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tv   Katy Tur Reports  MSNBC  July 20, 2021 11:00am-12:00pm PDT

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♪♪ it's great to be with you. i'm jeff bennett. as we come on the air today, our nation's top public health experts are warning about the new wave of covid cases. they have a simple message to the american people. get vaccinated to save lives. >> over the last week we have averaged 239 deaths per day, an increase of nearly 48% over the prior week. each death is tragic and even more heartbreaking when we know that the majority of these deaths could be prevented with a
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simple, safe, available vaccine. >> the importance of vaccination is that our vaccines that we're using in this country are very effective against this variant, particularly i point out to the situation regarding advanced disease leading to hospitalizations and deaths, where it's still well in the 90% of effectiveness. >> nbc news learned today that the fully vaccinated aide to house speaker nancy pelosi and a fully vaccinated white house staffer both tested positive for the virus. new cases of covid-19 are moving in the wrong direction, way up, not down in 47 states. hospitals across the south are bracing for a surge not seen since last winter. the university of arkansas school of public health expects hospitalizations will triple there over the coming weeks. with this new search in cases driven by the unvaccinated, there is increasing chatter
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among public health experts about vaccine mandates in the future, if and when the vaccines, which are safe and effective, receive full fda approval. as andy slavet told nbc news, quote, i think once the vaccines go through full fda approval, everything should be on the table and i think everything will be on the table. while governments and businesses requiring vaccines could be a possibility down the line, requiring masks again seems like a much closer reality, which means we could see more states and cities following l.a. county's lead in reinstating mask mandates. we have gabe gutierrez in louisiana, ron allen in new jersey, and dr. aimish. you're in louisiana, which has a
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nearly 300% increase in new cases over the last few weeks. what accounts for that surge? >> reporter: local officials say it's several factors, including rise of the delta variant, also skepticism, misinformation as well that we've seen throughout the country. the vaccination rate here in this state is about 47%. in lafayette parish it's down to about 34%. other parishes even lower, in the 20s. we spoke with folks getting vaccinated today at a nearby clinic and we wanted to know about the so-called movable middle. in other words, there's a good chunk of people that got the vaccine immediately. there's another chunk that's dead set against it. what about those who were initially skeptical but open to
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be persuaded. take a listen. >> i didn't distrust the vaccine at all. i honestly just didn't see, you know, with the recovery rates, i just didn't see that it was necessary. what's changed is, you know, and i guess selfishly we're just seeing younger and younger people get affected. i just decided it was time to do that. >> reporter: that's something that we heard from several people, it's that their opinion changed. they wanted to see if friends or family had any adverse effects. another woman we spoke to said her adult son had gotten sick, so that factored into her decision. also something that factored into his decision is he's going to become a dad for the first time later this year, so he's started thinking about that as well. it's a wide variety of reasons as to people who have been so far reluctant in this part of
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the country to get the vaccine. the hope is from public health officials that that will begin to change. the hospital we're had two weeks ago had 11 covid patients. now it's up to 40. this hospital and also in baton rouge are seeing this uptick in cases as the delta variant surges. >> i think for some people it has to hit close to home to make the decision to get a vaccine. once it's at that point, sometimes it's too late. ron, you're in jersey city, where you spoke to students and parents at a summer school about the new recommendation from the american academy of pediatrics that masks should be worn in schools, whether or not kids are vaccinated. what did these parents and students tell you congresswomen. >> reporter: they agree with it. that is, in fact, the rule here at summer school and most of jersey city, for the summer at
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least. of course, officials are looking at this over the next six weeks until the fall term begins. parents emphasize that their kids are the ones for the most part who can't get vaccinated. they feel those kids are vulnerable. so they want them to wear masks. they don't see it as an intrusion, as a government mandate they think is unfair and all that. this is what the thinking is in this particular community. here's what some of the parents had to say about their thinking about masks and the importance of it. take a listen. >> i think it's really up to the school, every school, every state, everybody's different. >> i do think it's a good idea. whether it was a requirement or not, i believe kids should wear masks. they're the only ones that have not been vaccinated. >> it's difficult for her but it's something she's been getting used to and she's been able to do it.
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>> reporter: guidance from the cdc is that unvaccinated students and staff should wear a mask. and there should be local decision making about all of this based on what's going on in the county and area with covid rates. the american academy of pediatrics says all students aged 2 and older should wear masks, whether they're vaccinated or not, staff as well. the concern is just safety. we met one parent here, a man named mr. patel, who told us he lost a daughter who was 10 years old to covid some time ago at the heart of the pandemic. he was standing there with his young son and saying i'm certainly going to have my son wear a mask. i can tell you from personal experience i have a 12-year-old daughter. she got vaccinated and the school she's going to is also requiring vaccinations for students and for staff to come back to school. it's an independent school in new york city. there's a range of procedures going into place.
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again, there's still about six weeks before the school year starts. so schools are trying to make this decision. a lot of parents say whatever locally is decided, they will abide by that. there's no one-size-fits-all policy that will fit the entire country. of course in other states where there's been political opposition to masks and everything about covid, there's going to be a lot of resistance there if there are mandates to wear masks, florida, mississippi and other southern states where there's a bigger problem of unvaccination and just not following the guidance. these kids can't get vaccinated, so their parents see them as vulnerable. >> doctor, what's your view? setting aside the issue specific to children, should other states and localities reinstitute those indoor mask mandates the way that los angeles has? and to ron's point about
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political resistance, what's the best way to do it from a public health perspective given all the resistance you see in various parts of the country? >> what i think we have to try and understand is the fact that covid is going to be with us for some time. we're not going to eradicate or eliminate it. in many parts of the country cases are decoupled from hospitalizations and death. you want to have recommendations for masks for the unvaccinated. we know the vaccines are holding up very well against covid-19. i think you have to create an incentive or vision for what the future will be for someone who's not vaccinated when they become vaccinated, which means they might be able to discard their masks. i think this is going to be very difficult to do because not many people are going to comply. vaccinated people are going to
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say, why do i need to wear a mask? you have to focus on places where there might be a threat to hospitals, places like springfield, missouri. we're in a tough spot trying to figure out what the best recommendations are. in general, many states are doing okay in terms of hospital capacity. the goal overall has to be to get vaccine into people's arms. that's the solution. it's not masks. it's vaccines. >> doctor, i want to get your view on a moment today in a senate hearing, a moment between dr. fauci and senator rand paul. >> knowing it is a crime to lie to congress, do you wish to retract your statement of may 11th where you claimed the nih never funded gain of function research in wuhan? >> senator paul, i have never lied before the congress and i
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do not retract that statement. this paper that you're referring to was judged by qualified staff up and down the chain as not being gain of function. what was -- let me finish. >> take an animal virus and increase its transmisability to humans, you're saying that's not gain of function? >> correct. senator paul, you do not know what you are talking about, quite frankly. i want to say that officially. you do not know what you are talking about. >> dr. fauci there. look, if we see they kind of conflict playing out between a top public health expert and a sitting member of the senate -- >> it's going to be difficult for that 15% or so of the population who are against this vaccine who are going to be really not open to rational persuasion who are evading the
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evidence. there is that group in between where they might be numgnudged the vaccine gets full approval, if their friends or family members endorse it. that's something we have to work on. when it comes to senator paul, it's appalling to see him attack dr. fauci over and over again. senator paul is not just a senator, he's a physician. he understands the data. that's not conduct becoming to a senator. >> my thanks to the three of you. the tokyo olympics continues to struggle with the wave of covid cases with the usa basketball men's and women's teams, the latest to be affected just days before the games begin. nbc's stephanie gosk has the latest. >> reporter: yesterday it was gymnastics.
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today it's basketball. a basketball player announced she tested positive for covid and won't be coming here to tokyo. she says she's devastated. another basketball player, zach levine is undergoing covid protocol but they do hopefully expect him to get here later on in the week. the gymnastics team, her family says she's asymptomatic and in a hotel. according to her dad, she's really kind of bored. as an alternate she knew there was a chance she wasn't going to compete, but now of course, her hopes are dashed. her teammate is also in isolation, but she has tested negative. usa gymnastics are sharing some of the details of how they're protecting their athletes, including the fact they're in a separate hotel, they have separate rooms, they eat in a private dining room, they have their own private bathrooms within the facility and the
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alternates are kept from the six gymnasts who will be competing, those competitions happening sunday. all of this covid news contributing to the attitude here in japan among a majority of japanese that they don't want these games to go forward. you see that also affecting is some of the sponsors' behavior. the largest beer company in japan says it won't be sending executives to the opening ceremony. toyota is pulling all domestic advertising from the games. >> joining us is msnbc medical contributor dr. gupta. these breakthrough cases have caused a stir in japan and abroad. how serious a risk is a positive covid test for somebody who's both double vaccinated and presumably healthy as an olympian? >> good afternoon, jeff. in that particular case, somebody who is otherwise healthy, young in the case of an
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olympian, fully vaccinated, two doses of the vaccine, the chances that they could transmit the virus, which is the key question here appears to be extremely low. some studies suggest less than .1%. so we really need to think twice. i have a lot of sympathy for these olympians that are asymptomatic, otherwise healthy, fully vaccinated that they're being kept out of competition. now we know things we didn't know six months ago. pcr tests come with a second result that's called the cycle threshold which can give a sense if somebody's infectious to others versus not. we could potentially clear these olympians to play, in my view, if they're otherwise healthy, fully vaccinated and asymptomatic. i believe the data shows the chances of them transmitting is exceedingly low. >> should the olympics change their testing protocol?
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most people who are double vaccinated here in the states aren't tested for covid that much anymore. >> i think there's two problems here. one, it's medical dialect. we call somebody that's asymptomatic fully vaccinated and otherwise healthy, if they test positive, we still call that an infection. i think that's the wrong terminology. that's not an infection in the classical sense. how should that inform testing protocols? i think if somebody is fully vaccinated and they've received two doses of a vaccine, in the case of the u.s. olympian, usually that's pfizer and moderna, they should be exempt from testing. the same rules should apply. it's complicated because we're talking about the world descending on tokyo. not everybody has two doses of pfizer and moderna. the olympic village is trying to impose one standard versus multiple different standards based on the nature of the vaccine. that's the complication there. i think in the case of an olympian who tests positive, is
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otherwise healthy, asymptomatic and proof of vaccination, that is something we should reconsider whether they need to be kept out. how should us regular folks think about these breakthrough covid cases? we're hearing a lot more about them. should average people who are double vaccinated start wearing masks again? how should we deal with that? >> i think we need to remain calm. as mentioned previously, we profiled lafayette, louisiana, they have 11.6% positivity for covid, 20% of their hospital beds are filled with covid. that's significant stress. these vaccines work. when vaccine breakthrough cases do happen, typically they're in high risk individuals, those older than 65 or immuno compromised. we should be calm. we're making significant progress. areas of concern are areas where
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there's not enough vaccination uptake rate. for those who are high risk, you're likely going to be getting a booster shot come fall. you will be protected as well. >> keep calm and get vaccinated if you haven't been already. thanks for that clarity. still ahead, house minority leader kevin mccarthy names the five republicans who will sit on the select committee to investigate the capitol riot if house speaker nancy pelosi says so. republicans who contested the results of the election. also ahead, an historic launch, jeff bezos rockets off to the stars and comes home with big dreams for the future of the space race. later, the wildfires burning across the west are so big and so intense, they're affecting the weather clear across the country. ey're affecting the weather clear across the country. ♪ when technology is easier to use... ♪
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it's one small step for man,
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one giant leap for mankind. >> that was neil armstrong as the world sat mesmerized 52 years ago today. this morning, a mission far closer to home, just about to the edge of space, but no less a giant leap for mankind. >> whoo! oh, wow, wow, wow, wow. >> look out the window. >> oh, wow. >> and touchdown. welcome back, "new shepherd"
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first human crew. >> congratulations to all of you. [ cheers and applause ] >> that was, of course, jeff bezos, the world's richest man using those amazon billions to fund blue origin, building an automated spacecraft which today blasted him, his brother, an 82-year-old from the netherlands into space. now the youngest and oldest space pioneers ever. >> i want to thank every amazon employee and every amazon customer, because you guys paid for all of this. seriously, for every amazon customer out there and every amazon employee, thank you from the bottom of my heart very much. it's very appreciated. now, onto how it felt, oh my
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god! >> this was your dream, but for all those millions of americans watching this who are saying this is a joyride, it has nothing to do with me, what did you experience that matters to all americans? >> listen, we have to build a road to space so that our kids and their kids can build the future. we need to take all heavy industry, all polluting industry and move it into space and keep earth as this beautiful gem of a planet that it is. that's going to take decades and decades to achieve, but you have to start. big things start with small steps. >> that was jeff bezos in an exclusive interview with my colleague stephanie ruhle. if amazon is where his head is, it's evident that blue origin and space flight is where his heart is. joining me is dr. may gemison,
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stl eye lot of work underneenl neej. so we have an opportunity to change things. democratization, i think we have to be really careful. because right now, you know, $250,000 bus ticket doesn't make it democratic, necessarily. i went up, charlie went up with nasa. i was a first woman of color in the world go into space. with a government agency. what concerns me about people saying private industry is coming in and taking over is who are going to be the gate
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keepers? who will be the gate keepers of access and technological development. this resource is really shared by humanity. >> such great points. two true trail blazers. thank you so much for your time. coming up next, the republicans named to the select committee to investigate the capital insurrection. will the house speaker use her veto on that. and suspended for a whopping 12 hours. the tweets that got marjorie taylor greene kicked off twitter. stay with us. e kickedff o twitter. stay with us a lot of snacks are packed with air but not planters nuts. our dry roasted peanuts have an incredible ratio of size to substance a delicious, salty, crunchy ratio. planters. a nut above.
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jordan is. the probably the most partisan republican members. tell us about the rest of the folks. >> we're going to get to know jim banks pretty well. he'll be the ranking member of the committee. he's an up and comer trying to be within house leadership. and with someone we heard a lot of mention or really wanted this job when very few republicans wanted to be associated with this committee at all. ronny davis is an interesting pick. he voted for the bipartisan commission that thought this should have gotten investigated. i think you see mccarthy throwing a bone to members of his conference who wanted to go that route with davis' pick. i'm interested in what troy nails brings to the table. he's a former sheriff. he is a freshman member from texas. he was in at the chamber on january 6th. there is photos of him up against the chamber door trying to help barricade it, deescalate the situation that day. he could be interesting. >> and the house speaker has veto power over the recommendations. do you think she'll use it? >> i don't. i think democrats are happy. republicans are actually going to participate in this process
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at all. i'd be surprised if the speaker vetoes any of these. >> let's talk about marjorie taylor green. she was suspended from twitter for sharing misinformation about covid-19. and the only reason i bring her up is she as a freshman member of congress raised $4 million in april. that speaks to how messed up, if i can use that phrase, the incentive structures are right now in congress. >> she's not on any committees anymore. can you mark this down as an inkind contribution from twitter. i guarantee you the minute she's back on twitter if not beforehand, she'll be using this suspension to raise money. there are so many republicans are campaigning openly against the idea of big tech censorship. she will use this to her fund-raising advantage, i'm quite certain. >> the loudest voices in congress seem to be able to raise the most money.
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good to see you as always. >> thank you. a group of democrats from the texas state house fled their state last week in an effort to block republican law makers from passing new voting restrictions. last night here on msnbc they shared the personal struggles they say they experienced as they put themselves up front and center in the fight for voting rights. he. >> it's challenging for members leaving behind families and jobs, businesses, a young children in many cases. bradley is only 17 months. too young to be vaccinated and too young to wear a mask on the plane. for us, that meant driving. we had some very impactful meetings. and something that senator warren told us continues to resonate with me. she said democracy is not a given. it is the responsibility of every generation to fight for it. that's why texas democrats are here in d.c. and i hope that by having bradley here with us we're instilling that belief in her as well. >> we're going to talk more now about the growing movement behind the push to protect the right to vote.
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with us is dr. cole, the national chair and president of the national council of negro women and participated in the white house meetings. great to see you as always, dr. cole. when you hear the texas lawmakers speaking about the personal sacrifice, give us a sense of how that fits in with the long running battle for voting rights in this country, this fight is not new. i'm reminded of the work by john lewis. then you have ida b. wells and so many others. >> i believe deeply that we learn from our history and our story. and while some would like to say it is in the past, it is no longer relevant. i must firmly disagree. there is indeed a long line hf civil rights heroes and sheros. some of whom literally gave
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their lives in the interest of our democracy. we need to remember it was about a year ago, in fact, it was july 17th, that congressman john lewis, as i would put it, went to glory. let us also remember that unforgettable day when he led a march from selma to montgomery and we saw the brutality of citizens and law enforcement folk. if there ever was a time for us to remember congressman lewis, it is now. and the way to do that is for us to continue to push so that we
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get a voting rights bill act actually that bears his name. i have a special feeling about sister hamer. the last of 20 children, born to a poor mississippi couple. but fanny lou hamer may have been mighty short of material stuff. but she had an abundance of commitment to justice. and remember those days when in fact we saw -- we saw dogs biting at the heels of civil rights workers. we saw billy clubs going against the bodies of women and men.
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why? because they dared to want to exercise their american right to vote. and so when fanny lou hamer said "i'm sick and tired of being sick and tired," there was an expression not to say that she would give up, because she would find a way to go forward. we are now at a moment in our country where other women, leaders of national women's organizations, have come together to say this must end. voter suppression must end. and we stand, for example, in total solidarity with our sister
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in georgia helen butler who is an extraordinary social justice advocate. she has just been removed from the board from the voter rights board. this is the kind of insidious action being taken in state after state after state. so let me say finally that texas democrats who have left their state in the interest of justice, they are our heroes and sheros. >> dr. cole, i appreciate your insights as always. dr. cole is the current president of the council of negro women and national chair of that group as well and also the former president of spellman college. thank you. we have breaking news coming
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in that we have to get to. it involves the chairman of president trump's 2017 inaugural front. the our justice dependent pete williams joins us from washington where this information is coming in. what do you know? >> a lot more. we know that he's been arrested in california. he is an investor in california. that's where he lives. he was the chairman of president trump's 2017 inaugural fund. and that fund was under federal investigation whether or not federal funds were used. barrick has been arrested. he's been arrested on federal charges coming out of brooklyn and that they are not related to the inaugural which begs the question what are they related to? and that's what we don't know yet. but we expect those charges to be unsealed shortly. and when they are unsealed, we'll get back to you with further details. but we do know from several law enforcement officials that tom barrick, a long time friend of
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donald trump's for more than three decades, has been arrested on federal charges. >> pete williams with the late breaking news for us. pete, we appreciate that as always. coming up next, the wildfires out west are burning so hot they have blanketed the east in a haze. prompting air quality warnings all the way over new york city. climate scientist michael man is with us after a quick break. imate scientist michael man is with us after a quick break. our. like the new artisan italian and hearty multigrain bread. it's the eat fresh refresh™ at subway®. it's so much new there's no time for serena! wait, what?! sorry, we don't even have time to say they were created by world class bakers! oh, guess we did! seriously?! my bad. riders, the lone wolves of the great highway. all they need is a bike and a full tank of gas. their only friend? the open road. i have friends. [ chuckles ] well, he may have friends, but he rides alone. that's jeremy, right there! we're literally riding together. he gets touchy when you talk about his lack of friends.
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30% contained. with us now is michael man, director of penn state's earth systems science center. he is also author of the book "the new climate war. michael, good to have with you us. so this bootleg fire is so significant, as i understand it, it is generating its own weather. help us understand how that even happens. >> thanks. good to be with you. what happens is these fires burn so hot that they're changing sort of the pattern of temperature in the atmosphere that change the convection, wait that currents rise in the atmosphere when it's heated from below in this case by the burning wildfires. that causes lifting. as the airlifts and has humidity in it, that humidity condenses. you get rainfall, thunderstorms, lightning. and so this heat is actually creating its own weather and the problem is it's so hot that water actually evaporates. the so you get the thunderstorms without any rain. you light the fires.
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you have the ignition. you don't have the water to put them out. it's a double whammy. that is one thing that we're seeing play out right now. >> and we usually don't see fire conditions like this until mid to late august. so what's happening? why is this happening so early? >> well, you know, we used to talk about a fire season, for example, in california. then a few years ago the worst wildfire, the largest wildfire in california history took place in the middle of the winter. and what it points to is the fact that there is no longer a fire season. we have a perpetual fire season. the entire year during the entire year we can have conditions where things are dry enough and they're hot enough and, look, you know, on day when we've been talking about some actual rocket science, this isn't rocket science. you take unprecedented heat. you take record drought. you put them together. you get these sorts of massive wildfires like we're seeing here in the united states and around the world as the planet heats up. >> i want to put you to a question that our show team
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here, our producer team talked among ourselves earlier today. because in the last few weeks, it seems like we've seen extreme weather followed by extreme weather from the wildfires. we've just been talking about to the flooding in germany. it feels like it's all happening so suddenly. it feels like it is happening at the same time. have we just not been paying attention to it? >> well, here's the thing. when i started graduate school, when i finished my degree back in the late 1990s, the signal as we say was still emerging from what we call the noise. you had to dig through the data. you had to compare climate model simulations very carefully to observations to discern the human impact on the planet on the climate. now we've got to the point where the signal is so large it's he emerged from the background and to see it play out, all we have to do is turn on the television screens. the impacts of climate change have become so profound that they now play out in real time
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on our television screens in our newspaper headlines. and here's the thing. the warming is pretty much in line with what the models predicted decades ago. we predicted this would happen if we didn't reduce carbon emissions burning of fossil fuels. we predicted we would see worse heat waves, droughts, wildfires, super storms. and our predictions, unfortunately, are coming true. the truth is bad enough. we don't have to exaggerate the science. some people do. some people overstate it. the science alone is bad enough. it tells us that we are having this profound impact now. >> given all that, i mean given the profound nature of climate change and severity of it, i mean, what can we do? i put up my recycling yesterday. that just felt like a drop in the bucket in terms of trying to save the earth. if people decide to drive an electric car, does that make a difference? what does the collective effort need to be at this point? >> this is one thing i address with the new climate war. we should all do these things in
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our every day lives that reduce our individual carbon footprint. they save us money. they make us healthier often. they make us feel better. they set a good example for other people. look, you and i, we can't impose subsidies for renewable energy. we can't block new fossil fuel infrastructure. we can't impose carbon pricing. all these things we need to do to accelerate this transition away from fossil fuels towards renewable energy only our policymakers can do that. we need politicians. we need governments to act. we need systemic changes and we need to make sure that we turn out an election and we vote for people who will do somethingahe americans working abroad now believe they have been sickened by havana syndrome. details on the new wave of cases that have popped up on every continent except antarctica. ent. with voltaren arthritis pain gel
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we have more information coming into the newsroom about the breaking news involving the charment of president trump's 2017 inaugural fund, tom barrick. he has been arrested and indicted. our justice correspondent pete williams has the information contained in the charges. what's the update? >> so as we said earlier this is not related to the unaugust rags. what the government says here is that tom barrick and a man from aspen, colorado, named matthew grimes, were illegally representing the interests of the government of the united arab emirates, the uae, acting as foreign aides. without diz closing it according
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to the documents between april and november of 2016. they were doing this while he was an informal adviser to the donald trump campaign. he adviseded government officials on foreign policy in the middle east and asked to be pinted to a senior role in the government including role of special envoy to the middle east. but the charges said he failed to notify the government that all these actions about trying to influence policy were being taken at the direction and the request of officials in the united arab emirates. for example, the charges say, barrick inserted language that praised the united arab emirates into a speech that trump was to deliver about u.s. energy policy. and the charges also say that when he was requested about this by the fbi two years ago in june of 2019, he made several false statements including falsely denying that an official of the
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united arab emirates ever requested that barrick take any action on behalf of the uae. and finally, we should report that both barrick and grimes, the man in colorado, were arrested this morning. there is say third person mentioned in the federal indictment. that is a person from the united arab emirates and according to the justice department that, person remains at large. jeff? >> pete williams, thank you as always for that late breaking update. and that will do it for us on this hour of" msnbc reports." chris jansing picks up the coverage coming up next. ris jane coverage coming up next.
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good afternoon. i'm chris jansing in for ayman mohyeldin. we have major breaking news on what is turning out to be a very busy tuesday. tom barrick, a close ally of former president trump is arrest ond federal charges related to illegal lobbying for trump. pete williams will have the details in just a minute. also, six months since president biden took office, we're just minutes away from what will be the second meeting of his cabinet. key to that agenda, as we're seeing the delta variant cause a spike in coronavirus cases exactly that. we've had several high profile folks testing positive over the last 24 hours or so. two more u.s. olympians announcing this he have covid-19. just days before the tokyo games begin. and as olympic organizers struggle to could be taken

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