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tv   Alex Witt Reports  MSNBC  July 18, 2021 9:00am-10:00am PDT

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the elderly. it comes as a bipartisan group of senators is working overtime this weekend scrambling to finish writing an infrastructure bill ahead of a procedural vote on wednesday. this morning democrats confident they are ready to move full steam ahead. republicans say they need more time. >> how can i vote for cloture when the bill isn't written? unless senator schumer doesn't want this to happen, you need a little bit more time to get it right. >> i think we need a deadline, we need to get going. >> the biggest hearing in the january 6th insurrection, paul hodgkin's. he's going to be the first defendant sentenced for a felony involving the breach on capitol hill. this hearing could set the bar for what other rioters may face. let's start with josh letterman standing by at the white house for us. welcome to you. tell me how facebook is responding to this criticism from the white house regarding
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the alleged misinformation put out on the site. >> reporter: alex, when you and i last spoke at this time yesterday, we said this tiff between the biden white house and facebook and the social media companies didn't appear to be going anywhere soon, and that is certainly the case with facebook standing their ground, laying out in a lot of detail data that they say they've been tracking in coordination with two different universities they say they're making a lot of progress as part of their efforts to fight disinformation about covid. they pointed to data they collected showing acceptance of the vac even among facebook users in the u.s. has grown 10 to 15 percentage points since january and putting out a blistering statement attacking the white house saying in private exchanges the surgeon general has praised our work including our efforts to inform people about covid-19. facebook going on in that statement to say they knew what they were doing.
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the white house is looking for scapegoats for missing their vaccine goal. but the white house, they are not backing down particularly on their point about misinformation of the type suggesting that you could cause infertility by taking the covid-19 vaccine, which is something completely false and baseless. the surgeon general was on television this morning, and this is what he said. >> my concern as surgeon general has been consistent from the beginning. we saw misinformation flowing around covid-19 from the beginning. and we raised those concerns to these companies, and i've spoken about my concerns about misinformation publicly numerous times over the last many months. my concern is that we're not seeing nearly enough progress here. and that's one of the reasons i issued this advisory. it's not entirely about the tech companies but to call the entire country to action, recognizing there are steps all of us can take. >> reporter: alex, some of this is taking on the feel of a fight
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at the family thanksgiving table because there are so many former people who now work in this administration, likewise former obama, biden and other senior official who is now work at these tech companies. they all know each other and this escalating as the white house trying to explaining what they're seeing in the numbers with covid-19. the white house does feel like they are on solid ground when it comes to the way the public is viewing president biden's handling of this situation with the new cbs poll showing 66% approve of the way president biden has handled the covid-19 outbreak. only one in three americans say they feel he's doing a bad job. alex? >> i love that behind-the-scenes intrigue as well. didn't know all that about the cross pollination of all those stafrgs. thousand so much. 43 states report an
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increase. some a 50% surge in the last week. nationwide new cases have increased by about 135% in the past two weeks. this is according to a "new york times" analysis. a warning today from the u.s. surgeon general for unvaccinated americans. 99.5% of covid deaths are among those who have not gotten the shot. just 48% of americans are fully vaccinated. despite that, many americans say they still don't plan on getting the vaccine. a new poll shows 29% of republicans and 6% of democrats say, nope, they are not going to get the shot. and today new concerns in tokyo as two south african athletes in the olympic village have tested positive for covid a day after the first infection was reported in a games official there. joining me now nbc news medical contributor, an infectious diseases physician, and political analyst peter baker, chief white house correspondent for "the new york times." hey, guys. good to see you both and
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together. that's different. i'm glad to have you both here. peter, i'm going to go to you first here. if we look at the facebook story we were dealing with josh there, it's pushed back harder against the white house after the president suggested social media is killing people. facebook told nbc the white house is just trying to find a, quote, scapegoat for missing its vaccination goal. give me your sense of the white house position on all of this. did they kick a social media hornet's nest unintentionally? >> i think facebook and the other companies feel like punching bags. every time something goes wrong people are pointing to them and saying how come you didn't stop people from distributing bad information and they feel they have spent a lot of time and effort to take down misinformation on the covid vaccine and they're not getting credit from the administration particularly when you see a president like biden come out and use words that are so stark like they're killing people. as josh has said, they've compiled their own numbers.
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their own numbers suggest that they have at least gotten through to yusers about the efficacy of the vaccine. there are people who are frustrate that had think more should be done. social media and the internet generally have been sources of extraordinary amounts of misinformation out there. the reason some 30% of americans so far have not gotten and many are refusing to get it in many cases people are uncertain, they don't think they're getting the full information from the government. they don't trust what they're being told. they're trusting random bits of information on wild claims they're seeing online even if it's not backed up by experts and doctors and studies. >> let's go to the doctor expert. i'm curious what you hear from patients and fellow doctors. what is keeping the full vaccination rate below 50%?
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is it the politics of misinformation? are you as a doctor hearing about family politics like people identifying themselves? i'm a democrat and i think this. i'm a republican and i think this. is it fear the of unknown? i'm curious what the prevailing reason is. >> i'm seeing a little bit of all of that, alex. i think you are seeing a lot of people who are hesitant it's because they've heard common disinformation, covid myths and it's time to address that. in some cases it works. many people are reporting saying i got vaccinated by can't get two of my family members because they're convinced of what they saw on the internet. i don't want the public health issue here is that misinformation is leading people astray and making this conversation about biden against the tech companies. we're in a once in a century
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pandemic. people are still dying every day in this country. i do think that social media companies can do more. 65% of disinformation is coming from 12 highly active disinformation agents. >> that's stunning. >> some of them are still active on sites including facebook. that's not the only problem. you see purveyors on cable networks, leading cable networks. you see people share that information on whatsapp. a lot of misinformation. we have to take a holistic approach rather than making it just about the tech companies. i do think they can do more. >> i agree with you. peter, what about you in terms of the white house and how wary it may be political play of a rise in covid-19 cases? >> of course this is a huge public concern and humanity concern because this is a president who has banked everything on his ability to
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basically end the pandemic or at least curb the pandemic. that's one of the biggest reasons. he knows he will be judged largely on his success or failure to do that. to find this sort of core group of americans who are resisting the vaccine, the one way we're going to get past this pandemic is very frustrating to white house aides. they have tried to overcome this resistance, not everyone who is resisting a vaccine is a republican. but obviously a lot of trump supporters are among those resisting. and the idea it's a partisan issue is rather remarkable. the scientists will look at that and shake their heads and say why is this about partisan politics, about public health. you can say people who don't want to get the vaccine are only hurting themselves, that's obviously not true and the doctor can speak better than i can. if we don't get to a high enough
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vaccination rate in this country and really around the world it allows the vaccine to continue to exist in society, to continue to mutate, to continue to be a danger to people, even people vaccinated can still get the virus out there, the variants out there even though they're more protected against severe cases or hospitalization or death, but in order to get rid of this virus, there has to be a higher rate of vaccination that's incredibly frustrating to the white house right now. >> i'm curious, doctor, when you speak with a hesitant patient or your colleagues have spoken about that, to peter's point, is it a point, a selling point, if you will, if you say, look, you have to think about this beyond just you. anecdotally, i was having a conversation with someone just yesterday morning who is a young mother who was hesitant. you have a young child who is 3 years old. the chances are if you get it, you pass it on. is that point hitting home for
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people? >> i think the communal aspect of vaccines is missed by most people. i think when we talk about it most of the patients i talk about are talking about it in terms of their safety and the impact for them and they're commenting. in massachusetts you have this highly vags nated state so they're saying, well, everyone else around me is vaccinated. delta is a more transmissible variant and we clearly don't have enough people vaccinated. and when you see that you see a slightly higher number of breakthroughs because there's more virus in the community. all of us have greater chances to come across that virus. 90% of the people who are hospitalized are unvaccinated. 99% of the people who died are the unvaccinated. but the point that i sometimes have a hard time getting across and i hope to get across right now is that by increasing the number of people vaccinated
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we're allowing the transmission to go down. so the reason you are getting it, you're going to keep yourself safe but becoming a buffer. less likely you will transmit to other people so your whole community will be safer. >> well, i'm glad for this conversation with both of you and i hope a lot of people were paying as close attention as i was. thank you to you both. new on breaking news out of d.c., heightened security at today's game between the washington nationals and san diego padres. there was a shooting outside the ballpark. >> no one is to go on the field. remain calm. the incident has been reported to be outside the stadium. >> so three people were shot outside as the teams were in the sixth inning of the game. thousands of fans ran out of the stadium. others were forced to take shelter, hide. some went into the dugout. into the part where the players are only allowed to go.
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to reporter derek ward from wrc joining us from washington. a big welcome to you. i understand this game is going to resume in less than an hour, i think at the top of the hour. what's the latest on the investigation? do they know what happened last night? >> reporter: well, they have talked to two people that they think are involved. among those three people that were shot were two people who showed up at the hospital afterward, and the police believe they were involved in this. they have one of the cars. they're still looking for other folks that were involved. it was two cars out here on south capital street at about 9:30 that started settling a score of their own, and it was what we believe to be an exchange of gunfire. one of the three people that were hit was a female fan. she suffered a graze wound to her back. she's going to be okay, as we're told. you can imagine on the panic on the field. some thought it was practice for some fireworks they had planned for later that night. when they saw a player bolt from the field, as we hear from this
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fan, everybody started looking for cover anywhere they could find it. take a look. >> we basically took cover going down and then as you saw people running through the concourse, we went through into the dugout of the padres. we were sitting there with manny machados glove sitting right in front. yeah, pretty scary. >> reporter: now we have heard from some fans that said there was a little bit of confusion. first they were told to stay in their seats but most people decided to get out on their own. there's increased security around the stadium and most people say that makes them feel safe. others, i know where my seat is. let me pick out where the closest exit is. we don't expect that today. a de facto double-header. that will start just a few minutes after this game resumes in the sixth inning. >> it is just extraordinary to think you're going to a ballpark, to a baseball game.
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i mean, america's favorite pastime, right, and you have to worry about being shot. i'm curious about the descriptions you got from folks. how clearly was it in the audio part, wait, that's gunfire? you know how it is in stadiums. it's noisy. it kind of echoes. you're talking with people. were people like, wait, that's gunfire? >> reporter: some people who were on the other side of the stadium didn't hear it. some people did. some people on the field actually heard it. but what happened when people started seeing other people run. they said, okay, we should run, too. it's that classic thing. you see people starting to run. you panic as well. you make sure you get out. it was orderly and calm but people were definitely upset and worried about what was going on. >> i can imagine that guy who got to go in the san diego padres' dugout. that's a cool story. not the reason for it. >> reporter: it is indeed. that's what happens when
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america's favorite pastime converges with one of america's pressing ills, and that's gun violence. but the game is going on, isn't it? >> it is going on. carry on, guys. thank you so much, derek. if you're wondering what kind of penalty all those charged with crimes on 1/6 will face, tomorrow sentencing is expected in one case. se this may look like a regular movie night. but if you're a kid with diabetes, it's more. it's the simple act of enjoying time with friends, knowing you understand your glucose levels. ♪♪
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new today on capitol hill, plowing ahead on infrastructure. a procedural vote to advance both these $579 billion bipartisan bill and the massive $3.5 trillion agreement democrats seek to pass through reconciliation. neither bill has actually been written yet. this morning, ohio senator rob portman, is pushing back on this wednesday deadline.
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>> chuck schumer, with all due respect, is not writing the bill. nor is mitch mcconnell, by the way. that's why we shouldn't have an arbitrary deadline of wednesday. >> congresswoman sarah jacobs, democrat from california, a member of the armed services and foreign affairs committee. i'm so glad to have you. i'm curious how you are or aren't in these bills. >> well, i'm very confident that we're going to get something passed. i've been home for the last week. we're in a district workweek right now and every single constituent that i've talked to has asked me about infrastructure and when they can expect it to be done. i'm sure my colleagues are hearing the same thing from across the aisle. part of the vote we need to do
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is actually to set the framework so we can begin the processes in the committees to get to writing the bill. that's what the first vote on the 3.5 budget will be, a start to the process and then go to the committees and get the details worked out. >> just typically if you put a date for something and something has to be done this is there to light a fire you know where to get this thing done. if you said, oh, this procedure vote is another week or two weeks away, it would stall and slowly roll out. is that what it's about? get this done. >> i think that's right. the president and senate leader schumer are really looking at the calendar and want to get the infrastructure bill done in a timely manner. we in the house stand ready to get to work. we're coming back on monday. i think it's about making sure
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we don't drag the process on, that we don't let it continue with endless negotiations and not being able to deliver for our constituents. >> okay, point well taken. this week began the rollout of the child tax credit payments. people getting or have already gotten up to $300 per month for each child under 6 years old and up to 250 for each child between 6 and 17. the white house says this is going to remove half of the children out of poverty which is extraordinary but it received no republican support in congress. senator marco rubio called it anti-work legislation. what's your reaction to that? >> i have to tell you in my short time in congress so far the child tax credit expansion is the thing i'm most proud of. more than 87% of kids will receive some benefit from the expansion that we did.
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as you said we'll be lifting half of american children out of poverty. i think it's crazy there wasn't a single republican who would vote for this especially since prior to the american rescue plan there had been bipartisan discussions around how we can fix the child tax credit. i think it goes to show what we're looking at is a republican party in the house and senate who are trying to not give joe biden any wins even when they know this is not good policy and good for their constituents. >> looking at the docket for tomorrow, we will see perhaps the biggest hearing so far in the federal investigation of the january 6th insurrection. it's happening as the first defendant will be sentenced after his felony conviction and he faces between 15 and 21 months in prison. that could set a standard for future punishments after being found guilty. what do you want to see? what do you think is a fair punishment? >> i will leave it to the judge to decide the sentencing.
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i think what's important is that we are holding everyone accountable who was involved in the activities of january 6th and that we get to the bottom not only of how it was to happen that day but how the misinformation was able to spread so we can protect and make sure something like this never happens again. >> so the select committee hearings set to begin january 27th, nine or ten days from now. what are the biggest questions you want answered aside from misinformation? is there somebody specific you would like to hear from? >> i think it's great the first hearing will be with capital police officers who were working that day. i think there is an important fact-finding we need to do about how the breakdowns were able to happen that day that allowed these rioters, this mob to get inside the building and as close to us. i was in the house gallery that
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day. i think we need to look at how this was able to be funded, house the message was able to be spread, the misinformation, as i said, and then what kinds of security precautions we need to put in place so if, god forbid, something like this happens, we're better prepared to defend ourselves. >> as a progressive member of the foreign affairs committee, what's happening in cuba right now. your colleague tweeted support for protesting cubans but then added it's america's 60-year-old embargo that plays a role in their suffering. should sanctions be lifted? >> i think both things are true. we need to stand with the cuban people protesting against the very real harms done and the very real failures to provide safety and dignity and human
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rights to their population. and we can acknowledge the role what i think of failed u.s. policy of the embargo has played in this and i do think it is time to lift the embargo. it's been more than 50 years. it has clearly not worked. allowing remittances to be sent from families in the united states, covid vaccines to be sent, to make sure they have internet connectivity and to make sure we are allowing them the same legal right every person in the world has to seek asylum when they are fearing persecution for their lives. >> it's always good to talk with a fellow californian. one year since the death of civil rights icon john lewis and a new initiative hoping to keep the legacy of his voting rights alive. one of the people has a great fight of his own. martin luther king iii next. ime.
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a new voting rights initiative launching this weekend to mark one year of the passing of john lewis. more than 60 years after his work began the son of another civil rights icon has launched for john lewis to fight against voter suppression. the eldest son of dr. martin luther king jr. martin, always good to see you. welcome back to the broadcast. >> thank you. >> let's take a look at the landscape. by your count 389 voter suppression bills across 48 states. what is your takeaway from this overall push? >> my basic takeaway objective is trying to sound like they're trying to suppress democracy.
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i felt it was beyond hypocritical to go around the world and promote it and reduce it at home. this makes it much more difficult for the black and brown community, for students, maybe for seniors. we should be expanding this process not reducing. we have a monumental task. ideally the goal is to get the john lewis voter restoration act passed as well as the for the people bill as well. those two things could address these bills across our nation. we're having a march in about five cities, so far, and four or five sister cities are joining, so at least ten marches, to mobilize what the organization march on with a number of organizations. and then we want to register a
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minimum of 2 million people for next year. >> do you think getting public groundswell through the marches you're telling us about right now is the only way to get congress to act? is that a concern of yours? especially your family's revered name associated with that. is that what it will take. a groundswell of support like that? >> that is helpful. that is not the only thing. we have to inundate united states senators offices with calls to say, look, we want to you do this. or your job may be on the line. this is about protecting individuals' jobs. not what's doing right for democracy. >> what you're seeing passing, 48 of which are considering these restrictive measures, what do you think is the most
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egregious? >> i'll give a hypothetical. in georgia in my county, fulton county, there were 20 drop boxes. now there are going to be like ten. most communities have these kind of provisions. in harris county, the largest in texas, i don't know how many boxes there were. you are limiting participation. in georgia they have a provision that says you can't even give people water who are standing in line to vote. it's insanity. >> you bring up something and as you were saying that they're limiting drop boxes. what they're saying is 20 is too much. ten is okay. how is that not just obvious voter suppression? how is it that ten of those boxes, those are fine, just not
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20? it doesn't even make sense. >> and, in fact, the reality is when we had our election it was because people participated at higher levels than ever before. it should be easier not harder. this is why we say it's jim crow 2.0, a more sophisticated level. >> i know you know president biden gave that speech in philadelphia. vice president harris met with voting rights advocates. even after that, they say their actions and words don't go far enough. what do you think needs to be done or said by the white house that has not been said or done? >> i think congressman clyburn came up with a great idea. we have a provision to be able to adopt a budget with 51 senators but yet when we talk
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about the most precious right, you have to have 60 votes. that filibuster issue. i don't understand why we don't look at doing that. we're not sure yet who would support it. we have to do everything we can. we have no choice. our democracy is beyond challenged. >> have you, yourself, or someone with, again, the illustrious last name from the king family, given a call to someone like joe manchin? are you reaching out to that level saying, hey, can we talk about this filibuster? >> we certainly are involved in that process. in fact, my mom spoke to every united states senator when we were trying to get the king holiday passed and then many of the congress persons. my wife and i are also looking at the process of at least having some communication.
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we must continue to dialogue. the fact of the matter is i'm sure in 1965 the votes did not necessarily exist for the voting rights act. after constant and consistent engagement ultimately it was passed. >> martin, how much do you miss john lewis' voice? it's been a year. i remember profoundly being saddened when he passed, as i'm sure you were. how much do you miss him? >> his voice, his example will never be forgotten and he will always be missed. but he taught to us not give up, to not give in and to not give out. that is what we must embrace. when more of us are participating ultimately, some days we may lose things but if we keep being persistent, ultimately we can win these battles. >> martin luther king iii,
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always a pleasure to talk with you. thank you for your efforts as well. revelations in a tell-all about president trump may be raising all sorts of questions. in the end what's the fallout? t? ♪ ♪ when technology is easier to use... ♪ barriers don't stand a chance. ♪ that's why we'll stop at nothing to deliver our technology as-a-service. ♪ usaa is made for the safe pilots. to deliver our technology as-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. get a quote today. age before beauty?
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we all know the story of chaos, four years in the trump presidency. you don't have to be a "wall
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street journal" reporter working over there every day to know that. what was striking in this book how many people close to trump had become concerned he was dangerous for the country. alex, he asked his own teammates in the white house to have americans shot. >> right. >> he wanted people protesting civil rights abuses to be shot, to have their skulls cracked. his own secretary of state was concerned that he might lean no a foreign conflict in order to hold on to power. >> "the wall street journal's" michael bender speaking to me about the eye-opening revelations in his book "frankly we did win this election." one of the several new bombshell books shedding a light on the final days of the trump presidency. joining me now sue and del percio, msnbc political analyst. also david jolly, former congressman from florida and msnbc political contributor. i loved that interview with
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michael and the book, wow. it is an eye opener. one of the things he said during the interview, that stuck with me. how the president talked about how americans need to be shot. we saw him at campaign rallies, remember, and somebody would misbehave, they ought to crack that guy's skull. it's stunning, susan. when you see what michael bend er said, if all these people were so concerned, why didn't they do more? why did they wait until now to speak out? >> well, there's the million dollar question, alex. i mean, obviously these books are part a rehash of people's reputations, telling these untold stories hopefully to come out looking a little bit better and the things david and i were saying for years, frankly, that donald trump was as dangerous as
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we said he was. and many other republicans and democrats and independence said he was this dangerous. it seemed like hyperbole but it wasn't. this was even worse than what we thought. >> among the most jaw dropping of all, it comes from "the washington post's" book "i alone can fix it." according to excerpts, general mark milley was so worried about the prospect of trump trying to use the military as part after coup attempt the general compared his rhetoric to adolf hitler's rhetoric. this is a reichstag moment, the gospel of the fuhrer. trump criticized mill yel saying if i were going to do a coup, one of the last people i would want to do it with is general mark milley. but to you, david, how do you
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wrap your head around all of that? the fact we're even quoting a president to say if i were to do a coup -- come on. >> i think all of the books are an affirmation of our worst fears, those of us who followed closely, the obvious day-to-day administration donald trump was running and one of the core elements of donald trump, past president, saw that some of the key institutions, the courts, the military, even the press were there for his own personal use. if he courts did not agree with them, he would try to undermine them. in the case of the military, he saw the military as his personal protection force. the book paints the president as someone who would consider a coup because he believed he was wrong in the november election. i think the affirmation of those fears should be a warning.
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this may be a president who could return to office. his understudies who have now learned and will face questions, what do you think the role of the military is, the role of the courts, the role of the press. and them should. we are seeing the next generation begin to turn the corner in dangerous faces in our democracy. >> a stunning statement there. >> this book breaks down in great detail january 6th and how dire of a situation it was for lawmakers, how many of trump republican allies were calling him and those around him saying he needs to tell them to stop. but, susan, how did it go from that where donald trump still has a stranglehold over the republican party? >> because those republicans live in fear of donald trump and their jobs more than they care about the country. it's that simple.
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they know what happened. the elected officials in the chamber know what happened and are still willing to go forward and support donald trump. one of the excerpts from "i alone can fix it" was when mitt romney went to senator holly and said -- i'm paraphrasing -- this is on you. you started this. and that's exactly right and there are members. it's not just donald trump who caused this january 6 insurrection. it is also other elected officials. and they should equally be held accountable for their words. there was a moment people were going after the hollies and the cruzs. that can't stop. they are part of this. those pictures are pictures ted cruz and holly actually egged on and supported as well. >> you're saying they hold
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responsibility. there are those in these pictures that hold responsibility, right? we'll find out tomorrow at the sentencing of the first felony conviction of one man. he's supposed to get between 15 and 29 months behind bars. what do you think, david, is an appropriate sentence in terms of sending a message and telling anyone who may be considering doing something like this again you'd better not or you're going to pay? swift, strong justice and the public eye. it's important the public eye to this, alex. events of the world move so quickly particularly with our access to information. but since the events of january 6, the fbi and the department of justice and federal prosecutors have done remarkable relentless work with detailed investigations, with evidence to put before the judiciary. and it is important that as we look back on the events of january 6 where americans tried to topple our own democracy, where they violated the sanctity
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of a sacred institution, where they threatened the life of our vice president. that is justice that demands it be swift, it be strong and in the public eye so that the american people know, yes, justice is done but if you're an american contemplating flirtist with this trumpist dangerous rhetoric, now is the time to stop. >> i look forward to our date next sunday. you'd better show up. thank you. coming up next, the double whammy making life miserable and dangerous. erable and dangerous. i became a sofi member because i needed to consolidate my credit card debt. i needed just one simple way to pay it all off. it was an easy decision to apply with sofi loans, just based on the interest rate and how much i would be saving. there was only one that stood out and one that actually made sense and that was sofi personal loans. it felt so freeing. i felt like i was finally out of this neverending trap of interest and payments and debt. ♪♪
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it's burned. now a red flag warning was issued in the bay area through tomorrow afternoon. let's check in with nbc scott cohen. he's joining us from boulder creek, california. you have gone from one hot spot to the next, literally or one drought spot to the next. what's it like? >> reporter: it's kind of calm now. not so here in the west where they can be really deadly. take, for example, this neighborhood in boulder creek which was wiped out by a fire know as the czu lightning fire complex last august. that killed one person and burned 86,000 acres. the fire near lake tahoe, that is threatening some 200 homes. it's led to mandatory evacuations. some with very little notice.
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>> they gave us about 20 minutes notice. it looked like they said the fire was five, six miles away. about an hour later it was right on us. they didn't give us any time at all. the national forest let this fire burn for over two weeks without putting it out. they thought it was going to get out on its own and they dropped the ball. >> reporter: right now in the west, some 70 fires are burning in 12 states and bear in mind, as you know, being from california, it's only july and the peak of the fire season is normally a couple of months away. >> i was going to say september is usually the hospitalest month there. that's one of the strangest things i had to get used to when i moved to the east coast. september is really brutal. one of first sentencings in the many cases of the defendants is expected tomorrow.
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let's go do nbc ed augustine. there's been a lot of debate about whether these protests are purely economic, a reaction to covid shortages and inflation or if they are a bigger statement against the government. is the answer any clearer now a week into this? >> reporter: the protests are motivated by a mix of complaints. there were people on the streets on sunday who want increased civil and political liberties. they want to be able to vote directly for the president. they want multi-party elections. i'd say the main grievance having spoken to people are economic in nature. one man gets up at 2:00 a.m. every day and up to ten hours to try and buy clicken and minced meat and sometimes when he gets home, the power can go and the
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food can go. it's enough to drive anyone to their wits end. those economic problems in cuba are primarily motivated by the pandemic but strict with billions in tourism and by the trump era sanctions. just to take one of the over 200 measures that the trump regime took against the cuban state and the cuban people and maximum pressure campaign. they cancelled remittances. these trump sanctions are a continuation of the u.s. embargo on cuba whose logic was stated by state department in 1960s as being put in place to increase hunger, desperation and the over throw of government. end quote. >> that is a stunning quote you share. many angles to look at. thank you for doing that for us. a very good day to all of
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you in msnbc headquarters. new this hour, in the fight for voting rights, democrats on capitol hill are exploring reconciliation as a tool to get voting legislation through the house and senate. senator amy klobuchar and congressman james clyburn explaining two ways it can be done. >> we can put election infrastructure funding along with housing and child care and the like and do what we can to incentivize mail in ballot. >> we can reconcile these things by the constitution. the 15th amendment gave the former slaves the right to vote. that was done by the way by a single party vote. to senator manchin, bipartisan is good but it's not required to make a good solid law. >> republicans are taking issue with the

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