tv Deadline White House MSNBC July 16, 2021 1:00pm-3:00pm PDT
the instant air purifier removes 99.9% of the virus that causes covid-19 from treated air. so you can breathe easier, knowing that you and your family have added protection. ♪ ♪ hello, everyone. it is 4:00 in the east. i'm chris jansing. we hope to get nicolle wallace to you shortly. in the meantime, so much going on. congresswoman joyce beatty was arrested yesterday at a voting rights protest at the u.s. capitol issued this statement. i stand in solidarity with black women and allies across the country in defense of our
constitutional rights to vote. we have come too far and fought too hard to see everything systematically dismantled and restricted by those who wish to silence us. be assured this is just the beginning. this is our power, our message. beatty isn't the only lawmaker sounding the alarm this week. as we've been reporting the delegation of texas lawmakers remains in the nation's capital pressing for something, in their own words, anything on voting rights. but here's the blunt and ugly and tragic truth. it isn't working. "the washington post" reports that while many democrats insist passing a voting rights bill remains a top priority in the coming weeks, schumer and others have said failure is not an option. momentum on capitol hill has shifted away from the voting rights push following a failed test vote last month. the dynamics were on display when president biden arrived at the capitol for his first
in-person lunch. a meeting that was largely devoted to the massive multitrillion dollar safety net plan. not to breaking a voting rights stalemate months in the making. and on thursday a contingent of texas democrats emerged from a meeting with one key senator, joe manchin iii, democrat of west virginia, without securing any new concession that is would allow a voting bill in the coming weeks. there's no movement on the filibuster. there's no meeting we're aware of to hammer out the details of a narrower bill. there's no progress whatsoever. in fact, the fastest, most egregious erosion of voting rights happening on president biden's watch is becoming the new thoughts and prayers issue in the democratic party. it's a crisis. it's the greatest threat to democracy in modern history. according to democrats, the plan is, there is no plan.
so here we are with the republican rollback of access to the polls speeding through more than a dozen states. 28 new restrictive laws already passed and signed into law this year. 18 more states deliberating bills that would restrict access to the polls. and on top of all of that in georgia, arizona and nevada, candidates who believe the election was stolen are challenging the secretaries of state who stood up for the 2020 election results. it's a crisis that endangers the democratic majorities in the house and senate and the prospect of future democratic candidates winning the white house. and over on the delusional right of american politics republicans are still working to undo joe biden's legitimate verified win in the 2020 election. the ex-president calling on arizona to decertify joe biden's win there. after a briefing to the state senate on the so-called election audit that was filled with so
much misinformation, so many falsehoods, that maricopa county supervisors were forced to fact check it publicly on twitter. the unfortunate success of the gop's voter suppression drive as it collides with stalled democratic action is where we start today. the reverendal sharpton is here, host of msnbc's "politics nation" and president of the national action network. also, clint watts, former consultant to the fbi counterterrorism division and an msnbc national security analyst. and anna palmer, co-founder of punch bowl news as well as an msnbc contributor. so great to see all of you here. you know, reverend, al, when you think about the texas folks who are still in washington willing to walk out twice and you look at the women yesterday who were willing to get into good trouble as we think of one year ago tomorrow when john lewis passed, the courage, the intensity, but
will it matter? will it make a difference? where do you think we are right now, rev? >> i think it will make a difference. last thursday when we met with president biden, leaders of eight national civil rights groups, and said we needed him to make this a bully pulpit issue. and he went tuesday and did so in philadelphia. i was there. i think the thing people are not considering is that the senate bill one, which we do not have the votes for, but then you have the john lewis voter bill, which has not even been completely written and put through the house, what the democrats need to do is say to manchin and some of the republicans -- and we met the civil rights leadership with manchin and some of the republicans -- let's finish the bill together. what will you pass? make them say we will do nothing for voter rights or these are the things we have.
but we talk about the john lewis bill but it's complete and it's passed the house. the option is if you say there's some things in the senate bill, what are they and what can we do with the john lewis bill or let's expose clearly you are just for the erosion of voting rights. we have to force them to the wall on this. let us remember, chris that is how the generation ahead of me got the voting rights act in the first place in '65. it didn't take one meeting, one set of arrests, but multiple strategies, multiple coming together multiple times. this is not a political campaign. i think we're prepared to do that. there are rallies that will culminate in what we were involved in august 28 in washington and people say why? later on because there is no john lewis bill completed yet and it has to go before the
house and the senate late in the session. >> you know, when you look at what the texas lawmakers are doing, you get a real sense they feel like, okay, we've been talking about this for generations, but there is an urgency to this because the attacks are coming fast and furious right now. i want to read something the associated press wrote about the long, surreal days. the more than 50 state legislatures of political lobbying outside work and family obligations under a national spotlight. many have left young children behind. the texas state legislature is a part-time body with an annual salary of $7,200. the vast majority of the delegates have other primary jobs back in texas that they abruptly left behind. anna palmer, is this sense of urgency something you're seeing and feeling on capitol hill? >> i think they put a fine point
and put that human pressure of meetings with a lot of senate democrats. you saw the meeting with vice president kamala harris. it certainly is something that democrats are having to face in congress. but i don't think that there is the sense of urgency. i think when you look at democrats and they know their majority is so slim and most believe the house will turn in the midterms as it historically does that they are really looking towards infrastructure, finding that budget resolution. these once in a generation things president joe biden has set forth. right now no one is saying they need to get rid of the filibuster over this in terms of the key people that you would need, the joe manchins of the world, to be reiterated once again this week that he was not interested in that. >> let me interrupt you there. then is this a choice? is this a choice if we're going to get infrastructure done, we can't do this, too. we have to prioritize. and here is where the priority
is. what's behind all of it? >> i think they see a pathway forward and that budget reconciliation deal whereas on voting rights i think to the reverend's point potentially the john lewis voting rights bill could be that piece of legislation that could come together but it's very difficult to see ten republicans vote for anything on voting rights. i don't see that as the tipping point here. >> let me go to nicolle wallace who is back with us now. we had a little bit of technical difficulty. it's good to see you, my friend. >> i heard you and i thought, oh, my glorious, magical, brilliant friend, chris jansing reading something i wrote hours ago and delivering it like such a maestro. >> and written brilliantly.
>> if people only knew how brilliant you are. i came to this conclusion after talking to -- anna has this story down, what she's reporting is spot on and the rev is right about the size and scope and duration of the sort of struggle. the only thing i bring to the table is my intimate knowledge of the depths of the republicans' commitment to rolling back voting rights in all 48 states where they've introduced bills. and i'm scared of the speed and efficiency with which they're passing and i guess my question is always to the rev. is it enough? do you have enough time to make this a front burner issue for democrats or are there such slim margins in the house and senate, we don't have a cycle to let this become a front burner issue legislatively? >> i think the time we do have, the time you must fight and you must continue to keep the pressure on as you go through
into august because clearly with the john lewis bill not written, i'm not looking at the ten senators you need republican. what i'm looking at is what can you say to cinema and manchin to say if we put these things in the bill without messing with the core rights we need then can we fight to have a work around be the filibuster, which we have in other areas. and put it on them because, let's face it, if the democrats lose this narrow majority, they are in majority. you may not care about the civil and voting rights but do you care about yourself? you can bring a bill where you have 50 solid and say we want to propose a workaround and make the republicans have to deal with the fact that they've
worked around before. i think rather than our becoming full of despair we must be strategic and look to history. you can work around on voting rights. sit down at the table with us, joe manchin and senator sinema and tell us what we need to do to get you part of that workaround and let's debate that, a debate many of us would welcome. >> chris, you mentioned the texas democrats. i think they are in some ways making the washington democrats look bad, sacrifice personally. they left young children at home. they're willing to sacrifice professionally, sacrifice reputationally, their standing in the state where democrats have a hard enough time and it's that contrast and the chairwoman getting arrested yesterday, i
think what is shaping up here in the dog days of summer is this sharp contrast between how important this is to people who see the stakes and this as front burner and the more pragmatic analysis to get infrastructure and other policy priorities done. >> yeah, part of it is, obviously, and i've spent a lot of time in those states, spent time the way the democrats in texas are operating, in other states where voting rights are under attack. i've met with the people and covered the people who have formed entire organizations trying to convince people of why voting for state legislatures is so important and the impact it can have. they also understand that is sort of the long game. i was talking in the last hour about being in mississippi and alabama and an extraordinary group of black women who considers themselves following in the footsteps of stacy abrams, and one part it have they want to get more black
women elected, a more representative congress, a more representative legislature, but there is an urgency they're willing to put their lives aside because they understand you cannot get to that place. you cannot get to that place of fairness, of equity until you have the right to go and cast a ballot. and rev understands this better than anyone but i am deeply moved by the number of blacks who come up to me, even older than you and i, rev, who will talk about what they have fought for over the decades and how they are looking and seeing it slip away state by state by state. this urgency they feel on the ground, that they feel in their own lives, that they feel when they look at the futures of their children drives them in a way that is incredible and there is, without a doubt, whether you look at texas or any of the other states, there is a difference between what's
happening at that very grassroots level and what we see as the prioritizing on capitol hill. >> rev, i wonder what you think about that. rachel says watch what they do, not what they say, right? anna's reported exactly what they're doing. they're doing a bipartisan infrastructure deal, a human infrastructure pieces done through reconciliation. they do not have this as an achievable agenda item. how does that land? >> well, i think that, first of all, you must understand as we are watching these states stack up the restriction laws, one federal law would override all of that which is why we must remain focused in the voting rights community and the civil rights community. secondly what we need to deal with, i understand from some people that the white house may be saying let us get infrastructure and other things through before we have to fight
around and work around voting rights and as we write the john lewis bill. again, to have the fight now when the bill is not even banned and pass the house would be premature. and lastly to chris, i'm old but i'm not cold. i'm going to be fired up, also. >> i want to bring you in, clint. the other piece of the republican effort, and we spent a lot of time talking about it may be malevolent but is incredibly competent and fast-moving strategy. it is anti-democratic and it's zipping through the states. the other piece it have is part of the radicalization of the ex-president's supporters and those are the faux audits. one in maricopa county, arizona, that we've talked about a whole lot. the ex-president was tweeting about it and now the current president, president biden's victory to be decertified. this is the next front of their efforts to delegitimize him. i wonder at the intersection of
lies about election fraud and extremism how that lands from your perspective. >> yeah, nicolle, the first story of texas is if you can't win the voters, you get rid of the voters. in arizona if you can't win the vote then you try and change it. you see this in texas and arizona, what do we see, places where the gop just doesn't have good ideas and they can't win. when you can't win you try and change the story. the problem is when you change the story, even when people who know the story is a lie, try and change the story, someone believes it. someone down the road is committed to that cause and every single time they do this there will be someone that believes the election was stolen and you will see mobilizations to violence. if you look in the last three to four days the number of arrests around the country of people that want to strike political targets that are talking about turning over the election, we have new revelations about that, another out in san francisco talking about explosives and weapons.
each one of these lies powers a conspiracy. the longer it lives, is perpetuated and the more political leaders speak to the lie the more you will see people mobilize to violence over time. ultimately what i never hear from the gop in any of these discussions or with regard to the conspiracies the long-term damage to america. never how do we bring the country together? how do we get people to vote? what's the strategy for building confidence in democratic institutions? that should be the number one goal regardless of party. i think the extremism part is the most concerning. as the weeks go on and as the president becomes more vocal and out in public you will see more and more incitement over time. >> anna palmer, i've often wondered, i mean, the rigid to where things are. is that a fair description of it
to where the filibuster stands, where the objections to doing away with it. but i've always thought the security piece could change the landscape, under their feet. hang mike pence was the mission of the insurrection and it changed not one thing. it puts liz cheney front and center again in talking about donald trump and his supporters and his followers as a threat to homeland security, and i wonder if there are concerns when you see these arrests in sacramento at the democratic headquarters there. >> i think particularly democrats are on high notice in terms of their own personal safety. we are going through a massive fight right now that we are watching and they are on track to run out of money. the people who keep the capitol safe. we had something we all, the people who work in the building,
we're very thrilled about and a lot of the country was excited about. it puts into sharp focus this concept of their own personal safety. time and time again whether it is january 6 or you look back when steve scalise was shot or gabby giffords and violence even against members, sometimes you think oh, maybe that will shift the debate, but it hasn't. the parties are very far apart right now. we don't know if house minority leader kevin mccarthy will name republicans to the select committee. that is why i think liz cheney will be so important for democrats moving forward. it means they can do it and it means she's going to be a real clear voice on this issue. >> chris jansing, you are majestic as a broadcaster and colleague and friend, thank you for stepping in. >> my pleasure. >> my thanks to the reverend al
sharpton and anna palmer. thank you both so much. clint watts is sticking around. one more thing to cover. yesterday this hour we started with new reporting and revelations from the yet to be released book by "washington post" pulitzer prize winners, harrowing reporting about mike pence's experience on january 6th. we read this excerpt from their new book. here is goes again. quote, after a team of agents scouted a safe path to ensure the pences would not encounter trouble, giebels and the rest of pence's security detail guided them down a staircase to a secure subterranean area that rioters couldn't reach, where the vice president's armored limousine waited. giebels asked pence to get in one of the vehicles. we can hold here, he said. i'm not getting in the car, tim. i trust you, tim, but you're not driving the car. if i get in that vehicle, your you guys are taking off. i'm not getting in the car.
the pences made their way to a secure underground area. after reading that exact excerpt yesterday i asked jeremy bash this question, quote, someone familiar with this reporting, jeremy bash, tells me that pence feared a conspiracy, feared the secret service would aid trump in his ultimate aims that day. this is the most harrowing version of mike pence's day that i've seen reported out, end quote. this is me today. i interviewed those sources again hours ago today. they stand by that reporting. pointing to this quote from pence in the book. i'll read it one more time. quote, i trust you, tim, but you're not driving the car. if i get in the vehicle, you are taking off. i'm not getting in that car. end quote. to both the excerpt and my reporting an aide to former president mike pence is responding and today says that, quote, any characterization
pence was mistrustful of the secret service or its plans for him is a total misinterpretation of pence's comments. quote, this couldn't be more wrong, end quote. when we come back the cdc is warning of an upcoming pandemic of the unvaccinated. myths is the latest threat to political health coming up. plus, a reckoning of lawyers who pedaled the big lie on behalf of the ex-president. one state attorney general who will make sure that everyone who shopped those lies is held accountable. plus, investigators prosecuting january 6th more inclined to prosecute and take down domestic terrorism cases. the latest scare on what was being plotted. we've mentioned it already. it's in california. this is cynthia suarez, cfo of go-go foodco.,
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powerful words from the president. that was president biden just this afternoon responding to a question there from our colleague, peter alexander, and the dangers of covid misinformation spreading, in that instance on facebook. his grave warning comes after the u.s. surgeon general yesterday issued his first formal advisory to declare this,
that the lies are an your jept threat to public health criticizing tech and social media companies for not doing enough to fight it on their platforms. covid case have is doubled in the last three weeks a. pandemic of the unvaccinated is what the cdc director called it today. the white house says the facts are now, quote, a matter of life and death. white house reporter for the associated press and clint watts are back. we all watched this in slow motion. the ex-president lying about covid the whole time, lying about how damaging it was, it is, even after the fact. this president has done an extraordinary human logistical things getting needles and vaccines into anyone who is able or willing. what he's up against is the damage left behind by his predecessor. >> that's a deeply frustrated president joe biden and his
staff about the pockets of this country that refuse to get vaccinated. anyone who wants access has access. public health officials think can be convinced. we know it was developed quickly. it's safe. we'll make it easy for you to get. there's still some hope there and, of course, children, people are still waiting for a vaccine for those under 12. there's a pocket of people and they are largely republicans who are refusing to take the vaccine. some young adults as well. the young adults may feel they don't need it because they're invincible. others is a political statement. there's been an anti-science strain, parts of the republican party for quite some time now that predates donald trump. he accelerated it.
we heard from him undermining trust in all sorts of government institutions throughout his time in office. that adds up. his followers believe everything he says. of course when the virus does arrive and the president down played it day after day and that adds up, too. he has started saying, take the vaccine, he's never given it a full-throated endorse many. it may be too late. it's part of people's social identity. it's amplified on social media. >> and that is where we are. i want to spend one more minute on where we are, and this was so interesting this is jen psaki explaining where the vast majority of disinformation comes from. let's watch her and we'll talk
on the other side. >> there's about 12 people who are producing 65% of anti-vaccine misinformation on social media platforms. all of them remain active on facebook despite some even being banned on other platforms including facebook -- ones that facebook owns. >> so facebook can't take down 12 people spreading 65% of the lies about covid? >> yeah, nicolle. part of the challenge is they're policing content. they don't necessarily police people. that's the breakdown whether it was the election or covid or vaccine this is year. there's way too much focus on trying to police bad content. look, people can make misinformation faster and that's why they're always beating these companies. a lot of these groups have moved into a private fashion so it's much more difficult to detect who they are. they also know how to skirt around it.
while i thought -- by the way, i thought the surgeon general's report was the best government report i've seen on misinformation and disinformation ever put out. from a research perspective, what the press secretary is correct. usually about 1% of the manipulators, that's across almost anything. you really have to focus at the top of the cone, the top of the pyramid, if you can focus on those individuals that are creating outright lies that are dangerous to public safety, that's critical. there are two things i would like to add. from the social media companies across the board, they don't know what to police because the regulations aren't there. they're either getting beat up by section 230 on the political right or misinformation and disinformation on the political left so they're in this constant about what to do. >> i want to read from this excellent government report.
it was pretty riveting. >> i know. it was really good. >> you threw me for a minute. i'm going to read this to you, jonathan lemire this is a white house that has a plan and a white house that seems to always have a plan b and a plan c. this is their glass when you come up against the covid disinformation on the vaccination. teachers, he said, should explain lessons on media literacy and critical thinking. journalists, he suggested, should work to responsibly debunk health misinformation without spreading it further. public health professionals should do a better job answering questions and explaining why health guidelines sometimes change. that's for everyday americans, they should verify questionable health information with trusted sources. it sounds like the mass communications part of this may be over and what the government is doing is directing, again
this is targeted around the hesitant, the scared, back to their pediatricians, back to their only spheres of influence. is that the white house strategy, jonathan? >> it is. it's media literacy is a may major problem and people don't know who to believe or tru. the white house is trying to do this on two tracks. they're not eliminating the idea of the big gesture. president biden will still say, get the vaccine. i was there when a pop star came in and she spoke to the reporters in the briefing room and has cut a bunch of video that is will be on tiktok for young americans who perhaps don't think they need the vaccine and she's trying to convince them, yes, yes, you do, also your loved ones who you might spread the virus to. they're doing that and at the community lel, pediatricians or community leaders, civil groups,
pastors. a person of some authority and trust to say, look, i understand you're confused, you're scared. i'm trying to tell you this is good. you can do this. i've done it myself. they are hopeful. there will be things in ballparks and nascar races and at grocery stores but small things to flood the zone. what is the backdrop is a real worry. we are seeing mask guidelines go back into place. we are seeing the spread of the virus in the red states but they fear it could be elsewhere. they realize right now is a moment to try to get ahead of this before weather starts getting colder and the virus spreads even more easily. >> this brings me back to where we connecteded in the last block. with virus levels -- i don't know if we call them surging
yet, but they've doubled since last week, they're largely in red states. but, again, mask mandates are part of the political hot war, if you will. it was an animating ideology for the violent extremism that threatened this country. i wonder what concerns you have from a security standpoint if public health experts want us to go back to other public health measures. >> nicolle, i think it will tip off a whole series of protests and violence. my home state is ravaged with it right now. they have their surge. it's essentially what happened in new york for us last year. there it's out of control. and i don't know how they would be able to institute those controls again. in the northeast and on the west
coast as they push these controls you will immediately see a react. there's another horizon, the vaccination of small children. and that issue will bring lots of anti-vax audience. over the last decade they are predominantly the political left. you'll have the gop supporters who just refuse to move in that direction. that will be a hot flash point and will converge as we head into the fall when the country has to get back on its feet. literacy is great. you have to scale truths and take messages of truth on the offensive. i think that's the first part and they did address that in the report. i think the second part is we are moving from the tactical information -- strategic information campaign, the very tactical ones. you have to go into social media
and on the ground and have messengers that look like and talk like targeted audience that is are just refusing the vaccine. that's ideological leaders, this is people that are trusted in community. we have to get their message out. they're the influencers we need. we have to bring them together to get this going and i think the last thing is fear travels faster than calm. not trying to coax people nicely, we need to be telling them this should be a real fear for you. if you're unvaccinated your chance of dying is astronomically higher than any complications of vaccine. you are literally at this point if you're dying of covid-19 and unvaccinated, that is a choice. it really doesn't make sense at this point that you can't take these mitigation methods. and it's not just about you. it's about our whole country. if you want our country back on our feet, don't want to wear a mask come fall, all you have to do is get a vaccine.
you can get it very quickly. >> you just said something that is going to become my mantra every day from here on forward. you have to scale truth. that's amazing. that is exactly the mission statement for all of us. jonathan lemire, you do that every day. thank you for spending time with us. clint, you're sticking around a little longer. up next for us, michigan is opening an investigation into those who have pushed false claims about the 2020 election results. why that state's attorney general does not plan on letting those individuals get away with it. don't go anywhere. balanced nutrition for strength and energy. whoo hoo! ensure, with 27 vitamins and minerals, now introducing ensure complete! with 30 grams of protein. ensure complete! verizon launched the first 5g network, and now we want to be the first to give everyone the joy of 5g with a new 5g phone on us. old customers. new customers. every customer. from these bakers to these bakers.
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since november a team of lawyers shamelessly led by rudy giuliani and sydney powell have been trumpeting the big lie about election fraud, attempting to prove that somehow the 2020 election was rigged. it was not. we know it was the most secure election in our country's history and that president joe biden was rightfully elected president by big margins. they're finally being forced to confront all the lies they told. this week in michigan a federal judge pressed those lawyers over their lawsuit and the surrounding paperwork seek to go overturn the results of the election. with the judge announcing she will rule on discipline for these lawyers in the coming weeks. the state of affairs in michigan is just one of several states looking to actually hold these people accountable for spreading the big lie, at least in court. joining us now is michigan's
attorney general, dana nestle. thank you for spending time with us. i've heard from the things that you've said publicly and things that attorney general josh shapiro said that there will be accountability. there is a slow process to seeing that come to fruition. is that what we're starting to see with judge parker in michigan? >> well, i definitely think so and i hope so. you know, it's -- we know already what the impact has been of these lies that were told in a court of law and then repeated by the former president and his supporters. and it's done incredible damage to our democracy and it's undermined our system of elections. but the one place -- the one place that seemingly has held up is in our courthouses because we know that every judge that evaluated these claims, whether they were appointed by a democrat or a republican, you
know being found these claims and dismissed these cases. it's time for these attorneys that filed these ludicrous claims and these pleadings to be held accountable. >> what are your concerns about the damage that's already been done? not just by the lie that is were told in court but the lie that is were told to millions of the ex-president's supporters? they're fueling voter suppression laws. they're trying to change who certificates and counts the votes. what does that look like in michigan? >> it's going to be very hard for people to come to grips with the fact that these lies they've been told over and over, and they continue to be told every day seemingly nonstop that those have been inaccurate claims and that our elections actually are safe and secure. and in michigan we had the most
successful election that we've ever had and we know that it was done properly and accurately. but it's going to be hard for folks to be -- to understand that after everything they've heard. worse, we're starting to lose some of the individuals that we really need in order to be able to conduct our elections. we have people who just don't want to be clerks anymore. they are retiring and resigning in mass numbers because they don't want to be threatened. they don't want their families to be threatened and they know there's just no doing their job right unless they come up with the results that a certain individual or certain party would like. >> and you are fighting this fight, obviously, for accountability, but on the other side it's all part of the political mosh pit. do you feel safe? do you face threats for doing your job? >> almost every day. and it's not just me. it's a number of individuals
that were elected to serve the public and appointed individuals. it's judges. as i said, it's clerks. it's literally everyone and anyone that seems to stand in the way of the notion, the ridiculous and false notion, that trump was actually the win winner of our elected. it is indeed a scary time. it is why it is so incredibly important that in the one place that we know people can be held accountable, which is in our courts of law, that we make every effort to make sure that is actually done. and i will say in my many decades of practice in front of these same judges, including judge parker, i have never in my career ever seen pleadings of this sort that were so baseless and inaccurate and unsupported
by facts or law. and, you know, unless these attorneys are really held accountable, when i say that, i don't mean just fined. i don't mean just sanctioned. i don't mean having to pay the expenses or the attorney fees of the opposing parties, they have to be disbarred. otherwise they're making so much money off these cases, there's really no incentive for them to stop doing exactly what they're doing right now. so they have to be penalized in a way where they're actually losing their law license so that never again can they enter a court of law and make these type of unsupported and, frankly, dangerous claims. >> we were riveted by the reporting, and i'll pull the you on the spot and ask that next time there's a development we can talk to you about it. it does seem like they're finally being asked very pointed questions about exactly what you're describing, michigan's attorney general, thank you for
talking with us. up next, citing the need to prevent further acts of domestic terrorism. prosecutors are asking for a prison sentence for the first felony defendant in the january 6th capitol insurrection. how that could impact more than 100 others facing charges as well. usaa is made for the safe pilots. like mac. who can come to a stop with barely a bobble. with usaa safepilot, when you drive safe... ...you can save up to 30% on your auto insurance. usaa. what you're made of, we're made for.
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and it could set the bar for how at least 100 other defendants are punished. prosecutors are urging a federal judge to impose an 18-month prison term on 38-year-old paul hodgkin. he carried a trump flag into the well of the senate on january 6th. prosecutors citing the need to deter domestic terrorism. separately, other extremism threats continue to be investigated in this country in the wake of january 6th. two men have been charged in what the fbi calls a, quote, specific, detailed and serious plan to -- plot to attack democratic party headquarters in sacramento, california. doj says the two began planning to attack democratic targets after the election and sought support from a militia group in hopes their actions would start a movement. let's bring into our conversation ryan riley, senior justice reporter, and clint watts is still with us. brian, take me through how closely other defendants and defense attorneys are watching this first sentencing. >> very closely. i mean it is going to layout the
path for a lot of these cases going forward, and the sentence they requested is smack dab in the middle of the sentencing guidelines, 18 months. that's in the range of what it would be. what prosecutors talk about in their memo is they say that paul hodgkins has several points where he made key decisions along the way. one of the key points was in florida when he packed up his bags and put some of the stuff into his bags that he would bring into the capitol, some latex gloves, some goggles, things of that nature, basically preparing for battle. the second decision was after he left the rally, started making his way that 1.7 miles to the white house, and then the third decision was when he actually crossed those barriers and entered on to property he had no right to be on just as thousands of others did on january 6th. and then the next decision was entering the capitol building, and the next decision after that was going into that senate well. that's what sort of escalated his sentence above and beyond what -- or his charges rather above and beyond what a lot of other defendants are facing who entered the capitol and are only
facing misdemeanor charges. because he entered the well of the senate during that sort of extraordinary shocking visual scene we saw unfold inside the senate chamber, that's really what escalated these charges and why he's one of the felony defendants in this sprawling investigation. >> clint, obviously the closer he got to any senators or members, a graver danger he represented. i want to ask you about something that you can sort of surmise from the prosecutor's written sort of filings and ask you about this. special assistant u.s. attorney mona sedkey cited in director wray's testimony in march at the senate that the problem of homegrown violent extremism is metastasizing. she asked that the court recognize prior court filings, though they may have no prior history she believes it makes them unique among criminals in the likelihood of recidivism.
obviously being a repeat offender who has no criminal history speaks to the theory of the case they've been radicalized and are now extremists. how do you sort of keep them in a way with these prosecutions and sentencing that they don't represent a threat? >> yeah, it is going to be challenging, nicolle. unfortunately, we kind of have to fall back on some of the lessons learned from the war on terror and kind of this spectrum. we used to say you are introduced to the ideology or the big lie, you are immersed in it, you become frustrated that, you know, the lie isn't becoming true, and then you mobilize, essentially the violence. i think what you are going to see is a spectrum of these actors and those that have already been arrested, and judges trying to adjudicate the severity and where they really are falling on that spectrum. the first ones will come through. they're folks that are completely committed to a fantasy, but actually took overt action and are not likely connected to a larger plot or a
larger conspiracy. severally, you are starting to see some of the folks start to take plea arrangements or start to deal essentially with the federal government for reduced sentence, and that to me tells me they're cooperating for what are larger charges to come. outside of that, nicolle, what we saw in san francisco with the fbi making that arrest regarding the dnc, this is exactly what i was worried about six months ago. there are some that now see this is the moment where we need to commit, we need to accelerate, we need to bring this conflict to the fore. if we do this, if we do one single attack we might inspire others to do it or we might inspire an entire movement to follow us. i would just like to note that was the same theory used by terrorists 20 years ago. >> and let me just for our viewers leave you with the extremists in their own words lest you have any doubt that they're all taking their signals from the ex-president. copeland. let's see what trump is going to do.
rogers, he needs our help. copeland, i know. rogers, the deep state is disgusting. >> rogers, two men change the world if we want to. copeland, we don't need to win over 50,000 people. we need 500 -- off patriots that want america back. as we say every day, here we are. ryan reilly, clint watts, thank you for joining us. the next hour of "deadline: white house" starts after a quick break. don't go anywhere. we are just getting started. families. businesses. in-laws. law firms. every customer. new 5g phones when you trade in your old ones. and if you're not a customer, we'll help cover the cost to switch. just ask wanda. she's been with us since... (gasps)... now. upgrade your phone. upgrade your network.
it has to be the end. >> hi again, everyone. it is 5:00 in the east. look around and there are signs everywhere that we as a country are barrelling towards what the congressman warned us all about during the president's second impeachment trial, the possibility of another insurrection. just this week we got a stark reminder that domestic violent extremism is the greatest threat to the homeland. we told you how federal prosecutors cited the ongoing threat of domestic terrorism in their call for an 18-month prison term for the first felony defendant in the capitol insurrection. two men were charged in a plot to blow up the democratic party headquarters in sacramento, california, all of this painting a picture of a fraught security situation complicated by right-wing propaganda and disinformation and a disgraced ex-president with fantasies and delusions of returning to power. many people fear he will do anything to overturn the results of the election he lost decisively. the new yorker is reporting in
the final days of the trump presidency general mark milley feared trump would resort to conflict, either at home or abroad after the 2020 election. there were two nightmare scenarios, milley told associates, for the period after the november 3rd election which resulted in trump's defeat but not his concession. one was that trump would try to use the military on the streets of america to prevent the legitimate peaceful exchange of power. it was not public at the time, but milley believed that the nation came very close to conflict with the islamic republic. ""the new yorker" describing this chili final interaction between milley and trump. he brought up the forthcoming rally of supporters on january 6th, asking milley and the acting defense secretary, chris miller, if they were prepared for what trump had already promised on twitter would be a wild protest. it was a short conversation. milley later recalled to associates, no more than a couple of minutes at the end of an hour-long meeting. quote, it is going to be a big
deal, milley heard trump say. you're ready for that, right? it is the last time the president would ever speak to his joint chief's chairman. combine these new details with what we just learned from phil rutgers' upcoming book about trump's deeply autocratic tendencies and it is alarming that the gop is doing the bidding of the disgraced ex-president by continuing to peddle his white lie, by white washing the horrors of the insurrection and blocking all attempts at accountability for those who played a roll in the attack. add to that the push for voting suppression measures and you have what trump would say is a beauty. "the washington post" is warned of a full-blown constitutional crisis after the next election. quote, we are looking almost certainly in 2024 to take power without winning election. recent moves in republican-controlled state legislatures to suppress the votes of people of color and to give the legislatures control overcasting electoral votes are
all working toward the scenario in 2024 where they lose by 10 million votes but still appoint their guy. this existential threat to our democracy posed by the ex-president and hits party is where we begin this hour. some of our favorite friends. pete strzok is here, author of the book "compromised." joining us basil schmeichel, former executive director of the new york state democratic party, now a lecturer at columbia university. miles taylor is here, former chief of staff for the department of homeland security. miles, the book tells a story that you have been telling since you first wrote an op-ed as anonymous in "the new york times", that people around the president were most alarmed by the president, even more so than those of us watching from the outside. what do you make of the fact that all of your collective actions of not invoking the 25th amendment, not going to more
whistleblowers in congress brought us to where we are now with our democracy seriously imperilled by him? >> yeah. well, nicolle, the silence that some people had through the administration put this country through hell, there's no question. i would say that the only penance those people can have is now to at least speak the truth, even though it is too late because these strains of authoritarianism is continuing. those cabinet secretaries who told me behind the scenes they felt like i did, that trump was a threat to the fabric of our republic, they still have an obligation to speak out. i think it is morally disgusting that a wlot of these people haven't. i hate to be the guy that said "i told you so," nicolle, but in my book of warning, i said even if he loses the election he is going to claim he didn't and there's going to be violence. that was a year before the election. and why did i think that? because i had heard trump talk in person about using his authorities in a way that was
extra-judicial. for instance, he talked about things in the oval office like marshal law and he talked to us explicitly with his fascination with the insurrection act. i have to hone in on that point. i have heard donald trump on multiple occasions in private in the oval office wax poetic about the use of the insurrection act. in those cases it was to seal the border, but he knew he had this tool and this power so i have no doubt in my mind that trump when inciting those protests knew he potentially would have the ability to say there was an insurrection and try to deploy the military. that's not a fantasy. it was something that we were actually worried about. >> you know, pete strzok, when you hear miles talk about the situational awareness inside the highest levels of the ex-president's cabinet and you think about this new reporting from susan glasser today in "the new yorker" and from carolyn inc. and phil rutger over the past few days, it is not a comfort at the end of the day we have president biden, the
rightful winner of the 2020 election. it feels like that too is part of our slide toward normalizing all of the destruction that the ex-president did. i wonder if you can just speak to your current assessment of the strength of the institutions and how much of this they can handle. can they take four more years on the streets of looking for a plot like the one that was foiled in sacramento? can they take four more years of people radicalized by the big lie, radicalized by covid restrictions as it appears we are not done with covid either? how much more of this can our institutions take? >> nicolle, i'm really worried about the threat that's out there, particularly when you look at what is already on the plate of the department of justice and the fbi and the other members of the intelligence community. i mean keep in mind you talked at the start about a couple of the folks finally beginning to plead out, but over 500 individuals have already been charged and looking at potentially another 100 or more that stormed the capitol. as the fbi, as dhs and the other government entities go out to
try to build a base to understand what is coming, they aren't doing that from a starting point of nothing else on their plate. they have this enormous burden of taking all of these cases to trial, of developing evidence, of turning over evidence, of building a case, of scheduling all of the various arguments, many of which will be very complicated in terms of arguing the first amendment. these aren't simple trials. so when you put all of that together and ask that the fbi and others lean forward and get ahead of the threat that's coming and is only increasing, i'm extraordinarily worried because the fbi has always been -- always has more threats than it can handle. >> yeah. >> when you look at this burgeoning and increasing domestic terrorism, i'm really worried about it. >> you know, basil, i never say anything about the democratic party in the spirit of these things being their fault. i say them in the spirit of we as a country only have one party that is interested in governing and protecting the country. i wonder what your assessment is of their band width for dealing
with now having to do a select committee to investigate january 6th because a commission wasn't a thing that kevin mccarthy could sell to donald trump, and sort of doing all of the governing and also having to push back against 389 voter suppression laws racing through 48 states? i mean what is your assessment of the priorities they've chosen and how they're doing? >> well, i think their choice of priorities is important and it is certainly, i think, in the proper order as i would see it. but i would tell you my concern really isn't the congress. my concern is for the average american. you know, i got into public service -- >> yeah. >> -- because i was concerned, you know, i was concerned that history was always written by the winners. i'm spending my career now making sure it is not being written by the losers. the prevarication, the venue shopping, the fact you have leaders all over the country looking for the easiest,
quickest possible pathway to undermine our government, undermine our election, undermine our democracy -- and i said this last year when the trump administration and his colleagues and the lawyers were going into the courts to say, you know, this election is invalid, it really wasn't just about that election. it is about testing the waters for all of these voter suppression laws that we're seeing that you just talked about. you know, i tell my students this, i tell others this all the time, that the burden on the individual is so intense to try to right these wrongs, to try to advocate, to try to mobilize. so i believe that congress is doing the right thing. i think and i would like to feel confident that they have the band width to tackle all of these issues. i am afraid that important policy isn't going to get done, but i have to say hats off to the biden administration as they've been able to push through into senator schumer and others have been able to push through very valuable pieces of legislation. but it is the average citizen that i am most concerned about.
i don't want us to get tired. i don't want us to feel like it is too big for us to tackle all at once. >> yeah. >> we are all sort of deputized to do this. >> basil, i'm going to need you to say more. >> okay. >> because you have stirred something in me. look, democracy is a lead really not easy to articulate there, but that's what is happening. i wonder if you with your students, do you remain hopeful about democracy? do you remain hopeful that they will have the same access to vote as we had in 2020? do you remain hopeful that the forces that are pushing against facts and science and truth are going to lose? are going to wins, the ones pushing those forces are going to lose? >> i'm hopeful because of the students that i see, but by the time they get to me that's not really what my concern is. i'm concerned about when they're younger. i say that because this
conversation around critical race theory i think is important, and i think it is valuable and we should have it. what i am also concerned about, maybe even more so, is that we don't teach civics in schools the way we used to. so by the time those students -- by the time the students see me, they're engaged, they want to be advocates and i'm glad and anxious to train the next generation of advocate. but if they're not getting those lessons k-12 education, they don't understand how the system works, the three branches of government, why they're important, how you access them. if you don't do that, then we've already lost. so that's one of the things that i fight for and i encourage everybody else to as well. >> miles, you have been increasingly blunt. you are a blunt guy. you have been even blunter lately about the republican party as a threat to what basil just described. people by the time they get to him, really knowing the truth of the history of our country, the glorious and the
not-so-glorious, as well as what we've been talking about for the last hour and 15 minutes, the increasing evidence that many members of the republican party have been radicalized to violence? >> yeah. and, basil, i like you a lot. your optimism is -- i usually try to be mr. bright side, but i'm pretty cynical on this one. >> right. >> i have to say the reason being, i watched up close in the trump administration us going from having a so-called access of adults that was trying to keep things in check. by the end the axis of adults became a cabinet of cowards, and that cowardice spread faster than covid-19 among republicans who ended up really aggressively aiding and abetting these efforts to undermine our democracy. i know a member of congress from north carolina who after the insurrection said that night, "i'm going to impeach donald trump tomorrow" and then got weak in the knees the next morning because he didn't want to stray from the team. this is what we're worried about, and i actually think that
the civil war within the republican party has gone from figurative to physical. we now have these physical threats, these terror plots we've been talking about around the country. in my own case, i had to hire a body guard because i spoke out against the president. i had a friend who recently spoke out against trump have a hit put on their head and was notified by federal authorities of a hit on their head. so this is getting serious. it is serious. it is violent. it is scary. the only way to get past it is we have got to go defeat the radicals at the ballot box. that's why we launched the renew america movement. but i'm going to say, when it comes to the gop civil war there's a north and there is a south, and right now the south is winning and americans need to stand up and arm the north in that struggle, arm the rationals to get these guys out of our politics because i do sincerely think it is the greatest national security danger to the united states. i don't say that lightly. peter worked on a lot of these cases alongside us when he was at the fbi. we looked at russians and chinese and terrorists.
this is more serious than those threats that we were trying to stare down, and that's not hyperbole. >> well, let me just pour a little salt in this wound he opened. i mean i think it got serious for small children in cages four years ago. i think it got serious for those of us who spoke out against trump lonely -- lonely few of us in 2016 and didn't take jobs in his cabinet, miles. i think i welcome you to this fight. it is better with you in it, but there are a lot of people who have been sounding the alarm and have been, frankly, horrified that we're -- it seems there are fewer and fewer people joining the fight. i'm not sure that i would describe the republican party as racked by a civil war. i think the republican party is brain washed in its loyalty to donald trump, and liz cheney couldn't exist in its leadership ranks for refusing to lie. i mean where is the friction? >> yeah. look, that's a good point.
i mean the north here, i don't want to portray it as a fair fight, is severely losing. we are talking about a rag tag crew that's trying to bring the gop back from crazy, and i'm pretty cynical about the ability to do that in the near term. but i want to touch on something that you just said because there's been a lot of rhetoric, including from these stories about general milley, about trump and trump's policies being nazi like. i don't think it is a stretch at all. i mean miles taylor four years ago would have roll his eyes at that, but i saw it up close and personal with my own eyes. policy about family separation at the border, the president's restrictive anti-immigration policies, these were generally nazi-like restrictive efforts to try to close our country and exercise his authorities in a way that, again, was extra judicial and in some cases we determined to be illegal. i don't think it is a stretch at all that general milley saw this as a potential reichstad moment. that's who donald trump is and what we got close to. >> pete, how do you fight that?
what we're dealing with, clint watts described the scene in the streets of philadelphia when they were marching over 4th of july weekend as, you know, this is also an advancement in terms of what they're willing to look like, dressed in their matching brown, you know, pants and whatever. i mean we are so numb to how bad it is because i think for some people it has been going on for so long. president biden prevailed. but how do you deal with the fact that this has become normal on the political right? >> i think you have to have some sort of accountability because otherwise the narrative just -- it has already been changed. i think part of the reason these news stories are so shocking is we've forgotten the events of january 6th. we've heard so much of the right wing propaganda machine trying to rewrite the narrative. when we see the new books coming out they remind us what happened. look, it is like fighting an islamic terrorist threat. it goes to not just identifying
the perpetrators and holding them accountable, but you have to tell the truth about what happened. when you look at what is going on with liz cheney, when people like mitt romney are not being embraced by the republican party. the things they have to say are not being listened to by the bulk of the members of congress in the republican party. we have to have a conversation of vigorous enforcement and putting the truth out that is going to come out through these enforcement actions to try to get through to the average man and woman on the street that there's a real, real problem here, and we ignore it at our peril. >> you know, basil, i wonder how that lands with you, because i know there are people -- and i hear it from my viewers, i hear it from democratic sources. i hear this from other reporters. there are people who have been screaming at the top of their lungs since before miles became anonymous. democrats have found the smoking gun, not once but in two impeachment trials against donald trump. they proved -- the facts were not in question for either of his two impeachment trials. he was let off the hook both times. the mueller report in the first
volume makes abundantly clear that russian president vladimir putin and his acolytes and the trump campaign had a shared mission, the obstruction section proves six acts of criminal obstruction of justice. the headline in every paper was totally and completely exxon rated. are you sort of tapped out in terms of your well of confidence that the facts will prevail or do you have hope there will be accountability? >> i doubt. i don't, but i -- i do wonder about accountability. this is going to things said earlier. it is not north/south. it is just everyday listening to my colleagues and my friends. you know, here in new york i'm hearing more of my friends say they're interested in buying guns. it has got to the point when the everyday person is afraid to walk down the street because they're concerned that someone
is going to pull the rug out politically in terms of our institutions, pull the rug out from under them. they feel that not only is their democracy being attacked but their person is being attacked as well. that's how it felt to so many of us on january 6th. so, to be honest, i don't know that we believe that persons in my sort of circle that there's enough accountability that exists to really hold everybody -- everybody's feet to the fire. there are concerns that our elections aren't really going to work for us when we want -- you know, if we really want change. but, unfortunately, this is what we have in this moment and, you know, going back to the point i was making earlier, if we're going to train the next generation, if we're going to open people's ears and eyes to what is going on, we have to talk about what is working. we have to talk about what is not working. maybe there's no party in that, right. maybe there's no left or right or progressive or moderate in that. you know, i still stand for the democratic party, but when you
have a lot of young people that don't believe in any party or not affiliated with any party in a substantial way, we still have to talk to them. we still have to come at them and say that this is not correct. >> yeah. >> i do feel, i do feel confident that we'll get there. >> the pro-democracy party, i'm for that. thank you so much for starting us off this hour. i'm grateful to all three of you for having this very frank and important conversation. when we return, with new fears about the delta variant and covid cases on the rise, the largest county in the country is now reinstating its mask mandate. not everyone in the medical community thinks that's the right move. we will talk about that story next. plus, as prosecutors swirl around matt gaetz we are learning more about the kinds of people gaetz is turning to for help. it is not pretty. and the one issue nighting the left and the right, free britney! we will talk about that. "deadline: white house" continues after a quick break. don't go anywhere. when you have an irregular heartbeat, it's more.
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there is a clear message that is coming through. this is becoming a pandemic of the unvaccinated. we are seeing outbreaks of cases in parts of the country that have low vaccination coverage because unvaccinated people are at risk, and communities that are fully vaccinated are generally faring well. >> pandemic of the unvaccinated as described today by the cdc director as the highly contagious delta variant has led to a startling rise in covid cases, a nearly 70% jump in one week, with covid hospitalizations and deaths on the rise again too. but she says, and we're more
than 153 million fully vaccinated adults across the u.s. remain protected. still, amid a recent rise in community transmission, los angeles county, the largest in the nation, is reviving precautions for everyone, bringing back the mask mandate for everyone regardless of the vaccine status. let's turn to someone we trust, professor of pediatrics,. let me start with the kinds of questions i get all the time. when will kids younger than 12 be able to get vaccinated if the parents want them to? >> so let's deal directly with that, nicolle. that is going to happen sometime before the end of this year or maybe into early 2022. any hopes for getting younger children vaccinated by school starting this fall is probably not realistic, but that's i think the timetable that we
should expect. >> so that said, is the delta variant more dangerous to kids? is that why you're seeing the cases like we have in mississippi, or is it more contagious so anyone unvaccinated is more susceptible? >> the latter is true. anyone not vaccinated is definitely going to be more contagious. however, we are also watching a concerning trend, nicolle, where we are having younger and younger people get sick with the delta variant. they're being admitted to the hospital, talking about people in their 20s and 30s. there's absolutely no reason to feel confident that it is going to stop there. i think we are seeing an early warning sign in places like mississippi where officials are saying lots of children are being admitted to the hospital who are really quite sick. that is worrisome to me. it is not a high enough number to make me go into panic mode, but i think it is just an early warning, a shot across the bow here that we cannot become too
complacent about where this is all going because we just don't know, nicolle. the other thing is even if children are not getting very sick, they also can become carriers, which makes people that they may live with or have contact with much more vulnerable getting ill. so older people, people with immune compromise and so on who are near these children who may be carriers is a problem we need to be concerned about. >> can you talk about people who are vaccinated getting covid and testing positive? i know there were some baseball players this week that tested positive. i mean what is -- can you get covid after you are vaccinated? >> you can, and there's some new data out of the united kingdom that, in fact, is saying that they're seeing people who have been fully vaccinated getting, you know, a round of covid. i think that is also something to worry about. the problem in the u.s., nicolle, is that we have such a crazy patch work of places that are vaccinated, communities that
by and large are not vaccinated. we have different rules and guidelines coming out in los angeles, as you just pointed out. it is nuts looking. you know, it is like we're looking at a map of a completely patchwork, random september of guidelines, gubernatorial rulings on what is allowed and what is not allowed. i think we look kind of nuts, i'm sorry to say, in a time when we are really reentering a phase of exacerbation of this terrible pandemic of covid-19. >> yeah. look, i want to talk about that now. i mean those are the political contours of our country, and i just wanted to get the facts out there because i think we're still starved for information. we are still trying to make the best decisions about what our kids should be doing. we are still trying to make the best decisions about whether we are just going back to our pre-covid lives in september. i think what i hear you saying is maybe not so fast. >> yeah, not so fast. here is the thing about this.
so if we lived in israel or the uk or france, there's a national policy, and that policy becomes the guidelines. it may change as conditions change. you know, when we get new variants, that may obviously affect the guidelines. here the cdc can make recommendations, establish guidelines, but there's essentially zero obligation for any state or even any city to strictly follow what is put out there. that's a real problem. it is this disconnect between the science and the policy. we keep saying, well, we will be dependent on the science to make decisions. well, not exactly. maybe the cdc is, but the rest of the country is not obligated to follow along. that's why we have such a disorganized, politicized set of agendas around getting the pandemic under control. >> and it leaves us susceptible to what the president diagnosed today as facebook killing people. facebook has responded -- i'm
not going to read the whole thing, but they basically said, "we will not be distracted by accusations which aren't supported by facts. the fact is more than 3 billion people viewed authoritative information about covid on facebook." the problem is not the people that looked at good numbers. the problems are these numbers. let me put up the states-by-state vaccination rates. 47% in tennessee. 42% in alabama. 46% in louisiana, 54% in kansas, and 49% in south carolina. the problem is those getting their information from facebook. i wonder if you think this white house and this administration being more aggressive with disinformation will save lives? >> well, i think it has been really incredibly irresponsible by the big social media platforms, especially facebook. i really wish they would take
control over this. you know, they are able to take control now i guess over allowing certain people to post, but i think we need a much better system of accountability by facebook that is somehow assessing whether they're dealing with absolute -- let's call it, you know, bs or something resembling truth because many people are 100% relying on facebook to get their information, and much of it is just absolute informational garbage. i think it is affecting the ability of america really to protect us from getting into a very serious new wave of covid-19. it is a disaster for us. >> i hit you, dr. redlenner, with a lightning round. i want to give you the last word. any thoughts about this moment? >> yeah. i think it really is time -- i wrote an op-ed the other day which caused me a lot of grief, but i said joe biden should call
up donald trump, if he will take his call, and tell him to please talk to his constituents, to his fan base, to his followers, whatever you want to call them, and tell them, beg them for the sake of the country to get vaccinated. you know, donald trump, his entire family got vaccinated. donald trump with operation warp speed actually made it possible for joe biden to have an accelerated path to getting so many people vaccinated. one last thing that trump can do right now to benefit america is to tell his followers, please get vaccinated. i mean i didn't agree with almost everything in his administration, but now is the time for him to step forward and do the right thing, i think, if he will do it. >> i totally agree with you. i think the president, it is worth going down to wherever -- wherever the retired floridian lives, mar-a-lago, and i would add to that. i think if fox news made this a mission statement for everyone eligible to talk to their doctor
if they want to first and then get vaccinated, those are the two entities, the ex-president and fox news, that could have the greatest impact. you look at the ratings, cable news ratings, fox news has massive numbers of people watching their programs. they could save millions of lives if they wanted to, and the question is do they want to. >> exactly right, nicolle. saving lives, it is about saving lives. >> only they can answer it if they choose to. dr. redlener, thank you for answering our questions and spending time with us. when we return, there are new details about matt gaetz and who and what he is spending big, big, big money on in the face of sex trafficking allegations against him. that reporting is next. ting is t this is franc lefranco, the owner of lefranco construction. specializing in projects like this. and this and this.
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new campaign finance reporting filed yesterday is giving us a little window into the depths of the troubles facing disgraced congressman matt gaetz. that's excluding the federal sex trafficking investigation. more charges could be looming for him. according to filings with the fec ahead of his bid for reelection, gaetz has enlisted some of trump world's most devoted followers including roger stone whose consulting firm was paid $20,000 by gaetz's campaign. most surprising, gaetz's campaign paid $25,000 to a lawyer who lists jeffrey epstein as a notable client. the lawyer also represented el chapo of all people says on his website that he specializes in subtle, novel and creative
arguments other attorneys may miss. nick com posori and katie phang. katie, the matt gaetz story has been largely opaque to us. we know a lot throughis former wingman who just successfully got an extended period in which he won't be sentenced as he is proving fruitful as a witness and story teller. what do you make of sort of that data point laid over where matt gaetz is spending his campaign money? >> so, nicolle, you know, these campaign finance disclosures, they come out after the conclusion of each quarter. so we wrapped up the end of june and by july 15th, which is yesterday, these candidates are required to disclose how they've been spending their money. as a lawyer, i'm focusing on two major things that came out of this disclosure. one, the $25,000 paid to mark
burnick. what do you need a criminal defense attorney for unless you are concerned about criminal exposure. when you have something like campaign finance money, it is supposed to be used for services or for things being provided related to your campaign. so, matt gaetz, you're hiring a criminal defense attorney. you are paying him $25,000 by no coincidence he happened to represent people like jeffrey epstein and this recent guy, keith raniere who was running a sex cult, but is it related to your campaign? because, nicolle, if the funds were used and not related to the campaign, he has created and fec problem. he is stuck between a rock and a hard place. if he is making it a disclosure, it has to be related to his campaign. but what does flying on a private jet to the bahamas have anything to do with your campaign, matt. those are the questions being raised. the second thing very quickly is the following. if you are paying roger stone money for some type of campaign consultant advice, you are
making two of those payments, matt. two, his company being roger stone drake ventures sued by the federal government for acting as an alter ego for roger stone and his wife for fraudulent transfers. all of it looks dirty and none seems clean at all. >> let me follow up with you, nick, on that point. we learned back in april that "the daily beast" and i believe "the times" did reporting on this, too, that greenberg, who is gaetz's wing man who has been charged and is awaiting sentencing, enlisted stone last fall to secure a pardon from donald trump. i mean what stone does isn't really clearly campaign consulting, as katie i think is insinuating. let me read you more of the reporting. according to a seers of text messages between the two men, greenberg repeatedly told stone gaetz was directly implicated in the same sex crimes he was charged with earlier that year. so is it reasonable to think that one of the things that is
at least available to federal prosecutors or under scrutiny is sort of this triangle between the three of them around a pardon? >> look, it is possible. i was thinking a different thought, nicolle. i saw that story and "the times" story back when the gaetz's effort to get a pardon from trump in the day was first reported. but in light of paying roger stone and paying all of the different associates of the president, it seems to me that who knows who will be president in three or four years and who will be in office then. that's why it makes a lot of sense if you are betting on donald trump perhaps being president again and you think that the option of a pardon could be open in the future, it makes a lot of sense for both short term political purposes in his campaign and long-term purposes to ingratiate yourself as closely as you can. in particular, put on your payroll a guy who is quite an expert in getting a pardon from
donald trump for taking flack for him. >> we have a philosophical difference of opinion, nick compossore, that they play long games, i think they play whack-a-mole. but i would ask you both to stick around. when we return, in a hyperpartisan universe there's one issue that unites both sides, free britney. that story is next. e britney. that story is next this may look like a regular movie night. but if you're a kid with diabetes, it's more.
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britney spears has a right to choose her own attorney for the very first time in 13 years. this week the judge overseeing the conservatorship approved the hiring of former federal prosecutor mathew rosengart after the pop star spoke publicly for the second time this month in an emotional appeal by phone that her father be removed and charged with conservatorship abuse. spears told the court this. quote, the conservatorship has allowed my dad to ruin my life. spears also managed to do something not even a capitol insurrection that threatened to spoil our democracy could do, uniting both sides of the political aisle from ted cruz to elizabeth warren, calling out to free britney. republican congresswoman nancy mays tweeting, it's insane. you can force a woman to basically sterilize herself under the guise of protection. if this is happening to britney spears, how many other women across the country are silently suffering. we are back with nick confessore and katie phang.
nick, it is your paper that i think brought a lot of the britney story and the free britney movement to a wider audience, about all of the fans and the legal machineations around the conservatorship. talk about the most recent developments, and now i believe a former clerk to someone who went on to be a supreme court justice is her new and we're told aggressive attorney. >> right. well, look, i'm so proud of my colleagues for making this story one that really jumped out to people around the country, and, more importantly, highlighted this bigger issue of the abuse of these conservatorship. they are poorly overseen. they are ripe for abuse. there are cases in which there are conservators who come in and basically take over someone's life and steal from them. it has been a growing issue around the country, and it is tragic but not surprising that it required this happening to a celebrity, a household name, to bring this, you know, kind of out in the open a little more.
what we're seeing here i think is the fruit of this publicity, this positive publicity and efforts by britney spears herself to get more control over her life. i also think that the reason you see someone like nancy mace or ted cruz jump out on this is first of all obviously it tears at your heart strings to think of this person suffering and being not free, but also this question of the forced sterilization, the iud. you know, if she isn't able to control her own birth control i think that lights up people across the spectrum, especially social conservatives. so you have a moment here to ask this basic question of what is the purpose of this conservatorship, whose interest is it really serving to have britney spears be a cash cow for her dad, for some managers or for some so-called advise shalls advisers or really serving spears' interest. >> katie, is this heading to a
criminal investigation of her father in the conservatorship? >> you know, i think it is too early to tell, but to have britney spears say she wants her father charged is obviously, you know, pretty shocking in that it is her father. as you mentioned mathew rosengart who is a former federal prosecutor who represented big names in hollywood and is at a large law firm, he has the manpower and voices to be able to be the voice of britney spears now and to give her the opportunity to be heard. but his critical next move will be to see whether or not britney spears' father will stipulate and agreespears' father will stipulate an agreement to have this conservatorship be terminated. during the course of that, we'll see the presentation of perhaps, fraud, the presentation medical evidence that shows that brittany had not been sufrg in terms of not having the capacity to have preagency over herself and her body and money. it peels back the layers of
what's been happening. there is no more mystery involved in terms of what was happening to her money and to nick's point everybody that was feeding at the troves of brittany spears and now she wants to take back her life, really should her father be gawking? it was back in 2008. this was intended to be a temporary conservatorship and the fact that 13 years later we are having this conversation is a sad reality. there are 1.3 million people according to the last amount of data we have been able to see that's under conservatorship, there are $5 billion in asset under the control of guardians and conservators, there are a lot at risk for both sides of this case. >> nick, that raises the obvious question, was this about taking care of brittany or was this
about taking brittany's money? >> that's what we are going to find out in the coming weeks and months if the court case continues and if the petition to get rid of the conservatorship is denied. we start seeing some of these details more in the press more in court and the press. i think we are about to find out who sets the fees and who decided on the royalties and who decided how much of a cut different people get, was britney spears being decided? you get a picture of a woman who's an adult and posed to risks to herself and others and performing constantly in vegas who was not allowed to make aims for herself and somehow she's able to perform every night and have a show out there and be a cash cow.
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thank you so much for letting us into your homes these extraordinary times. let me apologize for our technical difficulies a the beginning of hour. we are grateful for you watching. "the beat" with ari melber starts now. >> welcome to "the beat," i am ari melber, we begin with breaking news of domestic terror. two men charged in plot to attack democratic party headquarters in sacramento.