tv Deadline White House MSNBC July 13, 2021 1:00pm-3:00pm PDT
hi there, everyone. it's democrats break glass in case of emergency for democracy day. president joe biden will now forever hold the distinction of having served as president during one of the greatest rollbacks of access to the polls in recent american history. 28 voting restriction laws have been enacted since he was inaugurated and 61 more are racing through 18 other state legislatures and that is according to the latest update from the brennan center for justice. in states and counties president biden won by slim margins, the
laws are particularly egregious. in georgia their law disempowers the secretary of state removing him as chairman of the state election board and empowering the gop-led legislature to suspend county election officials. in arizona, the state's secretary of state has been removed as a statewide official responsible for representing that state in disputed election results. in harris county, texas, the new voting restriction expected to pass but for the defiance of democratic state representatives, we'll get to that later, would ban drive-through and 24-hour voting and further tighten the rules for voting by mail, measures disproportionately used by democrat and minority voters in that state. so here we are today. president joe biden putting the full force of his office behind the moral case for protecting the right to vote in 2021 america. a speech he never should have had to give and would not have had to deliver if the gop hadn't lurched toward anti-democratic policies, something president
joe biden addressed today in philadelphia. >> the 2020 election was the most scrutinized election ever in american history. challenge after challenge brought to local, state and election officials. state legislatures, state and federal courts. even to the united states supreme court. not once but twice. more than 80 judges, including those appointed by my predecessor, heard the arguments. in every case, neither cause nor evidence was found to undermine the national achievement of administering the historic election in the face of such extraordinary challenges. audits, recounts were conducted. in arizona, wisconsin, in georgia it was recounted three times. it's clear. for those who challenge the results and question the integrity of the election, no
other election has ever been held under such scrutiny and such high standards. the big lie is just that, a big lie. >> president biden also delivered a forceful appeal to congress to pass the john lewis voting rights act and hr-1, the for the people act, but also outlined measures that he's taking, that his office is undertaking in tandem, like a push to educate voters as well as a rebuke of the republicans at all levels of government leading the effort to strip mostly democratic, mostly minority voters of their access to the ballot box piece by piece. watch. >> we're going to face another test in 2022. a new wage of unprecedented voter suppression and raw and sustained election subversion. we have to prepare now. as i said time and again, no matter what, you can never stop
the american people from voting. they will decide. and the power must always be in the people. that's why just like we did in 2020, we have to prepare for 2022. we'll engage in an all-out effort to educate voters about the changing laws. register them to vote and then get the vote out. we'll encourage people to run for office themselves at every level. we'll be asking my republican friends in congress in states and cities and counties to stand up for god sake and help prevent this concerted effort to undermine our election and the sacred right to vote. have you no shame? >> the president's case for the moral obligation to fight the gop voter suppression laws sweeping the nation are where we start today. eli stokels is here, white house reporter for "the los angeles
times." also joining us is ari berman and judith brown diane. judith, i start with you. take me through your reaction to the president's address today. >> sure. thanks, nicolle. i think, number one, it is important for the american people to hear from the president of the united states about the issue of voting rights. it's important that he sounded the alarm about the attack on voting rights. he also laid out what his administration is doing. they can't do everything. he called on congress. and also he set out the truth. he debunked the big lie and he laid out a great case for why it is a lie and why we need to move on, but also why we need to protect democracy. but, nicolle, he didn't go far enough for me. at the end of the day, i need the president to call on his
colleagues, his former colleagues in the senate to end the filibuster. we can't get the john lewis voting rights advancement act passed or the for the people act passed with the congress that we have right now without ending the filibuster. >> you know, eli stokels, this is where this debate is. i want to read you yamiche's immediate reaction and ask you for yours and then we'll turn to what judith raises which is how. she tweeted that was one of president biden's most passionate speeches of his presidency, possibly of his entire career. he's saying very clearly this is a crisis as important as to what led to the civil war. he had peddlers of lies are threatening the very foundation of our country. i see it that way too. and i also, having spent time in the republican party, i assure you they see the opposite is the
case. access to the polls for minority voters equals their political defeat forever in places like georgia and arizona and michigan. there's no mistake with the republican strategy. so republicans have their eye on a prize and they are running mercilessly through norms and relying on democrats' reluctance to blow up the filibuster. i wonder if you think democrats and this president and this white house see it that clearly? >> well, i think they understand that the filibuster is the obvious impediment to passing the two pieces of legislation the president threw his full support behind in that speech, but they are not going out and saying it just yet to the consternation of a lot of people on the left who want them to just get it over with and get out there and make an emphatic case and do the arm twisting in public with joe manchin and kyrsten sinema and the other moderates who are not there yet. the white house will just keep
saying we do not have the votes. i talked yesterday with representative james clyburn, obviously a very close ally of the president's and he was not concerned. he said, look, it's one thing, you can use the microphone or you can use the telephone. his sense was that a lot of the arm twisting, the conversations are taking place but behind the scenes. and so that may not mollify a lot of progressive who want the president to come out and name it and talk about the filibuster, but vice president harris this morning also intimated as much, saying she's having private conversations, not going to get into that, but let it be implied that they are talking about the filibuster. they are all aware that neither of these pieces of legislation are going anywhere unless they do secure those 50 democratic senate votes and decide as an entire senate conference to go forward. and to do that even if it's just on voting rights. they're not there yet and i think inside the white house the sense is it makes sense to do
this privately and not put lawmakers on the spot. that's been their approach with the infrastructure and covid relief package. that's how they negotiate. that's the hill strategy. they are going to respect the personal politics of the individual lawmakers, even if that frustrates a lot of the democratic activists out there who want to hear the president explicitly say it's time to blow up the filibuster. >> ari berman, how do you see this today? >> well, i thought the rhetoric of the speech was very, very strong. it was the strongest rhetoric that joe biden has used to date to describe the gop's war on voting. he called this 21st century jim crow assault. he said the choice is democracy versus autocracy, which i absolutely think is right. but then the action needs to match the rhetoric. and the question is if the passage of the for the people act and the john lewis voting rights act is a national imperative, as joe biden said,
then democrats have to do everything they can to pass it. and the second part of that is what are you going to do to pass it? and to eli's point, i think that the biden administration needs to educate the public about the filibuster. i don't think a lot of people know what the filibuster actually is, so you can't just have this conversation behind closed doors with joe manchin or kyrsten sinema. he needs to talk about the fact republicans blocked the debate and didn't just block the debate, but you had a piece of legislation supported by 68% of americans that would expand voting access for tens of millions of americans but it can be blocked by 41 republican senators representing just 21% of the country. i don't think that the american public realizes that a tiny minority of extremely conservative republican senators can block legislation that's supported by a huge majority of americans. i think the president needs to make a public case for eliminating the filibuster.
maybe this is a two-step process. maybe the first part of the process is to educate people about the attack on voting rights. maybe the second part of the process is to educate people about how to respond to it. but if you listen to texas democrats that just left the state, time is running out. they have an august 6th deadline to go back to texas to face arrest. what they are saying is if we don't get congressional legislation to stop voter suppression, they are going to enact a new bill. so they are saying we have three weeks to act and it doesn't feel like congress or the president has that same sense of urgency. >> judith, the white house will admit that they may not have won the senate, control of the senate, those two georgia seats if this georgia law had been in place. i mean they see, to eli and ari's point, they seem clear-eyed about the threat. if you could just pick up on ari's point that today's speech was really the first time that
the rhetoric and the bully pulpit seemed in line with, commensurate to the threat they're facing. i'd like to know what you think the appropriate next steps are on both these paths, the public -- i don't know, public relations, public education, whatever you want to call it and the behind-the-scenes action to have federal voting rights legislation passed by this congress ahead of the midterms, because i think what everyone agrees on is that this supreme court, when you've got justice alito trotting out the word voter fraud, which wasn't a thing. if he had bill barr's phone number, bill barr could have told him so. you have no guarantee that the legal path and democrats say they plan to sue more states for their laws. but there's no guarantee that, one, it will be successful or, two, that it will be speedy. >> we have cases that we filed in georgia and in florida against these new voter suppression laws. you know, we know that the supreme court just made it
harder for us to prove discrimination. and so i do think to ari's point that there has to be a continued education of the american public about what is at stake and how our democracy is being taken apart, dismantled root and branch. i think the president outlined a really important point about we worry about foreign interference with our elections, but what we really need to be worried about is domestic interference with our elections which is called voter suppression. and so i think we do have to be doing that. listen, this is an all hands on deck, use every tactic in the book moment, because we know what is at stake. so that means we're going to be in the courts. we have to be in the streets. we have to be at state capitols. and we have to be in the senate making sure that they do their job. because the other thing that we have to be worried about, nicolle, is that when
legislative sessions go into effect in january, the floodgates of voter suppression will be opened and we will see more laws passing that will harm voters. >> eli, you know what i thought watching this speech today, that the simple task of sort of pushing back against the big lie has never had a bigger figure with a bigger megaphone and i wonder if you've got any reporting that they suggest to make that they have considered or anyone suggested doing a speech like that in prime time. i mean you've got obviously the hard right and the devoted trump supporters and the folks who were willing to storm the capitol. they'll never believe the truth. but the people who determine elections sometimes sit in the middle of our politics. i wondering if this white house is considering a more extensive and higher profile effort to undermine the big lie? >> well, what i've heard from folks inside the white house,
nicolle, is this is the first big messaging effort. it doesn't preclude them from doing more speeches like this potentially in prime time. but the effort today i'm told is mostly about diagnosing the problem, clarifying for the problem who is doing this. this is a partisan attempt. it's paced on this false pretext of the big lie. it's happening state by state. it was also not just the president talking about voter suppression but the words you heard were election subversion. the president was explaining to americans that, look, some of these laws allow partisan election officials to do exactly what donald trump wanted them to do last fall which is just change the result. throw out the ballots that your party finds inconvenient and tilt the election that way. so i think the president did want to shock people who may not be following this all that closely, people tuning in today. he said i don't mean to alarm you, but you should be alarmed. and so this was the first crack at it to really wake people up
to it. i know he didn't go far enough for a lot of activist people who want him to talk about the filibuster, but inside the white house, they were talking mostly about, look, we need to make it very clear what's going on, who's doing it. the plan of action is still a little opaque and i understand the frustrations and i think the white house understands the frustrations inside the democratic party about the fact that they are at an impasse right now. and whether they are private discussions or need to be more public discussions, they're aware of that. but they do have an eye on next year, 2022. they said that explicitly, the president said that explicitly. i talked to someone yesterday who said we dealt with this in 2020. it was a crazy election. there were all kinds of crazy battles and we had to tell voters how they could vote, when they could vote, what the impediments to voting were in those states. so they're prepared to do that again even if there are more and more roadblocks being set up for
voters. but it's understandable that the white house knows you're not going to animate your voters and get your people excited to vote if they're frustrated and feel like you're not fighting hard enough to get some of those impediments out of the way. >> ari, i want to be really blunt and really clear here. the white house's diagnosis is an issue for activists. i think that's dangerous. these are the voters who chose joe biden after bruising and humiliating defeats in iowa and new hampshire, african-american men and women of all ages picked joe biden. they are the only reason that he rose from the ashes and became the democratic nominee. this white house is under the impression that this isn't an issue that shows up in public opinion polls. i think this is the language that they use. our activists are angry. no, your voters are angry. the people who brought you to the dance will not be able to vote. and if they overcome all those hurdles, they can't go to a drop
box, they can't vote by mail, they can't vote after work late at night. it's not going to be the $25 million that the dnc announced with vice president harris, it's going to be hundreds of millions of dollars to educate millions of democratic voters how to vote in a new way. even if you do all that, these laws change the arbiters of who has won in a state. so i guess i'm missing the alarm in the action plan as well. i wonder what you would prescribe at this point, ari. >> well, i think that's absolutely right, nicolle. this can't just be a check the box strategy, do one speech and move on. reach out to some constituencies and say, okay, now we've done it, we're going back to infrastructure. we're talking about the most fundamental right in democracy, the right to vote, and we're talking about laws that make it harder for millions of people to vote and add election subversion components that could throw out
tens of millions of votes potentially. so if this is as big of a crisis as the president says it is, then they need to act with a sense of urgency to solve that crisis. and that means not spending $25 million to register voters. that means an all-out full-court press, not just to lobby and inform the public, but to pass congressional legislation to do something about it. because i don't believe this is the kind of thing that you can just outorganize or do geo-tv around. just like in 1965 when lyndon johnson -- we need congressional legislation to protect the right to vote. the other avenues are not going to be as successful and much more difficult than passing congressional legislation to stop this problem. so i think this really requires the white house to be deeply, deeply engaged with this issue. the voting rights activists that i talk to, they want voting
rights to be as big of a priority as infrastructure. at the end of the day, you're talking about the most fundamental right in a democracy. that touches a lot more people than infrastructure. so i think it's going to be very difficult for democrats to run in 2022, to run in 2024 if they don't actually pass this legislation to protect the fundamental right to vote that their voters turned out to protect in 2020. >> judith, i want to put this out there because the president did, i think, a very good job at this today. at a time when the right is waging a culture war about teaching our country's racial history with this hand, with this hand they are advocating brazenly in the light of day voter suppression legislation, voter nullification legislation in a targeted manner to disenfranchise voters of color. i wonder what you make of sort of the starting line. everyone is talking about doing more to educate their voters. it's to educate minority voters.
everyone is talking about a legal strategy. it's not a legal strategy to protect all voters, it's a legal strategy to protect those who have been disenfranchised and those are largely minority voters. how is this the starting line? why isn't the starting line something that changes the conversation from the left that makes it easier to vote? why isn't the democratic party sending out 389 voter access laws the way the republican party is pushing 389 voter suppression laws. >> i think, nicolle, we're always playing defense, right? i agree with you that we need to be playing offense. voters like for it to be easier to vote. you know, this is what we found in this election. the turnout was up because people had more access to the ballot box. it's easier. when it's easier, we turn out. and so i do think that this is a conversation across the country that is really a conversation
for all americans, because it's about how convenient voting should be. it's also about who gets to participate and have a voice in our democracy, which should be all of us. but we also do have to put it in the context of this racial justice moment that we are in because this is clearly an effort not by just the republican party but driven by people who want to hold on to white supremacy, who are in the midst of doing a power grab to make sure that certain voters do not get to participate because they understand the changing demographics of america means that they can't win if they don't want an inclusive democracy. and so this is a moment for all americans to see that this inclusive democracy requires easy access to the ballot box for all of us. and that those of us who are more impacted are going to fight, but we need people to get off the sidelines and save our
democracy. >> eli stokels, ari berman, judith brown dianis, we could go on but i appreciate all of you starting us off on this topic today. thank you so much. when we come back, texas governor greg abbott's threat of jail time for democrats. one of those legislators saying bring it on. jasmine crockett on that. and if she's making a breakthrough with any of the senators she's speaking to in washington, d.c. just days after the former president described january 6th as a lovefest, federal investigators are releasing more videos that show the pro-trump mob attacking police officers at the capitol. later in the hour, rudy giuliani getting laughed out of court for his role in fueling the big lie. the judicial system holding firm, again, maintaining over and over, again, that 2020 was not a stolen election. all those stories and more when "deadline white house" continues after a quick break. don't go anywhere. a quick don't go anywhere. break. shingles doesn't care. i keep my social distance.
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we're sad for democracy in the state of texas, and we took a solemn oath to protect the constitution of the united states. >> when i look at the african-american museum, i thought about the struggle of my people fought in this country to get the right to vote. i'm not going to be a hostage, that my constituents right be stripped from them. we have fought too long and too hard in this country. >> more than 50 texas state democrats are in washington, d.c., today. their absence back home in texas effectively denying the republican colleagues the ability to take up that state's restrictive voting legislation for the next three weeks at least and buying time for
themselves to push congress for federal voting legislation. knowing there's nothing texas republicans can do while democrats remain out of the state, the republican governor, greg abbott, is calling the democrats quitters and threatening to arrest them when they returning. our next guest, one of the texas democrats who also practices criminal law says she's not worried about it. abbott can't make a crime out of what they're doing for democracy. joining us now, jasmine crockett, a familiar face around here. thank you for coming back. if you knew this was what you were going to do last time we talked, tell me now. just tell me how this came to be that you wound up on airplanes and back in washington. >> oh, you know what, i never wanted to go back. i never wanted to go back. but i can be a little rowdy and so i didn't want to go back because i knew that we were going to have a session that was going to be loaded up with what they have referred to as red
meat. things that don't matter to the majority of texans. things that matter to the fringe right that the governor has decided that he wants to pander do. he doesn't have trump on the ballot and so he's trying to get the trumplicans to come out and become a mini trump. and so i don't want to do harm to the people that live in my district. so i didn't personally want to go back. but you've got to understand this is a team sport. i'm single, i'm childless. but that can't be said for every single member of my body. and so everyone had to make their own decisions for themselves. and it was still going to take over 51 of us to be able to accomplish this. sadly enough one of my colleagues was actually going to get married on the house floor. it would have been the first union of two persons that are of the same sex. it would have been history in the state of texas. she's missing her wedding now. so there are huge sacrifices that are being made. so i personally never wanted to go back.
but obviously i do what the team wants to do. and i am so proud of my teammates. i am thankful that they were willing to risk it all, so to speak, because it matters just that much in the name of democracy. >> what is the end game? is it to show that these sacrifices endangering your sort of standing, as you said, amid your constituents, missing personal events shows a sacrifice that's not mirrored by washington democrats? >> absolutely. and i don't want to throw anybody under the bus to the extent that i'm saying they're not doing enough. but i want to compare and contrast what we see happening in texas where they have the majority in the house, the senate and they have the governor's mansion, versus what we see with us having the majority in the u.s. house, the u.s. senate and the presidential white house. you know, i want to see us
moving the envelope. your guests said a little bit earlier, it's time for a full-court press. when we came before, it was just a few of us and the bill was already dead. we didn't know what to anticipate. now we know what's on the table. it's sitting there, lying this, waiting to die, right? but we know what it is. and i've brought so many more of my teammates. it's time for them to hear us. it's time for us to meet with senator sinema and anyone else that has any type of apprehension whatsoever about moving forward. we're not asking for anything to the extent that we're saying, hey, you know, expand, expand, expand. i know your guests talked about the fact that we're always playing defense, and i agree. we need to be on the offense every once in a while. but we are in a dire situation where we literally just need oversight because texas can't get it right when they're trusted to do something. they always do it wrong. the courts have said over and over and over that texas has been intentionally
discriminatory when it comes to our lines and when it comes to dealing with voting rights. but we don't have legislation to go ahead and say they are being intentionally discriminatory at this point so we need that oversight. >> what are you hearing from democrats in the senate that you meet with, and do you have -- last time you came, you didn't meet with joe manchin. you made a joke you weren't sure where he was or what he was doing, but do you have a meeting with him on your schedule this time? >> so some senior democrats did meet with senator manchin about an hour ago. so they did have a conversation with him. you know, i think that we've -- i don't know that seniority is kind of what gets him to move. i think that it really was a good kind of mix of people and hopefully he will move. what we did do while that meeting was happening, we kind of divided and conquered.
i was with senator booker. booker is on our side, right? so my question is who all really has some apprehension? who do we need to talk to, right? maybe there are some other people that really aren't that excited about hr-1. we know hr-4 isn't quite ready just yet, so tell us who may not be that excited, how we can get them excited, and if those people can then move either manchin or manchin and sinema to the extent we can get something on the table. what most people don't realize is that if we got just an inch, that would protect us in texas. texas is the hardest state to vote in as it is, so we need some kind of oversight. we need just something. we don't necessarily need everything that's in hr-1. we would love to have it. but if we don't get anything, i don't know what's going to happen to our democracy. you see our governor wants to lock us up. >> this is really important, i want to make sure i understand this.
manchin has a position now. we know what manchin would support. and so you're really involved now tactically and booker is advising you guys in how to -- because the white house's answer today is we don't have 50. and so we can't talk filibuster reform until we get to 50. so your effort today is about helping to get to 50, and what you're saying, i want to make sure i understand this, on anything, anything to protect a state like texas from the most onerous laws, right? >> that's right. i need something. if we don't get it, i don't know what's going to happen in my state. that's how serious it is for us and that's what we need to impress upon them is that we need some kind of oversight. i may not get everything that i want. that may be one of those times that i have to settle for incremental change. but when you're talking about a state that says, hey, we want to take away 24-hour voting.
there's never been that type of caveat. you only felt like that was necessary once harris county, the most populous county in the state of texas decided to open that up. when you hear testimony from first responders saying, hey, that helped me as i was working a 24-hour shift, you know, on the frontlines of covid-19, i didn't have to stand in line or i didn't have to worry about when i could go vote, but it was a matter of i could go vote. or i could sit there and do drive-through voting. or, you know in, one of the versions of the bill they wanted to say you can't have anybody else in the car if you're going to vote even curbside. so people say who are going to get their children from school, up got to kick your kids out of the car if you want to vote. you know, it's crazy all they're trying to do is suppress the vote and encumber people who
aren't as well light. texas is starting to look a little too colorful for the republicans. >> so you're trying to help them get to 50. once you get to 50, then you can make the case to the white house that we've got all the democrats, we've got the vice president's tie-breaking vote, go ahead and reform the filibuster. is that the plan? >> absolutely. and here's the deal. we're not asking for widespread. this is a narrow issue. just on this issue. and we've seen the evidence of what's going on with our democracy. it's falling apart. and we're not getting bipartisan support. and i appreciate those that really want to operate in the vein that government is supposed to operate, in a bipartisan fashion. but when you see these sweeping laws that are going across this country, we know that these laws aren't being passed in a bipartisan way. and so we've got to do everything that we can to protect our democracy, even if that means that it's not in a bipartisan fashion. >> some of your colleagues will
be meeting with the vice president later today. we'll continue to call with you. >> i'm actually here right now. >> are you part of that group? >> i am. so i'm going to walk in and see if i can meet her. >> what are you going to tell her? >> i'm going to listen first. i'll let you know later what i had to tell her. >> okay. wave your arm and we'll come back to you after that meeting or tomorrow. it's a pleasure to talk to you. are you going to stay in d.c. until the end of the session? >> well, i'm staying for now. i'm working on a very creative plan. it will not involve be going back to texas for sure, but i don't know that i'll stay in d.c. the entire time. but our job right now is to lobby on the hill as much as we can. but lobbying for three weeks. i don't know that we need to do that for three weeks, but i have something that may be a little bit more fruitful that we could do elsewhere. so i'm going to work on that and i'll let you know if we get somewhere on it. >> all right. if you have anything to report after your meeting with vice president harris and when you're
ready to talk about your plans for staying out of the state, you know where to come. representative jasmine crockett, thank you so much for spending some time with us again. when we come back, there's more chilling evidence and details showing just how heinous and how horrific january 6th was. the man who sent the rioters there continues to shower them with love, praise them. the very latest on how to keep trump and his allies from rewriting history, next. writing. when you have an irregular heartbeat, it's more. it's dignity. the freedom to go where you want, knowing your doctor can watch over your heart. ♪♪ ♪ ♪ when technology is easier to use... ♪ barriers don't stand a chance. ♪
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dramatic new video from the day of the capitol insurrection and released by the justice department this the week completely obliterates loony comments i guess is the nicest thing we can say about them from the disgraced ex-president that the events of january 6th were a lovefest. it's a court exhibit in the case of one capitol suspect charged with assaulting police and shows how officers had to rescue one another. another video shows the same suspect attacking officers with what appears to be a red trump flag. the newly released footage adds to a mountain of evidence making clear the vicious and devastating reality of the capitol insurrection. our friends over on peacock took some of that video and set it against trump's lies about the insurrection. take a watch. >> there was such love at that rally, and they were peaceful people. these were great people.
the crowd was unbelievable. and i mentioned the word "love." the love in the air, i've never seen anything like it. you have people with no guns that walked down and, frankly, the doors were open, but there was also a lovefest between the police, the capitol police and the people that walked down to the capitol. people who walked with no guns, with no nothing, and there tremendous -- in many cases, tremendous people. tremendous people. >> hang mike pence! hang mike pence! >> oh, my god, it never gets easier to watch that. let's bring in ryan rally, senior justice reporter for the huffington post and david plouffe, msnbc political analyst. ryan, there's a really devious and concerted campaign under way to rewrite, and i believe that interview was with maria bartiromo who says yeah, yeah, right. other figures in right-wing media, part of trump's effort to
rewrite horrors of that day. why? >> yeah, if you look at those videos, those individuals are acting in the way that you would act if you thought the election was stolen. the idea that people would go down there and act peacefully and have their nice little protest, if they actually thought the rug was being swept out from under them, there was a dictatorship about to take over america and that america was being taken away from them and this was 1776 2.0, the idea that they go down and have a peaceful protest sounds ridiculous on its face and it is. these were people who were acting like they thought the election was stolen. they were acting like they actually believed all the lies donald trump was telling. we saw the consequences that day. i have to say, i've been covering this for six months now. every day i see a new video and a new violent scene and a new suspect or individual that's attacking an officer or doing something violent or screaming obscenities in an officer's face
or wandering the halls of congress screaming and damaging property. and it just is really stunning to have this huge disconnect where not only trump is saying this, but there's still this huge portion of the country that believes him. it just seems so insane because there's a huge split right now where so many individuals continue to believe what donald trump says and continue to believe even new conspiracy theories about this, about january 6th itself. first they believe the conspiracy theory about the stolen election. now they believe conspiracy theories about it was antifa under cover and other ridiculous things. it can get really grinding and frustrating to have to just constantly have to pull people back to reality when you have these unfolding cases going on. this is one of the biggest fbi investigations in history. this will be going on a year and a half, two years, three years in the future, appeals, five years. this is going to be with us for a very long time and it's about time that people came around to acknowledging reality about what happened that day.
>> well, david plouffe, it feels like another instance where even the media was part of understanding that people saw this in two different ways. there's one way. there's one fact. there's one thing that happened. there's one reality. there's, you know, one fact of this event and that is that it was a deadly violent insurrection incited by donald trump's lies that were never refuted by kevin mccarthy and mitch mcconnell. it's laid there in multiple bulletins to law enforcement warning of the threat of domestic extremism tied to this specific belief that the election was stolen. i guess my question for you is when do we stop -- insanity is doing the same thing over and over. when do we stop staying -- republicans are not trying to move on. they don't want to move on. they're rewriting the truth of the day. they're turning ashli babbitt
into a martyr. >> they either are rewriting history or want to forget it altogether. this would be so easy to stop if republicans in unison came out and said this was a terrorist attack. we need this to be investigated. trump should stop lying about it. it would stop. they won't do that. so december 7th, 1941, the country unanimously knew what happened. we were attacked by the japanese. the same thing on september 11th, 2001. here again, an event, by the way, that would rival those because i think we're going to be dealing with its aftereffects for many years if not decades. we all see the videos. my guess is you'll see next january 6th, donald trump will do a rally somewhere of 2022. my guess, donald trump if he runs for president, if he doesn't, others will announce their candidacy on january 6th, 2023 for the presidency. and so this could not be more
dangerous because this has all been mainstreamed. but again, those other events that have happened in american history, we had adversaries from other shores attack us. this was homegrown. our democracy came this close to ending that day and it remains under absolute severe if not fatal threat today. >> well, i just wish there were constant vigilance against the lies, because it is some sick word i can't say on tv to try to ignore and erase the horrors of what law enforcement went through, the mutilation their bodies endured so that our lawmakers thank goodness did not get hurt on that day, so the insurrectionists were not successful in their mission statement of hanging mike pence. it's an ongoing horror. i'm grateful to you, ryan reilly for covering it. david plouffe, you're sticking around. fighting back against falsehoods online. the republican leader in the
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ask your doctor about caplyta from intra-cellular therapies. hearing is important to living life to the fullest. that's why inside every miracle-ear store, you'll find better cheers with your favorite fans. you'll find a better life is in store at miracle-ear, when you experience the exclusive miracle-ear advantage. our team is devoted to your care, with free service adjustments and cleaning of your miracle-ear hearing aids for life. we're so confident we can improve your life, we're offering a 30-day risk-free trial. call 1-800-miracle today and experience the miracle-ear advantage. house republican leader kevin mccarthy has sunk to new depths in an attempt to attack the right's current favorite target, initiatives to combat racism that the gop now represents as critical race theory. mccarthy citing civil rights leader martin luther king in an interview on blaze tv. mccarthy claiming, quote,
critical race theory goes against everything martin luther king has ever told us. don't judge us by the color of our skin, now they're embracing it. that comment invited a sharp rebuke from many people including the civil rights icon's youngest daughter bernice king who tweeted this. representative mccarthy, i encourage you to study my father's teachings and words beyond the last lines of i have a dream. this nation has yet to eradicated racism against black people. you should help with that. joining our conversation, kim atkinson, and david plouffe is still here. kim, this feels like a thing that in their bubble they all pat themselves on the back. they debase themselves in front of general milley and secretary austin and then they go into the safe bubbles, the snowflakes that they are, of fox news green rooms and everything is okay. but he seemed to step on sort of a live wire when he invoked
martin luther king. explain. >> well, look, this is something that we often see certainly around dr. king's birthday where we see our twitter and instagram feeds flooded from folks who we know have pushed policies that do great harm to black and brown folks in america, but they think so long as they post a two or three-sentence quote from dr. king everything is okay or that, you know, even worse that they actually understand what he fought for. certainly we have to go back and say, again, for the -- i don't know how many times on this show that critical race theory is not being taught in elementary and high schools or in work rooms. that is an academic theory that is taught in law schools. what we are talking about is teaching actual history, what happened in the context of what happened. and there are a lot of wonderful things in the history of this country but there are also a lot of brutal and horrific things in
the history of this country that continues to reverberate today which prevents all people from having access to the same chances at life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness in an equal way. that's what republicans are railing against. they don't want the truth of this history to be taught lest it, in their own words, make white students feel guilty or bad about themselves, which is certainly not what this is meant to do. i would think that most americans would learn about what has happened, what has happened and what is happening in our country and think, i don't want my country to be that way. i don't want inequality to be built into our systems. i want to do something to fix it. but in this case, yes, in stepping on dr. king's memory he got a clap back from dr. king's family, which was well-deserved, but i don't think that this will be the last that we will see of this tactic because we have seen it happen so many times before. >> david plouffe, you have your finger on the pulse of public
opinion. are they going back to this well and lying about where critical race theory is being taught because it works or are they trying to fabricate something here? >> well, first of all, you know, not everybody out there, nicolle, but there's a lot of voter hospital are parents, have kids in school, grandparents have kids in school, they know what is happening. so this is disconnected from what is happening in their everyday lives number one. number two, your point about the echo chamber. this is one of the reasons the country is in such difficulty now. fox news, blaze tv, they go in there, they can say whatever and they get slapped on the back and say, you did a great job. by the way, back in '12 they were all surprised when romney didn't win. they convinced themselves romney was going to win. they convinced themselves in '18 the democrats wouldn't do as well as they did. they convinced themselves trump would win reelection. so i do think it is very dangerous. i mean another example of this is around vaccines and covid.
so the leading health official in tennessee had to resign today because she's now -- they don't want anybody in tennessee talking to any teenager about getting vaccinated. so it is issue after issue. listen, you have to be careful because these culture, you know, knights have worked for them before. but i think we always give this part of the republican party too much platform for their messaging. at the end of the day it is not going to work as they're speaking to themselves. it is not going to get them the urban voters back in my view. >> can i say something quickly? >> of course. >> i really respect david a lot. we are seeing parents that believe something toxic and terrible is being taught to their children in schools, going to school board meetings, rallying against this from coast to coast even in blue spaces like massachusetts. so, yes, i do believe that this is nonsensical, but i do believe that it is actually dangerous
and it isn't just republicans talking to themselves. republicans are very good at messaging even when that messaging is filled with misrepresentations, misunderstandings of history and outright lives. we have seen that happen. so i'm very deeply concerned this push against critical race theory is not only effective at scaring parents for no reason, but it is used as a way to take the attention from very real things like the voting rights efforts that we've spent the very large part of your show talking about, taking place in real-time. so i think that it is very potentially harmful and it is, unfortunately, so far at least somewhat effective. >> i mean just to button this up, i mean that's your point, david, exactly about vaccine disinformation. tragically, you look at who is dying, they are 99.5% unvaccinated adults. david plouffe, thank you for spending too with us. to be continued, kimberly
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what we are really dealing with here and uncovering more by the day is the massive influence of communist money through venezuela, cuba and likely china and the interference with our elections here in the united states. >> this is not a singular voter fraud in one state. this pattern repeats itself in a number of states, almost exactly the same pattern. i think the logical conclusion is this is a common plan, a common scheme. it comes right directly from the democrat party, and it comes from the candidate. >> oh, so shocking after all of these months. hi, everyone. it is 5:00 in the east. we've been putting the hair dye dripping down rudy's face aside, that was one of the most shocking and memorable post-election moments, a bonkers
news conference where trump's lawyers, this team of rudy giuliani and sidney powell, touted outlandish false conspiracies to explain away why the former guy lost the election. now in recent months those that disseminated the big lie and the conspiracies that stemmed from it are having to answer for it in court. "the washington post" detailed a fascinating hearing yesterday as a judge questioned several lawyers as she considers imposing sanctions on them for having filed a lawsuit seeking to overturn the election in her state. u.s. district judge linda parker said she would rule on a request to discipline the lawyers in coming weeks. but over and over again during the more than five-hour hearing she pointedly pressed the lawyers involved including sidney powell and lynwood to explain what steps they had taken to ensure their court filings in the case filed last year had been accurate. she appeared astonished by many of their answers. while the supt claimed that the
vote in michigan and specifically detroit's wayne county had been troubled. the affidavits filed to support the claims included obvious errors, speculation and basic misunderstandings of how elections are generally conducted in the state, parker said. the remarkable exchange from the hearing, quote, parker quizzed the lawyers about whether there's a legal basis to ask a judge to decertify an election and name a new winner and she spent hours asking the attorneys to explain how closely they reviewed and vetted information submitted in hundreds of pages of sworn declarations, that they had told the court constituted evidence of purported fraud and irregularities. the judge noted that one observer stated in an affidavit that she believed she saw election workers switching votes from trump to biden. parker, the judge, asked whether any of the lawyers had spoken to that witness and inquired what exactly she saw that led her to believe that votes had been switched. she was greeted with silence.
anyone, she asked again? when no one answered a second time she said, quote, let the record reflect that no one made that inquiry, which was central to the allegation. this hearing in michigan is one of many pushes for accountability all across the country. in fulton county, georgia, the district attorney has launched a criminal investigation into trump's calls to pressure officials there to overturn the election results. in michigan, the attorney general there has opened a case looking into whether individuals have been raising money on false claims of vote manipulation. in arizona, the secretary of state just asked the attorney general to open an investigation into whether trump and his allies possibly violated a law that says it is illegal to knowingly interfere with an election officer. all of this as we're seeing democrats in texas stand up to the voter suppression bills inspired by the big lie introduced in their state. they're part of the nationwide effort to restrict access to voting and change some of the
referees, all predicated on that big lie. this afternoon in a stirring address president biden called out the republican-led efforts as unamerican. watch. >> in america if you lose, you accept the results. you follow the constitution. you try again. you don't call facts fake and then try to bring down the american experiment just because you are unhappy. that's not statesmanship. [ applause ] >> that's not statesmanship. that's selfishness. >> the president's big speech and those efforts to bring the disseminators of the big lie to justice is where we start this hour with some of our favorite reporters and friends. eugene daniels is back, white house reporter for "politico" and playbook co-author, joining us mathew miller formerly with
the justice department. and kimberly atkins stohr with "the boston globe". first on the president's speech, i quoted yamiche who said before it was the most passionate speech of his presidency, perhaps of his career. what did you think? >> you know, i think that's right. i think something that the president has wanted to show publicly is the same thing that he is said to have done privately with the civil rights leaders that he met with last week, which is that he really cares about this issue. he's been getting hit by progressives, people on the left who care about voting in this country, that maybe he hasn't been doing a more -- maybe he hasn't been doing enough, he needs to do more and that he needs to make sure that people really know where he stands and to use that bully pulpit. i think that's what he did today. it was a strong speech, but i think people are still wondering, so what does it mean you are going to do, right? we have seen him and his administration basically say they're not going to push for any changes to the filibuster other than him being open to a
talking filibuster at this point. so those are the conversations that are still happening. i don't know that the speech, though it was, you know, like yamiche said and she is always right, i always agree with her. >> i know. >> that it was one of the most passionate speeches of his career. always right, always right. one of the most passionate speeches of his career but i'm not sure it is going to stop folks from pushing for him to do a lot more in speeches and doing these things. they want to see him go on the road and take these speeches on the road because during the infrastructure fight and at the very beginning that's what we saw the president do, go to different states. that's what they're hoping to see more of. >> you know, kim, i want to get into sort of the slow sort of hands of justice or wheels of justice, whatever that is, in this hearing yesterday. i want to stay on this because i think both of these things can be true. this speech was certainly the most passionate of his presidency, and i think eugene is right. these things are central to who
he is and why he's there and how he sees himself. i think using the bully pulpit to push back against the big lie was really important, but i think it can also be true that the way he sees it, he sees it as this exist enshall threat to our democracy. if you see something as an existential threat to our democracy, you usually have to be ready to roll out actions that match that dire declaration if you are the president of the united states of america. i think that what people feel is lacking is that action plan. is it simply opaque to us, kim? >> no, i think that that is absolutely right. look, to be fair, there isn't a lot that the executive branch can do on its own to protect voting rights if congress doesn't act. we know, and th president very clearly stated what the stakes are and what has to happen, which is passing laws on a federal level that restores -- not only restores the voting rights act to where it was
before the supreme court gutted it in 2013 but also goes farther to extend and make sure that the right to vote is in reach of everyone to push back these efforts. that's what it is going to take. we have said many times that it requires the elimination of the filibuster to do that. the president can't do that on his own, but the president has been hearing from folks for a long time before this speech that he made today. i think some folks are seeing this as a little too little too late. we don't see everything that is happening behind the scenes, but so far the white house effort has focused largely on giving this information to voters, not so much putting the pressure on lawmakers in such a public way but sort of working to get more information to voters about these restrictions, helping them be able to navigate these new laws so that they're able to get out and vote, which is great, which is important. but what a lot of voters are hearing, it is like, look, we
voted and now both chambers of congress and the white house are in democratic hands. that is what voters voted for. told to vote, it went out in a pandemic and voted. they sent two democrats to the senate from georgia, and now what they're hearing is, well, here is how you vote again, this is how you fight against this. well, we voted. like that's not enough. we need the people who we voted for to act, and i think that is what the president needs to impress upon the people in his caucus, in his party on capitol hill. >> matt miller, i was talking about the movie "dave" today with our good friend, bennie deutsch. i think the president has an opportunity to have that budget-smudget scene reenacted. jasmine crockett, state representative from texas, gave me more granular clarity about the tactical approach for voting rights legislation than anyone from the white house or congress has been able to do on this show for the six months we've been
covering this issue. what she said is that something is better than nothing, that with the supreme court in its current makeup and with the recent decision it is clear that a legal strategy will take too long. democrats will be voted out of their majorities in the house and senate before anything can be done. as kim said, you know, democrats went out and voted. they overcame the hurdle of the pandemic, the hurdle of the ex-president saying lunatic things about in-person voting and absentee voting and mail-in voting. they did everything they were supposed to do, and this president has now presided over the greatest rollback of access to the right to vote in modern history. 22 new laws, 389 in total making their way through all 48 states. that is an inconvenient fact, but that is the fact of this president's record in terms of what has happened in this country when it comes to voting rights. why can't he convene a meeting every morning at 6:00 a.m. with joe manchin, who has said he is for something. it isn't everything. and get to 50 and then push for
filibuster reform, why can't that start today? >> you know, there's no reason it couldn't but the question is whether it would be effective. look, there are three things the white house can do to try to effect public policy. they can use the bully pulpit to try to rally public support and shame people, they can use executive action and try to pass laws through congress. we have two out of the three. we have the president making a speech, the justice department suing in georgia and i feel certainly it won't be the only state the justice department sues. what we're lacking is the third which is the most important leg of the stool, congressional action. i wish there were a magic wand the president could wave that would make joe manchin drop his opposition to reforming the filibuster but i don't think there is. it doesn't mean he shouldn't try, but they're having a tough anymore time getting him to support the infrastructure packages they want to get passed through. they have one, they don't even necessarily have him on the
second, let alone getting him to back down on something he has made a clear line in the sand, the filibuster. so i think the president can probably do more here, but it is going to be incumbent upon all of us in the democratic party not just to work, not just to count in congress, because there's no sign that manchin is going to flip on this issue. we're going to have to treat it as an existential crisis and fight at the state levels the way texas democrats are, fight in the courts and keep pushing manchin and sinema and the rest of them, but realizing it is an uphill battle. i very much get the activists' frustration it is an uphill battle because there are people in our party who think it is an acceptable situation that it takes only 50 votes to pass a tax cut but 60 votes to protect democracy. it is an untenable situation, but, unfortunately, there's not an easy way out for the white house or anyone right now. >> i'm curious about the word activist. do you think it is only activists that are mad? you don't think it is the democratic voters who are
frustrated that they do everything they are asked to do, they turn out, they vote, they revive joe biden's ailing primary efforts. they, you know, are all in. he has a 60% approval rating. his covid relief package passed without a single republican vote. reconciliation for a lot of the stuff that progressives care about on infrastructure is going to pass without a single republican vote. do you think it is just an activist problem, because that's the white house's diagnosis, matt miller? >> no, i don't think it is just activists. i think it is voters. i think it is members of the democratic establishment. i think it is members of the house of representatives, and i think it is 90% of the democratic caucus in the senate. look, if filibuster reform came up on the floor of the senate today, i think it would get the overwhelming support of senate democrats. i think most senate democrats, not all but most are pretty frustrated that joe manchin and several others are standing in the way of passing real voting -- you know, real reform to protect voting rights. but it is not like -- it is not like joe biden going to west virginia is going to move joe manchin. joe manchin has a higher
approval rating in west virginia than biden does. biden lost the state overwhelmingly. it is not like a bunch of other activists running into west virginia are going to move him either. he is kind of on an island there and it is an unfortunate situation where everyone in the democratic party can be mad at him about it and he doesn't really care. >> yeah. i guess, eugene, we are left with a seemingly hopeless legislative path. we are left with a year's long effort. i mean there's one lawsuit that's in georgia, merrick garland announced it, and soon after the judge that announced he would deal with the underlying case. that will be years. definitely not before the mid-terms, maybe not before the next presidential. this is not just about spending $25 million at the dnc to educate voters. it is about voter nullification, i mean in texas, in georgia, in more than a dozen of these laws they have proposed big carveouts in terms of moving the power to arbitrate disputed elections
away from the kinds of people who walk the line for our democracy. is there really sort of a sense that hands are being thrown in the air, there's nothing that can be done? >> i think one of the things that is really interesting when i am talking to folks about this, nicolle, is that i have to ask, every time i ask that exact same question, like is this it? what is the plan b? is there something else that you guys could do? and something that they also point to is that resaw what the supreme court did with the arizona case, right. so they say, even if we do get some kind of legislative fix, if it gets to the supreme court we know what we're facing there. so there is kind of a sense of dread. there's a sense of what do we do, but i think that they are trying to use the levers that they're used to using, right. legislation, we'll go and we will speak to the people. but it does feel like there's not much -- like matt was saying and kim were saying, not much that the executive branch can do, but there's also not much at this point that members of
congress can do. i think that puts democrats in this kind of space where they have to be a lot more creative and they have to do what voters and activists have said for years, which is fight a little harder, right. something you hear all the time from people on the left is that they feel like democrats in congress don't fight hard enough, whether it is true or not i will let, you know, voters decide. but that is what they continue to tell us, and they've been saying it for years. so when you have this texas delegation, i was up talking to some of these folks until like 11:30, midnight last night on the phone, when you have them coming here, leaving their state after being threatened by the governor that he would if they come to texas arrest them and pull them into the chamber to have some kind of quorum, that that is a drastic thing that people want to see democrats do. they want to see democrats move and do things more aggressively than they ever have before and be more creative than they ever have before. i think that is what when you talk to folks, they say, you know, this is -- if you say this is existential, then act like
that, you know what i mean? do things you have never done before. say things you never thought you would say. to matt's point about pushing manchin or sinema or some of these other democrats to get rid of the filibuster, you know, that is something -- and clyburn talked about this a little bit. he is obviously very close with joe biden. he is pushing joe biden to do that behind the scenes, right. so we may never see joe biden go to west virginia or joe biden, you know, say anything to kind of upset manchin before we get the infrastructure bills through. they get the infrastructure bills through, one and two, but at some point there is going to have to be something, a serious conversation, and it may have already happened. we don't know. but a serious conversation between the two of them and other moderate democrats on what they can actually do, because right now it feels like the president and the vice president, who is leading on this issue, other than building coalitions, other than building support around the country, their hands are essentially tied especially when it comes to legislation. >> look, i have never worked for a democratic politician so i
don't know what democratic voters will tolerate, but a republican voter would never tolerate a republican white house, a republican senate and a republican house and an existential threat for democracy being something that you throw your hands up for. if you think about the current state of affairs, and i trust all three of you and believe in your reporting, i'm sure you are right. but if the current state of affairs is something that president biden described today and which yamiche correctly described the most passionate speech of his presidency is hopeless, then i hope democratic voters are more tolerant than republican voters because they will have overcome extraordinary hurdles in 2020 and have seen their access to the right to vote curtailed under democratic president, a democratic senate and a democratic house. do you think they will stay as animated and energized, kim? >> no, which is precisely my point. they did everything that was asked of them, and they delivered really extraordinary results that i think not even
any of us here were predicting would happen. that is the -- that was their job. now the job is the people -- the job is for the people that they elected, and no matter what excuse it certainly won't be a rule in the senate that has no constitutional basis will be seen as a viable excuse for not doing what they asked of these officials who they elected. so i think they're absolutely right, nicolle. >> we'll stay on it. eugene daniels, matthew miller, kimberly atkins stohr, thank you for starting us off on another extraordinary day of news. when we return, inside the insane final days of the disgraced ex-president's time in office. the "wall street journal's" michael bender joins us with new reporting from his stunning new book, "frankly, we did win this election." that is next. plus, new fall-out for the trump organization following that indictment and charges of a 15-year-long tax fraud scheme against long-time money man allen weisselberg.
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how strong do you feel -- let -- >> are you going to pack the court? >> vote now. make sure you in fact. >> he doesn't want to answer the question. >> i'm not going to answer the question. >> why wouldn't you answer the question? >> the question is -- >> the radical left -- >> will you shut up, man? >> that exchange was from the first presidential debate between joe biden and donald trump. it was stunning at the time, stunning still. it was a disaster of a night for the ex-president in which donald trump continually interrupted the current president, joe biden, and even the moderator,
chris wallace, the debate hall and those watching at home were stunned into silence by what they witnessed. the "wall street journal's" michael bender puts it this way. trump's style had changed from four years earlier, but so had he. this time, trump had something to lose and it rattled him. no one wants to vote for somebody acting like an angry -- one of his closest advisers said afterward. one of the most incredible self-inflicted wounds of all time, another said. he -- the bed. everyone seemed to understand how much damage trump had just done to himself, but no one wanted to tell the one man who needed to hear it. michael bender's new book titled "frankly, we did win this election," the inside story of how trump lost, is out today. michael bender joins us now. michael bender, you know that we have covered everything that has come out from your book and it is so nice to have had a chance to read the whole thing. >> thank you so much. >> i want to talk about that, but i want to start with a bigger question, something i asked almost every week during
the trump presidency, whether it was after charlottesville or -- hole countries or after that debate. why didn't anybody feel dishonor working for him? why didn't anybody quit? >> hmm, that's a really good question, and something that, you know, the folks around donald trump will have to answer. and i think what i found reporting this book is that they all have a little different answers, and that -- that trump's priority from day one at the white house was always to win reelection. everything was secondary to that. i don't -- i had a hard time finding anyone else around him who would put that as their top priority. he had people who wanted to pass tax bills, people who wanted to get immigration reform done, people who wanted to run, you know, form tech committees and meet the titans of business. no one though had wanted to win as badly as donald trump did,
and that's what you saw in that debate and, you know, what was missing there from 2016 -- and that's what i write, that he had something to lose now. in 2016 he was as confrontation and as aggressive, but, you know, and as chaotic, but what happened in 2020, he saw the race coming out from underneath his feet and another sort of through line of this book is that senior aide after senior aide told me that they were -- they were struck by how much of a danger he was to the country and there were very few people who would actually tell him no, tell him the truth directly and concisely. >> and i want to sort of -- i mean the book has so much. for the purposes of our conversation today, and i hope you will come back, i want to chunk that up into the danger he presented to the rule of law and your reporting on the justice department, the danger he sort
of presented to the military and your reporting on milley and then i want to talk about covid, because your reporting in all three areas is really among the most stunning of the trump era. let me start with the justice department. you write this, despite warning from cipollone, white house council and the justice department, trump repeatedly tried to reach out to u.s. attorneys in states where he wanted voter fraud investigated. panic rippled through the georgia republican party including among many top officials trump trusted. georgia senator david purdue might have had the closest relationship with trump of any republican member of the senate. david's cousin had been his ag secretary in the cabinet all four years. none of them could talk sense into trump so they started to call jared. once donald put rudy in charge, it guaranteed this was going to be a clown show, jared said, i can't help you. so all of them knew that he was corrupting the justice department by seeking these investigations. we all heard the call with raffensperger and meadows is on the phone. did any of them worry that they
were running afoul of the law? >> you know, i know some of those georgia republicans were struck by jared's just, you know, willingness to check out at that point. stay what you will about jared, he was -- he had some success protecting his father-in-law from distraction. i know that sounds wild, but he was one of the few people who could do it with some degree of success. but he saw the writing on the wall those last couple of months, and, you know, he told others around him in the white house that that's his father-in-law at the end of the day and, you know, can you imagine every birthday party, every one of your son and daughter's birthday party for the rest of your life hearing your father-in-law say, well, i would be president again if only jared would have, you know, not stopped us from fighting. so he washed his hands.
and one after the other of people as senior as jared kushner, i'm talking about mike pence, ronna mcdaniel, to a-degree mark milley, thought strum was going to find his way out of this. they wanted to give him some space to let off steam and acknowledge the results of the election, but what happened is that created an opening for rudy giuliani and those folks to come in and tell trump exactly what he wanted to hear. >> did any of them worry that the insurrection would be the natural extension of trump's refusal to concede? did any of them say after the fact that that was a concern? >> no. i mean in hindsight it is -- it is somewhat obvious and a natural outgrowth from what trump had been telling us, not just for two months but for five years, right. i mean any electoral defeat, he was never going to take
responsibility for. it was always going to be someone else's fault and based on fraud. the only way he could lose is to have it stolen from him. it really was a failure of imagination in trump world those last few weeks, those last couple of months to realize the direction that trump himself had been telling us all that this was headed, you know, for four years. >> i want to turn -- >> there are people that pushed back and we can talk about that. >> no, go ahead. give them their due. >> well, folks like mark milley, right. not a lot has been said about mark milley so far until this book about the role he played behind the scenes, which is, again, just stunning that it takes the -- you know, the top general in the world's most powerful military to act as a guardrail here for trump, and he was the one who was stopping some -- what could have been some truly dangerous situations from unfolding.
and, you know, he -- sorry. you know, one of the most striking scenes for the book for me is trump trying to put troops into u.s. cities and milley having to point to the portrait of lincoln and say, he had an insurrection, mr. president. what we have is a civil rights protest. >> let me read it because it does make you feel good about the role that milley played behind the scenes. so let me read that excerpt. this is from page 157. vice president pence suggested invoking the insurrection act, an obscure federal law that enabled the commander in chief to deploy active duty troops within u.s. borders. milley, the nation's highest ranking military officer, was horrified by pence's suggestion. the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff understood precisely what the difference was in sending active duty troops to the protests. one was trained to take land and kill the enemy and the other had
been taught riot control and quasi control. let me see what i can do with the national guard before we make that next jump millie told trump. these cities are burning. the community infulliated milley. the four star army general spun around and said to shut up. he spotted lincoln's portrait hanging to the right of trump and pointed at it. that guy had an insurrection. what we have is a protest. trump started to reconsider. did milley see trump as a threat to democracy? >> yeah, i think he did. i mean he was on -- they were on -- you know, he knows the difference between the national guard, which is trained as a quasi law enforcement unit to take care of things like protests, what was happening in cities across america, and active duty military who are trained to kill and take land,
right. two very clear differences. so he -- he tried to explain and pull trump through that repeatedly, right. and trump actually did respect milley quite a bit. as you know, it is a nonpolitical job. he was made -- mark milley was made a chairman of the army under barack obama. trump himself made him chairman of the joint chiefs of staff. he was trying to prevent a dangerous situation. where trump saw it as political and very personal. and how does he get -- and there were others, too. mark esper would push back quite a bit, but milley had trump's attention in these moments. he was a general, a highly decorated general, and had a way of speaking with trump -- you know, he is ivy league, very interesting character. he's ivy league educated, but also kind of a boston sports guy
who could, you know, mix it up a little bit with trump. and milley's thanks is to get -- to get basically tricked into participating in one of the most controversial political moments in, you know, american history. it certainly will be remembered long, for years and years, which is the st. johns march and trump waving around the bible. >> you depict an unbelievable scene about ivanka trump's -- i want to get this right -- soft italian leather handbag and general milley. i'm going to have that serve as a tease. we're going to sneak in a break. michael bender isn't going anywhere. much more from his brand-new book, "frankly, we did win the this election." after a very short break. stay with us.
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we're back with michael bender, reporter and author of the new book, "frankly, we did win the election," the inside story of how trump lost. so here is the piece of reporting on milley that i wanted to read to you. i have never seen details like this and it is one of the most scrutinized events of trump's presidency. you write this. milley had thought trump wanted to speak with the troops as he had done earlier and only realized how wrong he'd been as he watched ivanka pull that anonymous bienl out of her soft italian leather handbag. at the same time milley noticed that the white house press corps was being brought up to the church to document the moment.
what the -- milley muttered as ivanka stepped to her father with the bible. milley grabbed his aide and they backed away from the church. they took a circuitous route back to the house and got in a car and drove away. my question is what happened next. how long did it take him to apologize for that? >> it was about a week until he apologized. you remember esper backed away within a day or two, and milley was -- was part of that, and after esper apologized it was what i kind of describe as a full metal jacket, the drill sergeant from full metal jacket was trump. >> yeah. >> and just laying into esper and milley and anyone else who was in the room, he was so upset. milley apologizes a few days
later at a -- during a graduation speech, and trump kind of leaves himself alone. again, i was talking a little about it before, but trump respected milley, even on that day when he wanted the insurrection act, when he was pushing hard and repeatedly for the insurrection act, and milley was the one telling him no. trump kept asking for him, you know, get milley, i want to ask milley about this, where is milley, you know. so there was a high level of respect there, and milley's apology took trump by surprise, and it is a couple of days after that speech where he's in the oval office with other -- with other officials, and trump kind of looks at milley and says, what was that, right? he says, why did you apologize in that makes you look weak. i don't understand. and milley just looks at the president and says, i don't expect you would understand. that's where we see the break, i think, in that relationship. >> and then i think it breaks in
public, i believe trump issued by carrier pigeon an attack i guess against him after that testimony about critical race theory. i want to turn to covid because, again, you have some of the most stunning reporting i have seen about the president's indifference to the death. >> thank you. >> and the suffering, and he really saw -- he asks -- you talk about this. he asks you if you had been catching his, you know, performances, and then you have this reporting about atlas. let me read this and have you talk me through both of these. atlas's controversial theories and aggressive behavior quickly became one of the things that could unite trump world. fauci complained that atlas was a total nut cause. kylie mcenany had been reluctant to cite him. in one meeting inside the west wing in late august, birx expressed concerned about the upcoming labor day weekend and suggested that the white house remind the american people to
practice soernding. she wanted to prevent a spike in covid cases before the fall. you just want to shut down the country, atlas shouted. i speak for the president and we're not shutting down the country. birx glared back at him. that's fine, but just know that you are killing people, she said. the rest of the room sat in stunned silence. well, jared said, it is nice to have robust debate. did they not view the opportunity to save lives which were available to them at the time such as mask wearing and social distancing as imperatives? >> i interviewed trump for the "wall street journal" around this time in june, and he told me that he viewed mask wearing as a personal affront to a degree. he was taking this personally, and the people around him started taking it personally. scott atlas is a good example. there's a lot of questions about why people didn't push back harder. well, they would be pushed out, right, and people like scott atlas would be brought in. i have seen before atlas ever appeared at the white house briefing room or we knew that
atlas was consulting, he was sitting outside the oval office. trump's political team is in the oval office, and the political team leads and atlas comes in. trump says, okay, dr. atlas, tell me what you told me. atlas turns to him and says, this will be done by tend of the summer, by the end of september. >> of course, we were heading into our biggest spike. >> yeah. absolutely. i mean even the -- even the people in the room knew that was ridiculous. but the president brings in people to reinforce his own viewpoints, and this is, again, another example where it is beyond chaos. these are dangerous situations. it is a pandemic. it is the worst health crisis in 100 years, and when he -- when the president calls me at the beginning of this crisis to complain about a story, it turns out that he's just minutes away from one of his white house covid news briefings, and he --
you know, he tells me if i'm -- he asked me if i'm watching. refers to them as the number one show on television, you know, and says that he's -- you know, he has used all of his prep time talking to my, you know, so actually what he said was if he bombed that he was going to blame me. but that's where he -- you know, there was no attempt to prepare for this. there was no, you know, it was one dangerous situation after the next and what this book shows, it was constant triage for most of 2020 inside the west wing. >> michael bender, i want to bring in my friend and colleague donny deutsch, who is also, you know, often widens the lens on all things trump to his prepolitical life. donny, you have a question for michael. >> michael, first of all, congratulations. i mean the book sounds stunning. i have just read the excerpts and i can't wait to read it this weekend. one of the excerpts that jumped out at me and seems to kind of really symbolize trump in the most frightening aspect is his
interaction with john kelly when he went overseas to europe for the centennial of world war i and i basically was touting, you know, he had a couple of things right because the economy was good under hitler, and i don't think anything piqued more to this man's soul than that. could you talk about that exchange? >> yes, kelly was trying to give -- basically give trump a history lesson. they were going to the anniversary of world war i, and kelly was explaining kind of who the allies were and who the enemies were, why that mattered and how that led into world war ii. suddenly they were in a kind of debate over the, you know, whether or not hitler did anything positive. i mean trump's point was the economy and that the german economy had performed well at certain points under hitler, but obviously kelly -- or basically anyone else saw how ridiculous that was, right. and kelly's response was, even if those -- those people would have been germans, europeans,
would have been better off poor and destitute than had to have lived through the era of hitler. but, you know, for a president who has struggled to answer questions about, you know, his position on race and his view on race relations and, you know, it is a very troubling situation and, you know, again, one that sort of suggests or starts to explain his trouble responding to the civil rights protests a couple of years later. >> michael bender, you paint a portrait that, you know, people on the outside like us could have only guessed was going on behind the scenes. the reporting is a real service. i want to read one more thing for our viewers. you write this about him leaving office. what am i going to do all day, he asked one aide after stepping off air force one in west palm beach on january 20th.
he repeatedly asked friends if he blamed them for the riots at the capitol. you don't think i wanted them to do that, he asked. if that's the case, why does he keep calling it a love fest and this recently as this weekend describing them as good people? how can both things be true? >> yeah, it is a very good question. i wrote a bit about this, this period right after the white house in that because it was just such an interesting transition for him. he was as unprepared for the post-presidency as he was for the presidency itself. aides showed up at mar-a-lago in their office space, there were mattresses on the floor. they had to go to office depot and find desks and office equipment. you know, this is something that the people around trump continue to struggle with. there's a real question about whether trump believes what he is saying about november 3rd,
about the election or not, or if it is just a refusal to admit defeat and trying to maintain his image as a winner or if he actually believes these conspiracy theories that one after the other has been proven false. so these are -- i think that's why this book is really so important, particularly right now heading into the next couple of years is because it documents in a way that i don't think has been before these sort of existential questions that people around trump had to face on a daily basis in 2020. >> michael bender, congratulations. thank you for spending some time with us to talk about it. michael's new book, "frankly, we did win this election," the inside story of how trump lost, is out right now. donny is sticking around. when we return, the purge of donald trump's long-time money man as prosecutors zero in on the trump org. that story is next.
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organization. joining us now is our washington post reporter and our political analyst. the beginning of trump i hardly knew him phase. which is it in your view? >> at least right now it seems to be the trump organization recognizes it is bad through the cfo is indicted and it is hard to do business with regulators or lenders or anybody. they're taking his name off to get liquor license or getting out not having to deal with lenders or that sorts of things. i don't think it is a defense that allen weisselberg did it all. trump is not charged with
anything. i don't think we'll see it as we get closer to trump's doorsteps. >> donny, what do you think is going on inside the trump org.? >> i have said it many times on the show. just from a tax point of view, each one of these companies set up for different reasons. you wonder what's going on there. you can't have these guys at the front line at this point. i would be shocked if anything is panic going on. a lot of these entities are in the kids' names in terms of the elder's kid name. i would not be shocked. the next shoe to drop would not be with donald trump himself but with the kids. >> david, where is your reporting focused now? what is your questions of what happens next? >> two areas.
this is a very end business. weisselberg is out of his company, he's not replaced by some other executive. they're narrowing it down. eric and don are running everything, mostly eric. how long can a company carry on with very few people around and who gets charged next if anyone? >> david farenthold, staying on it. we'll be back after a quick break, don't go anywhere.
"the beat" with jason johnson starts right now. hi, jason. >> thank you very much. welcome to "the beat," i am jason johnson in for ari melber. tonight over 50 texas democrats in washington, d.c. and facing the threat of arrest after leaving their home state, they left and block a voter suppression bill, back in austin, texas republicans today voting to arrest the democrats. this is some stuff that's going to chase them around the country. the sergeants at arms had to jurisdictions in d.c. >> we need congress to act now and pass the for the people act. texas democrats