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tv   Way Too Early  MSNBC  July 23, 2021 2:00am-3:00am PDT

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you want to know what time the live coverage starts? 7:00 in the morning, 7:00 eastern. on nbc, the coverage starts at 6:55 eastern. so you officially have no time to go to bed tonight. you should just settle in. you'll be up all night. "way too early" with kasie hunt is up next. whether you're vaccinated or not, please know we, together, are not out of the woods yet, and you will want to make thoughtful decisions to protect your health and the health of your family and your community. we are yet at another pivotal moment in this pandemic with cases rising again and some hospitals reaching their capacity in some areas. we need to come together as one nation, unified in our resolve to protect the health of ourselves, our children, our community, our country, and our future with the tools we have available.
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>> we're not out of the woods yet. with the delta variant on the rise, that sobering warning from the cdc director in a call for unity as the nation reaches another crossroad in the pandemic. the question is, will americans listen. plus, on the eve of today owes's opening ceremony, new cases of coronavirus hit a high. the question is, will the games go on? and, democrats consider adding a second anti-trump republican to the committee task ed with the committee on the insurrection. it's way, way too early for this. ♪♪ good morning. it's "way too early."
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we'll be covering 16 days of the olympics. i even jonathan lemire. there's a lot going on. we'll start with the news. there's an elevated concern about the spread of the delta variant among the unvaccinated across the u.s. after months of progress. with a spike in new infections and hospitalizations, major hospitals are preparing for an influx of patients, if they don't already have them. nbc news national correspondent miguel almaguer has more. >> reporter: painting a grim picture of the new reality inside some hospitals, the numbers from the cdc reflect our nation slowly slipping back toward crisis as we surpass 50,000 infections a day. new cases, hospitalizations, even daily deaths are speaking again. >> it is one of the most infectious respiratory viruses we know of and i have seen in my 20-year career. >> reporter: struggling to contain the delta variant, florida, texas, and missouri,
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three states with lower vaccination rates, now account for 40% of the nation's new cases. one kansas hospital turning away patients as they struggle to manage their own caseload. >> we're kind of at a tipping point. we're past the tipping point. we're in trouble. >> reporter: meantime in los angeles county, construction teams are back at providence st. joseph's medical center, expanding their just shuttered covid ward. in the nation's covid capitol, new infections have increased nearly 2000%. we're seeing beds in the hallway. is that disheartening to see? >> it's really, really hard. >> reporter: this nurse manager says with vaccinations, his team is on the front line of the battle they don't need to be on anymore. >> it feels like we're going backward. i know me and a lot of other people here, we are feeling very
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discouraged, very disheartened, in some cases, very angry. >> reporter: as the cdc heard breakthroughs on infections and discussed boosters for those with compromised immune issues, there are sought states where people are choosing whether to get vaccinated. this woman watched her husband loose his bat toll covid through glass wall after they both became in affected. >> i wish we would have gotten vaccinated. one simple shot could have prevented all of this. >> reporter: regret and loss as more families face dark days ahead. >> our thanks to nbc's miguel almaguer for that report. in the last two days, alabama has seen new cases. alabama governor kay ivey didn't hold back when addressing concerns about the recent rise in covid-19 cases in the state and its low vaccination rate.
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>> let's be clear about this issue. maybe you need to start reporting the facts. the new cases in covid are because of unvaccinated folks. almost 100% of the new hospitalizations are with unvaccinated folks. and the deaths are certainly occurring with unvaccinated folks. these folks are choosing a horrible lifestyle of self-inflicted pain. y'all, we've got to get folks to take the shot. the vaccine is the greatest weapon we have to fight covid, there's no question about that. the data proves it. >> the u.s. has also seen a string of covid-19 outbreaks tied to summer camps in recent weeks. the latest strikes upstate new york. more than 30 campers at camp pontiac in columbia county, a seven day sleep-away camp for
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children to ages 16 are testing positive for the virus. 31 of the camp's 550 campers have tested positive. none, thankfully, were seriously ill. all infected are under the age of 12, making them too young to receive vaccines. as the delta variant cause as surge in coronavirus cases across the country, top white house officials are debating whether they should push vaccinated americans to wear masks in more settings. according to the "washington post," the talks are in the preliminary phase based on six people familiar with the discussions, and my colleagues at the "associated press" and i reported late yesterday confirming these talks, but white house officials telling me they're still very much in the early stages, categorizing them as routine discussions between health officials and white house aides about how to respond to the pandemic. we heard from white house press secretary jen psaki yesterday dismiss the idea that masks were
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inl continentally on the return per cdc guidelines, but notably, she didn't close the door for a change down the road. meanwhile, president biden vows to follow the science. >> we follow the science. it's happening now. there's all the major science tiffts in the country, they're looking at all possibles of what's happening now. if you are vaccinated, you are safe. if you are vaccinated, you have a 99.95% chance of surviving. >> what's the latest strategy to reaching the unvaccinated people who are the source of these recent outbreaks? >> my reporting echo as what you said, jonathan.
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of course, these conversations are taking place between top white house officials and others in the biden administration, particularly agencies like the cdc and hhs because they're constantly evaluating the evolving science and data, and when it comes to changing mask guidance, we know that would be a very thorny issue, especially for this white house and this president that just weeks ago on the fourth of july declared an independence from the virus, held that massive event with more than a thousand people, most of whom were not wearing masks, and was really trying to set the country on a path forward. but just like you reported, everything is in a very preliminary phase. i thought the way jen psaki phrased it yesterday sums it up very well. she said, wouldn't it be disappointing to americans if we didn't continue these conversations on a daily basis to see where we might make adjustments. but, again, the cdc and the white house saying they have no intention of altering what
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americans should do when it comes to masks, but saying those unvaccinated are most at risk. the president was a little imprecise at the recent town hall, making sweeping statement if you get vaccinated, you're not going to get covid. we know that's not true. yesterday he tried to remedy that by saying you have pretty good chances of not getting hospitalized. we know they represent a smaller fraction of the overall cases. a lot of people still want to know what's going on with those. can you get long haul covid from that even if you're fully vaccinated, and those answers simply aren't here yet. the white house t cdc, the covid response team evaluating all of it saying we're going let science guide us first, we're not going to be the ones to lead on this.
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it's a difficult issue for the president who's prioritized for the first six months where he's touted success. i think it's a difficult phase, especially as we get into the fall. >> you raise the point, monica, it's tough for the white house. they're banking on recovery, eyeing the midterms next year. all of that is in danker if the virus continues to surge. as someone put it to me in the last couple of days, this is the first time cases have really gone up since bind first took office. if you get credit for when cases go down, you also get credit when cases go up. the summer camps, children are too young to get vaccinated. health officials say kids won't get a vaccine, those under 12, until late fall, winter. what do you think about the reopening of schools? there will be some communities reopening schools in about a month's time. >> exactly. the president did get ahead of
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this a little bit at the town hall. he said he believed the cdc will lightly suggest and ask kids ineligible for the vaccine to wear masks just in a week's time before classes resume. the issue is they would like to get the vaccine use available for emergency ought san diego for kids 5 through 12. we're talking halfway through the school year when some of those kids will be eligible. the thing is a lot of these schools and localities are not waiting to make these decisions. they're saying, we're going to decide for ourselves. you saw atlanta schools and others throughout the country say, we don't care what cdc or others recommend. we're going to require masks for all of our students when they come back. this is something parents are so anxious about. but that camp you point out is the challenge. the kids are mostly outdoors,
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but, again, it shows how rapidly the delta variant can spread, particularly among the unvaccinated, which we know many of these children are because they're not eligible for the shot. the president and this white house, they haven't even hit that 70% goal of adults having at least one dose, so this is just going to be a gar gant onchallenge in the months ahead, and, again, as we get into the cold and flu season, we didn't have much of it because people were so vigilant, people wearing masks. it's going to be a completely different one. >> thank you so much. still ahead arc preview of the opening ceremony of the tokyo olympic games. the race for gold and against the virus. plus, american troops are leaving afghanistan, but that doesn't mean the fighting has stopped. the latest on the u.s.'s military bombing campaign against the taliban. those stories and a check on the weather as we look at the
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there are bucks fans shouting. they hoisted their trophy to tens of thousands of milwaukee fans who came out to celebrate the team's first nba championship in 50 years. p.j. tucker tried to claim the mvp of the parade, chugging like a champ while celebrating his very first nba title. good time had by all. now for the game that had me up way too late last night. the red sox hosted the yankees that included a rain delay and extra innings. new york took the lead in the fourth. after a brief rain delay, the sox eventually tied it up in the bottom of the seventh. but the yankees went up two in
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the bottom of the ninth, and that's when kiké hernandez came through once again with a long double to even things up. bottom ten, now tied at 4-4, but not for long. there's kiké ripping it to left. i'm going to enjoy the highlights here, bouncing off the wall. okay, try again. we go to the tenth now. hunter renfroe makes the yankees pay with not one, not two, not three, but four wild pitches in one inning and the sox win on a sacrifice fly. this was boston's fourth walk-off win, a game i'll look forward to talking with yankees fan willie geist coming up next hour. turning to football where the nfl is doing everything they can to try to get players vaccinated, including threatening them with losses. on thursday they sent around a league-wide memo warning if there's an outbreak on any of
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the 32 teams and the game can't be rescheduled, the team would have to take a forfeit as well as give up that week's paycheck. that's a huge deal for a team that only plays 17 games. now they say it's only for players who are unvaccinated. the nfl says if there's a break through outbreak, they'll attempt to min might the effort on both teams. last year there were several games postponed due to the outbreak, but none canceled. in just over 90 minutes from now, the tokyo 2020 olimb pecks will finally and officially get under way. the opening ceremony kicks off at 7:00 a.m eastern. one of the biggest highlights will be the parade of nations. carrying the american flag for team usa will be u.s. women's basketball player and four-time olympic gold medalist sue bury and baseball player eddie
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alvarez. they represent 1,600 athletes for the team usa. the "today" show will air the opening ceremony live. coverage begins at 6:55 eastern on nbc. but as the games kick off in tokyo, the city has hit another six-month high for new covid infections. yesterday nearly 2,000 new cases, the highest reported number since january as tokyo remains under a fourth state of emergency put in effect on july 12th. meanwhile another three olympic athletes have tested positive for the coronavirus. tokyo organizers say olympic cases rose by 19, which brings the number of disclosed cases up to a total of 106. a cluster of covid cases has occurred. with six of its members including four athletes testing positive and in isolation this morning, the czech olimb pimm
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committee is discussing whether lax behavior on a team flight to tokyo last week might be to blame. the czech team reported it. meanwhile there's growing concern about another type of test at these games and how it could impact performances. for several months at the height of the pandemic, testing athletes for performance-enhancing drugs was stopped by the anti-doping agent sichlt rigorous testing has slowly gone back to normal, but they saw a 45% reduction in testing. they told the "associated press," you'd have to be naive if you didn't think there weren't people trying to take advantage of the lack of testing. however, he knows the majority of athletes follow the rules. now it's time for the weather. let's go to meteorologist michelle grossman.
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what's the forecast today, michelle? >> hey, there, jon. it's hot all across the country. so many spots that are hot. we're going to see the excessive heat through next week. minneapolis, 96. that's 13 degrees what is typical for this time of year. let's slide to the east. on saturday, chicago will feel like 99. 103 in st. louis. and that extended into early next week and through the later part of next week. charlotte next week, 92 on tuesday. a lot of spots feeling like over 100 degrees. that's going to set the stage for more fire danker. we have flag warnings in idaho with winds firing up those storms. low visibility. air quality not great all the way down to parts of the southeast, jon. the northeast really nice today. enjoy it, jon. get out after work and enjoy the
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nice temperatures. it will heat up next week. >> thank you, michelle grossman. still ahead, the biden administration levels more sanctions aagainst those pulling strings. how that could impact things. we're back in a moment. we're back in a moment which to his bladder, feels like a mile. yet he stands strong, dry, keeping the leaks only to his eyes. depend. the only thing stronger than us, is you. (vo) nobody dreams in conventional thinking. it didn't get us to the moon. it doesn't ring the bell on wall street. or disrupt the status quo. t-mobile for business uses unconventional thinking to help you realize new possibilities on america's largest, fastest, and most reliable 5g network. plus customer experience that finds solutions in the moment. and first-class benefits, like 5g with every plan. network, support and value-- without any tradeoffs. that's t-mobile for business. among my patients i often see them
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try pepto® diarrhea. its concentrated formula coats and kills bacteria to relieve diarrhea. see, pepto® diarrhea gets to the source, killing the bad bacteria. so, make sure to have pepto® diarrhea on hand. with the power continues, air strikes will continue until the end of the month. the military has targeted the taliban with a half dozen strikes. over the past few months taliban forces have reportedly seized control of roughly half of afghanistan's 421 districts. that coincides with u.s. plans to pull all troops from the country by august 31st. since most of the u.s. strikes have been carried out by unmanned drones, it is unclear if those will continue even after all troops exit. meanwhile u.s. officials are reportedly set to announce a
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major shift in the iraq mission next week from a combat role to a purely advisory role. the announcement is expected to come monday between president and the iraqi prime minister. that's according to the discussion. the reported plan will not full withdrawal of the roughly 2,500 troops in iraq. instead politico says u.s. troops will provide adviory and logistics support to the military and the islamic state group. the biden administration is imposing new sanction on a cuban official and government entity. cuban military and political leader is among those who will face the latest sanctions. the move comes after thousands of protesters last week filled the street over frustrations surrounding food and power shortages. in a statement president biden suggested the sanctions were
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just the beginning. meanwhile the cia director is looking into the havana syndrome. it includes the assignment of a senior officer who played a critical role in finding osama bin laden. so far there have been least 200 possible reports linking back to the havana syndrome including 100 cia officers and others. it was first reported by officials based in the u.s. embassy in cuba in 2016. still ahead, many americans have ditched their masks as the covid has shown signs of abating, but the delta variant is bringing covid back and that could change things in a big way. before we go to break, why are you awake? email us at way too
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welcome back to "way too early." it's just after 5:30 on the east coast, 2:30 on the west coast. i'm jonathan lemire. nbc news white house
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correspondent kelly o'donnell has more on face coverings. >> reporter: the delta variant mask debate. president biden says he has talked to his covid experts about mask rules for vaccinated americans, but so far no change is planned. >> a 25-person group we put together are looking at all pockets of what's happening now. >> reporter: the cdc director has a message for the fully vaccinated. mask wearing is it to you. >> you may choose to have an extra layer of protection by putting on a mask, and that's a very individual choice. >> reporter: but some local officials push for broader mask wearing. authorities in new orleans and philadelphia now recommending masks indoors for the fully vaccinated. atlanta public schools said masks will be mandatory for all students and staff regardless of status. >> our thanks to nbc's kelly o'donnell for that report. the white house is also
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concerned about an influx of migrants at the border once co-rid restrictions get lifted. let's bring in reporter julie julia ainsley. >> thanks for having me. there are biden officials who have expressed concern about lifting these covid restrictions. known as title 42. it started with the trump administration to block immigration across the southern border. president biden has been allowing some adults and children in. they started july 1st to allow families to come in. this is so they can come in and make their asylum claim and go to court. sometimes that can be a two-year process.
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since they started this, there have beenover a million blocked from even coming into the united states to make these claims. now they think because of the rise at the border, they might not be ready to lift the covid-19 restrictions, but advocates say it's not a reason to keep this in place, that title 42 is a public health order and you can't use a public health order in order to force immigration law. there are those who think the system, processing people, putting them through court could come to a standstill and be your wemed if they lift this right now. >> julia, you just touched on this. talk about both sides of the political aisle and the issue. where does the biden administration go from here. >> well, they're definitely getting pressure from republicans, jonathan. we're seeing texas attorney general paxton filing a lawsuit stopping children from being able to come in, saying this order should be enforced more
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than it already is. but we're also seeing the from the other side, look, this isn't how you should be using title 42. and the very idea they would be using this to force immigration law shows that it's not really the pandemic. he points to public health experts who say title 42 really does very little to curb the spread of covid-19. >> julia ainsley, thank you so much for your brand-new reporting and sharing with us today. still ahead, the totally different way a teenager took to bird watching. her close encounter with a seagull, aah h! . you don't want to miss that. "way too early" is coming right back. to miss that. "way too early" is coming right back
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i order my groceries online now. shingles doesn't care. i keep my social distance. shingles doesn't care. i stay within my family bubble. shingles doesn't care. because if you've had chicken pox, you're already carrying the virus that causes shingles. in fact, about 1 in 3 people will develop shingles, and the risk only increases as you age. so what can protect you against shingles? shingrix protects. now you can protect yourself from shingles with a vaccine proven to be over 90% effective. shingrix is a vaccine used to prevent shingles in adults 50 years and older. shingrix does not protect everyone and is not for those with severe allergic reactions to its ingredients or to a previous dose. an increased risk of guillain-barré syndrome was observed after vaccination with shingrix. the most common side effects are pain, redness,
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>> listen to this [ bleep ] crybaby. >> how about i make up my own [ bleep ] rules. how about every time i land on property, i get $100. how about that? >> how about that? "the sopranos" has their own monopoly board game. players will be able to buy, sell, and trade familiar properties like the soprano house. and they will include tony, a baby duck and others. also in new jersey, a teenager aboard the slingshot ride picked up an unexpected hitchhiker. just as the slingshot picked up 75 feet in the air t tanger was smacked in the face. the teen was able to quickly fling the seagull off into the
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air. neither the teen nor the bird were injured. the teen later told nbc philadelphia she always wanted to catch a seagull. imagine that. you're going for a ride, minding your own business, hertling toward the sky, and you get a face full of seagull. no thanks. >> dr. jill biden, first lady, will serve as the head of the delegation. the trip marks her first solo trip abroad as first lady. she met with japan's prime minister and wife yesterday. she spoke with teem usa athletes over video thanking them for their dedication, and just hours ago the first lady stepped into the imperial palace to meet with japan's emperor. city ahead, house speaker nancy pelosi eyes another republican for the house panel probing the january 6th insurrection. what the addition of adam
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kinzinger would mean for that. we'll talk with debbie dingell about that. and we'll talk about the fight for infrastructure when "way too early" comes right back. for infrastructure when "way too early" comes right back. and for unexpected heartburn... frank is a fan of pepcid. it works in minutes. nexium 24 hour and prilosec otc can take one to four days to fully work. pepcid. strong relief for fans of fast. experience our advance standards safety technology on a full line of vehicles. at the lexus golden opportunity sales event. get 1.9% apr financing on the 2021 rx 350. experience amazing. on the 2021 rx 350. experience amazing. this is franc lefranco, the owner of lefranco construction. specializing in projects like this. and this and this. everything was business as usual, until... urgent. need new contractor for town arts center development project asap. is lefranco construction in? if he was gonna pull this off, he needed to rent another crane. like, yesterday.
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house speaker nancy pelosi is considering appoint someone to the house select committee. that's according to two officials familiar with the ongoing discussion. when asked if she thinks adam kins linger thinks he would be a good member of the committee, she said, quote, everyone else does. his service is considered, of course, an asset in what we do next, but she would not say whether she would appoint him. bennie thompson confirmed kinzinger is being confirmed. >> i think his reputation speaks for itself from all indications.
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he's a fine representative. that's the kind of person we'd want to have on this committee. >> a source tells nbc news former congressman denver riggleman may become an adviser to help staff the committee. nbc news caught up with riggleman as he approached the speaker. >> are you going to serve on the committee? >> the committee's first hearing is scheduled for tuesday. joining us now, democratic congresswoman debbie dingell of michigan. congresswoman dingdingell, thanu so much for being up so early to speak with us. do you support adding another member to the house committee? >> i think it's so important that this committee be a
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bipartisan/non-bipartisan committee. i we we were going through all of the gamesmanship and partisanship we were going through right now. i wish minority leader kevin mccarthy would appoint people we know want to be objective and get to the facts, but i do think it's important there be republicans on this so people don't accuse it of being a partisan whatever word they want to use. >> congresswoman, you also introduced the better care, better jobs act in the house. can you tell us a little bit about your personal connection to this legislation? >> well, this is legislation that has been introduced as part of the cares job that would allow seniors to stay in their homes. most people don't realize that when you get into long-term care and you have seniors who need help or people with disabilities, that the system's designed for institutional care, and you have to be broke. we have nearly a million seniors
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right now that are trying to get some help and community-based care that can't get it. they're really struggling. many of you know i was married to a great man. i didn't realize how broke the system was. i had to try to make it work. 99.90%. you're not going to get help. most people don't have long-term care. that doesn't cover it either. and medicaid is the largest provider of long-term care in the country, but it doesn't take care of people. it doesn't have enough money. it's institutionally focused, and we're trying to do something about that, people who are seniors, people with disabilities, and to also support caregivers who are frequently working three or four
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jobs and still living below the poverty line. and, by the way, in the days of covid, are working many jobs are becoming carriers going from one place to the next. >> congresswoman, it's certainly important legislation. you mentioned covid. could you give us an update on your home state of michigan? we've been tracking all morning the delta variant. it's been surging across the nation. can you give us an idea of how things are across michigan? >> it was very scary in april. i got back home yesterday. it was an odd experience. i went to a din were 700 people last night. i was the only person wearing a mask. i come from washington. you see many of the staffers that are in the buildings that i've worked we have tested positive this week, and it's an individual source right now, but i think -- i'm vaccinated. i've decided to wear a mask when i am out in large public
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gatherings and i don't know if people have been vaccinate order not, and i find myself giving that message to a lot of leaders in the auto industry last night. i know people don't want to wear them, but people are getting sick again, and i know several people who have been vaccinated who have gotten the breakthroughing and i think we individually have to look at this. i don't want covid. even being vaccinated, i don't want the danger of even a minor case of covid. i think we all have to think about that. >> you're certainly right, congresswoman. we're seeing a rise in mask wearing both in washington, d.c. it's pretty apparent in recent days. one more question for you. we know that the senate is currently, we believe, in the final days of hammering out the bipartisan infrastructure deal brurks do things stand at the house? where do you think they're at on the proposal, and where do you think they'll end up with the democrats, moderate and liberal
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democrats? there's a big gap between sort of the very leftist members of your party and those to the center. what do you think? >> i think that nobody in the house knows what's in the bill. it is very frustrating. there are days -- and i'm one of them -- that i want to say it isn't just frustrating. it's one or two senators that control the fate of how hi institutions are going to be impacted. i think we'll get it worked out because i don't think failure is an option. i got home last night, i've had floods in my district for three weeks and my basement is flooded again. i had 20,000 towns in my home down of dearborn that have been flooded for weeks. water doesn't know if you're a republican or democrat. we need broadband in rural areas. we need to get the lead out of water pipes. we need to do something. i talked to many of my
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republican and democratic friends this week, they believe they'll get something done there. but when it comes to the house we have a right to know what's in it, a right to fight for our constituents. i have to believe we'll get it worked out and we'll work together to work it out. >> please come back soon, thank you and enjoy the weekend. earlier in the show we asked, why are you awake. erin writes i'm up way too early getting ready to finish my first week at any new job strong. genie tweeted this, hoping jonathan and coffee helps me back for washington d.c. this morning. grab your suitcase, open it up, just throw everything in there. it's friday, get ahead of the traffic. another viewer is up way too early, waiting for the olympic opening ceremony that starts soon and also had too much caffeine before bed.
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and mh writes wanted to see how much jonathan would gloat after am sox win. hope willie sets you straight. up next a look at axios' one big thing. coming up on a very special "morning joe," u.s. secretary of state tony blinken joins the conversation. we'll talk about the global vaccine effort and how america is battling back in cyber space against adversaries. "morning joe" is just moments away. "morning joe" is just moments away 0 grams of protein for muscle health. versus 16 grams in ensure high protein. boost® high protein also has key nutrients for immune support. boost® high protein. of course you've seen underwear boost® high protein also that fits like this... but never for bladder leaks. always discreet boutique black. i feel protected all day, in a fit so discreet, you'd never know they're for bladder leaks. always discreet boutique.
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joining us now with a look at axios a.m., the cofound erof axios, mike allen. mike, hit it. >> happy friday! >> thank you. >> what is the axios one big thing this morning, mike? >> first a fine sea gull impression. first, olympics unite the u.s. on the show we talk about all the splits it's hard to find any
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poll that america isn't 50/50. there's a new axios poll that shows on the olympics we agree on the olympics americans are rooting for team usa. they think it's important to win. and they say they will be excited to see americans up on the medal stand. now you know there's a catch, and the catch is that this does very much split down the way that other splits in america do. that is younger people are much less likely to be excited about the idea of team usa and america. and there is a red and blue split about who we're going to be rooting for and against. so jonathan, a little bit of a cold war feel. we asked people who they're going to be rooting against. there's a big group rooting against china, a little bit of cuba, iran, so that's where you get the cold war feel.
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but jonathan, i'm going to bring you back to a good place. americans are good guests, hosts, neighbors. so when we asked people who they're rooting for, canada, mexico. and we have a soft spot for the host, japan. >> that is good to hear. i would like to think americans would do that. japan has suffered enough trying to pull the games off. we're all looking forward to watching it on nbc. axios has been covering the fast pace at which president biden is nominating and confirming federal judges. this was donald trump's top priority working hand in hand with then senate majority leader mitch mcconnell to have a couple hundred judges installed. for biden this is a quieter priority. but will he be able to cause significant change in the courts within his four-year term? >> he's already started.
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this took me by surprise. we feel like everything is covered all the time but look at this, biden has confirmed eight federal judges the most, in your lifetime or my lifetime, that's twice as many as trump had at this point or george h.w. bush. and at this point in their presidencies, ronald reagan, barack obama, george w. bush had confirmed zero. so they are putting a big focus on this. the chief of staff, ron klain is particularly interested in this. here's a twist, the administration has been trying to look for non-traditional candidates. you get a lot of federal judges who are prosecutors or come from big law firms like ron klain does. some of the biden nominees, they're focussing on civil rights litigators, public interest prosecutors. and what's interest, when they announce their nominations they'll say this is the first
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woman from this state or give the first, point out this is another part of the administration's agenda where they're making equity and progress a priority. >> and, of course, this push with the federal judiciary, which is terrific reporting by axios comes amid a backdrop about questions about a possible supreme court vacancy if justice briar does retire sometime next year which many democrats hope he will while they have all three houses. thank you for putting up with me and getting up way too early with us this friday morning. enjoy your weekend, stick with us. "morning joe" starts right now. the official motto for this year's olympics is united by emotion. the unofficial motto is as of right now, we're still doing this. >> the olympics kick off in japan amid the grueling marathon
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race against covid. back here at home, cases are surging, and it doesn't get much clearer than this. >> what is it going to take to get people to get shots in arms. >> i don't know. you tell me. folks supposed to have common sense. but it's time to start blaming the unvaccinated folks, not the regular folks. it's the unvaccinated folks that are letting us down. >> as the leader of the state, don't you think it's your responsibility to try and help get the situation under control? >> i've done all i know how to do. i can encourage you to do something but i can't make you take care of yourself. >> wow. that is remarkable. governors are furious, hospitals are overwhelmed, the economy is shaky and yet americans are still refusing a life-saving tool that the rest of the world desperately wants. also, secretary of state antony blinken is our guest this morning. we'll talk about the global


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