a 100% spike in new infection rates. >> the numbers are just going up and up and up and every day the covid numbers are higher than the day before. >> reporter: with 25% of adults vaccinated there are more reports of breakthrough cases, 102 fully vaccinated people in washington later caught the virus. it comes after 141 cases in south carolina and 374 in minnesota. experts say the infections are
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rare and a reminder the vaccines are a strong layer of protection but not a silver bullet. nurse practitioner diane schmidt contracted covid four months after she was vaccinated. >> my case is definitely an outlier. i would still highly recommend the vaccine. >> reporter: but in north carolina, and colorado, closures at mass vaccination sites. hundreds had appointments canceled after a small member of adverse reactions. tonight both centers set to soon re-open. progress but not without setbacks. there is also new worry that the true number of new infections is much higher than reported. one reason many testing sites have turned into vaccination centers. >> nbc's miguel almaguer reporting for us. "the 11th hour" continues after this short break.
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did you know that every single flush flings odors onto your soft surfaces? then they get release back into the air, so you smell them later. ew right? that's why febreze created small spaces. press firmly and watch it get to work. unlike the leading cone,
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small spaces continuously eliminates odors in the air and on surfaces. so they don't come back for 45 days. just imagine what it can do with other odors.
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last thing before we go tonight, a quick programming note. you can watch "the 11th hour" any time you please by downloading the msnbc app on your phone. if you're on the move you can listen live each night on serious channel 118. the show is available as a podcast also. no reason you have to miss a single night of "the 11th hour."
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that is our broadcast for this thursday night. on behalf of all of my colleagues at the networks of nbc news, good night. tonight on "all in" -- >> does matt gaetz have anything to worry about? >> that is such a -- breaking news out of florida. >> i'm sure matt gaetz doesn't feel comfortable today. >> what does it mean that a former republican charged with sex trafficking and tied to matt gaetz is seeking a plea deal with prosecutors? the latest reporting and former congresswoman katie hill on what she calls her unlikely friendship with matt gaetz and why she wants him held accountable now. plus, the new transportation secretary, pete buttigieg, on the fight for an infrastructure bill. another dramatic day in court for the prosecution in


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