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tv   The Rachel Maddow Show  MSNBC  July 16, 2021 6:00pm-7:00pm PDT

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it seems like we should be able to just solve that with -- by spending the money we need. >> i think one of the lessons of the events of the last week is we do need to be spending more money on adaptation as well, people in the climate community have focused on the carbonization which is critical. but we're sort of already unable to live in the world we have today and things are only going to get worse over the next couple of decades. thank you so much for your time tonight. the "rachel maddow show" show starts now with ali velshi. >> thanks to you at home for joining us this hour. rachel has a much-deserved night off but she will be back on monday. and this woman says she's a doctor who is invite today the speak to the ohio legislature by a republican lawmaker about the efficacy of the covid vaccine. she was billed as a witness, the expert kind, expert witness to help inform the legislature's decision about whether to pass
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legislation around covid vaccine. and this is how that went. >> i'm sure you've seen the pictures all over the internet of these people who have had these shots and now they're magnetized because now we think that there's a metal piece to that. there's been people who have long suspected that there was some sort of an interface, yet to be defined, in the interface between what's being injected this these shots and all of the 5g towers. not proven yet. >> not proven yet. the operative word there is "yet." this came right after that testimony. >> i just found out something when i was on lunch and i wanted to show it to you. we were talking about the doctor's testimony about magnetic vaccine crystals. this is what i found out. i have a key and a bobby pin here. explain to me why the key sticks
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to me. it sticks to my neck too. if somebody can explain this, that would be great. any questions? >> you know what, no, i actually do not have any questions about whatever that was. because the covid vaccine does not make a metal key stick to your forehead or to your neck or any other part of your body unless it's a little bit sweaty. while we're at it, let's knock a few more out of these. the covid vaccine does not contain satan's microchips. it does not turn humans into hybrids. it will not give you mad cow disease. it will not kill everyone and decimate the world's population and if you interact with a vaccination person, it will not effect your menstrual cycle. it will not turn you into a biological time bomb. these are just some of the
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fringiest reasons. vaccine hesitancy comes in all shapes and sizes. maybe you're afraid of needles. maybe you're afraid you'll get sick and have a bad reaction. whether you think the covid vaccine will imbue you with the microchips of satan or whether you're just scared or skeptical, the refusal by millions of people in this country to get vaccinated against covid is a very bad, very scary, very dangerous thing right now in america because for the first time in months, we are seeing a steep rapid rise in new covid cases. positive tests are up 121% in the last two weeks. hospitalizations are up 26%. deaths are up 9%. new cases are on the uptick in all 50 states. covid-19 is still killing more people in this country than guns, the flu and automobile accidents combined. it is a triggering thing given
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what we've just been through as a country to say -- to see declarations of a fourth wave about to come crashing down on us. but, of course, this time we are not all equally vulnerable. because this time we have vaccines. the more than 160 million people who have been fully vaccinated remain at a significantly lower risk of contracting a serious case of covid, one that could land them in the hospital or potentially kill them, and the real-time data bears that out. of all the people currently hospitalized for covid in this country right now, of all of them, 97% are unvaccinated. for all intents and purposes, vaccinated people in this country are not experiencing the pandemic like the unvaccinated are. both the president and the head of the cdc both remarked on the dual nature of this phase of the pandemic. the president, in particular,
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blasting facebook for offering safe harbor to some of those conspiracy theories that are encouraging vaccine hesitancy. watch this. >> 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. >> on covid misinformation, what's your message to platforms like facebook? >> they're killing people. i mean, they really -- look, the only pandemic we have is among the unvaccinated. and that's -- they're killing people. >> we are at this bizarre juncture of the pandemic right now, it's a split in the american experience. on earth 1, on planet vaccine, we're going to go to the grocery store without masks, having barbecues with our friends, eating indoors in restaurants, but on earth 2, in the parts of the country where most people are unvaccinated, people
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continue to get sick. they're going to the hospital. they continue to die of covid. and that is not just a danger to those people who are unvaccinated. it is a danger to everyone. the vaccine hesitancy on earth 2 has the potential to compromise all of the hard-fought progress we made. take a look at los angeles. l.a. county announced that tomorrow mask-wearing will once again be mandatory while indoors. not just for people who are unvaccinated, for everyone. the county health commissioner calling it an all hands on deck moment. we have similar news out of las vegas tonight with less than half of that state fully vaccinated. vegas health officials are recommending that everyone start wearing masks again in crowded indoor places regardless of their vaccination status. every time the virus duplicates, that provides more chances for new variants to emerge, variants
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that could be resistant to the vaccine. vaccine hesitancy is a threat, not just to the unvaccinated. it's a threat to all of us. as long as there are unvaccinated pockets of the population, that presents a feeding ground for the virus to take hold. let's take, for example, the state of mississippi. new cases are up 95% in mississippi over the last two weeks. hospitalizations are up 79%. only 34% of mississippians are fully vaccinated. they are tied for last place with the smallest proportion of their population fully vaccinated. the states with low vaccination rates like mississippi are and will continue to be in dire straits until more people get vaccinated. that's going to take work. it's going to take creativity. it's going to take someone like denise taylor. she used to be a professional basketball coach. she was the head coach at jackson state for ten seasons.
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she went on to be a coach for the wnba. these days she works in health care. she runs an operation for a clinic in the western part of the state and right now she's doing something in mississippi that quite honestly could be the playbook anywhere struggling to get people vaccinated. ms. taylor is a one-woman traveling salesforce, trying to sell the vaccine across her community to people who haven't gotten it. she drives around looking for pockets of unvaccinated neighbors having personal one-on-one conversations to convince people to get the shot. she went to a conference for teachers and talked to them about boosting mississippi's vaccination rate before the school year starts. she talked to this one teacher for a full half an hour. watch this. >> say that again. tell me so you're going to do what? >> i'm going to get vaccinated. >> why are you getting vaccinated? >> because of you. because you really stress the
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importance. it's okay. it's safe. and it's the -- if i want to be an -- make an investment in my family, i need to do it. and my students. and i thought about with this new variant, that the youth are -- most of the deaths and people being in the icu are the youths. so i can't imagine bringing it to my students or having the students share with me. and school is about to start. i'm going to get vaccinated. if i get vaccinated, it's probably about a hundred people who are going to get vaccinated because they were looking to me for advice. and because i wasn't vaccinated, that they would not have been vaccinated and would have been hesitate to do it themselves. i'm confident there will be more to follow. >> will you update me? >> yes. >> let me know how many people you get vaccinated, okay?
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>> okay. >> thanks. >> the program run by dennis taylor's clinic has gotten more than 700 people in the communities they serve vaccinated. how is she doing this and why are we not doing it everywhere? joining me now denise taylor. look at that smile on your face. >> vaccination time! >> that is exactly right. you have made it vaccination time for a whole bunch of people who were not going to do it. it doesn't seem like the most efficient way of doing it, but it seems remarkably effective. you're getting out there, spending half an hour talking to someone and she comes away not only ready to get a vaccination, but ready to tell -- she said a hundred people to get vaccinated. >> absolutely. that was so awesome, man. again, just my heart started beating like so fast. i was just so pleased to hear
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that when she -- i talked to her yesterday and then today she was like, i'm going to do it. so it makes a difference. >> talk to me about what it is that makes a difference? can anybody go up to anybody or what is it you had to understand about this person that allowed you to speak her language, to speak to her own fears, to overcome her resistance in order to get her to say, i'm moving from vaccine hesitate or vaccine resistant into a vaccine salesperson, frankly? >> first of all, it's a no-judgment zone. when i approach people, it's like you meet them where they are. and their fears, their hesitation, it's real. because i was hesitant. so, you know, the blueprint is, is this one-on-one, face-to-face contact and to communicate and
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educate them on why. i always ask, like, why? and once they told me why, then that's where -- that's where the communication come in and the education come in and answering their questions and i think that's the blueprint, like, meet people where they are and answer their questions and educate them to trust the science, look at the facts, trust your providers and just meet them where they are because -- and let them know it's okay to be scared. it's okay to be hesitant. but once you educate them, it makes a big difference. >> there's a wonderful woman, a doctor in philadelphia, dr. ala stanford, and she's been making the same argument to me, the social media campaigns are good, but actually it is something about going to people's communities, meeting them where they are, sometimes that means
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churches, community centers, barbershops, out there and having that conversation on their terms. if their vaccine hesitate, they're not coming to your hospital, they're not necessarily coming to your clinic. >> absolutely. i mean, you got to, you know, just like a missionary, you go in the streets and you talk to people and it's like, hey, there's not one person that i meet no matter where i go, the gas station to the convenience store, to the grocery store, have you been vaccinated? if they say no, i say why? and then that's when the conversations start. and i say -- i let them know it's okay. because i was hesitate too. and then you listen to them and then you -- now you're able to answer their questions and give them the feedback to educate them, you know, and to inform them on the questions and the concerns that they have. and so i think, you know, you got to be in a no-judgment zone
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with them and put yourselves in their shoes because it's real that they are, they are scared, some of them are scared of needles. some of them, you know, there's a transportation problem. some of them it's just a misinformation. they read so much information that they're confused. and so i just listen and sometimes it's 45 minutes, it's even been an hour. you know what, once you listen and you answer their questions and they feel good about it, then they make that decision to take the vaccine. that's the charge that i -- that i give to everyone, all of the teachers, the coaches the leaders, you know, the people that they trust is that you meet them where they are. >> denise, you need to do a master class or ted talk or something like for us to understand how to do it. i hear everything you're saying. it all makes sense.
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but i wonder if i'm in the midst of this conversation with someone, at what point am i going to throw up my hands and say, i'm done with you. you're stubborn, you're getting your garbage information from facebook and i have to have lunch or something. how do you get past that part? we all hit that zone with someone where you feel like saying, you're speaking nonsense now and i don't know how to continue this conversation? >> it's the patience. i have a nephew. i talked to him for 45 minutes and he moved from, like, first base to second base. at first, it was, like, no way. then second -- then he said, okay. i'm going to consider it. so we have to be patient and we have to understand that these are real fears that people have. these are real concerns that they have. and then some people, we're here in the mississippi delta.
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what i found is that some people, they're listening to some misinformation, but some people are not capable of reading and understanding, you know, the information that's out there. so it's important for -- it's important for us, the people that they trust, that we help them to understand and explain, you know, facts. and so that's the other thing that i found, especially here in the mississippi delta. everyone can't read and everybody can't understand all of the information that's out there. so when you listen to them and you meet them where they are, trust me, it makes a difference and that's where the success has come from is that you empathize and you understand and you answer their questions. >> you put more gas in my tank for this one. i'm ready now. there's going to be a name for people like you in 25 years when we're talking about at the end of the pandemic, we still had people who weren't getting vaccinated, the government took
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ads out and they're going to tell the story of people like denise taylor who said i'm going into every corner of every state and church and we're going to find people and get this done. thanks for all you do. coach t. now you understand why they call her that. >> it's vaccination time! let's win this game of this vaccination game! let's shoot the shot and let's score points in our community. every one of you, you, you, you and you, all of us can make a difference. i'm challenging every coach, every leader, every superintendent, every athletic director, every student athlete, first of all, start with your family. your family, your friends, your co-workers. if we get one person, if it's one person today that you get to take the vaccine, that's a win for all of us. so now we can start watching basketball games, continue to hug people. and kids can go to school and
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get that socialization that they need so i'm asking everybody to join this campaign. let's shoot the shot! let's win this vaccination game! >> i'm with you. >> let's do it. >> coach t., thank you. >> yes! >> she is the operations manager at the delta health center. i'm fully vaccinated and i feel like getting another vaccination after all of this. thank you for your time tonight. we're going to be right back with the "rachel maddow show." with the "rachel maddow show." g] ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ summer is a state of mind, you can visit anytime. savor your summer with lincoln.
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startling images to see, the head of the congressional black caucus zip tied and led away by the police. but it is an image that reflects a long tradition of black leaders causing good trouble to protect voting rights in america. i'm referring to yesterday when chairwoman of the congressional black caucus, congresswoman joyce beatty, and eight other
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activists were arrested at the hart senate office building. they were protesting the lack of momentum on two big voting rights bills in the senate, the john lewis voting rights act and the far the people act. today vice president kamala harris hosted some of the activists at a meeting at the white house to push the issue further. we're now five days into a dramatic act of civil disobedience by the democratic members of the texas state legislature. 51 democratic state representatives left the state to deny republican state legislatures the quorum that they would need to pass antivoting legislation. the governor of texas has said that as soon as they step foot back in the state, they will be arrested. all of this, this civil disobedience, all of this good trouble is somewhat cosmically tied. tomorrow is the anniversary of the death of john lewis whose acts of good trouble that helped bring around the voting rights
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act of 1965, tomorrow, the official ceremony honoring lewis will be the christening of the "uss john lewis" navy ship. speaker of the house nancy pelosi will lead a congressional delegation to san diego to participate in the christening that will honor the former congressman's legacy. proteges of lewis are calling for some more good trouble in his name on voting rights and there will be vigils around this country from georgia to new york to north carolina to texas to honor the late congressman and to carry his torch for democracy. specific, the protestors who were arrested yesterday and the texas representatives who are holed up in d.c. and the americans holding vigils across the country, they're calling for voting rights legislation at the federal level. without legislation at the federal level, voters in republican-controlled states all across the country might be out of luck which means all eyes are
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on moderate swing votes, senators like joe manchin who have the power to act at any point they want to protect the right to vote by agreeing to carve out voting rights from the senate's filibuster rules. which would allow voting rights protections to pass with a simple majority in the senate without needing ten republicans to sign on. that's all it will take. tonight, while 51 texas democrat representatives are in d.c. to plead with senators like manchin, manchin himself has flown to texas for a fund raiser held by -- are you sitting down for this, predominant republican donors. which seems to me like just the opposite of good trouble. joining us now is one of the democratic state representatives currently in d.c., representative jasmine crockett. representative, thank you for being with us tonight.
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you are in a state that over the last 50 and 65 years, we have not often had the chance to talk to someone. you are actually in a state of civil disobedience right now. you have left your state so you will not be arrested as assigned by the governor of texas so you cannot be brought back to the legislature to be present and establish a quorum for legislation that will pull back on the voting rights of your fellow texas citizens. >> yeah, that's absolutely right. first of all, thank you so much for having me and thank you so much for covering this story. you know, it is quite disappointing that we are coming up on the year anniversary of john lewis, someone who gave so much of himself for the purpose of voting rights, yet instead of honoring his legacy and his sacrifice, we're rolling back the hands of time, the hands of time to a time in which he felt
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it necessary to march in selma. it's unfortunate in addition to that that you see someone like congresswoman beatty who was arrested and you juxtapose that with january 6th and the number of criminals that still have not been arrested and then you want to talk about lawmakers in texas and the threats that -- the empty threats, let me be clear, that our governor is sending out about arresting us. it's amazing who we want to arrest in this country. we're doing everything that we can to fight for democracy. but we don't want to arrest those that are breaking the law, that are killing people, that are, you know, doing the things that they claim that black lives matter protestors were doing, that were actually rioting, insurrectionists, but we want to arrest duly elected congresspersons and state representatives. >> let me ask you about texas and voting. texas is one of the hardest
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states in which to vote. they simply don't make something easy that we should make easy. texas has no examples of widespread voter fraud. texas has virtually zero examples of any voter fraud. and the very things that this legislation is meant to pull back on, 24-hour voting, drive-through voting, helping people get to the polls, none of them are at all connected to any instances of voter fraud in texas. in other words, there is no argument that if you take away drive through voting, take away 24-hour voting, fraud in texas elections will decrease. >> no, you're absolutely right. but you're trying to apply logic, right, i determined there's no logic in the legislature, at least the texas legislature. this is all about a power grab. that's what people need to understand. they need to understand the full context of what's going on. texas already makes it harder than every other state to vote.
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we simply say we want nice things in texas too, right? when we look at the majority of states, 36 states plus d.c. have online voter registration, we had a number of bills that were filed this session saying, hey, give us online voter registration which has nothing to do with fraud whatsoever. we're talking about the registration process. and guess what, we couldn't get a hearing on something as simple as voter registration being online. we also deal with in texas them saying, hey, you know what, we're going to expand the number of hours that you can vote. really what happens in our code and most codes is that there's a minimum standard that's developed within the code that says, hey, you have to have at least this many hours. what happened is, we had a millennial who was in control of the elections during the pandemic and thought outside the box. he expanded the hours. some people say, we don't have 24-hour voting, why is texas so
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upset? most states don't set a maximum. and texas is trying to tell everyone else in the country, if you don't have a maximum, you need to make sure that you do that. but just like i tell people all the time, you may not have 24-hour restaurants when you go to a small town. but when you go to the big cities, you're going to have restaurants that are open 24 hours a day. if you can go and grab mcdonalds 24 hours a day, i don't know why it's so problematic for you to be to vote 24 hours a day if your elections administrator feels as if there's the need and the money is there to make it happen. >> representative crockett, have you ever been arrested? >> i have not. >> are you prepared to be arrested, because you may be very shortly? >> i'm prepared to do whatever is required. i am only the 22nd black woman ever elected in the texas house. the first ever elected black woman is actually here with us.
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so when we look at the numbers -- and i know the sacrifice she has made through the the years. there are plenty of people who died, fought, were beat, the least that i could do is give everything i got. i was elected to serve the people. whatever the sacrifice may be, it pales in comparison to what those who came before me were actually willing to do. i'm doing my part so that little girls like the little one that showed up to my office this week, the 4-year-old child whose mother brought her in doesn't have to keep fighting this fight. it's ridiculous that john lewis is dead right now, yet we're still fighting for the very things that he was fighting for when he was in his 20s. >> proud of the good trouble that you and your colleagues are getting into. jasmine crockett, thank you for your time tonight. >> thank you so much. if you're eagle eyed, you
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this is not a joke, this is not a drill. this is for real. for the first time in years, it really is about to be infrastructure week. senate democratic leader chuck schumer has announced that on wednesday next week, the united states senate will likely hold its first big vote on the bipartisan infrastructure bill being negotiated by a group of moderate democrats and republicans in the senate. at the same time schumer has made wednesday the deadline for senate democrats to finalize their much bigger 3 1/2 trillion dollar infrastructure package. that means next week we should finally be able to see what's in both of those bills and have a better gauge of the likelihood of them passing. right now, those two proposals appear to be on radically different paths. the bipartisan bill appears to
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have hit a snag after republicans refused to accept democrats' best plan for funding the bill because it would have meant collecting more taxes from rich people. republicans tanking a bipartisan proposal because they don't want to make rich people pay more taxes. who could have seen that one coming? as lawmakers try to scramble to save that bipartisan bill, democrats appear to be making much better progress on their larger package which does not require any republican support. this week, senator joe manchin indicated that when it comes to the democrats only much larger infrastructure package, he's ready to be a team player. i want it to proceed manchin told a reporter for the hill, adding that he wants to be part of the negotiations on a reconciliation bill. like with everything in the infrastructure debate, nothing is agreed to until everything is agreed to. and if you think you know what the end result of all of this is going to be, then i've got a bridge to sell you and maybe a
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few roads and tunnels too, all of which may be in need of repair. for now, democrats appear to be ready to go home with their larger bill. it could have measures that would make it easier to form a union and that is on top, on top of the already ambitious proposals on child care, health care, other human infrastructure that president biden rolled out as part of his infrastructure agenda three months ago. today, the transportation secretary, pete buttigieg, traveled to chicago to push for the administration's infrastructure agenda. just before that event, i sat down with secretary buttigieg here in oregon to discuss the senate's two-track approach to infrastructure and what he thinks of the bill that senate democrats are putting together which takes a broader view of infrastructure than republicans do. >> the idea that americans ought
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to have paid pa rental leave just like people pretty much in every other country, it's something you don't have to be a republican or democrat to believe in. it's in washington that there seems to be a problem. early on in this debate when we were talking about human infrastructure, i heard a lot of republicans saying, oh, child care is great. building veterans hospitals is great. we just don't think it's infrastructure, so you should put it in a different package. fine. now it's in a different package. let's see if they'll vote for it now. >> yes, we shall see. by the way, you can catch the full interview with secretary buttigieg this weekend on my show, but as the white house and the senate democrats begin to coalesce around a plan or set of plans, there's one other group whose input and support will be key to passing these major proposals and that group is house democrats. joining me now is washington congresswoman pramila jayapal which will play a part in what
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kind of infrastructure bill will pass in the house. it's nice to be in your part of the country. you heard that conversation with the transport secretary. he's prepared to do the easy low-hanging fruit transport side of the bill, the bridges, the roads the buses the stuff that republicans and democrats can generally agree to. but he's talking about the fact that there is a much bigger, much more interesting bill that has a much broader and more modern view of what infrastructure actually is. and a lot of those things are things that you support. >> that's right. exactly, ali. this is the opportunity for us to invest in all the things that are going to make americans feel differently about their lives. not just the fact that they're going to have good green jobs and highways and roads and transit that we're going to take on climate change in a real significant way. but also that we can get women back to work, that families have childcare, that people have health care.
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these are really significant pieces. they're populist, they're popular, and they are necessary. and that's why i think this big reconciliation package has so much support from republicans, independents and democrats because it is so necessary for us to allow americans to have hope and opportunity again where they wake up every morning and they feel differently about their lives and livelihoods. >> but you make an interesting point. it's got so much support among republicans and democrats, not republicans in congress or the senate to the same degree. what do you do about that? americans get it. americans get that all of these things are something that makes their lives better, their working lives better, their home lives better. there are still some republicans who are caught on an old-fashioned view of infrastructure being bridges, roads, tunnels, planes, buses. >> well, that's why we're going to do this without republicans. we're doing this as a reconciliation bill.
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this will be a budget resolution that just needs 50 democrats in the senate. i hope we get some republicans with us. we certainly will try to do that if they -- if they're listening to their constituents, they'll vote for it. but, ali, you know not a single republican voted for the american rescue plan. a rescue plan that put money in people's pockets, shots in arms, got kids back to school and these republicans were nowhere to be found. we'll do it by ourselves if we need to do it that way because we can through budget reconciliation. that is why the progressive caucus has been so clear, and i've been on this show with rachel before saying we said we were not going to move a bipartisan bill unless we had the reconciliation bill agreed to and voted on at the same time and that it had to contain our five most important priorities for the progressive caucus. i'm happy to report that those five priorities are in the bill. we're working out the details of the numbers which will be a long fight. i don't want to minimize that.
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but this is a significant step forward with the 3 1/2 trillion dollar proposal that the senate has settled on. >> congresswoman, thank you for joining us tonight. as i said, it's fun being on the west coast. we're going to finish the show and it's going to be time for dinner out here in oregon. good to see you, as always. i always appreciate it. you join me early in the morning, and that's painful in this time zone. thanks for being here. chair of the house progressive caucus. up next, our nation's top military official says he was worried about a trump coup. how seriously should we take that and is that threat over? i have just the person to ask after this. after this rtments-dot-com maintain the superhuman levels of productivity necessary to help more renters get into new homes than any other site? it's really as simple as taking the ol' power nap once in a while. [brad makes a snoring sound] and cockadoodle-dooskie- wakey-wakey...
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nothing rhymes with liberty mutual. only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty. liberty. liberty. liberty. ♪ when it comes to laundry, everyone thinks their way is the right way. i just stuff everything in. it has to be cold water, it's better for the planet. the secret is, with tide pods it all works. of course, it does. no matter how you wash, it's got to be tide. a pool floatie is like whooping cough, it's not just for kids. whooping cough is highly contagious for people of any age. and it can cause violent uncontrollable coughing fits. ask your doctor or pharmacist about whooping cough vaccination because it's not just for kids. this week we learned that in the final weeks of donald trump's presidency, the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, mark milley, was so worried that trump might attempt some kind of coup to stay in power, that milley was making plans with
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other u.s. military leaders about how they would block an order from the president if he attempted to use the military to remain in office. those revelations are contained in a new book due out next week from "washington post" reporters. here's one excerpt msnbc has obtained ahead of the book's publication next week. a student of history. milley saw trump as the classic authoritarian leader with nothing to loose. he described to his aides that he kept having a feeling that some of the worrisome early stages of 20th century fascism were replaying in america. he saw parallels between trump's rhetoric of election fraud and adolf hitler's insistence to his followers that he was a saver. the gospel of the furher.
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it's worth drilling down on this a little because according to the new reporting, mark milley wasn't causally throwing around nazi references as ep that thes to disparage president trump, he was using historic context. this isn't a case that trump is bad so i'll calm him nazi names. he saw an historical analogy in what trump was doing. in february of 1933, the german parliament building in berlin went up in flames. the german chancellor adolf hitler blamed the communists and said it was the beginning of a terror campaign by the left. on that premise, his government proceeded to suspend constitutional rights giving hitler the power to rule and germany turned from a democratic to an authoritarian state. in the weeks after the november election, milley feared that donald trump was creating his own version of the reich's fire,
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the emergency that justifies the suspension of the rules that demand an authoritarian response. the election was rigged and stolen by shadowy left-wing forces, therefore, we must stop the counting of the votes. we must suspend democracy. milley feared that trump would use the military to achieve this suspension of democracy. instead, it took the form of an insurrection that sought to stop the certification of an election, an insurrection that succeeded for a few hours but ultimately failed and given that it failed, given that trump did leave office and democracy did prevail, it is tempting to leave this all behind us, to read carolyn leonning's book, except it is not over. donald trump has never had more of an iron grip over the republican party than he does right now. that framing so alarmed mark
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milley that the election was stolen, the results should be thrown out and trump should be reinstalled as president that it's basically the republican platform for the 2020 elections right now. up-and-coming gop candidates have to swear fealty to the notion that trump is the real president. just yesterday the house republican leader made a pilgrimage to trump's new jersey golf club to kiss his ring. when republican voters ask who they want to be the nominee, trump wins by a mile, and republicans are enacting voting restrictions and stripping power from nonpartisan election officials so they can attempt to make sure they win elections one way or another. joining me now is one of the most per septembertive thinkers on this subject, time snyder, professor of history at yale university. his books include "on tyranny". professor snyder, good to see you tonight.
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one of the reasons i want to talk to you is because of an essay that you wrote barely a month into the trump administration back in 2017 titled in which you said it could be formed to an authoritarian regime. the democracy they were creating was vulnerable to an aspiring tyrant who might seize on an "a" dramatic event as grounds for the suspension of our rights. as james madison nicely put it e tyranny arises on some favorable emergency. i want to get your response, professor snyder, to this reporting about what general milley was fearing in the last days of the trump administration. >> well, my personal response is that i'm grateful that general milley reads history and i think the broad significance of all this is that our leaders and our aspiring leaders should be reading history. there are two really important
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references in what you just cited. the first is the federalist paper 48 in which madison who himself thought very historically recognized how fragile republics are and recognized people will use a real or, in the case of mr. trump this time, an artificial emergency. a second important reference is the reichstag fire, this idea that mr. trump was a victim and, therefore, because he was a victim, everything was permitted. that is familiar from fascism. and using something to do with the parliament, in this case our congress as the pre-text is also familiar, the idea that he lost the election and something dramatic had to happen to parliament, that's terribly familiar. so i'm grateful general milley is referring to history. i think that's very important. >> one of the things you told dana milbank this week, the journalist, is that a failed coup is practice for a successful coup. your view is not that this
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insurrection failed, we're glad it failed and we know a lot better, you're worried to the people who were inspired by -- to do what they did on january 6th, they remain inspired. >> we're now working within the framework of a big lie. one of the things i was try to explain last fall is that once mr. trump makes this big claim that he actually won the election, we're going to have a polarized society and one political party which makes it their single issue, which is basically what's happened. so long as we're in that framework, we can expect one of the parties to rig the system. if you tell people the other side cheated, you're promising your people that you're going to cheat as well. this scenario is now playing out with the voter suppression, with the culture wars. we get ourselves to a scenario where in 2024 the republican candidate could lose by a lot, let's say 10 million votes, and you could still rig up some electoral college majority.
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and then we would be in a position of greater tension, sadly, than we were in 2021. >> you were talking to us a lot last fall about this, and it's sad because the things you were saying seemed exaggerated and big, and yet every last one of them has come to pass. what are you worried about? do you think we're going to be stuck in this situation heading into 2022 and 2024 elections? or do you think there's some way to understand this to be students of history and not let this continue? >> look, i mean, as i said at the top, the encouraging thing is that some people listen to history. if you compare 2016 to 2020, i was saying the same things as you were kind enough to remember for four years. but there's a difference to how americans reacted in 2020 to 2016. in 2016 we were in the mode of we're exceptional, our institutions are going to safest. a lot of people were thinking actively, ahead, and thinking historically, making freerpgsz worst case scenarios, and those preparations are, in fact, what
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saved us. so the institutions only save us if we make those institutions live, if we care about them. i'm neither a pessimist or optimist. the possible dark scenarios are very much with us. we could very well lose our democracy in the next four years. but i'm also -- i'm pleased that people are paying more attention to history and i think if we understand that america is not outside of history, that things that have happened elsewhere can happen here in various forms, if we understand that, then we got a fighting chance. >> well, neither an optimist nor pessimist, but we're keeping you very close for the next election cycles. professor, thank you for being with us tonight. we'll be right back. ♪
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rachel will be back here on monday. i will see you from here in portland organic tomorrow morning where i will air the rest of my interview with transportation secretary pete buttigieg. it is time now for "the last word" with lawrence o'donnell. lawrence, i have to tell you, watching the arrests of joyce beatty and the other representatives who are threatened with arrest and likely will be arrested when they return home to texas and on the eve of the anniversary of the passing of john lewis, i think to

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