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tv   The Rachel Maddow Show  MSNBC  July 29, 2021 1:00am-2:00am PDT

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person by giving people false information. >> max fisher and cheryl franco, great reporting both of, you thanks for being on the show. i appreciate it. >> thank you. >> that is all in for this evening, the rachel maddow show starts right now with ali. right now with ali. evening. "the rachel maddow show" is next. ali velshi is filling in >> good evening, chris. thanks to you at home for we'll be talking to senator john tester, one of the senators who helped negotiate the deal.ea hopefully he can walk us through what's in the bill. first we've got breaking news right off the top.p. here's a brand-new headline. as trump pushed for probe in th 2020 election, he called acting attorney rosen almost daily.
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we know he had tried to pressure the justice department in the days prior toic the election asking them to investigate fake claims of voter fraud, but until tonight we b did not know how extensive trump's efforts were. trump called his acting attorney general nearly every day over claims of voter fraud in the 2020 election. in those calls "the post" reports donald trump raised various allegations of voter fraud he had asked about and asked the justice department what they were doing about it. here's the kicker. these phone calls did not stay phone calls. there is a paper trail. quote, attorney rose entold few people about the phone calls, but there arene notes of some o the calls that were written by a
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top aide to rosen named richard donahue who was present during some of the conversations. those notes could soon be turned over to the senate judiciary committee as part of its probe why bill barr so suddenly left the justice department after the election. those notes could head to congress in a matter of days unless donald trump moves to block thatve from happening. joining us now is develin harris. thank you for the reporting and being here tonight. as unorthodox as things were during the donald trump t presidency, this goes further, the idea of a president dealing in his own personal interest with the attorney general is stuff we think about when we think of richard nixon. >> right. and one of the things we've all been working to understand a little better is exactly how hands-on did trump get with his aides and senior officials as he pushed for this and as he sought
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to, frankly, pull the justice department in to thinks like litigation and attacks on the vote certification. we know he called on rosen. it's possible in a matter of days those notes may be produced.r generally speaking you don't take notes that you don't think are going to be meaningful. was the attorney general receiving notes almost daily from the then defeated president of the united states still in office? >> right.ed
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i think there was some concern. the notes reflect a tricky tightrope that senior justice officials were trying to walk at that time. they had to take, in their minds, the call. they have to talk to the president. but they, also, don't want to be sort of pushed or shoved or -- o or even wrongly, you know, told that they have to go, you know, take trump's side in these fights. and so, a lot -- what -- what ft was described to us is a lot of these conversations involved the president saying the things he's concerned about. the things he is upset about. and the acting-attorney generale jeff rosen, saying, uh-huh, uh-huh, okay. i hear you, mr. president. don't worry. we will -- we will investigate any, serious allegations.en, , . and trying to change the subject, even at times. and -- and -- and frankly, usually, not succeeding when he tried to change the subject. >> so it sounds a little like that call to georgia election officials that we all heard e ound christmas time. that there's a -- there's a president trying to convince someone to do something, and the person on the receiving end,
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understanding this is probably unorthodox. somewhere along the line of unorthodox to entirely wrong orr possibly illegal and trying to not commit to anything. >> right. and you see that in an implicit gentle way. in rosen's testimony before congress, back in may. he made a point of spelling out all the things he did not do, in that time period. and i think, in hindsight, now that we know about these phone calls, i think in hindsight that testimony stands out more anhosiy as rosen sort of tryingd to draw a line for people, even though he didn't feel he could say it publicly. of look, whatever was said to me, whatever, you know, was brought my way, i did not go down the road that some of these folks wanted us to go down.hagh >> great reporting, dev lin. important reporting that this -- that may be before us in a matter of days, as congress investigates january 6th and the accusations about election fraud. "washington post" reporter out
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thanks for being here, devlin. all right. here is a question for you. do you remember how january 6th started? i mean, do you remember the first thing that happened that day? we all know where the day ended up, with a violent insurrection at the u.s. capitol. and we know that, right before the violent insurrection, president trump gave a speech near the white house, in which t he riled up his supporters and told them to march to the capitol hill. but that speech didn't start until noon. at that point, the stop-the-steal rally on the ellipse had been going on all morning. snote the whole gang was there. trump family members, rudy giuliani. the attorney general of texas, who is under indictment and in the midst of an entirely separate fbi investigation, he had tried to get the supreme court, you will remember, to overturn the election. but do you recall who began the day, bright and early, at 9:00 a.m., who really set the tone for the event? it was this guy. >> today is the day american patriots start taking down names and kicking ass!
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>> that was how the day started. that was alabama republican congressman mo brooks setting the mood for the day on january 6th. congressman brooks fondly recalled how, quote, our 6t ancestors, end quote, sacrificed their, quote, blood and sometimes their lives, end quote. and he asked the audience if they were, quote, willing to do the same.he are you willing to do what it takes to fight for america? carry the message to capitol ll hill?y the fight begins today. all of those are mo brooks' words. now, some democratic members of congress tried to censure mo brooks for his speech that day, bun of their colleagues had a different idea. congressman eric swalwell of california filed a lawsuit against mo brooks along with the other speakers of the january 6th stop the steal rally, including president trump in which he accused.
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brooks of inciting an insurrection. in response to the lawsuit, congressman brooks had a novel defense. oe i was just doing my job. he said he couldn't be sued for his speech because he was acting in his official capacity as a united states congressman. and so the court turned to the u.s. justice department and asked the department to weigh in on whether congressman brooks was just performing his official duties, as a federal employee. and the justice department has now delivered its reply to the court, and it says, in essence, you're on your own, mo. i mean, it did seem like a long shot that mo brooks would get the u.s. justice department to come to his rescue here. but spare a thought for the justice department lawyer, who had to actually write this court filing, spelling out their reasoning. d tth ye a this is an actual quote from the filing. the complaint alleges that s brooks conspired with others to investigate -- to instigate a violent attack on the u.s. capitol and incited a riot there. instigating such an attack plainly could not be within the scope of federal employment.
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quote, alleged action to attack congress and disrupt its official functions is not conduct a member of congress is employed to perform. aal welcome to 2021 where the united states department of justice is forced to clarify in court that inciting an insurrection is not part of the official job duties of a member of congress.al but here's one thing that's worth pulling out from the argument that mo brooks tried to make about what he was doing at that rally on january 6th. he says the reason his speech at the rally was part of his official duties was that he made it, quote, in the context of and in preparation for congressional votes, end quote.ie votes that were held, that day, to certify the presidential election. it was all part of the preparation for the certification vote. and that preparation had been o going on for weeks at that point. this was the headline at politico on december 21st of last year. house republicans meet with trump to discuss overturning election results.
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now, see the sub headline there. trump loyalists are planning a last stand january 6th. inside the article, president donald trump huddled with a group of congressional a republicans at the white house on monday where they strategized over a last-ditch effort to overturn the election results next month.ef representative mo brooks, who is spearheading the long-shot push to overturn the election results in congress, organized the trio of white house meetings, which lasted over three hours and included roughly a dozen lawmakers. during monday's meeting at the white house where lawmakers noshed on a mid-afternoon snack of meatballs and pigs in a blanket, trump talked with members for over an hour about how january 6th will play out.
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know who else was at that white house meeting planning for january 6th? congressman jim jordan who just, last night, after a lot of hemming and hawing, admitted actually, yes, he did speak with president trump on january 6th. this is the guy that republicans tried to install on the house select committee to investigate the insurrection. liz cheney. one of the republican members of that committee said she agreed with speaker nancy pelosi's decision not to let jim jordan on the panel because they will, likely, have to subpoena him as a witness. maybe they should think about subpoenaing mo brooks too. mo brooks, who spearheaded weeks of planning to overturn the election on january 6th. who says his man the barricade speech that morning was all part of his preparation for that day's vote.roca i mean, the violence that day took most people by surprise, including the police officers on the front lines, according to e their testimony on capitol hill yesterday. but apparently it did not take mo brooks by surprise, and here's how we know that. congressman brooks tonight tells at. reporter, jim newell at slate.com that he was wearing body armor when he gave this speech on the morning of january
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6th. quote, because of a tip he'd received about potential violence, brooks had been wearing body armor at the very same ellipse speech in which he encouraged rally attendees to start taking down names and kicking ass. quote, that's why i was wearing that nice little windbreaker, brooks told me with a grin, to cover up the body armor. he didn't say who warned him or what the risk waso that he had been warned about. well, those sound like good questions for the new select committee investigating the january 6th attack. we don't know who will be st getting subpoenas from that committee. but select committee chairman, bennie thompson, told us on this program last night that those subpoenas are going out soon. in terms of what led to and to program last night that those subpoenas are going out soon. in terms of what led to and prompted the january 6th attackd
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the lies about election fraud. the narrative of a stolen election. the fantasy that donald trump's election loss could be nati overturned. that all needs to be investigated by this select committee.ed but that is not just stuff that happened before january 6th. as far as a false narrative about the 2020 election that is inciting people to violence or potential violence, we're all eo living in an active crime scene right now. this is ongoing. take the so-called audit that arizona republicans have been go conducting of the 2020 election results in maricopa county, arizona. the one being run by the cyber ninjas guy who is a qanon stop-the-steal conspiracy theory rift. where they have been running through ballots. they have been taking the ballots and running them under ultra violet light looking for bamboo fibers because maybe the ballots were secretly sent to america from east asia.roavs tr today the guy who's been overseeing the audit for the arizona republicans quit.re after being locked out.in i'm -- that's not a -- i mean,
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he was actually physically locked out of the building where the audit has been taking place. well, that was this morning. he quit. and then later today he un-quit. so that's going well. the whole arizona audit circus was supposed to last a few weeks. we are now four months in. the arizona senate republicans, just this week, sent a whole new batch of subpoenas to maricopa county for more stuff that they want to look at. they are just going to keep on looking. this thing is going to go on forever, so that donald trump and his allies can keep pointing to it and saying that proof of all the fraud is coming. it's just around the corner. and it's spreading. in wisconsin, the republican chair of the state assembly elections committee is gearing up for her own arizona-style audit in her state. she doesn't want just a forensic audit of the '22 election.onstdr she wants a cyber forensic audit. i have no idea what that is, but i'm sure it's much fancier than the regular audit. this wisconsin legislature -- legislator made a little pilgrimage to the arizona audit site last month so she could learn how to launch one back home. this is on top of the election investigation initiated by the republican speaker of the nsgionsin assembly who hired t some ex-cops to dig into the 2020 election results for him
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of a republican/former wisconsin supreme court justice, who became a stop the steal-activist after the november election. oh. and there is also the audit of ballots in wisconsin being carried out by a crew of random wisconsin citizens, including a guy convicted of bank and mail fraud. today the justice department issued new guidance to states. basically warning them about conducting these third-party uncertified audits. warning states that they could find themselves breaking federal law. a senior justice department official tells nbc news, quote, we are concerned that if they're going to conduct these so-called audits, they have to comply with federal law. they can't conduct them, in a way that is going to intimidate voters. but we'll see if that guidance manages to dampen republican enthusiasm for these audits in any of the many states that are considering them. it's hard to find any kind of breaking mechanism for this out-of-control car that the big lie has created.us t allomey'llg if the election was stolen, if the people in power are illegitimate, if americans havei been the victim of a vast conspiracy to deprive them of
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their democracy, what wouldn't you do? what action wouldn't be justified, in that situation? today on capitol hill, local election officials from across the country came to give testimony on how the big lie is affecting them, how the false narrative of a, stolen electio and the fake audits creating ea distrust in how local elections are run, how it's created an atmosphere of fear and threat and violence for election workers.f they described it as feeling like a local small-scale version of what happened on january 6th at the capitol. >> we had armed almost rioters in maricopa county. we had alex jones and the qanon literally arm in arm shouting my name and shouting for other
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election officials in the parking lot. and their compatriots armed with -- with some pretty heavy-duty firearms. and that was certainly no civil act of protest. that was not a grievance. the presence of those weapons in this environment was a threat. and that was very difficult. it was a step away from what happened here. the motivation behind these threats is the lie. that needs to end. th w >> what we're going through is very much the same as what happened here except they're going to our homes and they're making us very uncomfortable. some of my colleagues have been shot at simply because of what we do. all of us have been threatened. it's unfair that we're attacked for doing our job. i feel afraid. i feel afraid. i know that i'm going to get nfa some kind of repercussion from just us sitting here today, but i decided to do it because i believe in the right to vote.
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>> i know i'm going to face som' repercussion just from sitting here.he joining us now, congressman pete aguilar of california. he's a member of the house select committee investigating the capitol attack. he sat in the hearing today with local election officials. congressman, thank you for being with us. you know, yesterday's testimony was incredible to hear. lawrence o'donnell and i were , talking about this. we thought we all had heard everything there was to hear ou about january 6th. then hearing those police officers talk, again, was stirring. same thing today. these people. these elections officials in michigan and arizona. telling them -- us about how they've been threatened, people have gone to their homes, people have threatened their safety? what'd you take away from that today? >> what i took away is that these are additional, brave heroes who are administering our elections. and they are the fabric of our
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local communities. and they are under assault. and so, our hearing today, in house administration, which you showed that clip of, was about a bill from williams and harbay, and it's the preventing election subversions act of 2021, making it a crime to intimidate and harass elections officials because we know that's what they're trying to do here. they're trying to -- to use the combination of the -- the -- the back-door law change with, you know, rooted in racism. combined with the audits.h, um, as you mentioned and that's casting doubt on a free and fair elections system that is administered by those very individuals who were under attack. >> the department of justice has -- they -- they had done this with maricopa county in the state of arizona, a few months ago. sort of sent them a warning to say don't lose the chain of custody of ballots. don't -- don't fiddle with stuff.arheitn' they have written again to states to say where election
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records are no longer under the control of elections officials, this can lead to a significant risk of the records being lost, stolen, altered, compromised, or destroyed. the risk is exacerbated if the election records are given to sc private actors who have neither experience nor expertise in handling such records and who are counfamiliar with the obligations imposed by federal law.h the department of justice is saying, is warning states of exactly what i think is going on. i think in arizona, they are going to just keep on counting and storing and messing with these ballots until there's nothing left of the ballots. aes until no one can actually prove anything. >> that sounds about right because -- and that will continue to foment exactly what they want is to cast doubt on a these free and fair elections, and so that's the intention here. and sometimes, you know, they used to try to hide it. and now they're not. and so it's very clearly a problem in some of these communities, and congress wanted to step in.e
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and so, that's -- we wanted to -- to put a spotlight on what was going on.th and, you know, i tip my hat to, you know, these local elections officials. adrian fontes, who you showed there, you know, who talked, each of them, talked about threats thatbo they'd had again them, against them and their families and their loved ones. that shouldn't be the case.li and these individuals -- um -- you know, really are that better off of democracy that we have back home.in thousands and thousands of them, across the country, administering our elections laws. nid they deserve to do their u work, without intimidation. >> i don't know if you had a chance to see devlin barrett and his colleagues reporting at the "washington post" that donald trump in december was calling his attorney general on a daily basis with this kind of information.en between this and the testimony we heard yesterday, lots and lots of people want to know who this points to? and -- and who was involved? and how donald trump and mo brooks and people like that were
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involved in facilitating this. well, who -- i mean, what does that look like to you? does -- does donald trump, do all these people get subpoenaed before the select committee? >> well, we have a lot of work do. and -- and clearly, as you showed, you know, those brave officers yesterday, two d.c. ism yo metro police officers and two capitol police officers told their story in very graphic detail what they went through protecting democracy, and, you know, we owe it to them. and the last question that the chairman asked them was, what do you want us to do?st what do you want us to get out of this?wa and -- and just like you highlighted, you know, they said justice and accountability. and they want -- they want an accountable system. and they want us to chase the truth. and that's exactly what we're going to do. jd, we're not going to be intimidated. we're going to do our work. we are going to make sure that we lift over every -- every rock. and we're going to do our -- our level best to produce a document that gets to the root of what happened. what led up to the events of january 6th, how we protect against it moving forward. and soin that's what our work wl do. there will be subpoenas.
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we will move forward in a quick and expeditious way. but, you know, we will -- i'll let the chairman talk about our work plan, you know, moving forward. >> congressman, thanks very much for joining us tonight. it's good to see you again. representative pete aguilar is a member of the house select committee on january 6th. all right. if you are superstitious or you simply have kept up with the news, you may think that tweeting out that it is infrastructure week would jinx any chances of a bill passing. this time, however, it might be the real deal. senator jon tester, one of the h key senators involved in the negotiation, joins us after the break.
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what a difference a week makes. exactly, one week after a bipartisan infrastructure deal failed to clear its first procedural vote in the senate. tonight, a new $550 billion proposal from the same bipartisan group cleared the upper chamber with the support of 67 senators. bringing a fresh round of optimism to the nation's capitol. this time, 17 republican senators including the top senate republican mitch mcconnell joined every democratic senator in voting to begin debate on this bipartisan-infrastructure plan. now, after the vote, the bipartisan group of senators who have been negotiating this plan, for weeks, took a victory lap. >> it's not about republicans or democrats. it's about making america more productive, more efficient. therefore, improve the lives of the people we represent. >> the word in this town and all across this country from the naysayers is that bipartisanship
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is dead, that it doesn't work anymore and the government is broken. and we are here to say, no. it works. >> we've still got a long ways to go, before we get to the finish line. but this was a vitally important first step. >> i think the country needed a bit of good news, and i think what we are delivering tonight is that tonic in a way for the soul of america. >> tonic for the soul of america. well, america could sure use some tonic. today the white house applauded the deal, noting that it included some of the largest ever investments in public transit, passenger rail, bridges, clean water, clean energy, and electric vehicles burke tonight's vote while significant marks the beginning of what is sure to be a very difficult road. senators will now have to start filling in the details, crafting legislative language for the bill. they have to get it scored or priced out, by the congressional-budget office.
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they have to vote on amendments. and then, get at least 60 senators to vote for it, again, in a -- in a technical vote, before the final vote on the passage. and even if they do manage to do all of that, this bill is still going to have to pass the house where progressives are already making it clear they will not vote for this bill unless it's companied by another much bigger democratic proposal that includes many of their key priorities. so just ahead of tonight's vote, congresswoman pramila jayapal who leads the progressive caucus released this statement. quote, progressives have been clear from the beginning. a small and narrow, bipartisan infrastructure bill does not have a path forward in the house of representatives, unless it has a reconciliation package with our priorities alongside it. the votes of congressional progressive caucus members are not guaranteed on any bipartisan package until we examine the details and until the reconciliation bill is agreed to and passed with our priorities
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sufficiently funded, end quote. like i said, there is a long, long road, ahead. senate majority liter schumer has promised to try and get it all done before the end of the summer. but there was no doubt that, after weeks of frustration in the nation's capitol, tonight's vote is a leap forward. joining us now is one of the group of ten senators, whose work led to this agreement today. montana senator jon tester. senator, good to see you. i don't often start an interview with you -- with you smiling. so, you and a lot of senators are actually feeling like this is a big accomplishment. so congratulations on that front. how do you address this other thing? this 800-pound gorilla in the room, the idea that this package, there are a lot of democratic progressives who say has to be paired with a much
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bigger reconciliation bill before they will support it. >> look. i think you need to take a look at each and -- and weigh 'em out, on -- on their own merits. this -- this bill is traditional infrastructure. i think it's what the country needs. and hopefully, we can get it through the senate with a good vote and get it to the house and they'll pass it to get it to the president's desk. and then, we have reconciliation and hopefully, we can get a reconciliation bill that meets the needs of america, whether it's childcare or housing or senior care or whatever it might be and make sure that it's paid for and move it along too. i will tell you that what warren said is correct. i mean, this country needs this bill and they need -- they need -- we need to be able to show that we can work together to get something passed. and i think this bill meets the needs of this country very, very well. i am talking about the bipartisan bill. and look. once we get this done, when we go to reconciliation, that bill may be really, really good, too, and we'll make that assessment once that bill gets drafted and built and amended and all the things that this bill's going to go through over the next week. >> well, look. you and the other nine senators involved in this negotiation have -- have overcome some stuff. so talk to me about what the
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road looks like in reconciling two things. you heard what pramila jayapal representing house progressives had to say. senator kyrsten sinema issued a response about the reconciliation bill where she said i do not support a bill that costs $3.5 trillion and in the coming months, i will work in good faith to develop this legislation with my colleagues and administration to strengthen arizona's economy and help arizona's everyday families get ahead. so what we have here is two pieces of doubt both cast by democrats at the moment. tell me about how you negotiate thing going forward. >> i think we got to talk about the merits of the bill. i think this bill's about two things. it's about jobs and a lot of jobs all over this country. good paying jobs, liveable wage jobs, and it's about national security. the truth is china wants to replace us in this world as the leading economic power. and if we don't get our act
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together in washington, d.c., they will do exactly that. if we don't start to unite and -- and quit dividing, then -- then we're -- we're doomed in this country. and so, i think, this bill is a step forward. where you have five democrats and five republicans that argued and fought, for two months. and -- but we, all, had the main goal in mind to get to yes. and then we threw in the white house and they helped push this to yes too. and we threw in senator schumer. and now today leader mcconnell, and they all wanted to get to yes. we need to continue that philosophy moving forward. not only through the senate but through the house to get this bill across the finish line. our country needs this, if we're going to maintain our position as the leading economic power in this world, and if we don't, shame on us. so we have got a lot of work to do, ali, you're right. but this is work that can be done. we have done a lot of tough work, getting this to point. and we're willing to roll up our sleeves and continue that tough work going forward. >> 67 votes in the senate, these days, is usually reserved for something like naming a post
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office, things that are just -- nobody's got any disputes over. you mention leader mcconnell voted for this. this is a procedural bill. i mean, it's an important one. it starts debate. do you think there is some way you can get 60-plus votes to close this debate at some point? and then, the 50 -- i think you probably get the 50-plus votes you need, in the end. but you, still, are going to need ten extra republicans, all along this road. >> look. i think if people look at this bill for what it does for this country. i think we can get more than 67 votes moving forward. the truth is, as i said before, we need investments in roads and bridges and broadband, electrical infrastructure, and water, and the list goes on and on. and this bill does that. this is the largest expenditure in this country's history. is it going to be easy? no, it's not. nobody thinks it will be. there will be a lot of games played. there is folks in the senate that are going to try to derail this thing, but we need to stick together just like the tentatives have stuck together over the last ten months.
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and if we are able to do that, we will get this bill through the senate with a good healthy vote. i think it's going to be north of 67 votes, quite frankly, in the end. once people get a chance to see this bill and what it does, i think there is going to be more than 67 senators that vote for it. >> talk to me about what happened with jerry moran of kansas. he was on the team and he voted no in this procedural bill. why? do you know? >> jerry is a good friend of mine, and i can't speak for jerry moran. and we will have to sort that out through the process, but i don't think jerry's a lost cause. i think if he sees this bill being good for kansas and good for the country, he will get onboard. so like i said, jerry is a good man. he'll analyze it on the grounds that he thinks is important and act accordingly. >> senator, good to see you as always. montana senator jon tester. still ahead here tonight. what happens when a group of republicans at the local and state level try to tell a democratic official how to run the city she leads. that's next. the city she leads that's next.
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about mask mandates in st. louis last night that was just bananas, and i mean that in a literal sense. good evening. i wanted to let you know, i followed your rules. i wore my mask. i social distanced. and i washed my hands. heck! i even washed my bananas and my oranges! i was overboard, okay? i still got covid. so how did that happen? but i'm alive! i am a covid survivor. what county executive dr. page did yesterday was illegal. i hope the council recognizes this and votes accordingly. >> okay. there is a lot going on there. this was last night at a county council meeting in st. louis. members of the community like that lady yelling about her very clean bananas were there to ask the city council to repeal a new mask mandate enacted by the
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county executive, dr. page. and if you thought the fruit lady was something, dozens of people showed up just like her. the county council meeting went on for hours. and the most shocking thing about all of this is that it worked. last night, the st. louis county council voted, 5-2, to reverse the brand-new mask mandate in the county. enacted in response to the dangerous delta variant, that's ripping through the region. the county executive, who issued the mandate, said that the council's vote was meaningless, and that the mask rule remains in effect for st. louis county. but there's a fight in the courts, as well. the republican attorney general in missouri has filed a lawsuit, asking a judge to overturn mask mandates in st. louis county and the adjoining city of st. louis once and for all. new covid cases are skyrocketing not just in st. louis right now but the entire state of missouri.
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look at the right side of your screen. as rachel has been reporting for a few weeks. but 41% of the population in missouri is vaccinated right now, which is a dangerous combination. we talked to the head of the cdc last night, who told us that the vast majority of the counties in the united states, with high or substantial covid transmission, that's the stuff in red and orange on this map, have low vaccination rates. and look at missouri where the arrow's pointing. most of the state is lit up bright red. all of those red counties in missouri are exactly the type of places the cdc had in mind when it reversed its guidance on masks yesterday and asked people to start wearing masks indoors in areas of high covid transmission regardless of vaccination status.
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but look at what happened in st. louis county yesterday after leadership tried to enact one of those mask rules endorsed by the cdc. people who live there went nuts. the republican attorney general sued not the county, not just the county, but the city of st. louis, as well, to try and can sell cancel out a con current mask mandate that was enacted by the mayor of the city of st. louis. what are local leaders supposed to do to protect their constituents, when they live in an anti-science state? as far as the mayor of st. louis goes, she had this to say about the republican ag attacking her public health policy. quote, i wish that he would put more of his attention toward serving the people of the state of missouri. joining us, now, is the mayor of st. louis. mayor jones, good to see you, again. thank you for being with us, tonight. you got -- you got a serious issue in your state. and in your city. um, and it'd be one thing if you just had a serious issue, and you put in the mask mandate and you encouraged people to get vaccinated and we would get to the end of it. but you're actively fighting people, as this covid virus is -- is, once again, attacking your state. >> yes, we're fighting people, on two fronts. we are trying to get people vaccinated, and to keep them
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safe. and that's what the people of this -- of st. louis city and st. louis county elected myself and dr. page to do. and it should be noted that dr. page is an anesthesiologist. he works in hospitals. i have a ten-year career working in hospitals and health centers, as a health administrator. so, i think we know what we -- what we're talking about. but we're, also, following the guidance of the st. louis metropolitan pandemic task force made up of the leaders of our fqhcs as well as our local flagship hospitals. they have been recommending that we go back to a mask mandate for about a week now. >> you and i talked right after you got into office. you've been in office for about a hundred days now. have you had to sort of do a little bobbing and weaving and changing how you're -- you're dealing with this? because 100 days ago, three and a half months ago, we were getting these vaccines out. we assumed that, you know, a lot of people would -- would take them. there was difficulty getting it. and now, you have got an entirely different problem to solve. >> yes, absolutely. we thought that people would -- that vaccination rates would be higher. we thought that our leaders would be more bold and forceful
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in recommending that people get vaccinated. but in st. louis city alone, we are looking at another problem related to 80% of new cases in the african-american community. and only a little over 23% are vaccinated. so we have a whole different issue to deal with, with vaccine hesitancy amongst minority populations. >> how you do deal with both of those things? the same or differently? vaccine hesitancy in minority populations versus sort of anti-science conspiracy theorists. >> yeah, we have to deal with it, all, at the same time. or else, we will not get out of this pandemic. we are looking at a third surge in the state of missouri. and we have to address vaccine hesitancy, as far as myself and my family, all of us are vaccinated, including my 75-year-old father. and my 13-year-old son. so, you know, we follow the science. and -- and -- and i hope that others will follow the science, as well. it is safe to get vaccinated. and it's your best defense
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against the horrible side effects of covid-19 up to and including death. >> what's the fight look like on the ground? let's take -- get outside the political fight that we saw in st. louis county or the attorney general suing you. um, are you -- are you finding that you are able to sort of challenges resistance on the ground? are people at least abiding by the mask mandates? >> yes. we're finding that people are abiding by the mask mandates in st. louis city. um, and we're also finding that we have to meet people where they are. when it comes to vaccine hesitancy. so just last friday, we took our mobile vaccination unit from the health department to a community resource fair. and we'll be taking that mobile vaccination unit out everywhere we can, to actually meet people where they are. and offer them vaccines and in communities where they live. >> mayor, good to see you,
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again. thank you for being with us tonight. good luck in your efforts. st. louis mayor tishaura jones. much more ahead tonight, including what may be a positive development in the fight against the pandemic. stay with us. sudden. um, we're not about to have the "we need life insurance" conversation again, are we? no, we're having the "we're getting coverage so we don't have to worry about it" conversation. so you're calling about the $9.95 a month plan -from colonial penn? -i am. we put it off long enough. we are getting that $9.95 plan, today. (jonathan) is it time for you to call about the $9.95 plan? i'm jonathan from colonial penn life insurance company. sometimes we just need a reminder not to take today for granted. if you're age 50 to 85, you can get guaranteed acceptance whole life insurance starting at just $9.95 a month. there are no health questions so you can't be turned down for any health reason. the $9.95 plan is colonial penn's number one most popular whole life plan. options start at just $9.95 a month.
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the largest employer in the country is the u.s. government. they employ more than 2 million people. tomorrow president biden is reportedly going to announce a new coronavirus vaccine rule for all of those civilian federal employees. nothing is certain until the president says it himself, but the new rule would require all federal employees to get vaccinated or face repeated covid testing. that comes after monday since more than a thousand other employers have their own rules. workers at the v.a. will have to get vaccinated or lose their jobs. all of that comes in the same day we got a number of big reversal guidelines from the cdc. they're recommending all people regardless of their vaccination status to wear masks indoors if they live in one of the many areas where the virus is surging in the u.s.
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they're recommending masking for all teachers, staff, students, visitors in schools regardless of their vaccination status, that, of course, coming before school starts back up. and the cdc is warning preliminary evidence is showing even vaccinated people can spread the virus to others this. is all tough news to swallow, but sometimes following the science means taking a step back. joining us is dr. ashish jha, the dean of the brown school of public health. good to see you as always. i have to start somewhere else. i have to start in the u.k. the u.k. got to bad the u.s. issued a travel advisory. take a look at this. 69.3% of the u.s. has one dose of the vaccine. in the u.k. it's 88.3%. we've seen cases plummeted even though they've eliminated social
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distancing rules. what's going on there that we don't understand? >> ali, thanks for having me back. short answer, no one knows for sure, but there are a couple of theories. one obviously is kids are out of school, so that helps slow down spread in schools. second is the weather is terrific and people are spending time outdoors and we know largely the virus doesn't spread outdoors. third is what you pointed out, the huge increase in vaccinations that's happening in the u.k. lots more people vaccinated. they certainly have a high level of a population of immunity and that's helping out. >> an israeli health panel in israel is recommending a third shot for elderly people. i'm always skeptical. if i were a company, i would probably say that too. what do you make of this? >> i have to say i'm looking at the data and we're still
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learning, but it does appear that for some people -- and let's be very specific about this, not everybody, but older people, people who are frail, nursing home residents, a third shot may end up being helpful because we're trying to ward off infections against this very, very dangerous delta variant. so i don't think it's a slam-dunk. i want to see a bit more data, but that's what israel is relying on, and i would not be surprised if we don't go down that road in the next few weeks or the months ahead. >> we were talking with dr. walensky. she called it an update. she said we've got more information and we're updating it. i get that, but after watching cdc all of last year, a lot of americans were frustrated at guidance that seemed to be inconsistent. maybe today's cdc is suffering because of the reputational damage that was done to it last year. what do you think of the new mask mandate guidance that came from the cdc?
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>> look. i am totally sympathetic to people who say, look, this is different from what we were dealing with a few months ago. this is a pandemic where we're learning about the virus and new variants that show up. so in may when the cdc relaxed its guidance, we did not think they were getting infected and we certainly didn't think they spread it. delta wasn't around very much. i think what the cdc did yesterday is fine, it's consistent with the science, it's rehnable for people in high transmission areas to wear the mask. i don't think it's going to make a huge difference, by the way. i don't think it will stem the surge, but i think this is where the science is heading, and i thought the cdc made a good call. >> ashish, thank you for joining us. he's been keeping us informed for a very long time. thanks so much for your time tonight. we'll be right back. tonight. we'll be right back. it's the most comfortable, body-sensing, automatically-responding, energy-building, dually-adjustable,
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show me the olympics. [ "bugler's dream" playing ]
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♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ something to keep an eye on tomorrow. we've been watching those texas
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democrats who left the state to avoid the passage of restrictive voting rights legislation in texas. they'll be testifying before the house oversight committee in d.c. tomorrow. they're, of course, staying out of texas until the session ends so that law can be defeated. that does it for us tonight. we'll see you tomorrow. now the question is how soon could we see a bill passed? plus, tensions between party leaders are at a new high after the house of representatives reinstated a mask mandate for lawmakers and staff members. the question is did nancy pelosi really call kevin mccarthy a moron? and caeleb dressel delivers. he sets a new record and is bringing home the gold.

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