tv Deadline White House MSNBC May 20, 2021 1:00pm-3:00pm PDT
now. hi, everyone. breaking news of a cease fire between israel and hamas. associated press reporting that netanyahu's office annoyanced the deal after 11 days fighting. "the new york times" says they appear to be on the verge of a cease fire to take effect on friday morning. after the israeli security cabinet accepted a proposal for a truce. the government announced thursday. news of the israeli decision came as a news channel reported a mutual cease fire had been agreed to beginning at 2:00 a.m. friday. it follows increasing pressure from all across the world for the violence to end including from american president biden telling israeli prime minister netanyahu yesterday he expected a significant de-escalation.
that violence killed 12 israelis and more than 230 palestinians. 65 of them children and carried into this morning. the defense forces struck 60 targets harming the launching capabilities of hamas and they launched into israel overnight. joining us from tel aviv richard engel. tell us what you know. >> reporter: there is just an official confirmation from the israeli government they have agreed to a bilateral cease fire negotiated by egypt. that it will start -- statement didn't say a specific time. at a later date and other reports state 2:00 a.m. and simultaneous. reuters is reporting that hamas agreed to the deal so in a few hour's time according to to both the israelis and hamas a cease
fire should take effect meaning no more israeli air strikes. they said they're rooting out the tunnel network and no more rockets launched from gaza. the israeli government statement said that the political echelon emphasized that the pace of developments will be determined by what happens on the ground so israel is keeping in its back pocket a threat if it doesn't hold it will respond so we have the start of something but seems like the start of a process but a very significant development for israelis, for the people of gaza. it doesn't address the issues but it does seem that this 11-day conflict is going to hit a pause quite soon. >> you're helping us understand the frailty of such cease fires
with your extensive knowledge of the region. the cease fire is reported from the sources cited to commence in three hours. can you tell us based on your experience in the region how much you count on that happening in three hours? where can this go off the rails at this point? >> reporter: it depends on how aggressive the two sides want to be and how much pressure they're under to take what they have achieved so far and leave it there. in the past in the final minutes we have hamas try to launch a few rockets so that it can be the final word or israel could decide it wants to take out one target or a target of opportunity it sees so there's some fragility left but getting through three hour and the cease fire comes into effect and lasts
until sun rise and beyond sun rise then i think the worst will have been over. but nobody in gaza, nobody in israel thinks this is the end but there are three more hours and will see if cooler heads can prevail. if you read the israeli state they said it was a unanimous decision that the chiefs said they achieved the military goals and that israel had obtained its objective to set back hamas. >> richard, we talked i think two days ago and the press secretary for president biden, the president and secretary of state were calling or de-escalation. i asked you what impact that had. you said not much. not talk a the u.s. role. is it viewed in the region as
constructive, too much, too little, just right? >> reporter: well, in this particular round, i think the u.s. probably played a constructive role. we are seeing the tentative steps toward a negotiated agreement. israel did not invade with ground forces. the last major escalation in 2014 was different than this. israeli troops stayed for seven weeks. 2,000 palestinians were killed and a bloody ground offensive for the israeli military and mump more of gaza city destroyed with tanks taking up positions there. that didn't happen. the fact that there was an act i have diplomatic role probably played a big role in that. the fact of uprisings in palestinian society, some within israel itself played a factor.
social media played a factor. why this didn't escalate further is probably due to a variety of reasons but diplomacy being one of them. israel was beaten up in the court of world opinion. this is the first time they fought a fight like this in social media. i tried for days to get into gaza and every day turned around. we might get into gaza tomorrow but after the cease fire takes effect. but despite the fact that the media building in gaza was destroyed, despite the fact that foreign journalists weren't allowed to report on the ground there the word got out from gaza. the people were taking the
videos and posting it on social media. the local staff and many other palestinian journalists did a tremendous job getting out video so this was a different era for gaza to report in. they were united to a degree and communicate to the world even though they had limited access because of the -- living in a closed area. >> always grateful for your reporting but the analysis of the role of social media this time around on israel is fascinating. thank you for spending time with us. i want bring in chief foreign affairs correspondent andrea mitchell and yamiche alsindor is here. andrea, your phone rings on days like this.
what are you hearing? >> they're working on arrangements. egypt is the intermediary with hamas. israel considers a terror organization and does the united states. secretary blinken is in greenland about to fly back after a week long arctic conference primarily in iceland and in greenland today he was looking at effects of climate change, in fact and meeting with officials there and did call the foreign ministry the counterpart in israel to get word -- first, preliminarily to emphasize and to repeat what president biden said yesterday which was the strongest thing that the president said directly to prime minister netanyahu to see signs of substantial signs of de-escalation yesterday meaning today and then the prime
minister was adamant in comments to ambassadors who were in israel saying that they had more to do, they would not stop before they were finished and more military goals to achieve. as were many spokesman. i spoke to a lieutenant colonel for the israeli defense force and he was adamant as is all of the advisers to the israeli government. it is clear they didn't want to back down in the face of really stronger u.s. pressure from the president than we had seen any time in this 1 1-day crisis and the president under pressure from senators and not just the progressive senators but tim kaine earlier this week and others distressed they didn't feel the white house responded immediately with a call for cease fire and pressured both
sides pressuring hamas through egypt and qatar and israel the closest ally in the region to do something about de-escalation and cease fire immediately so there was a political pressure we have not seen. there's support for israel. look at the $4 billion in annual defense appropriations for israel. the largest any single nation. and that has continued for decades to keep them -- give them superiority over the adversaries but this is different and you see it among jewish-americans and others. there's real discomfort of crisis in gaza and a feeling of a disproportionate response and something that the officials deny to me.
the climate does change and affects an administration that was frankly not prepared for this foreign policy crisis. this was a back burner issue that they thought would not have to be dealt with. and they thought they had time to get the arms around this. they were focused on china and then russia and other alliances and hit them in the face and some feel that they were flat footed. >> what i'm wondering is if they're surprised. he's such a known entity as senator who had more say and a really public role on the senate foreign relations committee as vice president who was according to former president obama and then vice president biden officer the last person in the room. but there seems to be surprise
even some of the closest allies at the policy he is charting with israel. to be a steadfast of an ally as i think some critics in the democratic party see him as being. is that the right word, surprised? >> might be the right wor word. the thing they stress to me is that president biden has been at foreign policy for decades. he has a long standing relationship with the prime minister netanyahu and as a result he has really ingrained ideas of what he thinks is right for the middle east and there is of course shifting policy in the democratic party but president biden has real ideas and they're ideas he's held for a long time and wants to hold on to and i got the sense that there was this really increasing pressure that the president putting on israel to get behind a cease fire. they said publicly that israel did have a right to defend itself and had already achieved
significant military wins in this fight and that now it was a time to start to de-escalate and saw a more pointed biden. it started with readouts saying israel had a right to defend itself but then expecting to see deadlines be reached in this conflict and i talked to some officials who said in 2014 that went on for 51 days and didn't want to see a conflict in this instance like that so this cease fire reportedly is a welcomed thing for this white house as president biden continues to navigate this because this was not the conflict to be focused on. they wanted to talk about russia, china, covid and other priorities and this was not top of mind. >> i want to follow up with you. i talked to a senior white house official says that internally
they don't spend time talking about what they did and didn't plan on doing when they got there and knew about the crises that predated election day and the strategy, whether a hack that offlines a gas supply to the entire east coast, whether it is a foreign policy generated crisis that their approach internally is just to sit down and figure out how to solve it. has this strained the system? >> this -- i don't think it strained the system but in some ways it's showed that they have to be prepared for the unexpected, can't just focus on the top of mind issues. the president reminds people of four crises he laid out that he was going to focus on but to be president is to be president in this time, to be ready for the unexpected, the chaos of the
world, to be nimble and focussed on making sure that you have multiple ways to walk and chew gum at the same time and this is a white house that says they can do that and the foreign policy irses, the gas pipeline, this is more of what's been going on. we have seen the president have to weather with mass shootings and police killings and other things that the president didn't plan on doing and this white house says this is why they had all of these experts, the real thinkers come into the white house to be part of the administration to show that this is a white house that can handle this and they make the case the alternate to the predecessors because of the things they bring in. >> i'm so struck and you have covered president biden in every phase.
so i want your thoughts on that as well as this idea that white house made clear there are no celebrity staffers. they're getting to work with the people's business, the country's business to solve whatever crises crosses the president's desk. >> i do have some breaking news. i want to get to that point in a moment. this is the statement that the prime minister's office is about to release if they haven't already done. the prime minister's office statement is that the security cabinet unanimously accepted the recommendation, the idea of chief of staff, the head of the isa, the masad to accept the initiative for a mutual cease fire. the chief of staff, the military briefed ministers on the significant achievements in the operation some of which are
unprecedented and the reality on the ground will determine the future of the operation. he is crediting egypt with the initiative speaking for hamas and we have through the producer in tel aviv a statement by the egyptians that hamas accepted these terms. and it is the terms i believe for 2:00 a.m. friday they say palestinian time. which is israeli time, of course, 7:00 p.m. eastern time. to your point they don't have an ambassador on the ground in israel. and have yet to nominate one. we have reported that there are a number of names in contention all of whom are political appointees and very awkward to say the least right now and held up potential nominations while this crisis is going on that perhaps were in the pipeline. so they're understaffed.
they sent a lower state department envoy, not a high level maybe former secretary of state, someone with the gravitas. and i don't think netanyahu who had won the election and lost the ability to form a new government for at least 30 days, that was handed off to a more centrist politician so he was really on the ropes, for trial for corruption with serious implications similar to ours for if he's not prime minister he faces worse ramifications so he is now according to the polling there, according to former ambassador orrin, 80% of the israeli public was behind him and not wanting to stop before achieving the military goals. >> he makes clear in the statement in his view the goals were achieved.
>> exactly. >> they were not pressured to end before that had taken place. let's bring into the conversation senator maloney and john brennan. director brennan, your reaction to the breaking news? >> it is a positive step but i'm concerned there will be violations to take place and not confident that the command and control within hamas ranks in the gaza strip prevents rocket attacks after the cease fire and important for israel to show restraint if there are going to be some one-offer attacks but hamas. it needs to be follow up with follow-on security measures but to tackle the causes that have led to this fighting.
>> congressman, this president's -- not his first but perhaps biggest foreign policy crisis of the earlier presidency and your thoughts about how this has been handled at the white house level and your thoughts on as director brennan is saying the federaltity of the situation on the ground? >> it is extremely well handled by the biden administration and shows you what it means to have experienced, competent people at the helm guiding the foreign policy. this is a complicated situation and thank god innocent people, noncombatants will no longer be in harm's way and lose their lives but the administration gets high marks for steadiness and resol and the result. this is a big win for the white
house. >> the elephant in the room, congressman, is jared kushner ran relations for a four years and i think the adults have returned. we were talking about the sort of style of this white house lending itself to i think yamiche said walking and chewing gum and it's gone without harsh critics within the president's own party. what's your analysis of how well his conduct in the crisis is received in your own party? >> i think the president is rock solid. i give president biden get credit. i served in the white house. saw the president every day during the war in kosovo. it is difficult to make decisions in realtime and real people are in harm's way and so many things are outside your control but to engage the way we did on this, produce a cease fire i think is an enormous step
forward. there are real risks and not out of the woods yet but this is a very positive step and as a result of adults in the room. you won't do better than secretary tony blinken. nobody has more experience than president biden right now and this is where you see it matter. people are going to -- not going to lose their lives because this is brought in when it was and got to make sure it holds but thank god we're into a cease fire. >> congressman, i will ask you and director brennan to stick around. when we come back, repercussions from the vote on the insurrection commission. we'll talk about the security threat now posed by one of the two parties not being interested in investigating the gravest threat that exists today to the
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insurrection at the u.s. capitol. that is the good news. from foreign capitols news is not so good. america now has one of its two political parties either openly coluisive with the inrecollectionists or disinterested in protecting america what from christopher wray describes as a dominant threat to the american homeland. imagine if that was the reaction after september 11th? what would we have thought? former senior intelligence official involved in the post-9/11 investigations from both the 9/11 commission and congress telling me quote the capitol is ransacked. policemen were attacked and deaths. the image of the united states tarnished. there are questions on the security side of the equation at the very least have to be
answered. there is no sign that republicans aren't aware of grave threat posed by the former president's supporters a ten lies he continues to feed them and fuel them with. that makes the active obstruction all the more concerning. here's peter meyer on republican highway pock sy. >> many have softened the speech and more troubling there's an active to whitewash and rewrite the e inventories of that day to avoid accountability and turn away from difficult truths. if we avoid confronting what happened here we can be sure that violence will become a defining feature of our politics. >> turning away from difficult truths may be the gop's mission statement these days from ignoring the extremism warning to ramming through voter suppression laws in 47 states based on the big lie that the 2020 result was tainted by
fraud. republicans have collapsed as a party or a credible opposition party but resemble an anti-democratic propaganda dependent movement. >> to the other 90% of the friends on the other side of the aisle, holy cow! no idea what you're talking about. benghazi. you chased the former secretary of state all over the country, spent millions of dollars. we have people scaling the capitol hitting the capitol police with lead pipes across the head and we can't get bipartisanship! what else has to happen in this country? cops! this is a slap in the face to every rank and file cop in the united states! if we're going to take on china, rebuild the country, reverse climate change we need two political parties in this country that are both living in
reality and you ain't one of them. >> we're back with congressman maloney and director brennan. everything he says is really important, especially at this hour and the way he says it. but really important in the conversations i have had with former national security officials and i wonder your thoughts on this. we can't protect yourselves without the two major parties living in reality because we can't solve the problem of the threat if we don't both see the threat. how do you see the leadership effort to whip up votes to obstruct a commission? ordered by kevin maccarthy and then whipped votes against him. how do you see that? director brennan? >> i think a commission is
definitely needed. the fbi's investigating crimes that took place. any congressal hearings are beset by hyper partisanship in the congress and clearly i think the republicans are concerned that a commission would expose the cancer that has taken root in its party. also concerned once that is exposed it will alienate the swing voters they hope help them to regain the house and the senate in 2022. an independent commission can bring together experts from the government, from the congress just as the 9/11 commission did to ensure that there's going to be an objective and fair review of what happened to understand the causes and make recommendations to prevent a recurrence in the future. >> congressman, what do you make of the door that liz cheney has opened by saying on national
television that kevin mccarthy should be subpoenaed by an independent investigative commission? is this more than party politics? do you think this is personal for him? >> why would he have to be subpoenaed and not just tell everything he knows. the answer is because he can't tell the truth. so i think she is raising that possibility to say he's in a box. look. can i back up? not only did tim ryan nail every important thing you need to know about their opposition to the commission, you also have to consider what they did today which is 100% of them voted against the security supplemental to protect the capitol from a future attack and support the police. let me say it again. fund the police who defend our nation's capitol and january 6
lost their lives doing that and those police defend the life of mccarthy right now wherever he is flanked by capitol police officers literally protecting his life and today they voted to -- wait for it -- defund the police here at the capitol. 100% of the republicans. i understand why tim ryan is so passionate about this. because the hypocrisy is horrible. the substance matters. we need to know what happened. we are going to a point americans who have no ax to grind and can dispassionately without politics tell us the answers and we need to protect this building so that school kids can come here as they always have and not be afraid for safety, people go about the business here and especially so that the police officers have the support and the training and the resources they need to do their jobs. and that's what they all voted against today. so i want the american people to
know that we are going to hold them accountable for that. >> that's just extraordinary. director brennan, it gets to the piece that the former official talking to me about. everyone should want to know what happened to the office was picking up and everybody wanted to know what was in george w. bush's pbb. i worked to declassify the document. how do you explain the total -- they're not even -- opposite directions. everyone wanted to connect the dots and now you have one of two parties that doesn't want to pay to protect the capitol that was attacked. >> again i think it's because there's a concerted effort among the members of the republican party to suppress the truth
because i think they understand the truth is going to hurt them. what happened in the run-up of january 6 is really reflective of the republican party which is agitating based on untruths. the big steal by joe biden and the presidency. so a commission i think they see as a threat to them. these are the ones that put partisanship above country and above the security of the capitol grounds itself. and so therefore as congressman maloney said i think bringing in the respected individuals to have a fair and unbiassed analysis is so important. 9/11 commission did great work and did expose i think a lot of the failures that existed within the u.s. government prior to 9/11. i think this is what we need now to ensure that the u.s. capitol is never going to be assaulted the way it was on january 6. >> congressman, i want to put
you on the spot and ask you to try to explain why mccarthy is lying about what he did yesterday. so -- correct me if i have the facts wrong. he laid his hands on senator katko said get this done. he got democrats and republicans equal representation, both partys have to sign off on any subpoena. which also means that either party could block a subpoena. that was important to the republicans. not sure why. but he came out today. let me play it real quick. >> this pelosi commission we tried to work on for quite some tomb, i asked pelosi for one on january 13th why in that time an officer got killed on good friday. didn't want to have the scope to do that as well. >> so that's not true.
the commission that was formed in the bill that you passed yesterday could absolute investigate that attack if they wanted to. here's republican congressman katko dissputds what mccarthy just said. >> i want to note that the commission's scope of flexibility to investigate targeted violence and domestic terrorism relevant to the january 6 attack. it will be up to the commission to decide how far they want to go with that parameter. do i feel that the capitol -- the attack on the capitol that killed an officer is relevant? i do. do i feel the attack on republican members of congress is relevant? i do. they have the flexibility to do so if they want. >> that's last night as kevin mccarthy and all of his i guess
new leadership team whipping up votes against a commission to look at the other attacks. why lie? >> because the -- because he needs to give cover to john katko while he continues to side with the qanon conspiracy conspirists and those controlling that caucus because look at -- because liz cheney had to go and the matt gaetz and marjorie taylor greens goat stay and celebrated for the fund raising and the fund the rest of them. the tail wagging this dog is the donald trump qanon crazy wing of the republican party. it is dangerous and so while he's trying to give john katko cover he is at the same time deep sixing the fruits of katok's work on the committee and might think it's all cynical to pretepid they want it and
then trying to kill it but the fact is that we have enough adults in the house to get this done. the real question is what will happen in the senate? are those senators held accountable for their votes? because right now, right now we can get this going but we need those votes in the senate. >> we will stay on this as it moves into the senate. that's what happens next. we'll continue to call on both of you. thank you both for spending time with us. up next for us, how the republicans who experienced january 6 for what it was turned out to vote to stop the commission to get to the bottom of the deadly insurrection. ectin i'm so glad you're ok, sgt. houston. this is sam with usaa. do you see the tow truck?
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i am sheltered in place in my office. because we have protesters who have stormed the capitol. clashing with capitol police. forcing their way into statuary hall. the vice president of the united states was just rushed off the floor of the house by secret service. this is banana republic crap that we're watching happen right now. we have got to stop this. mr. president, you have got to stop this. you are the only person who can call this off. call it off.
>> so that was normal. right? normal reaction. that was republican congressman mike gallagher with an urgent plea for then president trump while sheltered in place in the insurrection to call it off. but what's not normal he voted on a bill yesterday for a bipartisan and independent commission to look into the january 6 attack. we have more. here's republican nancy mace describing her experience. >> i walked by a pipe bomb. where that was to get into the office that day. it was just -- just so crazy to me that's the world that we live in today. one point during all the mayhem, i was stuck in a tunnel underneath the capitol trying to get back to my office and e raid reports that rioters knew there were members stuck in the tunnels ian trying to go down find a way do get down there to find us and capture us. >> it is indeed not normal to
walk by a pipe bomb. she is right. but she, coverage woman nancy mace, voted no on a commission to discover who placed the pipe bomb. and this guy who hid in the mccarthy bathroom. with a civil war era sword on january 6 and voted no. then andrew clyde, remember him? he helped barricade the doors of the house. helpful that day. but then later compared the events of day of the insurrection to a normal tourist visit and he too voted no on the establishment of a bipartisan nonpolitical commission. joining us now former republican congressman david jolly. i understand the political climate. i think you and i both do but i don't understand the security questions. why are they siding with the
people that threatened them? >> i think what you are seeing from the rank and file members is a response to the fact that kevin mccarthy decided to whip this vote and bring down the party's infrastructure. every one of the members needs the fund raising arm and so to go against a key vote, a whipped vote by leadership would mean that their future in the congress is less tied to the purse strings of an mccarthy leadership team. it is the only thing that explains it unless there's a growing knowledge within the caucus that some members and perhaps mccarthy himself have unclean hands with the events of january 6. >> let's put the politics aside but i'm not sure it's clear or good politics to be against a
bipart san investigation that could look at other violence. absolutely look at the individual killed, killed an officer at the beginning of april. kevin mccarthy isn't really a sure thing. why are they willing to go down with him if it's also clear from liz cheney now who said he should be subpoenaed and may be some threads that he may be hiding over cover up for donald trump? why do they protect him personally? >> there is no tenable political position for republicans. kevin mccarthy and republicans are trying to shut it down because they may have unclean hands. what liz cheney seems to infer. how did he behave on january 6? did he give into the donald trump slow rolling of the
suppression? this is a politically untenable position to allow the american people to focus on. look. if democrats want to blame republicans for not supporting infrastructure republicans will frame it as costs too much. if democrats demonize republicans for not supporting immigration reform republicans will say we're the law and order party. there is not a republican framing to the events of january 6. there is no political been fit to mccarthy. so the internal politics we know he wants to be speaker of the house and may not survive a commission but for the external politics there is no republican framing of events of january 6 that's politically beneficial. >> it is amazing. it is also -- the politics are so simple. if you have a kid and you want
to know what's in the backpack. they open it if it's nothing to hide. they close it if they have something they don't want you to see. thank you so much for spending time with us today. up next for us, turning up the heat. a criminal tax investigation into the chief financial officer for the disgraced ex-president's company. the trump organization. who's worked for donald trump for decades. what it means? we'll talk to a reporter who knows more about what is under the hood than just about anyone. .
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i'd say give it a try. prevagen. healthier brain. better life. another new headline today highlighting donald trump's mounting legal problems. new york attorney general leticia james is investigating trump organization cfo allen weisselberg for criminal charges as to whether he paid taxes on benefits given to him by trump, including cars and tuition for his grandchildren's private school. previously, we knew she had been conducting only a civil investigation, but we're learning of its new focus just a day after the long-running criminal fraud investigation into trump and his businesses run by the manhattan d.a., cy vance, announced it was teaming up, joining forces with the attorney general's office. joining us now, "new york times" investigative reporter, whose work on trump's tax and business records earned her and her colleagues a pulitzer prize. susanne craig is here.
we're also thrilled she's now an msnbc contributor. thank you so much for being with us today. i have read your tax reporting a couple of times, and i have seen the doc that it inspired, and when michael cohen says the kinds of things that he said last night on joy reid, i'm going to play it in a second, i've always wondered what you've known all along. his implication is that it's so bad under the hood they're all going to flip on each other. let me play it real quick. we'll talk on the other side. >> allen weisselberg knew every single dollar in, not even the dollar, every single penny in and every penny out went through allen weisselberg's desk and then reported before and after to donald j. trump. he's going to turn on his accountant and point the finger. he's going to say, don junior handled that, ivanka, melania. he's going to tell them to take everyone except for himself.
>> even ivanka? >> that's just the kind of guy he is. everyone. ivanka too. >> wow. >> it's so shocking, but i think what people have to keep in mind, that whatever they think of michael cohen, he did work inside what was a relatively small family office. what do you think of that? >> well, i think if history is any indicator of this, and we've seen donald trump do it before, he often says, you know, i relied on advice of counsel. somebody else did it. i don't know anything about it. somebody gets into trouble, one of his advisors gets into trouble, all of a sudden he doesn't really know their name or who they are. so i think that there's a potentially predictable storyline going forward on it. you know, they've been working allen weisselberg, of course, he's the chief financial officer at the trump organization and they've been trying to work with him first as a cooperating witness to get him to talk and it seems now the tide has maybe changed on that so they're going to be working from the outside in order to try to get evidence, i would imagine, against donald
j. trump and that's sort of now the phase that we're seeing as the heat is being definitely turned up. >> and what do you think they're looking at, and where is the intersection, perhaps, with what you have examined to turn this from a civil probe to a criminal one? >> well, they're going to be seeing, i mean, with criminal, you have to show intent. i mean, did they intend to deceive? and it's important, you know, when the tax returns are one piece of that and we've seen the tax returns but in order to get a fraud case, what they're trying to do now is that cy vance, the manhattan d.a., got much more than the tax returns. he got the notes that were taken and the communication between the trump organization and the accountants that went into the tax returns and other things that were going on, and they're going to be able to try it and they're going to try now to piece all of that together to make a case. we did a story in 2018 that looked at the inherited wealth that donald trump received, the hundreds of millions of dollars
that he received from his father and as part of that, we found tax fraud in a scheme that they had in the 1990s. we did that by looking at the tax returns that we were able to obtain from fred trump and some of his businesses. we looked at bank records. we looked at financial statements, and it all kind of comes together and that's what they're trying to do now is get those pieces put in together. >> it's such a good point about the trove of evidence. they have the tax records, but they also have what michael cohen described in congressional testimony, the way they were inflated for certain things and deflated for others, those are the crimes, right? >> yeah, and we -- not necessarily. potentially. i mean, did they get an appraisal and did they put pressure on the appraiser or did they give the appraiser information that was false to get a certain appraisal? just so people know, i mean, when you have appraisals, you want them really high when you're making a tax donation so you can get a huge deduction on your taxes but in other
instances, like if there's a will involved, you want a low appraisal. those are the games people play and there are things done within that realm and the question is, did the trump organization step over the line? investigators are certainly looking at that with a couple of properties. did they try and elicit very high appraisals on certain properties that then went as a tax deduction because they were a land donation, so they became charitable. >> oh, it is fascinating, and you know all of the fine print. susanne craig, we're so happy to see you. thank you so much for spending some time with us today. the next hour of "deadline white house" starts after a quick break. don't go anywhere. we really are just getting started today. ere. we really are just getting started today. ngs] thank you. ooo... you gonna eat that at lesliepalooza? what? who's coming to that? everyone's coming, everybody. you, her, me, all of us.
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oath to do, if they don't uphold the constitution, then we will remove them from office one way or another. >> that attack, that siege was criminal behavior, plain and simple, and it's behavior that we, the fbi, view as domestic terrorism. january 6th was not an isolated event. the problem of domestic terrorism has been metastasizing across the country for a long time now and it's not going away any time soon. >> hi again, everyone, it's 5:00 in new york. that warning there that you just saw from fbi director christopher wray, you've seen it here before. it came over two months ago, but it's news again today because it did nothing to quell what he describes there as the metastasizing spread of the ex-president's big lie that the election was stolen and instead of arizona's audit of 2020 ballots being just some weird anomaly, it may just be the new normal. as we see more and more americans questioning the crown jewel of our democracy, free and fair elections. new reporting in the "washington
post" today paints a frightening picture of how trump has undermined confidence among his supporters in our democracy. from that new "post" reporting, quote, in emails, phone calls and public meetings, his supporters are questioning how their elections are administered and pressing public officials to revisit the vote count, wrongly insisting that trump won the presidential race. they detail specific and very recent examples, quote, at a public meeting last week in sheboygan county, michigan, a lawyer from detroit told county commissioners that the voting machines they used in 2020 could flip votes and throw an election. she offered to send in a forensic team at no charge to the county to inspect ballots and scanners. "the post" also writes about a meeting in windham, new hampshire, where nearly 500 people protested the choice of an auditor overseeing a review of a state representative election and chanted, you guessed it, stop the sale.
in california, residents during a board of supervisors meeting called for a frenzic audit as they questioned whether their votes were properly counted by machines. cries for audits are mounting as the one under way in maricopa county in arizona has reached such a level of absurdity, baselessness that local election officials are railing against it now. but trump's allies in congress, like the newly installed number three in the republican house, elise stefanik, qanon follower marjorie taylor greene, and congressman matt gaetz have all endorsed arizona's faux audit. this hold of trumpian disinformation so tight we're still seeing elected republicans not answer the question of whether joe biden was duly elected president of the united states. here's congressman warren davidson of ohio's response to the dispatch when asked if biden lawfully won. quote, i mean, obviously, the law was followed.
now, the law wasn't followed in lots of states, but ultimately, the process took place, you know, the electoral college voted and the house accepted the results. i mean, not everyone, you know. there were objections, but the votes were cast and in congress, you fight by voting. the votes were called and he got the votes. one insurrection later, we're now nearly seven months from the presidential election. dozens of lawsuits, multiple recounts and an insurrection later, and the gop still maybe even more complicit in the big lie that poses an imminent threat to our country. when the department of homeland security highlighted in its latest terror threat bulletin. the consequences of the lies spewed by the former president unchecked by members in his party is where we start this hour with two secretaries of state who find themselves facing this fight. arizona secretary of state katie hobbs and michigan secretary of
state jocelyn benson. thank you so much for being here with us. secretary hobbs, tell us first, this sort of national movement now to have what's happening in maricopa county happen in other places. does that concern you? >> absolutely, nicole. and you mentioned earlier, could this be the new normal? and the thought that that could be the case is absolutely alarming. this is nothing more than a grifting scheme for the republicans and donald trump's allies as well as an attempt to continue to undermine confidence in our elections. it is not an audit. it is the furthest thing from an audit that you can imagine. there's no best practices in place that would allow this results that they come up to be replicated. they have upset the chain of custody of ballots and equipment. we had to send maricopa county
notification today that our office would decertify the election equipment if it was going to continue to be used because there's been no chain of custody over it. >> that is just extraordinary. i wonder, secretary hobbs, as you see republicans sort of find their courage and start speaking out against what's happening there, the hunt for bamboo from china, i think, is it too little too late, or does it help? >> well, i certainly welcome them to this fight. however, i do think that if more people had stood together on both sides of the aisle and made these calls against this kind of action earlier, that we might not be in this place right now. unfortunately, that didn't happen, and so this is where we are. >> secretary benson, i want to ask you about what's happening in michigan now. this hasn't been going on or hasn't been getting national attention as long as what's happening in maricopa county,
but can you just, for our benefit, explain what's happening and where it's happening. >> outside of arizona, in michigan, in georgia, in nevada and even in new hampshire and california, there have been individuals, both raising money on one end and also going to local communities on the other and saying, hey, i'll come in and do a forensic audit for you, and you have these local officials, many of whom have been inundated with requests from residents who are embracing and believing the big lie, to conduct a forensic audit and notably here in michigan, we've had over 250 official audits that have been transparent, bipartisan efforts to reaffirm that the election was not just secure but also accessible and an accurate reflection of the will of the people. and so what you actually have is people coming in, trying to further the big lie and continuing to feed the big lie by having sort of, quote, unquote audits that actually aren't audits at all.
they don't follow any secure protocols, they don't, as secretary hobbs was mentioning, actually have reliable results because they don't have a reliable procedure that is in any way related to what an audit should be. and so it's all really just an effort to continue in the lack of evidence that there's been wrong doing, to continue to suggest there's been wrongdoing simply by having these types of misinformation parties that we're calling an audit and as a result, it's going to keep happening. it's going to keep growing. it's going to keep continuing throughout this country until there is accountability, until those behind this effort are held accountable for what happened on january 6th and what's happening in arizona and for really propagating the big lie in a way that is destructive to our democracy. >> so, i spoke to attorney general josh shapiro of pennsylvania. he's trying to hold rudy giuliani for coming to his state and abusing the courts and trying to sanction -- have him
sanctioned there. liz cheney is doing her part, not with a ton of success yet, to try to have republicans join an effort to hold the -- to investigate the insurrection. but i wonder, secretary benson, if you think those efforts are working or if you think the folks pushing policies like voter suppression laws in 47 states, close to 400 of them, based on a big lie, without a ton of ability to push back, the georgia law that resorted in boycotts is law. it went through. who's winning right now, in your eyes? >> i think we're seeing an escalation of the war on democracy in three fronts, one, this continued spreading of the big lie. it is growing. it is not receding and it's fed by, for instance, what's happening in arizona, and then secondly, we have this lie being codified in nearly every state in this country, as you mentioned, georgia, texas, florida, even here in michigan,
we've got 39 bills that are trying to ultimately undo the policies that led to such high turnout and such a secure election in 2020. and all those policies collectively are going to do are remove options for voting and make it more difficult for people to participate and vote in future elections. not to mention the work that's happening in states across the country to remove authority from election officials and give it to partisan lawmakers and others who would be able to interfere or intervene with future efforts to tabulate valid votes in an election, so the -- i think the -- those who are trying to undermine democracy and who did so in the months immediately following the election, have not stopped. indeed, they have just escalated their effort. it is a national, coordinated, partisan, well-funded strategy that will continue through, i believe, not just the midterms but all the way to 2024, where the same forces that emerged in 2020 will be back, but this time will be stronger. and so the question as to who's winning, that's yet to be determined because on the side of democracy are all of us,
secretaries of state, those of us trying to find accountability and truth in this moment, and it's up to us not just to be vigilant but to keep pushing for the truth to be told, to be repeated, to call out leaders who spread lies as opposed to telling the truth and to continue to petition back against all of the other tactics that i just mentioned, recognizing that this is a long haul effort to dismantle democracy so we all have to be in it for the long haul to protect it. >> secretary hobbs, do you feel like what you're both experiencing, what you're both on the front lines of, is adequately understood in washington, is getting the adequate attention and urgency from the white house and leaders in congress? >> well, i think certainly, the -- this last election thrust secretaries of state into the spotlight in a way that we haven't been before, and certainly americans have a better understanding of what we do. i do think that washington is
paying attention to that, at least on one side of the aisle. we can only hope that it spreads. i do think that, you know, i agree with what secretary benson just talked about in terms of, you know, who's winning this battle, but i think that we have no choice but to persist in this. >> secretary benson, i want to ask you something. you're free not to answer if you don't want to, but do you feel safe? >> sometimes. i think, you know, both secretary hobbs and i have faced near, you know, constant emails, phone calls, people showing up outside our homes, people following us. i mean, that is an unfortunate reality of protecting democracy right now. but it's a reality that's rooted in history. i know we -- secretary hobbs and i actually were in selma about two years ago on the edmund pettus bridge and i think often
of the need to stay the course and persist as she mentioned right now and stay focused on our work to protect every voice, every voter, and it means facing down those who would seek to undermine democracy just as folks who stood on the edmund pettus bridge faced down alabama state troopers. that is what democracy requires us to do, to face down threats, even threats of violence, to protect and defend the foundation of our country and i know secretaries of state, we sign up for that, actually. we sign up to do that. and we need others, too, as well. i think the federal government can do more. i think the for the people act is an example of what we need in terms of support as well as more investment and more funding in educating voters about the truth of our democracy and how to ensure they participate in a way that's informed and engaged. so there's a lot more we all need to do, and we know that as we move forward in this work, to continue to expand and protect democracy and push back against those who would seek to deny it,
it does mean that oftentimes we may not feel safe, but that's all the more reason to connect to those throughout history who have done this work and keep marching forward. >> i do not think there is a more important thing happening in this country than what you are both protecting against. you have an open invitation here. if we stop paying attention, admonish us and wave your arms and come back. secretary katie hobbs, secretary jocelyn benson, thank you so much for starting us off this hour. i'm really grateful. let me bring into our conversation, jason johnson, politics and journalism professor. also joining us, aaron blake, "washington post" senior political reporter. jason, i'm just sort of in shock from what is really happening, i guess, out there, and we cover it every day and we talk about it every day, but the truth is, we know that election officials are on the front lines. we know that the republican party from the top down is at war against its own democracy, because liz cheney told us also,
and as you always say, we knew that before as well. but on this question of who's winning, what do you think? >> well, right now, i think republicans are winning the war from the standpoint that they've got their troops at the ready, right? you still have too many democrats who are in congress, certainly democrats in the senate, what are saying, i don't know if we need to push this through. i don't know how necessary it is. so, if knowing is half the battle, the republicans know what the battle is. they seem to be prepared. and for every single example, and i was -- i really, really enjoyed that interview. you had two fantastic secretaries of state. for every example like that, nicole, that we just saw, we also have the brian kemps, right? there are plenty of secretaries of state in this country who are not willing to do this kind of work, who are willing to pander to this kind of nonsense, and that's where the real danger is, that it's dependent on the moral character and the professionalism of individuals who, quite frankly, you know, young lady said she's like, i'm
nervous sometimes. people tried to kill the governor of michigan over masks. i'd be terrified if i was a secretary of state. i'd be terrified if i was a campaign volunteer right now, and that's why this is dangerous. republicans are winning the battle because democrats and those who care about democracy are on their feet. they need to push back with laws, legislation, and a lack of tolerance for this kind of anti-democratic action. >> well, and aaron blake, i think something you've written goes to that point. for republicans, this is war, and it doesn't matter if on the other side of the line is a family member. you write this. trump attacks your family, your wife, your mom, no big deal in today's gop. pence, cruz, political expediency have long led people to do inexplicable things but very high on that list would seem to be shrugging off attacks on one's own family members in the name of toeing the party line. even if most anything is fair, lodging attacks involving the heritage and appearance of one's wife or mother would seem about
as close to a red line as you could get but as with most, every seemingly unwritten rules of politics, trump has bulldozed this one. i mean, pence, his brother yesterday was a no vote against the commission. cruz is legend. you also mentioned george p. bush. talk about this dynamic. it's really interesting. i haven't seen anyone else pick up on it. >> really, the pence situation was the impetus for this. of course, vice president pence was targeted by many of the people who stormed the capitol, not only that, but the president's first words as this capitol was being stormed was to attack mike pence. and since then, the timeline, as it's been assembled, to the extent that it has been assembled, has suggested that the president at least had some knowledge of the danger, not just that lawmakers were in but that vice president pence could have been in. but if you look back, even in recent weeks, we have mitch mcconnell who really is looking like he's casting the decisive vote against this commission.
when he came out against this on wednesday. he looks like he's going to martial support against this january 6th commission. it wasn't that long ago that the president was -- the former president was lodging attacks about the chinese ties of his taiwan-born wife, calling mitch mcconnell really mean things. george p. bush is another great example. the rest of his family is very much against donald trump and has come out against him increasingly so over the years but we have the one, really, bush who has a ramping up political career. he might run for texas attorney general and has really toed that trump line over the years. and so i think this really reinforces the -- what we've seen especially with this commission debate, also to a large extent with all the talk about voter fraud and irregularities in the election. it's that republicans are really playing a rather ruthless game here and when it comes to criticisms of their family members, the fact that they're willing to shrug those off in
the name of ambition and in the name of coming together as a party, i think, really just kind of tells a tale of what we've seen over the last four or five years. >> jason, aaron blake used the word, ruthless, and i think that's a word that i haven't found yet and i'm grateful to him for putting that on this mission. i want to ask you about something that i've wrestled with. you've got more clarity than i do. but i understand better than anyone the appetite to turn the page on donald trump. i try not to say his name, i try to call him the disgraced ex-president. but what he has uncorked, what is happening now is worse than what happened at any moment of his presidency. what he has uncorked is a unorganized but vast anti-democratic movement. its oxygen is disinformation. they view fox news as the medium source. we think fox is outrageous. to his supporters, they're in the center. they view fox as center right because to its right is all that other stuff, newsmax, oan and whatnot. what do you view this moment
for -- what do you view sort of this moment as in terms of navigating what we're watching? and yesterday's vote is one example. kevin mccarthy sending his deputy, john katko, to negotiate a bill that he then attacked and whipped up votes against. how do you explain what is happening on the other side of the aisle? >> so, this is really important, nicole. i think aaron made a great point. when he said ruthlessness and people not defending their families, the african-american clo kweelism is, you can debate as much as you want but the minute you say, yo mama, it's over. the republicans have moved past that limit. you can attack wives, husbands, children, nobody cares because they're worshipping donald trump. as long as donald trump is there, they're going to engage in this kind of behavior. what i fear, nicole, more than anything else, i've said all along, this has been brewing for decades. this was starting back with newt
gingrich, starting in the 2000 election. this has been growing for decades, for most of my, like, semiadult life at this particular time. but what frightens me is i try to think as a political scientist, 20, 30 years in the future. i don't want us to look back on this point and say, oh, you know what? we probably should have seen this coming. we should have probably seen that a group of people who can be okay with individuals marching into the capitol and trying to hang mike pence aren't the kind of people you can ever work with again. we're not dealing with a party anymore. i don't like using the term, republican party, because it's basically a storm front for an armed insurrection. that's all it is. we have to start talking about them that way. we have to recognize that tucker carlson is not a journalist. he's basically a spokesperson for a revolutionary movement to overturn this country and turn it into a white nationalist state. that's what's going on. any other terminology and we play into it and i hope that we recognize that this is war. this is war for the future of this country. one side is ready and fighting
and has already launched their first salvo and the other side is trying to figure out if they want to vote on it. that's what i see this point as being and i hope we don't look back on the summer of 2021 and regret the decisions that weren't made to protect this country. >> and aaron, the reaction sometimes from the right is that this conversation is hyperbolic, but the proof is in the pudding. heritage wrote sample legislation that is being debated or passed in 47 states. there was no voter fraud. bill barr said so. mitch mcconnell at one point said so. chris christie has said so. yet, at 47 state legislatures are debating legislation that is to address something that's nonexistent. so, that's how detached the republican policymaking process is from reality. the other thing is the census. the other thing is the history of midterms, the president's party typically losing some
seats. now, there are exceptions. 2002 was one of them. i was in the white house so i always like to put that on the record. but what do you make of sort of the posture of each party? i agree with jason. for the republicans, this is war. this is existential and they're going to change the rules to vote. >> yeah, and what we've seen is kind of all along, the republican party and at least especially its leaders haven't necessarily echoed the things that donald trump says about massive fraud, about hundreds of thousands of votes flipping in detroit overnight or something like that. they've instead, and even in the supreme court case, the amicus brief that we saw from house republicans, was narrower, it was talking about irregularities, it was talking about the idea that certain states weren't, perhaps, following their election laws. i think republicans have argued that they don't to talk about the 2020 election but they're having a very different conversation than the president has been having. it still serves the same purpose, which is crafting these
new laws that were initially predicated on these irregularities or these supposed irregularities and now they're basically trying to save the point. they're very close to winning back the house and the senate in 2022. they may not even have to rewrite those laws if that's actually the strategy here. and so, what we've seen is really this party trying to make the best of a bad situation, trying to take what the president's saying and really water it down into something that's at least more defensible to their base when it comes to crafting these new laws. >> jason johnson, aaron blake, thank you for going deep with me and for spending some time with us. it's great to see both of you. when we come back, dr. fauci says americans are misinterpreting the cdc's guidelines on masks. no one is misinterpreting that guidance more than texas governor greg abbott, who's now threatening to fine cities and towns, even public schools for requiring masks. that story's next. plus, back to the breaking news from the middle east. the ceasefire announced between
israel and hamas. we're expecting to hear from president biden later in the hour and we'll bring you his remarks live when they happen. and 62 republicans voted against the asian-american hate crimes bill that president biden today signed into law. 62 votes against, even as anti-asian hate crimes have soared over the past year. "deadline white house" continues after a quick break. don't go anywhere. continues aftea r quick break. don't go anywhere.
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mask either outdoors or indoors. it did not say that people who are not vaccinated should abandon their masks. it said people who are not vaccinated should continue to wear masks and should get vaccinated. so, i think people are misinterpreting, thinking that this is a removal of a mask mandate for everyone. it's not. it's an assurance to those who are vaccinated that they can feel safe, be they outdoors or indoors. >> dr. anthony fauci in an axios forum warning that the cdc guidelines for people who are vaccinated do not mean the end of mask mandates. perhaps no one is misinterpreting the guidance more than texas governor greg abbott who is taking his long-running war on public health a step further with an order banning government entities from imposing mask mandates, even fining officials who put them in place. let's bring into our conversation dr. peter hotez,
co-director of the center for vaccine development and dean of the national school of tropical message at baylor college of medicine and author of the book, preventing the next pandemic and one of our favorite people to talk to about covid disinformation and everything else. is it even legal to ban other institutions or organizations from putting a piece of cloth over their face? it's such a long way from the republican party that wanted to stay out of our lives. >> well, i'll leave it to the attorneys to figure out the legality of it all, but you know, what we just heard, i think, are two extremes. what tony said, what dr. fauci said, and what the governor of texas, governor abbott said. here's the situation, nicole, that i don't think we consider adequately. there's still a pretty screaming high level of transmission of virus going out in the country right now. we're all high-fiving ourselves, thinking we're out of it, but we're still averaging 30,000 new cases a day.
and when we were at that level -- when we hit that level in july, last year, that was headline news. they said, oh my god, we just hit 30,000 new cases a day. so there's still a lot of transmission going on, and what that means is, you know, for the cdc guidelines, feeling comfortable not wearing masks now, i would have waited a bit. i think if -- as we head, later, into the summer, transmission should start coming down in the states that are aggressively vaccinating up in the northeast, and then, i think, we can feel more comfortable with that, with the important provision that people who are receiving immunosuppressive therapy, we're now learning the vaccines are not as effective as we'd hoped, certainly not in a single dose, so even those populations may still need a mask. so, i think on the cdc guidelines, i think it could have been a little more nuanced. on the -- from the governor of texas, you know, as we say down here in texas, why use a
nutcracker if you've got access to a sledgehammer? so we tend to be -- so that was a pretty big statement to make. by the way, i think the executive order does preclude hospitals, which i'm glad about, i think, and prison systems and others. but there's still some confusion about medical schools and things like that. i didn't think a mandate was necessary at this point. let's see how this thing goes, because the other thing to remember is we're -- the place we're at right now in the country, last year at this time, we were at the nadir of our epidemic also and then if you remember starting in july and august, we saw that big surge cut across the southern states, including texas and the southeast. as well as arizona. now, it shouldn't be as bad this time around because we've got some people vaccinated, even though we're in the south, we're at the lowest levels of vaccination in the country and
only half as much, and we do have some infected and recovered individuals who are partially immune. but i'm worried what could happen this summer, so i would be very cautious about lifting mandates at this point and being very conservative, especially in this part of the country. i mean, you can't have it both ways. i mean, if it's one thing, if we were vaccinating at the levels of northeast, but the fact that we're so profoundly underachieving in the south and no one's really getting vaccinated, and then to lift the -- insist on lifting the masks, i think, is -- could introduce a lot of risk into the system. >> what is the impact on the dynamic you just described for all americans under 12 years old? i have one of said americans, and obviously, there is no vaccine for them. are we still in a situation where sort of politically-inspired defiance, either to get vaccinated or wear a mask, endangers young people, and should that be emphasized as
some of the public messaging? >> yeah, well, the other thing the public messaging doesn't emphasize is, you know, everyone focuses on deaths, and the statement is made, well, young people and kids are not dying. well, first of all, that's not entirely true, but second, there are a lot of things that happen with the sars coronavirus type 2 than death. there's long-lasting symptoms, long haul covid, still seeing hospitalizations in young people, especially with the b. b.1.1.7 variant. so no one ever contextualizes it, in either extreme, no one contextualizes it in the concept of how much transmission is going on. once we get back to containment mode, later on in the summer, which i think we can do potentially, at least in the northeast, then that gives us a lot more flexibility, but right now, my kids are all grown up now, but if they were still little kids, i would definitely have them wear masks when they go inside any place of business
while this level of transmission is going on. maybe by later in the summer, things will ease up. >> dr. peter hotez, the man with the answers, thank you for joining us today. it's nice to see you, my friend. coming up for us, the breaking news out of the middle east. the ceasefire announced in the last hour between israel and hamas and the role president biden's quiet diplomacy may have played in reaching it. we're expecting to hear from the president at the white house in just a few moments. we'll bring you his remarks live when we return. l bring you his e when we return [sfx: kids laughing] [sfx: bikes passing] [sfx: fire truck siren] onstar, we see them. okay. mother and child in vehicle. mother is unable to exit the vehicle. injuries are unknown. thank you, onstar. ♪ my son, is he okay? your son's fine. thank you. there was something in the road... it's okay. you're safe now. it's okay.
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we are waiting to hear from president biden on the breaking news developing just in the last hour in the middle east. the israeli government saying it has agreed to a bilateral ceasefire with hamas, egypt initiated the ceasefire and says it will begin at 2:00 a.m. friday. the truce follows increasing violence in the conflict's latest flare-up that's left hundreds dead since last week and increasing pressure worldwide for an end to the violence, including from the united states, israel's closest ally. president biden told prime minister netanyahu yesterday that he, quote, expected a significant de-escalation. from the "new york times," quote, there has been intensive mediation between hamas and israel which do not talk to each other directly. the united states has no contact with hamas, which it and the eu also consider a terrorist group, but the administration has nevertheless played an important role in efforts to end the
conflict. joining us now is michael crowley. you did a lot of explaining, and i've listened to some of your other interviews, but can you talk about -- it's not necessarily a cookie cutter role that an american president plays. talk about what this white house has done and the significance of the ceasefire that's been agreed to. >> yeah, well, first of all, it's significant, but we'll see if it holds. these ceasefires can be fragile. you can have people who go rogue, particularly out of gaza, there might be some actors. it's hard to, you know, the israeli government's going to be pretty unified but you could have actors there who shoot rockets and throw this all off balance. it's not -- it wasn't a cookie cutter approach for president biden. i mean, in some ways, he was criticized for turning to what people described as, you know, sort of a familiar playbook in dealing with benjamin netanyahu and the israeli government in terms of really stressing
israel's right to self-defense and seeming to almost lean in the direction of sympathizing with israel over the palestinians in this case. you know, and putting -- creating distance between himself and progressives, in particular, in his party but also some more centrist members of his party who were getting uncomfortable, i think, with the disproportionate casualties on the palestinian side, which, by the way, the israelis say are inevitable given the dynamics here. but what biden did was gradually kind of tighten his squeeze, toughen his tone, and we saw over the course of four phone calls with netanyahu, particularly on tuesday and wednesday, he was growing more and more impatient. my reporting with my colleague, andy, showed that he was even more impatient than white house readouts were letting on, telling netanyahu, basically, he was running out of time here in washington to be able to run cover for him, that he was losing support for democrats. the question is, was that squeeze what ended this or, as i
think there's a lot of evidence also to suggest, did the israeli military basically feel like they finished their mission and they were experiencing diminishing returns politically so time to wrap it up. >> and it seems like both things could be true. the statement that the israeli government put out about an hour ago was they had achieved their security aims, and richard engel said something interesting that i want your thoughts on. he said this was really the first time that social media played such a prominent role and increasing pressure on the israeli government. what do you think of that? >> well, absolutely, nicole. i mean, we're -- we all know this now, but we're living in this new age where political pressure is applied in ways that we just hadn't seen even a decade ago, and i think there are, you know -- it's an imperfect analogy but there are echos and parallels to policing and the black lives matter movement in the united states where you just had this incredible power on social
media, testimonials, perspectives that are often not captured in the major media, and these, you know, kind of viral hashtag campaigns, and they are exerting influence on political actors in a way that they weren't before, and i do think that, yeah, i do think that you are seeing that here and i think that had an effect in shaping the politics around this terrible conflict. >> you've also got some reporting about what the white house's focus is if the ceasefire holds. let me read from that. you're reporting the senior biden administration official says the united states was planning to be at the fore of an international response, most likely costing billions of dollars. a senior official said rebuilding gaza, which will most likely be coordinated through the u.n., was at the top of a list of festering diplomatic obstacles that the administration will face between israel and the palestinian authority once the fighting winds down.
just talk about, i mean, this president is someone, really, who's been -- i guess george h.w. bush is the closest parallel. you know this better than i do. he's been involved in every foreign policy crisis that's come to this country in the senate and as vice president. just talk about how that plays on these kinds of approaches on the humanitarian side. >> definitely, nicole. i just -- he was elected vice president in the obama era, there were -- just during that period of time, there were two major conflicts like this where israel and hamas were fighting in similar terms. in 2014, there was actually the israeli ground invasion of gaza, which dragged on, i think, for something like 50 days. president biden remembers that well. john kerry, now the climate envoy, then the secretary of state, tried to broker a ceasefire in that second conflict. many other senior national security aides in the current white house have seen these conflicts so i think as a result, part of that, what's
happening is they're saying, you know, we've seen this movie too many times. how do we break the cycle? what can we do? and they're trying to come up with ways to change -- break the cycle and, you know, one way would be some sort of major humanitarian effort that begins to reconstruct gaza and give it some new economic vitality, but i'll tell you, nicole, i spent some time today looking back at rhetoric following those other conflicts, including in 2014. you see people saying very similar things to what they're saying now. we have to break the cycle. we have to rebuild gaza. we have to do this and that, and these things that somehow, tragically, just never happen, so you know, i'm afraid that i'm, you know, hopeful but quite skeptical that things are going to be different this time. >> well, we know you'll stay on it. michael crowley, thank you for spending time with us and all your reporting today. we're grateful. we will carry and bring you president biden's remarks as soon as they happen. when we return, president biden with a big move today
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we cannot let the very foundation of this country continue to be eaten away like it has been at other moments in our history and happening again. >> an historic step forward thi achb in the country's fight against the surge in anti-asian hate. that was president biden moments before he signed new legislation today directing the department of justice to expedite the review of covid related hate crimes. also required to issue guidance that seeks to raise awareness about the spike of anti-asian hate crimes over the past year. the bill creates grants for states so they can choose to establish reporting hotlines. joining us now, former spokesperson for the house oversight committee. then we have the change in times
in one short sentence. thanks for being with us. i know this is an issue you have been speaking out about for a really long time. talk about the significance, the historic of the bill signed today. >> well, this is the first time, i think, in my lifetime that i can remember seeing a president of the united states address issues that directly affect the asian-american community like this in any legislative form. i think that as the president said, this isn't the type of country we want to have, the type of people we want to be. we want to be a country that's diverse and tolerant and accepting and welcoming and understanding. and we're seeing too much in recent times, you know, just the opposite. you know, i was just earlier today driving down to where i live, and as i'm at a stoplight, the car next to me rolls down
the window and starts hurling racial insults and threatens to beat me up. i have to think in my head, is this person armed? am i in danger right now? i hate that we live in a country where that thought has to come to my mind, where people who look different have to worry about every encounter turning into violence, something that could jeopardize their life and hopefully today an important and meaningful step in our collective effort to start addressing that and talking about it and educating people and showing us as a society that we are not going to be tolerant of that type of behavior, that we are not going to allow all communities of color to feel like they have something to fear by going through every day activities. even as this debate has reached the national forefront and consciousness, we have seen violence against asian americans
rise. we see every day reports surge about people being attacked and assaulted and harassed. and it has to stop. >> so one of the things we know is that the violence goes undercounted because it is underreported. did you tack down a license plate and report the attack on you? >> yeah. i wish i could have. i was at a busy intersection. and as this is happening, the light turns grown and then the turn just speeds off and drives away. i had a choice. well, i guess i could try to chase them down, but it is one of those things, too, where if you are in that situation, again, you have to think about how far am i willing to take this not knowing what the other person's true intentions are, not knowing whether they are carrying a firearm or not and putting other people sharing the road in unnecessary danger. but, again, so much of the hate crimes that go on in this country are underreported because i think a lot of people
and communities of color specifically, they don't know if they can trust law enforcement. they don't know if law enforcement has the tools and the training to even act on this situation in a productive and meaningful way. that's part of why this legislation is so important, because it is about giving those tools to the law enforcement community, giving them the resources to even count accurately the number of hate crimes that go on. but underlying all of that and why this is a challenge not just for asian-americans but for all communities of color, there is a distrust right now of law enforcement. and that's something at the root we have to address and fix. >> so i'm asking this because in my own life, i know this is real. elderly asian americans are serfied to go to the market alone or be out of the apartment in the evening when it's dark. does this legislation need a sort of touch people component to it to make people feel safe
or does it need a community level program to sort of hold people and say, i see you and i'll protect you. there are phones everywhere at college if you want to go on a safe walk. do we need to do more? >> we absolutely need to do more. part of the hope is where the funding and resources will be allocated for all of this and directed to state and local law enforcement that they in turn use those resources to do a better job in communities. the reality is, and i have talked to so many of my aapi friends that are worried about their parents and grandparents. they're worried about having them out in public and having them go certain places after the sun goes down. it shouldn't be like that. we should live in a country where we're free from that type of harassment and fear. and right now it feels like we're kind of being preyed on by these hateful, terrible people. again, i don't think that this
legislation will solve all of this overnight. but it has to be the beginning of a conversation that has to continue. they cannot be one of those times where, all right, we did something. let's go about our merry way and never talk about this again because, i'll tell you, the violence isn't going to have to stop. we have to stay vigilant and keep talking about it. we want to make sure that everybody knows that we are here. we're not going to go away. we want to be seen and heard, and we're going to continue this fight for justice. >> thank you so much for spending some time with us today. we are awaiting president bide biden's remarks on the cease-fire announced later today in the middle east. let's bring in mike. mike, i'm so happy to finally get to talk to you at the end of almost two hours covering this president and this cease-fire. you know better than everyone, i think, that covers him just how closely he follows world events, just how involved he's been in
foreign policy, just how much he knows all these players. talk about what the last few very tense, very tragic days in the middle east have been like for this president. >> well, nicole, today is may 20th. that means president biden has been in the white house for exactly four months and a few hours in change here. and whether it is largely been a domestic policy presidency obviously dealing with the pandemic, but we have seen even in the case now of what the situation is in the middle east a very clear pattern for how this president governs. and that is in the face of a crisis, it is to surgery sources. it is to surge experts and it is to surge his own depth of experience to a problem here. it was the same thing we saw. remember colonial pipeline? that was the biggest story last week. despite all the criticisms about whether this was going to be a crisis that tested his presidency, we have moved on quite quickly. we moved on with the pressure on this white house, including from members of his own party to take a much stronger hand here,
especially with regard to israelis. i asked the president why is this not the time to insist on that cease-fire? the president responded, i'm speaking to the prime minister in an hour. it was expected that even if this cease-fire came to be, it would just be a written statement that came from the white house. i think part of what the president wants to do here is to highlight the progress that has been made. this is a white house that has spent all week talking to us about the quiet but intensive diplomacy they have been engaged in, the 80 exchanges between the president and other senior officials with their world counter parts. he's not obviously going to get beyond this moment. we know how fragile any cease-fire is going to be. but i think this is a moment in which the president can speak to the success of this strategy. remember how often during the course of a campaign, nicole, we could talk about a campaign in which there was constant
criticism, questions about their strategy. when this white house left the campaign before it has set on a strategy, they have largely stuck to that strategy, and i think that's indicative of how the white house wants to present this situation at the moment. that's not to say that they're not mindful of the criticism, the questions that come along. i was in michigan earlier this week when we saw that presidentd congresswoman taleed. he singled her out in his remarks to praise her for her advocacy here. but all along, his conversations with the prime minister who he has known for so long and he has had his own complicated relationship with, but he's been able to dial that pressure up time after time. the question, of course, is was this cease fire inevitable? and could he have gotten to this point sooner with stronger advocacy? i don't know that we could answer it at this point. but the question becomes what do
we do next? that's why the president has been in touch with the egyptians, speaking to the jordan king today as they consider how to take this moment and improve upon it. >> thank you so much for just ending our two hours with all that great reporting. i'm really grateful to get to talk to you on a day like today. we will carry president biden's remarks when they happen on this network. our coverage continues now on "the beat" with ari melber. >> hi, nicole. thank you so much. we are tracking this developing news. president biden is about to address the new truce in the middle east. there has been 11 days of aerial attacks that killed more than 230 palestinians, 65 children and 12 israelis. hamas now agreed to this cease-fire to begin basically soon, this is 7:00 p.m. eastern ti