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tv   Alex Witt Reports  MSNBC  October 31, 2021 10:00am-11:00am PDT

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a very good day to all of you from msnbc world headquarters here in new york. welcome to "alex witt reports." democrats are going down to the wire to hammer out the last details of president biden's build back better agenda. they're hoping to vote tuesday on infrastructure and social spending. for president biden, the timing is becoming more
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critical. a new nbc poll shows his approval rating is at the lowest point of his presidency, down seven points since august. on the world stage president biden secured new agreements at the g20 meetings today including one on a tariff war put in place during the trump administration. >> we've got significant progress too on ending a dispute between the united states and our closest european partners where we were engaged in a tariff war over steel and aluminum. that's gotten resolved. there's an agreement not to finance coal projects around the world. this is one of the largest drivers of emissions. going into glasgow, as a result of american engagement, american leadership, we're getting that over the finish line. donald trump meanwhile showed up in georgia for game four in the world series and took part in the atlanta braves controversial tomahawk chop. that was hours after a list was made public outlining the documents and records he wants to hide from the house select
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committee investigating the january 6th attack on the capitol. >> i think the documents would document an attempted coup that didn't work. and they would document an assault on the nation's capitol. the last thing they want out there, as they move towards the midterms that they're so confident about, is that they attempted to overturn a lawful election in a violent way. >> our team of reporters joins to us go beyond the headlines. we begin in rome at the g20 summit with nbc white house correspondent mike memoli. mike, president biden just spoke about the supply chain crisis. what did he say? put all that in perspective for us. >> yeah, alex, as we get ready to wrap our time here in rome, it's been an interesting evolution over the last few days. i think the word of the day on friday was "clumsy," his description of the flap with france over the nuclear submarine deal. the white house has been pushing
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back about progress that's been made on a number of fronts on our foreign policy agenda and the democrats' agenda at home. some of our closest allies are not even members of the g20, participated in talks on how to deal with some of these bottlenecks. the president talked about using his executive authority, directing the defense department, for instance, to release raw materials from the national stockpile, defense stockpile. think of that as the equivalent of the national petroleum reserve, but for electronics. he talked about working with our asia pacific allies, the asean group, to deal with red tape at the ports, to get goods and services through those ports much more quickly. and the president laid out ways in which his infrastructure bill and the reconciliation measure will also deal with this as well. but let's take a listen to part
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of what the president said is really the long term solution as well. take a listen. >> and in the pandemic is the ultimate key to unlocking the disruptions we're all contending with. but we have to take action now. together with our partners in the private sector to reduce the backlogs that we're facing. and then we have to prevent this from happening again, in the future. now that we have seen how vulnerable these lines of global commerce can be, we cannot go back to business as usual. >> so a lot of these issues as it relates to the economy, inflation, the supply chain especially, have really been part of the drag on the president's approval rating. we'll see if the president can start pivoting as he hopes to rebuild some momentum. we'll hear from him later this afternoon at a news conference. we haven't had a chance to do that in a while, get a number of
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questions to him about what he's accomplished in rome and also what progress moving forward at home as well. >> mike memoli, thank you from rome. we'll await that news conference a little later. lets go to julie tsirkin on capitol hill. julie, so much is still being hammered out. what are you hearing behind the scenes on capitol hill? >> alex, there's good news and bad news. i always like to start with the good news. i'm hearing actually in just the last couple of minutes, i'm getting texts on my phone here that a group of senators and representatives in the house, including senator sinema, by the way, may be nearing a deal on prescription drug pricing and medicare expansion, to add those items to this framework that president biden presented on thursday. they are are still negotiating. a source cautions this is still very fluid. but this group of folks including senator bernie sanders, elizabeth warren, and others, were very frustrated to see that president biden left
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these items out of his framework, that $1.75 trillion plan he presented to house democrats on thursday. you heard senator bernie sanders alluding to this on cnn this morning, saying that he's been on the phones all weekend trying to work those items back in, which by the way he said he did not endorse this plan as is. it's a strong bill, he called it, but they're still working on it, as you mentioned at the top, they have to put their pens down by today to get this across the finish line on tuesday. let's take a listen to some of what senator bernie sanders, the budget chairman, said on cnn this morning. >> look, this is not about senator sinema or senator manchin. it's about 50 senators. i think there has got to be a framework agreed upon in the senate that all of us know is going to be implemented before the members of the house vote. it will be a framework. you'll have a piece of paper which will say this is going to be in the bill. you don't have to have all of the legislative language, but
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you have to have a statement which says a, b, c, d, and e is going to be in the package and 50 members of the senate are supporting it. >> alex, a framework is not a bill. and they're still working things out on this package. now, if the house votes on it on tuesday, a little bit more good news to add here on the bottom half of here is that house progressives are supporting this plan, another indication was ro khanna, congressman ro khanna, a member of the progressive caucus in the house, supporting both bills for a vote on tuesday. it shows the white house and progressives may be on the same page. but we're seeing nothing from holdouts, centrists manchin and sinema. i'll be camping out in front of senator manchin's office, so send snacks my way.
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>> i have a feeling those guys are getting to know you quite well given your intrepid nature of reporting. let me double-check what you just got on your phone, not a done deal, but at this moment you have senators sanders, sinema, warren, and others trying to negotiate lowering drug prices and expanding medicare, presumably, i'm putting words in your mouth, but presumably to include vision and dental. hearing is already in the bill. is that all you read it? >> that's right, hearing is in the bill. and these other items, vision and dental, once a red line, senator bernie sanders said, for him. these items in addition to lowering the cost of prescription drugs. they want to see those things in this bill. but again, that will raise the price tag and it's already $250 billion over what senator manchin said he originally wanted. so, work in progress. >> work in progress. thank you for that update, julie
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tsirkin. passage of president biden's agenda in the house could not come at a better time for the president, who has seen his approval ratings drop to 42% in the new nbc policy, which is why tuesday may be the most pivotal day yet in the biden presidency. there's also virginia's hotly-contested governor election and the fda approval of the covid vaccine in children. here to break this all down is peter baker, "new york times" chief white house correspondent and an msnbc political analyst and our sunday regular friend here. good news from peter -- i mean, rather, from julie there, peter, a moment ago. progressives on board for a vote on tuesday. what is your read and do you think it really happens this week? >> i think we should stop making predictions because predictions have obviously not worked out so well so far. but it does look like they're
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making progress and inching closer to a consensus to lay out president biden's version of a framework that forced the two sides to come to grapple with one of the really big dividing points left, okay, where are we really still apart and how do we get there, it does seem to be making some progress. the president wanted this vote to happen before he left the country to see his foreign counterparts, to give him a sense of momentum. that didn't happen, and it will probably be too late for terry mcauliffe who is running for governor in virginia. >> i think chris janssen reported there had been 1.1
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million early votes cast already in the state of virginia. let's get to the poll numbers. what do you think should be most concerning to the president? is it the 42% approval rating or is it the 72% of americans who think the country is heading in the wrong direction? >> yeah, i think, look, it's concerning to him that he's not losing republicans he didn't have to begin with. those numbers are going down because he's losing some democrats and independents. those are the people that he has traditionally appealed to. and he's now obviously losing support among them. that's something that's very concerning, particularly if you look at the presidential approval rating as a barometer of health of a political party heading into next year's midterm. the larger perception that this poll indicates and other polls have indicated is that there is public skepticism that he is in fact what he presented himself last year as being in terms of effectiveness, in terms of competence, in terms of getting things done. that's why this debate on the hill is so important.
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he wants to turn it around and say, see, in fact i can get big stuff done. but his own fellow democrats have made that harder for him by dragging this out so long. >> do you see a cause/effect, if that infrastructure bill passes, that number, the 42% of democrats who say the country is heading in the wrong direction, does that give it a boost? >> you would think it does, because these are priorities a lot of democrats have. pre-k education, childcare help, climate, you know, action, home care, all these other things are things that many democrats have been anxious to see and presumably if they saw it pass, some momentum on the hill, that would make them more favorably disposed to president biden. at the moment they're seeing a lot of logjams and sausage-making which is unsatisfying to many voters who don't care about the ins and outs of our committee structures and our congressional politics. so what he needs to be able to show is that he's able to deliver and that's what he's
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focused on right now. >> a couple of specific issues to drill down on. the majority of americans disapprove of biden's handling of the economy. however most americans do approve of his handling of the pandemic. one would think those two issues are intrinsically connected. do you see this as any sort of glimmer of hope for the biden administration? >> they are connected, i think that's right. and i think the white house hope is that things are beginning, it looks like, to look a little better on the covid front, that infections are down, deaths are down. they're still remarkably high, much higher than you would think they would be with all the vaccine out there. that's obviously a big problem because people are still resisting the vaccine. but if the covid situation gets more under control, it obviously creates a greater stability for employers, for, you know, employees to go back to work, for people to get the kind of childcare they need in order to go back to work. and that can help stabilize the economy and get it back on track. so you're right, these two
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things are connected. but at the moment, obviously, they're very worried about things like inflation. they're worried about the slowing down of growth at this stage of the recovery. >> okay. peter baker, see you next sunday, my friend, have a good week. >> you too. the supreme court gets ready to hear challenges to the texas abortion back. former state senator wendy davis talking about it, next. , next ♪ there are beautiful ideas that remain in the dark. but with our new multi-cloud experience, you have the flexibility you need to unveil them to the world. ♪ when you're driving a lincoln, stress seems to evaporate into thin air. to unveil them to the world. which leaves us to wonder, where does it go?
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run. it's halloween, everyone's wearing masks. oh god. no man could have survived that fire. [ screaming ] michael myers has haunted this town for forty years. [ chanting ] evil dies tonight! tonight we hunt him down. [ chanting ] evil dies tonight! he's coming for me... -run. and i'm coming for him. election day is less than two days away and the race for virginia's next governor is too close to call. a roanoke college poll shows democrat terry mcauliffe with 47% of the vote, republican glenn youngkin with 46%, a statistical tie. nbc's chris jansing joins us
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from sterling, virginia. chris, what say you about the campaigning in the closing hours? >> reporter: i think there are three things always critical, right, at the end of a campaign. one to watch is money. it's clearly being spent here. there are ads everywhere. it's the most expensive gubernatorial campaign in virginia history, $115 million. second, most valuable thing, arguably, in the closing days is the candidates' time. they're both out today, 15 stops between the two of them. and then the third is really important here because we have such a close race, too close to call, a statistical dead heat. it's getting your grassroots motivated. that's why i have a couple of guests here with me who are from the group red wine and blue. they all got active after donald trump was elected. kristen and ranice, good to see both of you. what's your closing pitch to people as you're going door to door canvassing? >> we want them to get out and vote. we want them to ask us if they
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have issues they're concerned about. >> reporter: are you finding there are things that keep coming up? is there something you talk a lot about with your friends? >> whatever dominates the headlines comes up at the doors. it's interesting hearing what people care about. it's bread and butter issues, schools. it's different from the headlines as well because it's what's happening at home, what's close to their heart, that they care about. >> reporter: why do you give your time up to do this? >> when you knock on the door, you can connect, whether it's a republican or democrat. you can have good one-on-one conversations. suburban women are the ones to do that. suburban women know our neighbors, suburban women know what's going on in the neighborhood, the issues at hand. it's not different for her in one area than it is for me in my area. it's the same. we can rub up against people and find out what connects us.
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>> i'll let you go do that, thank you for hanging out. here's why this is so critically important on both sides, when you talk to the youngkin folks, they talk about all the parents energized by the things he has to say about education. this poll from roanoke college is about the enthusiasm gap, and who is enthusiastic to get out the vote. the republicans are leading by a wide margin, 49 to 32%. i talked this morning to folks from the mcauliffe campaign. they say they've had 200,000 door knocks yesterday, they hope to get another 150,000 today. that tells you how close this race is and how all those things that i laid out, the money, the candidates' time, and this grassroots, are so important right now. >> as is the enthusiasm that you talk about. thank you so much for sharing that aspect as well, chris. tomorrow morning, everyone, the supreme court will hear back to back challenges to texas' restrictive near total abortion ban. the first lawsuit filed by abortion providers in texas
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challenges the state's tactic of evading judicial review by empowering private citizens to sue anyone who aids or abets an abortion after six weeks. the other suit, filed by president biden's justice department, will address the question of whether the federal government has the right to intervene and block the ban. joining me now is former texas state senator wendy davis, also the founding director of deeds not words. good to see you again, it's been a little bit, but i'm glad to have you here on this really important day on the issue ahead of tomorrow. these cases will not directly address the constitutionality of abortion, i want to make that very clear. but what is the bigger picture of the impact that they could have? what are you watching for? >> the bigger picture for us here in texas is whether the supreme court is going to do what it ought to have done the night before this law went into effect. and that is to answer the question whether a law can be structured in such a way that it
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allows a state to absolutely override the existing authority of the supreme court and the case law of the supreme court. right now of course roe v. wade is still the law of the land. and the question of its constitutionality will directly be addressed in the mississippi case that's going to be heard on december 1. but in the meantime, this question, can a state put in the hands of private citizens the ability to enforce laws and therefore somehow circumvent supreme court precedent is a really important question. and i'm surprised, honestly, that the court didn't choose to answer it the night before the law went into effect on september 1. >> i think you and a lot of people were very surprised by that. we'll see what happens tomorrow on that. but we know the supreme court expedited these hearings, adding it to the schedule only nine days ago. does that underline the urgency
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of this issue? >> i think it really does, because what they've seen is that the impact of their failure to intervene before the law went into effect means that in the state of texas, roe v. wade has pretty much ceased to exist. it has been overturned in our state. and that's not really the way supreme court precedents and decisions about whether those precedents should stand should take place. instead, there should be a direct conversation and analysis of the constitutionality of the laws that are in front of them. that's not what happened here. and so since september 1, people across the state of texas who have tried to access abortion care have been denied that right even though roe v. wade is still purportedly the law of the land. >> i'm going to drill down even further into some of that,
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because in this hearing on the provision that allows the individuals to enforce the law instead of the state, abortion providers told the court, abortion is the target today but tomorrow it might be gun buyers who face private civil liability for firearm purchases. same-sex couples could be sued by neighbors for trying to obtain a marriage license. is this texas law setting a dangerous precedent, is it fueling a sense of, quote, legal vigilantes in neighborhoods across texas or potentially the country? >> there's no question about that, alex. if you think about the extent to which this kind of law could be applied, it could be fairly limitless. and it provides the ability for someone in another state to enforce a law against someone that they do not know simply because they find their conduct objectionable, and even if that conduct is constitutionally
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protected otherwise. that just turns the constitution and all the statutory law upon which the constitution has been built, it just turns it upside down overnight. and the supreme court i think understands by watching what the impact of their failure to intervene here has been, they understand that they're creating a dangerous precedent that could be replicated state by state by state, not just on abortion law, but, as you said, alex, gun laws, gay marriage, and so many other issues. >> it's stunning to hear you talk about it. when it comes to the second hearing, very quickly, tackling the question whether the federal government has the right to intervene, what kind of a precedent could a ruling on this -- does it impact, say, florida and arkansas? because you though there are copy cat bills in those states being pushed into law. >> that's exactly right. i think the court will probably
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decide to answer this on one or the other of the two questions that are in front of them. they may choose to punt on this question about the united states having standing. but it's a really important question. when an unconstitutional law has been enacted in a state, does the department of justice, standing on behalf of the constitution and the values and the rights through which we should be protected by the constitution, does the department of justice have the right to step forward and be the voice for citizens across that particular state, and essentially across the country, on whether laws can be passed that are directly in contravention to the constitution itself? >> former texas state senator wendy davis, excellent conversation. thank you so much for your time. so alec baldwin speaks out on camera for the first time since that movie set shooting. considering the sheriff told him
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not to talk about the investigation, he actually spoke a lot about the tragedy. we'll let you listen in. n. unconventional thinking means we see things differently, so you can focus on what matters most. that's how we've become the leader in 5g and a partner who delivers exceptional customer support, and 5g included in every plan, so you get it all. super emma just about sleeps in her cape. but when we realized she was battling sensitive skin, we switched to tide hygienic clean free. it's gentle on her skin, and out cleans our old free detergent. tide hygienic clean free. hypoallergenic and safe for sensitive skin. with relapsing forms of ms... there's a lot to deal with. not just unpredictable relapses. all these other things too. it can all add up. kesimpta is a once-monthly at-home injection...
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plus, 0% interest for 36 months on all smart beds. ends monday. we are hearing from alex baldwin for the first time on camera since the deadly shooting on the set of his latest movie. the actor/producer refusing to address the investigation but describing cinematographer halyna hutchins as a friend. nbc's emily acada has more. >> reporter: alex, a frustrated alec baldwin spoke out, hoping to grant him relief from the constant media attention. he does not think they will be resuming production on the movie "rust." >> she was my friend. she was my friend. >> reporter: alec baldwin on camera for the first time since the deadly movie set shooting in
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new mexico. >> i'm not allowed to make any comments because it's an ongoing investigation. i've been ordered by the sheriff's department in santa fe, i can't answer any questions about the investigation. i can't. >> reporter: in an impromptu interview, the 63-year-old beside his wife, calling the tragic death of cinematographer halyna hutchins one in a trillion. >> there are incidental accidents on a film set. this is one in a trillion. >> reporter: baldwin says he's talked repeatedly with hutchins' husband. >> he's in shock. he has a 9-year-old son. we are in constant contact with him because we're very worried about his family and his kid. we're eagerly awaiting for the sheriff's department to tell us what their investigation has yielded. >> reporter: the encounter at times intense and even awkward. >> excuse me.
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>> reporter: but when shooing his wife away at one point. >> no details. >> do me a favor, i'm going to answer the question. >> reporter: the actor fired the deadly shot according to authorities, after he was handed a prop gun mistakenly with a real bullet inside. the assistant director yelled "cold gun" meaning it was safe to use. still, baldwin defending the production. >> we were a very very well-oiled crew shooting a film together and then this horrible event happened. >> reporter: in sharp contrast to what others on the ground recalled. a source familiar with the matter said some crew members walked offset shortly before the shooting over safety concerns. the "rust" producers said specifically, we were not made whatever any official complaints. baldwin turning his attention to change in the industry. >> so what has to happen, we have to realize when it does go wrong, it's a horrible, catastrophic thing.
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some new measures have to be taken, rubber guns, plastic runs, no real ammunition on set. it's urgent that you understand, i'm not an expert in this field, so whatever other people decide is the best way to go in terms of protecting people's safety on film sets, i'm all in favor of and i will cooperate in that in any way i can. >> reporter: the baldwin parting with this plea for privacy. >> my kids are in the car crying. >> reporter: alex, you heard baldwin call halyna hutchins his friend, saying he took her to dinner his first day on set. the 42-year-old mother will be laid to rest in a private funeral later today, alex. >> it's all terrible, appreciate it, emily. katie phang, a trial lawyer and msnbc contributor, joins us. katie, do you expect criminal charges in this case? what about a civil lawsuit?
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would it be individuals or producers, which would include alec baldwin, who says he is fully cooperating with investigators? >> alex, i anticipate a couple of lawsuits at a minimum of wrongful death, some kind of negligence, deviation from standard gun safety protocols in place across the board in the industry. when it comes to criminal charges, however, this is an investigation that will continue for at least a few weeks. there are available offences in that state of new mexico, inclusive of the misdemeanor of the negligent discharge of a firearm, all the way to involuntary manslaughter, which is a felony. this idea that you operate at such a level of gross negligence that it shows depravity in your heart and mind to the safety of others. there was that announcement by the assistant director that it was a cold gun prior to it being handed to alec baldwin.
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as a former prosecutor, if urges have elements met for one of those charges criminally then you won't present it to a grand jury for purposes of indictment. likely alec baldwin will not look at charges. there is an armorer, by all accounts it was her second movie she had worked on, she had expressed her trepidation about her lack of experience, and the assistant director who did not check the firearm before handing it over. there is not supposed to be live ammunition on any movie set so the existence of the ammunition, some of which was live in nature, raises questions about why that happens. the cops seized the firearm in question. the ammunition was not locked up, it was available out on the set. the firearms themselves were locked up in a safe. there's a lot of unanswered questions and we're looking forward to finding out what the results of that investigation is. as a side note, if i were alec
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baldwin's lawyer, i would be very upset. if you're told not to speak, don't speak. and don't engage with the media or the public about this, because there is an ongoing investigation. >> and by the way, with regard to the rounds of ammunition, i believe it was reported 500 rounds of ammunition were taken, confiscated. >> that's right. >> again, alec baldwin and the fact that he's talking, how risky is that for him? how many times do we hear -- he's not a defendant, we'll say that definitively, but defense attorneys say do not say anything. >> it's unwise. the sheriff told him, ordered him is the word alec baldwin used. look, you just don't want to step in it, you don't want to misspeak, you don't want to add to the optic that you either have some type of liability or culpability criminally or civilly but you also want to make sure you don't say something insensitive. i understand his need to speak
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out, he has been silent for a long time, but there is an ongoing investigation, and there is a potential wrongful death lawsuit, you don't want to add to any type of liability exposure there. >> absolutely. another topic that really has caught the fascination of the public and a lot of heartache along with it was the article you wrote, number one on msnbc.com, by the way, titled "brian laundrie's autopsy results bring even more questions about gabby petito's death." his autopsy report was marked inconclusive. at this point will the petitos ever truly know what happened? >> as with all pending, open cases, you want to be able to give the answers to the next of kin if you're law enforcement. you want to be able to give all families closure. we were obviously looking forward to hearing from brian laundrie himself and then now we have the results from the coroner, confirming that this is brian laundrie in terms of the remains that were found a couple
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of weeks ago. what's particularly problematic for the laundrie family is the fact that the family and brian laundrie refused to cooperate and to speak to law enforcement before gabby petito's body was found. they continued to refuse to cooperate with law enforcement up until now. and what i mean by refuse to cooperate, there was no engagement with them to answer the questions. so you can bet your bottom dollar that the police will continue to investigate the homicide, the murder of gabby petito. but you can also bet your bottom dollar there's going to be some answers that come from the investigation into brian laundrie's remains being found because apparently there was a notebook and a dry sack that belonged to brian laundrie found next to his remains. the fbi is looking into whether or not forensically they can get something out of that notebook. fingers crossed, there will be answers. there is so much that people want to know about why, why didn't law enforcement do more in utah, and what's happening
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now? we'll continue to wait for answers to those questions. >> we'll see if brian laundrie's parents are questioned in spite of the heartbreak they must be suffering because their son is dead. still, they have some questions to answer. thank you, katie phang. the former supreme allied commander gives his take on what we know about china's new missile technology, next. because a bit of magic unfolds when there's a ketchup for everyone. riders, the lone wolves of the great highway. all they need is a bike bec and a full tank of gas.lds their only friend? the open road. i have friends. [ chuckles ] well, he may have friends, but he rides alone. that's jeremy, right there! we're literally riding together. he gets touchy when you talk about his lack of friends. can you help me out here? no matter why you ride, progressive has you covered with protection starting at $79 a year.
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president biden is front and center on the world stage today, dominating headlines coming out of the g20 summit, reversing the trump-era steel tariffs, and getting countries to agree to back away from coal projects. but notably absent, at least on site in rome, russian president vladimir putin and chinese leader xi jinping. >> here at the g20, they're not here either. we are, president biden is. that in itself is making a difference. it's ultimately going to be up to a china, which is now currently the world's largest emitter, to decide to do the right and important thing for its own people but also for everyone around the world. >> joining me now, retired admiral james stavridis, former supreme allied commander of nato and a msnbc contributor. we're awfully glad to have you as always, sir. president xi has not in fact left the country of china since the start of the pandemic.
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but his commitment and cooperation would be critical for any of the agreements made here to be successful. how do you interpret his absence? >> he is utterly focused on what's going on inside china right now. and the reason, alex, next fall, the next iteration of the communist party congress is going to make a decision about who is going to run china for yet another five-year period. president xi desperately wants to be that person. so he is spending his energy working domestically in china, which has many different kinds of problems, including a significant real estate bubble that's looking like it might pop. environmental damage to the point of the secretary of state, tony blinken. as well as a sense of unrest from various corners, the uighur
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population. he's trying to consolidate power inside china. don't look for him to be stepping out on the international stage significantly. >> duly noted. joint chiefs chairman mark milley is commenting publicly about china's recent test of a hypersonic weapons system. >> i don't know if it's quite a sputnik moment but i think it's very close to that. it's a very significant technological event that occurred or test that occurred by the chinese. and it has all of our attention. >> wow. i mean, even making a subtle reference to a sputnik moment, officially china says the test was not related weapons but instead for a space vehicle for peaceful purposes. but what do you think, sir? what should we read between the lines? how concerned should americans be? >> on a scale that runs from sputnik moment, which in 1957 seized the attention of america and led to us putting a man on the moon, a great fear that
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russia, in those days the soviet union, was outpacing was. that's one end of the spectrum. at the other end is, it's no big deal, china's developing hypersonic missiles just like we are. i think this one is closer to a sputnik moment. we need to wake up on this and recognize that this is a new generation of weapons system, alex, that has the ability to be invulnerable to our defensive measures. it moves many times the speed of sound. they can direct it in a way that could overcome any of our missile defense systems. that's a big deal. we're going to need to up our defensive systems, obviously. but frankly, in the end i think this is going to be somewhat like nuclear weapons in the sense that we have to have this capability, hypersonics, so that we can create deterrence against chinese and, frankly, russian
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hypersonics as well. complex equation, it's just getting under way now. you'll hear a lot more about hypersonic weapons in the months and years ahead. >> i wish you could have seen my face as i was staring intently at you because this is a very big deal. to your point, we'll hear a lot more about it. president biden today, in announcing the reversal of tariffs on steel from the eu, he alluded to keeping dirty steel from china out of the u.s. do you have a sense that the lines between the u.s. and china are being drawn very deeply now? >> they are indeed, alex. and if you look at not only the trade and tariff disagreements which we have with china, we also disagree with their claims of owning the entire south china sea, this vast body of water half the size of the continental united states. we disagree with their treatment of uighurs, the crackdown on hong kong, their stance towards
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taiwan. these lines of conflict are deepening at the moment. and frankly, that is to neither side's interests. we have got to find a way to avoid sleep walking into a serious conflict with china. it won't do either nation any a conversation but illuminating. thank you so much. it is something a lot of people did not want them to do, but he did it anyway. coming up next the impact of the former president's actions in atlanta. ♪ ♪ there are beautiful ideas that remain in the dark. but with our new multi-cloud experience, you have the flexibility you need to unveil them to the world. ♪ fries or salad? to unveil tsalad! the world.
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facing new backlash after he participated in the controversial tomahawk chop at game four in atlanta last night. vonn hill hard has more from atlanta. i'm curious about the reaction from people there. what have you found out? >> reporter: yeah, alex. the former president walked into the stadium seated in a suite quite a ways down the first base
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line. they never showed him on the jumbo tron the entire game, yet folks in the surrounding sections were turned around up there. moment is when he and the former first lady were participating in the so-called tomahawk chop. of course, this is insensitive, racist. there are a great number of native americans who push back, calling it a mockery of native americans. this is not a native american chant or a native american song, but this is, instead, about 40,000 plus fans for 30 years inside of atlanta braves stadiums have engaged in this chant. now, it was earlier this year the cleveland indians announced they were changing their names to be the cleveland guardians. last year the washington football club dropped their team name and now great attention and focus and pushback against the atlanta braves, particularly when the lights are brought down by stadium operators inside of
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that stadium as they partake in that chop. this is the same former president who just seven months ago after george -- after the major league baseball moved the all-star game from this summer from atlanta, out of atlanta, to colorado in protest of those georgia voting restriction measures passed into law earlier this year, former president trump called for a boycott of major league baseball after that but seven months later you see he returned to the baseball stadium, and he partook alongside those atlanta fans. alex? >> why am i not surprised by the last point. thank you so much. who wants to ask a billionaire about that tax hike that didn't happen in the spending bill? do they deserve to pay more? i'm going to ask billionaire tom steyer in the next half hour. m steyer in the next half hour. a unicorn in training. a corner to build a legacy. a vision for tomorrow.
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a very good day to all of you from msnbc headquarters in new york. welcome to "alex witt reports" here's what's happening at 2:00 p.m. eastern. in rome the president is wrapping up another bus busy day on the world stage at the g-20. president biden set to speak to the press and answer questions in 30 minutes or so. we heard from biden hours ago at an event focus canned on the supply chain crisis. >> in the pandemic, is the

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