tv The 11th Hour With Brian Williams MSNBC July 30, 2021 8:00pm-9:00pm PDT
show." i will be joined by bet owe o'rourke. watch "the saturday show" at 10:00 a.m. eastern on msnbc. "the 11th hour with brian williams" starts right now. ♪ ♪ good evening once again. i'm chris jansing in for brian williams. day 192 of the biden administration. in this urgent and critical phase of the pandemic, the white house has stepped up its response to the surge, doubling efforts to get more vaccinated and also recommending masks even for those who have gotten their shots. tonight there's a new indication the white house could be weighing even tougher tactics to stop the spread. >> reporter: should americans expect more coming up, more restrictions because of covid? >> in all probability. by the way, we had a good day yesterday. almost a million people got vaccinated.
about half a million of those people for the first time. >> we are also learning an explosive delta variant outbreak in provincetown, massachusetts, pushed the cdc to change mask recommendations for people who have been vaccinated. new data showed three-quarters of those infected in that outbreak were fully vaccinated, but, thankfully, full required hospitalization. the data also suggested vaccinated people could spread the virus. >> the data that we saw in massachusetts were corroborated in numerous other places, and that's when we knew we had to take action. >> meanwhile, more businesses are announcing mandates. broadway's theater owners and operators say audiences must be vaccinated and wear masks to attend performances when they resume in the fall. vaccines will be mandatory for walmart employees at its headquarters and disney says all salaried and nonunion employees will be required to receive a covid-19 vaccine. meanwhile, florida's
governor is pushing back on mandates for masks in schools. he has signed an executive order that effectively bans school districts from enacting mask requirements. there's also major news tonight about donald trump's efforts to subvert the 2020 election. "the new york times" was the first to report that trump pressured justice department officials late last year to declare the election was corrupt, even though they had found no evidence of widespread fraud. "the times" reports trump's demands were made during a phone call on december 27th with the acting attorney general at the time, jeffrey rosen, and his deputy, richard donoghue. donoghue's handwritten notes from the conversation have been released from the house oversight committee. one note summarizes trump as saying, quote, just say the election was corrupt and leave the rest to me and the "r" congressman. trump didn't name the lawmakers, but at other points during the call the times reports he did
mention republican congressman jim jordan of ohio, scott perry of pennsylvania, and senator ron johnson of wisconsin. "the times" also reports congressman jordan and senator johnson deny any role in trump's efforts to pressure the justice department. congressman perry did not respond to request for comment from "the times." earlier today one member of the house oversight committee was blunt about the new revelations. >> i frankly think it is a criminal conspiracy. i think that the contemporaneous notes released today by deputy attorney general at the time donoghue clearly reveal out of donald trump's own mouth an illegal attempt to subvert the election results of a free and fair elects. >> also tonight, donald trump was dealt a major legal blow in the justice department issued an opinion saying congress should get to see the former president's tax returns. that reverses a decision made in 2019 by trump administration lawyers. we've also been watching the
effort to ex fend the federal eviction moratorium that expires tomorrow. a last-ditch effort to extend the ban has failed in the house, and lawmakers will be on recess for the next several weeks. the measure had prevented the removal of renters during the pandemic. with that, let's bring if our lead-off guests on this friday night. eugene daniels, white house correspondent for "politico". co-author of each day's edition of "politico "playbook"." barbara mcquade, a veteran federal prosecutor and formerly with the eastern district of michigan. she worked during the biden transition. she is co-host of the podcast "sisters in law." dr. kavita patel, former policy aide during the obama administration, one of our public health experts and nonresident fellow at brookings. great to see all of you. dr. patel, what is your view of the threat from delta right now
and what do we need to be watching for over the next couple of months? >> yeah, exactly what i think was at the top of everyone's phone in-box and messages today. we have to separate delta, which has totally changed the game for vaccinated and unvaccinated people. we know that it has implications for both, but just to be clear we still have incredible vaccines that we need to get to half the country. that statistic you cited with the president's kind of optimism, i hope that continues because that's exactly what we need. >> do you find it encouraging? >> i do. i do. by the way, i have broken down kind of where vaccinations have increased. they're actually increases in these places, miss sure owe, arkansas, nevada, where we had some of the steepest slope increases in cases. i wish i could say the same about florida. it is a large state, but florida is getting more cases per day than they've had in any previous surge prior and including at the
beginning of the winter when we didn't have vaccines for most people. so here is how i would approach delta for anybody kind of watching and wondering what to do. you really should -- the reason we're wearing a mask is really because of that kind of data from provincetown and other communities where we could transmit this much more easily than we thought if we were vaccinated to other people. with half of the country unvaccinated, we don't know who is unvaccinated, and that's why we're all, you know, talking about wearing masks. i think the most responsible thing to do is remember vaccines prevent severe disease and death, and they're working, but delta has changed the game and raised everyone's emotions including mine about how we should take precautions. it also raised awareness as you mentioned the governors preventing schools from protecting children and staff when we know very well that masks on children and in indoor settings are absolutely required
to keep everyone safe including the staff, and they should be mask as well even if they're vaccinated. kids can transmit this. >> the great divide, i can feel the temperature going up with a lot of people, particularly vaccinated people when they have to deal with these unvaccinated people. eugene, give us a sense how the white house has been operating behind the scenes this week with regard to handling the surge. what is driving joe biden's latest public announcements and then his statement tonight there may be more to unfold in this strategy. >>. >> yes, there's an urgency because they know -- you know, their one focus, their one focus walking in was the pandemic. that was number one. that was the thing no matter what you wanted to talk to them about, they wanted to talk about covid-19. they wanted to talk about that relief bill. as time has gone on they've done a good job on vaccinations, right. we have a lot of people vaccinated, 164 million by the last time i checked, more than 164 million people. that part of it is working. but nature is taking its course, and the doctor obviously knows
this a lot better than i do. so we have this delta variant, and so this week and last week they had this kind of renewed urgency to really focus on making sure that people get vaccinated, making sure that whatever the cdc says they follow. that's something -- i was in the white house briefing today and asking the principle deputy press secretary about this. you know, what she made clear is that their focus is making sure people get vaccinated, because outside of every other question that we had they say that's the one thing, the one thing that's really going to get us out of this, which we already knew. but it is starting to scare people around the country, right, and you look in some of the southern states where people are getting vaccinated all of a sudden, that is because the delta variant is scarier than people originally thought with the other variants and with the original covid-19. so the white house is focused on that, and when it comes to how the president is viewing it, he is seeing this as one, following the science, that is something you will hear over and over and over and i think they mean that.
but more importantly, the issue is that the science changes. that makes politics a little bit more difficult. >> yeah, you could tell his frustration though yesterday. he wasn't even trying to hide it when he gave that press conference. barbara, i want to turn to these latest revelations about trump's efforts to stay in power. a lot of people might say, well, we knew this, but as these kinds of cases go, how blatant, how audacious are trump's statements and what strikes you as maybe different about what we're hearing today? >> i think these notes that have been disclosed that the justice department wrote of the conversations with donald trump are really explosive. you have donald trump saying to the justice department, "just say that there is corruption in the election and leave the rest to me." you know, that sounds to my ear an awful lot like what he asked the president of ukraine when he asked him about doing us a favor. you may remember at the end it
was, we don't really need a real investigation into joe biden, i just need an announcement of an investigation into joe biden. that is enough for me to run with and sow this kind of disinformation and discord in the country, perhaps enough to be able to challenge elections throughout the country. so it is, i think, not the end of the inquiry but a very important step in the inquiry. i would imagine this is something that the january 6th commission is interested in looking at. i would also imagine that it is something that the justice department, who are investigating the origins of the january 6th uprising are interested in learning as well. i think that is a very damning statement, and i feel very thankful that we had people of integrity at the justice department in jeffrey rosen and richard donoghue who wouldn't go along with this. imagine if somebody inside would go along with it, i shudder to
think where we would be in that case. >> i don't know how your heads don't ex please. you have this, the january 6th commission, we talked about covid, how the white house is trying to deal with that. the bipartisan infrastructure plan isn't done yet. little movement on voting rights, on police reform. all of it really key elements of the biden agenda, and the house is in recess, the senate is expected to leave a week from tonight although schumer has threatened to keep people here. what is the administration's strategy for moving things along? >> yeah, i mean right now they are kind of allowing congress to do their thing. behind the scenes they're having the conversations. you know, president biden spent a lot of time in congress, 36 years, eight years as kind of the emissary as vice president to capitol hill. so he knows how to have these conversations. he worked with a lot of these members that are there now, especially some of these senators. that is their focus, is trying to move these things along. i asked people that all the time, all the time, how do you guys keep all of these things
going because they're concentrating on one infrastructure bill, you have the $3.5 trillion bill that is causing some friction between house progressives and moderates in the senate. so what do you do? they say, we walk and chew gum at the same time. it is easier said than done because obviously voting rights doesn't seem like it is going anywhere, though they do have a bill text for this john lewis voting rights advancement act. police reform, like you said, is at a standstill. we had june or bust. it is now august tomorrow, this weekend. so they've missed a couple of deadlines there. so there's a lot going on and they know, and this white house knows there's not a lot of time to get things done because when january comes around all eyes will be on 2022 and almost nothing is going to be able to get pushed through congress. >> yeah, and you still have these questions lingering about the other guy, the former guy, barbara. how critical do you think this doj decision on trump's taxes is and can trump drag this out the way he did before?
>> i think this is a refreshing example of rectifying something that really should have been done in the first instance. the statute that is at issue here says words to the effect of, if the chair of the ways and means committee in the house of representatives seeks the records of any taxpayer, the secretary of the treasury shall furnish those records. it is very clear. the language is clear. so the idea that in the past the justice department stonewalled those records was really wrong and it was nice to see the justice department rectify that today by reversing itself by saying, the statute is very clear, shall means." one of the things that's been reported tonight is that the justice department, the treasury department and the house have agreed that they will not turn over these documents until tuesday to give president trump an opportunity to wage an objection. so i think we've seen this movie
before. i do think president trump will file something and will seek to delay the production of these documents. i think he ultimately will lose, but i think he will fight it until he can fight no more. >> so, dr. patel, i want to go back to the questions that i know you are hearing a lot from folks about the coronavirus. let's start, if we can, with the whole idea of boosters. journalists and author laurie garrett wrote this in a column today for "foreign policy." waning vaccine efficacy coupled with a stubborn one-fifth of the adult population refusing any immunization, has opened the door for the dangerous mutant delta variant to wreak havoc among the vaccinated and unvaccinated alike. that's why the united states is going to need a third dose of the mrna vaccines for the nation's older population. the triple play is already overdue. when do we need to start having a serious conversation?
how soon do we need guidance on this? >> oh, we are past the point where we needed to start a serious conversation. it is not only way overdue. laurie is right. this is something we have seen data building, not over weeks, over months, and it is exactly -- hiv, organ transplant, people on chronic suppressive medication, steroids, all of us including myself know somebody or have this diagnosis ourselves. so this is not as uncommon as one would think. here is what is holding it up. let me kind of put on my former regulatory hat. these are all emergency use authorization vaccines so technically you are not allowed to even give third dose. people are getting them illicitly even at the recommendation of doctors who are smart, and they're not allowed to because we're under an emergency use authorization. we need to get these vaccines approved. they should be done in a safe fashion. it is hard for me to tell a
patient the vaccines are safe but why isn't it approved? they have a process, they need to do it. absolutely chris, every academic and clinical physician i know is clamoring for the ability to do these third doses, but then i also want to turn and just remind people that we can't lose our sight on getting everyone first and second doses, and we still have 13 million people who got j & j. we need a little guidance on what to do for them as well. i think they need boosters, but which kind, in what order are still up. we're passed the point where we need advice. we need to move forward on action. >> really quickly on these breakthrough infections because a lot of americans are worried about it. what do we need to know? >> yeah, so what we need to know is that the majority of them are mild symptoms, but what is important is that you do need to isolate if you do get a breakthrough infection. and if you are presenting or think you have been in contact with someone, even if you are vaccinated, who has had symptoms, chris, you do need to get tested. we want to bring as many people forward to get testing.
when in doubt, just check it out and get tested. that's what i want people to know. >> okay. when in doubt, check it out. eugene, i want to go back to you before we take a break with kind of a late- breaking tweet from congresswoman cori bush who tonight is trying to get congress to extend the eviction moratorium. this is her tweet. many of my democratic colleagues chose to go on vacation early today rather than staying to vote to keep people in their homes. i'll be sleeping outside the capitol tonight. we've still got work to do. she adds, reminding people that she was unhoused and lived in her car when her two babies for a time. can something like this help move the needle? >> it is hard to say because a lot of people have already left. >> yeah. >> a lot of people have already moved on and they're back in their districts and they will be, you know, following their schedules that are already laid out. i will say though, it was kind of an extraordinary week when it came to the eviction moratorium conversation because, first of all, the biden administration when they called on congress to
do something was already a little bit late. so this frustration from members of congress, especially progressives, who say this should have been worked on before. june 29th was when the supreme court said that congress had to do something on eviction moratoriums for the cdc to be able to, and that did not happen. they tried to last-ditch efforts to do that. so there's a lot of frustration with the biden administration on that, and there's a lot of frustration on the progressive side with moderates who are leaving, who were saying they were going to go because, one, it is not clear that people want to do this, right. if they really want to stay, they would have stayed. those are the things that -- that's one of the things that we know about members of congress. they don't like things getting in the way of them getting back home, but they will when they absolutely feel the need. so people like cori bush, people like alexandria ocasio-cortez, they are still pushing this, but with everyone gone there's not much that can be done. so that means that people may be getting evicted very soon and people like cori bush, who used to sleep in their car, may be
back to doing just that during a pandemic. that's something that health experts are very concerned about as the delta variant, as we've been talking about, continues to move through the united states. >> eugene daniels, barbara mckwag, dr. kavita patel, thank you so much on this friday. coming up, we will talk to a doctor who says his florida emergency room is getting crushed with a surge of covid patients. how is this happening? later, what problems may lay ahead for the only twice-impeached florida man if congress gets hold of his tax returns. "the 11th hour" just getting under way on a friday night. geg under way on a friday night. c. who can come to a stop with barely a bobble. lucia. who announces her intentions even if no one's there. and sgt moore. who leaves room for her room. with usaa safepilot, when you drive safe... ...you can save up to 30% on your auto insurance.
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♪ ♪ i continue to be humbled by this virus. i have no interest in continuing mask guidance, and the best way to stop a new variant from spreading is to have less virus out there. the best way to do that is to get people vaccinated and to mask up until they are. >> right now florida is at the epicenter of this surge in coronavirus cases, due in large part to the delta variant. the state reported more than 100,000 cases over the past week. that's more than a 50% jump in just one week. florida leads the nation in both covid infections and hospitalizations. we welcome back dr. oktar, an emergency physician at florida international university, and the university of arizona's college of medicine in phoenix. he joins us tonight from miami. good to see you again. terrible circumstances, doctor. there is a doctor at tampa general who described this
situation feeling as if we are being hit by a train, and that train being covid. how bad is the situation where you are right now? >> yeah, that's actually a great analogy. that's what it feels like. the last few shifts i have had have been wicked stressful, and i'm used to this. so i have been dealing with it for years and i lived through the pandemic including in arizona where there were hot spots. i don't know if i got soft or just really it is that bad, but we are in rough, rough straits in the emergency department. huge backups, massive delays, and it is ex tleemly stressful for us to try to see everyone. remember, they're very sick. so i think feeling like you got hit by a train is exactly right. every day you wake up, you get hit again. >> wow. what are you hearing from patients? i mean a lot of the things we've been hearing from doctors around the country is that they tell them, too late, i wish i had gotten vaccinated. but give us a sense of just sort
of what you are hearing from the folks who come in and they're clearly sick with covid. >> yeah, you know, you get the patients that regret. maybe miami is a special place because there are a lot of people who don't have regret at all. i had a patient recently who said she would rather die of covid than be vaccinated. imagine the irony of that. >> what do you say to that? >> it is hard to rationalize that because in our minds we are thinking, well, what do you want us to do in the er if your goal is to die? obviously we are there to help everyone and save everyone, but you have a very effective treatment and you are refusing it, it begs the question what are you doing in the emergency department, particularly when you are taking beds away from other people who have been trying to do the right thing. of course, we will always try to treat everyone to the best of our ability, but it is anger inducing, ironic and dangerous. >> and incredibly sad because we know how to deal with this, right? the "miami herald" reported today that south florida hospitals have seen a rise in
younger patients. again, something we have seen in some of the other hot spots. is that what you are experiencing? >> yeah. as a matter of fact, i think part of that is almost not a surprise. the elderly have been very effectively vaccinated in a lot of parts of the country including fairly well here. so the people who aren't vaccinated often are younger and, therefore, they're not immune and they're the ones most likely to get the disease and to spread it. just earlier today i caught a 6-month-old and after recalling realized i can't talk to the baby, i have to talk to parents. there are so many kids coming with covid, there are so many young adults coming in with covid. they're not as believing of the conspiracy theories. the worst of it is the middle-age adults who know they're sick, have families of their own and are refusing to get vaccinated. everyone, please get vaccinated, if not to protect yourself to protect your loved ones. >> even if you are seeing these cases among the young rides, governor desantis, who we said
earlier isn't letting schools mandate mask. also he said he's not masking his own three kids. he said, i want to be able to see them smile. he said, and this is the important thing, there's no evidence masks can prevent outbreaks at schools. is that true? do masks not work the same way as they do for everybody else? >> you know who is not smiling? kids with covid. they actually look pretty might rabble and their parents aren't happy either, and they're really in dire straits when they go to icu. i will grant kids generally don't get as sick as adults do, but none, none of the kids i have seen infected with covid have been happy about it. absolutely zero of them with a very tight confidence interval. we know from other countries, we know from other school systems that masks are very effective. listen, if 100% of the school is vaccinated you probably don't need a mask. but i know nobody under age 12 in this country is vaccinated. the only way of preventing transmission of disease if not
vaccinated is distancing and mask. i feel like a broken record but it is still true. >> it does seem that -- well, it doesn't just seem. we have heard about the numbers and joe biden just talked about it today, that we're seeing more people getting vaccinated. there had been this lull. we had this big push right at the beginning, then this big lull. now things seem to be picking up. since you are around patients all the time and you're so deeply immersed in this, is your sense that maybe what is happening now, which is this horrific reliving of what everybody went through for a whole year, getting people to get vaccinated, are you a little bit hopeful? >> i hate to sound like a pessimist on national tv, but after -- after the things i have seen and the people i have heard, i'm not sure that convincing people is exactly going to work. i do think that mandates could work. remember, we've mandated a lot of things over the course of human history, including vaccines.
so i think mandating the coronavirus vaccine, in particular the mrna one but really any one because they're all severely effective, i think mandating them could go a long way. would make it a crime not to get it. remember, if you are a hermit you don't have to be vaccinated or if you wear a hazmat suit all the time, but if you are interacting other people vaccination would be the way to go. i think mandating them is the only way to significantly increase the rates. >> i want to ask you before i let you go and it does stick with me, getting hit by the train analogy, how are the folks you are working with doing? >> very fatigued. the worst part is the residents i am training also, for one, are getting infected despite being vaccinated and, two, having to deal with patients at odds with their treatment plan. as my resident told me two nights ago multiple times on shift, i'm beginning to lose
empathy. i'm still glad he has empathy left, but there's only so long you can deal with it before it takes a toll. >> you mentioned some who are vaccinated are getting covid. how worried are you about the breakthrough infection? . >> well, the actual percentage of it is still extremely low. it is less than .1%. not 1% but .1%. the ones hospitalized are very, very rare. none of our physicians who have been vaccinated and got infected actually needed to be hospitaled, which is good news. remember, that's the most important thing with the vaccine. not just preventing infection, but especially preventing severe infection and hospitalization. that's the good news. but on the flip side, you do have to be concerned especially in the health care setting where we are all seeing patients that even if you are feeling okay you may be and you probably are able to transmit the disease. very important to wear masks, especially when you are around people who aren't vaccinated. >> dr. akhtar, i can't thank you enough. i know how tired you must be and
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you can come up with in your wild imagination. >> more reaction tonight to those stunning new details on just how the twice-impeached former president tried to overturn an election, including telling the doj to, quote, just say the election was corrupt and leave the rest to me. bill kristol put it bluntly. this was the closest we have ever come to a genuine presidential usurpation. that wasn't the only major development coming from the attorney general's justice department today. the doj reversed an earlier decision and now says the irs must release six years of trump's house returns to house investigators. just a few days ago the justice department said it won't move to block former trump officials from testifying to the january 6th select committee, so plenty to talk about tonight with victoria defrancesco soto, professor and assistant dean at the lbj school of public affairs at the university of texas in austin. and the aforementioned bill kristol, author, writer, thinker
and "politico", veteran of the reagan and bush administrations and editor at large at "the bulwark." great to see you both. bill kristol, put it in perspective for us. how does trump's pressure on the doj reveal how close we came to usurping the presidency? >> you know, chris, the events of january 6th are so dramatic and, of course, brought back into high relief by the very moving testimony of the capitol police officers this week. one tends to forget a little bit what happened between november 3rd and january 6th and what happened behind the scenes, what trump tried to do not in public with the justice department, with the defense department, with state election officials in michigan and georgia, in a pretty systematic effort to overturn the election, which is pretty amazing. with a sitting president, it has not happened in the u.s. the sitting president trying to reverts the verdict of the people and stay in office using the instrumentalities of government. he fires the secretary of defense.
he forces out basically the attorney general. luckily, a deputy attorney general, who he thought would be more pliant, seems to have resisted him in the call. he thought about getting rid of him and replacing him with a more cooperative person to run the justice department. i think when you put it all together and i hope the hearings do this in a systematic way, we both will be shocked by the incredible irresponsibility and callousness of fostering an attack on the capitol obviously, but also by this much more systematic effort to overturn the election and really see the depth of what -- of how as was said how unamerican what trump tried to do was and be astounded one of our two major parties still seems to regard him as its leader. >> victoria, with the revelations of just how much pressure was put on doj pushing these baseless claims, we have the ruling that former trump
officials can be subpoenaed by the january 6th select committee. would you expect not just that committee, potentially others to move maybe quickly. i mean team trump, of course, probably will push back and one against is framing it all as a witch hunt, but how do you see it all playing out? >> i think what we have seen over the course of this week, chris, you know, with the testimony from the january 6th commission and then what we saw from the doj just really highlights how close we came to the edge because this isn't supposed to happen in the united states. i think that the other piece of this that you mentioned earlier, in trump giving up his tax returns. well, this to me -- i am standing way back, maybe three steps back. this to me is about the branch of congress reasserting checks and balances, because what we saw during the whole trump presidency and especially during that interim of the election in january 6th was an unbridled president. we have seen presidential power grown over the last several
decades and it really ballooned under trump. so this is where we see the need for a congress to come and reassert itself. even though it may seem minor now because trump is out of office and it is more about a criminal issue, the fact that they can check his power, because he might have been beholden to foreign powers while he was president, is crucial to securing our democratic institution because really this is at the end of the day about small "d" democratic theory. >> bill kristol, peggy newnan at the "wall street journal" writes this about the january 6th commission. members of the republican leadership are making a huge error in how they are responding to the committee. they misunderstand their own position. they should be quietly trying to push away from the disaster by leaving it on mr. trump and his white house, not their own party. then she went on to criticize minority leader kevin mccarthy. is it too late, do you think, bill, for republicans to change course and, as peggy put it,
nail everybody involved? >> well, they could do it, i suppose, and maybe they will. it is better if they do than they don't, but peggy puts it in a technical way, it is unwise for them. it is wrong what they're doing. it is not a matter of, oh, they would be better off politically to distance themselves. so far they don't think they're better off politically to distance themselves too much. some are distancing themselves a little bit, but this needs to be unequivocally repudiated. it hasn't been. it hasn't been. >> here is what i want to -- what do you think? i understand the money part of it because you put trump in a fundraising e-mail and the dollars just come rolling in. but from, again, a strategic tactical point of view, he lost the white house, he lost the senate, he lost the house, and now like we're seeing in texas people who he is supporting are losing. so i'm just -- from any kind of perspective, how does this work? >> they don't see it quite that way. they picked up house seats. they almost won the senate.
they happened to lose the two georgia elections. they would like to have all of the energy of trump, all of the demagoguery which is successful. let's not kid ourselves, that trump engaged in, and get rid of the less attractive aspects of it. i don't think you can do that. they don't have the courage to repudiate him. they're scared of the primary challenges. one can step back and say it is unwise for them to do this. they don't think they're doing badly. does mccarthy think he's going the lose the house in 2022? no, they think republicans have a decent chance. they don't think republicans have a chance in 2024. i would say honestly they do despite the lack of repudiation. they have not paid a price. who has paid a price? liz cheney. a huge number of republicans who voted to overturn the election of january 6th, they haven't
paid the price. >> let's talk a little bit, victoria, about something i hear all the time from democrats, they want to see donald trump's taxes. the doj says the irs has to release them. democrats say it is a victory for congressional oversight and national security, but there's a different take from democratic congressman gerry connolly. >> i don't see it as a great victory. i see it as a signal failure of the system. it took two years to adjudicate this and to get the department of justice to finally agree that, yeah, you are entitled to see those tax returns. the american people were entitled to know while he was in office, and it might have materially affected, by the way, the two impeachments. >> so quickly, victoria, is this a better late than never scenario? how important do you think it is that congress could see those returns now? >> i do. i do think it is better late than never, and going back to what i said earlier i think that structurally congress needs to be able to flex that muscle. that being said, we know the playbook that donald trump is
going to use. it is a witch hunt, is what was very successful in him defending himself in his first impeachment, in his second impeachment. but quickly to one of the points bill made, i think that the question here isn't so much what is trump's staying power but what is the staying power of folks coming after him. is ron desantis going to be able to make any headway? trump has been slowly but surely losing a little bit of ground. he doesn't have twitter. he doesn't have the bully pulpit. he lost this candidate here in texas who he endorsed, lost. but my question is what is the influence of trumpism in 2.0 and the folks that come after him? that's really what i'm looking at now instead of trump. >> victoria and bill are staying with us. coming up after a quick break, the vote to pro secretary voting rights could come to a crucial vote but one party may still get in the way. we will talk about it when "the 11th hour" continues.
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♪ ♪ i want my constituents, i want my constituents' children's children to be able to enjoy the freedom that is given them. >> we need congress to act and we need them to act now. we are here in person because that's how important it is to protect everyone's freedom to vote, and we will keep fighting with everything we have. >> texas democrats still pleading for federal protections on voting rights, and here is yet another reason why. republicans in georgia are actively trying to take over elections in a crucial democratic stronghold. "the atlanta journal-constitution reports" state representative jan jones and four other
house republican legislators sent a letter friday demanding a vee view of fulton county election's management, a critical step in georgia's new voting law that must take place before the state election board can overhaul a county's election board.
still with us victor jaw di fran victoria and bill. the reverend said, look, democracy is in trouble. if we say it is the worst attack since the civil war, the answer has to be massive, what needs to happen here? >> we need to see a movement. it is really very much looking at the playbook of the 1960s. what was the playbook pushing over two dozen jim crow law has restricted voting across the american south? we are starting to see the same thing, chris. what we are seeing in this fight is folks going to washington. i'm going to assert my texas bias here, but i really think that the presence of
the texas democrats from the legislature here has really helped keep them in the spotlight. but then at the same time you see the grassroots marches, the civil disobedience we saw with sheila jackson-lee getting arrested yesterday. we see the march going to
culminate in washington, d.c. a month from now. all of these pieces together are what is causing this movement because, look, at the end of the day the republicans in legislatures across the southern states and some other states as well have the numbers. but as a result of that you see the pressing need of mobilization from all of these different areas as we're seeing right now, but ultimately it has to be a federal-level protection just like we saw in 1965. >> so if that's the goal, bill kristol, for folks who want to do something about voting rights, protecting people's right to vote, the president met with democratic leadership on passing a narrower voting rights bill, but really what are the chances that republicans are going to really negotiate here, be willing to get on board with something? >> i don't know that the chances many or certainly any republicans coming on board are at all good. but i will say this. they have done what people thought they couldn't do, which is they're about to come up with a consensus bill which senator
manchin helped write which will be a narrower election integrity bill preventing the overturning of elections by republican legislatures including other provisions as well, with national voter id which conservatives might like. they will come up with a bill next week and they will introduce a new version of the john lewis voting rights act next week. the meeting in the white house this afternoon was important. the president, the vice president, the speaker, majority leader schumer, i was told it went over an hour and i was told they focused almost entirely on voting rights. they have a lot to talk about, those people. >> yeah. >> they could have talked about covid and infrastructure. so i think they're serious, and i think they're going to try to get some republicans once they have the bill next week, but i -- and then they will see if they can get any. but if not, i now think the odds are better than i would have thought -- >> really? >> -- that they will come together to adjust the filibuster on this one issue because i do think they are convinced, as victoria was
saying, how urgent and important it is. >> we will keep watching. bis kristol, victoria defrancesco soto, good to have you with us. thank you for staying with us. coming up, the destructive weather story that nearly flew under the radar when "the 11th hour" continues. ots. do you struggle to fall ots. asleep and stay asleep? qunol sleep formula combines 5 key nutrients that can help you fall asleep faster, stay asleep longer, and wake up refreshed. the brand i trust is qunol.
♪ ♪ a big chunk of our country is recovering tonight after deadly storms tore across five states. at least a dozen tornados have touched down just over the past couple of days. our report tonight from nbc news correspondent rehema ellis. >> reporter: in pennsylvania a path of destruction. >> we got a major building collapse. >> reporter: after a powerful tornado tore through areas around philadelphia, ripping the roof off this car dealership, injuring five. >> just looked like a bomb went off. you know, i been doing this for 34 years, i never saw that kind of devastation. >> reporter: elsewhere trees uprooted, power lines down as
heavy rain pounded the area. in new jersey, at least three tornados barrelled across the state. >> we lost power and then we were just hear pop, pop, pop, all of our back windows were blowing out. >> it went on for about three, four minutes, and then this is what we were left with. >> reporter: this waterspout formed at nearby bethenny beach, delaware. two other tornados striking ohio. in virginia, damaging wind and hail. earlier, a tornado from the same system hit wisconsin leaving one man dead. experts say despite the summer severe weather, it might not be related to climate change as tornados typically strike as far north as canada. tonight, a perfect storm of violent weather. rehema ellis, nbc news. we're back with more of "the 11th hour" after a quick break. ♪ ♪
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the last thing before we go tonight, a quick update on the drama out of tokyo tonight where right now it is nearly 1:00 in the afternoon. american swimmer katie ledecky pulled off the three-peat tonight. she won her third gold medal in the 800-meter freestyle, her fourth medal from these olympics, and she says that rumors of her retirement are premature. she's not done swimming yet. caeleb dressel, meanwhile, was expected to dominate in the 100-meter butterfly final, and, boy, did he. capturing his third gold medal of these games and setting a world record. and the u.s. women's soccer team takes on canada in the semifinals monday, but if you saw the game today it was a nail biter shootout victory over the netherlands. that is our broadcast for this friday night with our thanks for being with us.
on behalf of all of my colleagues at the nbc network news, good night. ♪ ♪ earned vacation. it was the biggest story in the world and that's not an exaggeration. in the middle of july, not 2018, president trump met with the russian president, vladimir putin. this was in helsinki, finland. and as i'm sure you remember, it did not go well. he said putin did not really attack our election in 2016, he said the u.s. showed stupidity for investigating it in the first place. trump made international headlines for our poorly he represented american democracy when he shared the stage with a dictator. the one in german's my favorite