tv Alex Witt Reports MSNBC December 5, 2021 9:00am-10:00am PST
soldier, legislator, and statesman. it was one of many medals he received for his service, including the presidential medal of freedom by bill clinton and the presidential citizens medal by president reagan. we have to pause for the nbc network to join our live coverage. please stand by. >> this is an nbc news special report. >> good day. i'm joe fryer at nbc headquarters in new york with a special report. breaking news, former republican senator and presidential candidate bob dole has died at the age of 98. the elizabeth dole foundation announcing a short time ago the former senator died early this morning in his sleep. senior white house correspondent kelly o'donnell now with a look back on his life. >> bob dole always possessed humility and dry humor. >> i want to thank all of those who have said such kind words
about me. they're probably not true, but they were nice. >> respect earned through his years of public service and capped with a congressional gold medal in 2018. but dole's storied career brought congress together in a rare unanimous vote to pay tribute to this world war ii veteran and son of kansas who achieved so much. impaired by war, but never deterred. longevity was among his gifts. in his 90s, dole returned to kansas to visit every county wus last time. from his roots in russell, kansas, dole joined the army during world war ii. injured in italy, dole gave credit to the people of cancance for putting their faith in him. >> in 1960, then to the senate in 1968. rising to republican leader for
a dozen years. fathered a daughter robin from his first marriage. in 1975, he married elizabeth. his partner in life and politics. on the ticket as gerald ford's running mate in '76, dole sought the office of president himself three times. and faced incumbent bill clinton in 1996. describing himself then as a fighter again at age 73. >> tonight, i stand before you tested by adversity, made sensitive by hardship, a fighter by principle and the most optimistic man in america. >> after politics, his service turned to causes close to his heart. leading fund-raising for the national world war ii memorial in washington. his bond with other warriors endured, and an emotional dole
managed to stand before the flag draped casket of fellow world war ii veteran president george herbert walker bush. knowing physical challenges made him a credible champion of the americans with disabilities act. ambitious yet also self-effacing. in victory and defeat. >> i leave you all tonight with a full heart and a fervent prayer that we'll meet again. >> bob dole's commitment to country, tested and lifted by his resilient spirit. kelly o'donnell, nbc news, washington. >> you have been watching an nbc special report on the death of former u.s. senator bob dole. he was 98. i'm joe fryer. we now return you to your scheduled programming on the nbc network and we'll continue with more live coverage of this breaking news on msnbc.
we continue with this breaking news coverage. nbc news chief washington correspondent and chief foreign affairs correspondent andrea mitchell joins us on the phone. first, what's going through your mind at this time, this giant of the senate and of politics, bob dole, passing away at the age of 98? >> courage, resilience. i think of the way he struggled every day in his life after world war ii, to get dressed, because of the injury to his arm. the way he persisted in politics. he was tough, but i have to tell you, when i covered the senate, i was chief congressional correspondent, i was based in the senate side, and we saw him every morning with george mitchell, the democratic leader, whether bob dole was in the leadership or the minority, the two of them would be together on the floor of the senate every morning telling us what the agenda was, what was going to be passed, what wasn't going to be
passed. as partisan as bob dole and as george mitchell was on the democratic side, they got things done. they got things done every day. he compromised. he compromised on the americans with disabilities act with tom harkin. it was near to tom harkin's heart because his brother, his brother was deaf, and so he cared about it, and dole obviously cared about the rights of the disabled. that was something that motivated him, of course, all of his life. he was bitter initially in his injuries after world war ii. he had been a young man, an athlete, he was home in russell, kansas, he was in the hospital for some 38 months, i think, maybe longer than that, in rehabilitation, but the fact that he created this public life for himself after all those injuries just speaked to the brilliance and persistence of the man, and his public service. i interviewed him, i think, my last interview with him was in 2016, at a republican convention
in cleveland. he was as vigorous mentally as ever. even though diminished in recent years, he spent as long as a year off and on at walter reed, in what is now bethesda naval, because he was frequently really incapacitated with his various illnesses and the results of his world war ii injuries. and his marriage to elizabeth dole, of course, a big part of his life. and the unkind part of bob dole which sometimes got him in trouble politically. i was in new hampshire when in 1988, he lost the primary to george herbert walker bush, and tom brokaw was doing an interview, and asked bob dole, did he have anything to say to george bush, who was right there on set. the victor that night, and he said, stop lying about my record. so i can't say he was always
gracious in defeat in the moment of defeat. but that was part of the personality that made him such an amazing figure in american politics for so many decades. >> andrea, you talk about that bipartisanship. this year, he wrote an op-ed in june called lessons from a bipartisan era. he said washington do without personal attacks, demeaning insults and short sighted partisanship. help us understand how different the senate was back then, and does his death give any current politicians any pause to think about how things are done nowadays? >> i certainly would hope so because his lesson, his model was always to, as i say, whether in the majority or mineert, make things work. make things happen. budget compromises with democratic presidents. democratic leaders such as george mitchell. he will be mourned and grieved by so many people, and this is a notable day in washington.
it's the kennedy honors, the restoration, if you will, of presidential involvement and engagement in that because former president trump had not, and then two years of covid, so a lot of people in town. a lot of former and current officials. and i think everybody is going to be talking today at luncheons and dinners and at the honors themselves about bob dole and what he meant to this country. just in that last editorial or opinion column that he wrote, calling for bipartisanship at a time when our politics is so toxic. and i could trace throughout my career how from radio to cable television to social media, it became even more difficult for politicians to evade the immediate response and to try to think of the big picture. but bob dole was certainly, to all of the democrats and conservatives and more moderate republicans that i know, in the senate and in the house, he
always managed to reach for a higher standard and for a higher goal. and so despite all the tough campaigns, he ran for vice president, of course, with jerry ford. that was a tough campaign. he ran in '96 with jack kemp against bill clinton. and that re-election, so a lot of setbacks in his three runs for the presidency, but he came back because he always got back off the mat no matter what knocked him down. and found another way to serve. and i have to tell you, i became engaged in trying to help him as much as i could with the world war ii memorial because it was such an important part of his contributions and his legacy and for all of those who have gone to normandy and have covered other aspects of world war ii and that generation which tom brokaw wrote about so meaningfully for so many of us, that's just been an important contribution that he made. he led the way on that, and it's now the reality.
he used to go out and visit with the returning veterans himself, very often you would see him there on the weekends in his wheelchair, greeting them. and he was a hero to all. >> how do you imagine, we don't know yet what the services will look like in the coming days for him, but how do you think he's going to be remembered? how big of a deal is this going to be in washington, in kansas, and beyond? what are these services going to look like, do you think? >> i think it's going to be a very big deal because there is hope that perhaps the lessons of bob dole in victory and in defeat could animate some better spirits. and we all remember him struggling and standing and saluting president bush 41's coffin in the rotunda. that was such a touching moment in so many ways. former political enemies but fellow veterans of world war ii.
one in the infantry in italy, of course, grievously wounded. the other reroically surviving that plane crash and living to become such a major figure in american politics in so many ways. george herbert walker bush. so to have that surviving then probably 97, 96 or 97-year-old bob dole, my memory doesn't serve exactly what year that funeral and memorial and viewing ceremoies were, but at 98, having had this long extraordinary life and having been mentally engaged and engaged in the politics of our country for so many decades. i think this is going to be a big deal. i don't know whether this is -- it would not be a state funeral. he's not a former president, but there would, i'm sure, be services here in washington of some sort and of course in his
native kansas. he was from russell, kansas, as you have been noting. a small town in kansas. there's one coincidence that another senator not from kansas but was born and raised in russell, kansas, the great arlen specter of pennsylvania. so they were two senators, two republicans who actually were from the same small town, but bob dole was the hero of russell, kansas, and the native son, so i'm sure there will be ceremonies back there as well, and so much respect for elizabeth dole. carrying on the legacy that she has independently, and at some points considered to be a potential presidential candidate herself. i have gotten to know her over the years and certainly our sympathies, our condolences to her because they have had a remarkable marriage. and she has been at his side every step of the way.
>> andrea mitchell, thank you so much for your reflections and memories as we look back on the life of former u.s. senator bob dole. now dead at the age of 98 years old. andrea, thank you so much. we'll be back with more of the day's news right after this. voiceover: riders. wanderers on the road of life. the journey is why they ride. when the road is all you need, there is no destination. uh, i-i'm actually just going to get an iced coffee. well, she may have a destination this one time, but usually -- no, i-i usually have a destination. yeah, but most of the time, her destination is freedom. nope, just the coffee shop. announcer: no matter why you ride, progressive has you covered with protection starting at $79 a year. voiceover: 'cause she's a biker... please don't follow me in. (vo) for fourteen years, subaru and our retailers have been sharing the love with those who need it most. voiceover: 'cause she's a biker... now subaru is the largest automotive donor to make-a-wish and meals on wheels.
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back now with breaking news on a michigan family behind bars. a flurry of new investigations swirling at this hour, and new charges expected in the shooting at oxford high school. law enforcement officials are asking for further tips related to accused school shooter ethan crumbley, his parnls jennifer and james crumbley, and anyone who may have helped them hide out in detroit where they were arrested on involuntary manslaughter charges in the wee hours of yesterday morning. >> we believe they were assisted in that location to get there, to get in. and we're gathering that information.
and we're going to have the totality of that done fairly soon. and present that to our prosecutor for potential charges for either aiding and abetting or obstruction of justice. >> new reaction from tim thorn, school superintendent at oxford in response to karen mcdonald, the oakland county prosecutor's remarks that school officials are under investigation and may face charges. ethan crumbley was allowed to get back to the classroom after teachers raised an alarm and asked his parents to remove him from school the morning of the shooting. thorn released a statement saying he's launching his own third-party investigation into any and all interaction ethan crumbley had with staff and students. he added that at no time did counsellors believe he might harm others based on his behavior, responses, and demeanor, which appears calm and that whether or not the gun was in crumbley's backpack has not been confirmed by law enforcement or by the school's investigation at this time.
this morning, michigan attorney general dana nessel reacted to the superintendent with a tweet saying we have reached out to the attorney for the oxford community school district and offered the services of the michigan department of attorney general to conduct a full and comprehensive review of the november 30th '21 shooting and the events leading up to it. family and friends are saying good-bye to madisyn baldwin in orion, michigan. she's one of four students killed in the rampage on tuesday. funerals are continuing into the week ahead. heidi przybyla joins us from pontiac, michigan, outside the county sheriff's office and jail. we're still learning more about how these events unfolded, aren't we? >> yes, joe. we're here outside the jail where both parents and son are being held. this story is, of course, still developing, joe, but let's just say we have had this epidemic of school shootings now for two decades in this country. very unusual for the parents to also be charged. in this case, prosecutors say
that the parents ignored warnings that their son was on the brink of violence and that they could have done something to stop it. in this case, ethan was arrested on four counts of first degree manslaughter, he's being charged as an adult, and the parents were arrested yesterday on four counts of involuntary manslaughter. all are pleading not guilty, and as you said, new developments here. we're learning about some of the moments that ethan was arrested. take a listen here to the sheriff, mike bouchard, in a news conference yesterday. >> two of our deputies that were moving down that hall together seeking out the threat and as they came into that hallway, they observed the subject and he basically gave up. as they were approaching them, the weapon was put to the ground and he put his hands up. he gave up pretty much as soon as one of the deputies called
out gun, and he gave up. when he was taken into custody, there were some 18 unexpended rounds. and that's what i keep reminding them, 18. 18. could have been 18 more kids. >> so joe, why are prosecutors also charging the parents? they're citing evidence including social media posts that the parents purchased the handgun for their son and that on the day of the shootings, the parents were contacted by school officials after a teacher found a note from their son ethan in which he had scribbled, quote, blood everywhere. and, quote, the thoughts won't stop. help me. the reaction to that was that the parents resisted having him removed from school, and he was sent back to class. that was the day of the shooting. then the day before, another teacher had seen ethan searching for ammunition on the internet.
mrs. crumbley was also contacted about that and there were found text messages she sent to her son in which she said lol, i'm not mad at you. you have to learn not to get caught. joe. >> heidi, thank you so much for your reporting. let's bring in katie phang, this is still a fast developing story. it's rare enough to see parents charged in a school shooting situation like this. what's your sense of new charges that could still come in the next few days? >> well, i think that as you say, because there's so much that's going on, because there's all this new information, for example, joe, we just found out yesterday late that ethan crumbley when he was confronted with the note, with the drawing, he actually told school officials that he was preparing a video game, that he was interested in becoming a video game developer and that's the reason he had those types of drawings. i don't know how credible that sounds. if you consider the totality of
the circumstances, and that's what's really important. when you're a prosecutor and you're looking at the evidence, you're going to look at direct evidence and circumstantial evidence, but you look at the totality of the circumstances. school officials are trying to say there was no history of discipline. there was no history of violence with this particular student at the school. however, joe, we do know there was within a very tight window of time 48 hours, not only the search for ammunition on the kid's cell phone but also the fact he was making these drawings. the other thing that troubles me when it comes to liability and possible exposure for the school district is the following. why did school officials, number one, not elevate this or escalate it to law enforcement levels? according to the school superintendent it stayed at the guidance counsellor level. why would they then order the parents to get counseling for their son within 48 hours or they would refer the child to child protective services? there was something troubling enough you would do a referral to cps for that particular student or minor child.
the fact that nothing more was done, the fact that no search of the backpack was done, which the school officials would have had reasonable grounds to do, is something that really makes me concerned if i am school officials. i understand they're doing a third-party investigation. i think that's exactly what should be done. they should remove themselves from any type of involvement in this investigation. however, i would not be surprised to see a slew of lawsuits, at least civil litigation, for the school district, joe, but also the potential for maybe individual liability on criminal level, although that's very hard. let me be very clear. to be able to criminal liability against a school official in these particular circumstances even though they sound so egregious is probably going to be absolutely not going to happen at this point. >> katie, let's talk more about that. the sheriff spoke to my colleague, alex witt, yesterday, said he would like to be looped in when teachers first sounded the alarm about ethan crumbley. what do you think about the statement he put out about the backpack and launching the
investigation. >> quickly, what a sad, sorry state of affairs that the reason is less they were scared about getting sued by the paints of ethan crumbley for what they deemed to be an illegal search of a backpack. there is some legislation proposed that would make it a crime. parents would look at five years in pris fn one of their kids went and used a gun to kill others. we need to talk about whether or fear of litigation is stopping us from protecting our kids when we know this is an epidemic. it's pandemic, it's a problem for our united states. >> all right, katie, thanks so much for joining us. we appreciate it. next hour y will speak with michigan attorney general dana nessel about the case against the parents. plus, criticism directed at the county prosecutor for not apprehending the crumbleys before announcing the charges. tough new travel rules for people entering the u.s. in hours. they'll have to show proof of a
negative covid test taken 24 hours before departure. kathy park is at jfk international airport with the latest. kathy. >> effective tomorrow, the u.s. is tightening its testing requirements for those entering the u.s. and for some families that's already putting plans on hold during a very busy holiday travel season. in less than 24 hours, travelers flying into the u.s. will face tough new restrictions, as the nation tries to fight back the coronavirus and rising cases of the new omicron variant. all passengers coming in from another country must show a negative covid test a day before boarding their flight, regardless of vaccination status. the new rules already setting off a wave of worry. >> i don't think we're as worried about negtf tests so much as meeting the criteria to get on the aircraft and be able to come home. >> the stricter testing requirement comes amid a growing list of states detecting omicron infections, with health officials warning cases will
likely keep climbing. >> yes, omicron is concerning, and yes, we're still working toward better understanding it, but there is enough progress behind this to feel both cautious and hopeful. >> behind the scenes, scientists are combing through the data for answers on transmissibility and severity, but it may take weeks to find out. >> those efforts have to do with testing individuals and using pcr and other techniques to determine exactly which coronavirus variant they're infected with, but there's a turnaround time to do all those tests. >> in south africa, where omicron was first reported, researchers say the new strain is spreading twice as quickly as delta. hospitalizations are up, too, but the w.h.o. says no one has died from omicron, but that could change. >> it takes time, unfortunately, when the incidence rate goes up, it takes a week or two to result in hospitalizations and death.
>> for now, delta continues to be the greater threat, fueling an average of 1,000 deaths a day in the u.s. meanwhile, back here in new york, we're learning that more than a dozen friends who attended an anime convention in the city last month with a minnesota man who tested positive for omicron have also now tested for the virus. right now, it's unclear if they caught this new strain. >> kathy, thank you. if you have not heard what representative ilhan omar said today about republican minority leader kevin mccarthy, it is quite striking and sends a message. you'll hear that next. at next. i got the awesome new iphone 13 pro and airpods, and t-mobile is paying for them both! and this is for new and existing customers. upgrade to the iphone 13 pro and airpods both on us. only at t-mobile. alice loves the scent of gain so much, she wished there was a way to make it last longer. say hello to your fairy godmother alice and long-lasting gain scent beads. try spring daydream,
as a community in michigan still mourns the loss of four teenagers, in washington, democrats are once again demanding action on gun reform. senator chris murphy saying this morning he thinks it's possible but they need republicans to get on board. >> i have been in negotiations all year with senator toomey,
with senator cornyn, with lindsay graham, trying to find a compromise that can get 60 votes in the senate. maybe this shooting will bring people back to the table, but we haven't taken a vote this year in part because i have asked senator schumer for the room to try to negotiate that compromise you're talking about. i wish my republican colleagues didn't sort of have epiphanies on this issue only after mass school shootings. >> plus, new reaction from congresswoman ilhan omar, speaking off after video surfaces showing her gop colleague lauren boebert making anti-muslim comments. slamming republican leadership and saying she expects decisive action from speaker pelosi. >> mccarthy is a liar and a coward. he doesn't have the ability to condemn the kind of bigoted islamophobia and anti-muslim rhetoric that are being trafficked by a member.
i have had a conversation with the speaker. and i'm very confident that she will take decisive action next week. >> and as the omicron covid variant is being detected in a growing number of states, the white house today trying to tamp down worries about the strain, as several key questions remain unanswered. >> it's too early to really make any definitive statements about it. thus far, it does not look like there's a great degree of severity to it, but we really have to be careful before we make any determinations. >> also at the white house, president biden gearing up for a video call with russian president vladimir putin this week to discuss the tense situation in ukraine, as tens of thousands of russian troops are believed to be lining up near the border. white house deputy press secretary karine jean-pierre telling jonathan capehart what to expect in the high-stakes meeting. >> one of the things that president biden says all the time, there's no substitute for
a leader-to-leader dialogue and engagement, and that's what you're seeing here, and a big part of that is to make sure that we continue advancing u.s. interests so that it clearly is going to be a big component. >> for more on the putin meeting, i'm joined by peter baker, chief white house correspondent for "the new york times." the president will be meeting virtually with putin in a quite tense moment with the reported build-up of troops along the ukraine border. president biden has said he's expecting a long discussion. says he won't accept any red lines as putin demands washington guarantee it won't join nato. how do you expect this conversation to go? >> that's a great question. a lot of tension there. you don't put 175 troops on the border of your neighboring country without intending to use them. that's a lot of troops there, a big, big flash point in europe. what you're seeing now is a test, basically. a test by putin. once again, he's trying to see
how far he can push the west, trying to see how far he can push this new president. he wants concessions, a commitment that ukraine won't be admitted to nato. uyan says it won't make that commitment. he wants more influence in ukraine, which has been such an important part of the old russian empire and the soviet union for so long. he wants a friendlier government there if he can get one. right now for president biden, this is a huge geopolitical challenge because if it goes any further, it could easily escalate into something that the united states and nato would find very, very dangerous. >> secretary of state blinken has warned of severe consequences if russia were to take aggressive action against ukraine, and here's secretary of defense lloyd austin at a defense forum in washington yesterday. >> they have invaded before. and so as we look at the numbers of forces that are in the border region, as we look at some of
the things that are occurring in the information space, as we look at what's going on in the cyber domain, it really raises our concern. we remain focused on this. we are certainly committed to helping ukraine defend its sovereign territory. >> they say they're focused on this. i mean, how far do you expect the white house to go in helping ukraine defend that territory? what are the options they have on the table right now? >> well, that's a great question. obviously, the united states does not plan at this moments to take military action in order to defend ukraine. ukraine is not covered by the nato article 5 guarantee of mutual defense. they have over the years provided defensive and other equipment to the ukrainians. obviously, that could be stepped up. they could provide more deadly weaponry if that might be of use. obviously, they're talking about
additional sanctions. all of these things are things putin has already weighed into his calculation. he knows what is in the toolbox for the american president, and he's decided at the moment that they don't scare him. so the question is what can biden do that would go beyond what the russians already expect in any trade-offs they're willing to make in order to apply this pressure to ukraine. >> let's switch gears and talk about the pandemic. nearly every health adviser was out on the sunday talk shows this morning fielding questions about the omicron variant, while the headlines are warning the emergence of the new variant could dent president biden's political progress. how well is the white house getting ahead of the fear surrounding the unknowns of this variant? he has so many priorities right now, build back better, so much more. do you expect this to pull the president from those other priorities? >> the reason they have all those people out today is they know how nervous everybody is. we're heading into the holidays. the report you put on about the change in terms of international flyers. people are looking with some degree of fear at the next few
weeks. we don't know enough yet and they don't know enough yet to make good policy choices bah they don't know how communicable it is, how deadly it is, whether vaccines are going to be as effective as possible. we don't know even the extent of which it's existing in the united states. we had some cases now start to turn up, but there are probably a whole lot more we don't know about. it's a tough time for the administration to make good choices absent the information they really need. what they're trying to do is calm the public down while they get that information. but it's a very -- you're right, it's very distracting from every other priorities because they know solving the covid issue is their number one priority. >> peter baker, thanks for joining us. we appreciate it. >> the political repercussions from that abortion case before the supreme court. how will it play out in the midterms? perhaps not how we might expect. my sunday panel sizes it up ahead.
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lawmakers are gearing up for a busy week ahead in the january 6th investigation. with several high profile depositions on the docket over the next couple days. joining me now is virginia congressman gerry connolly, a democratic member of the house oversight and foreign affairs committees. congressman, good to have you with us. between the high profile depositions and the document deadlines set for this week, how critical a week do you think this is going to be for the january 6th committee to get the information it needs? what are you most interested in hearing this week ahead? >> well, i certainly want to see the committee proceed with, you know, compelling documents and witnesses. the jeffrey clark deposition, as you know, has been postponed until december 16th because of an illness he is experiencing. so we're not going to quite have the week maybe we thought we were going to have. but obviously, the select commission has to proceed.
we have to get to the bottom of what happened. we have to identify those who were responsible, who incited violence of the capitol of the united states to disrupt the peaceful transfer of power in america. that's pretty fundamental. so their work is critical. and we have to, as a body in the house, support every part of their effort. >> congressman. let's talk more about jeffrey clark. as you mentioned his deposition has been postponed. it will now be december 16th. comes after the committee voted to hold him in contempt. it's expected he's going to plead the fifth to each question. do you think this could get him to reconsider that, that he could talk, or the house holding him in contempt? >> i think he is in grave legal peril. two things. you know, in the previous deposition, he walked out of it. he refused to cooperate and actually walked out. after having cited executive
privilege. which certainly does not pertain in a subsequent administration, which has actually said it won't invoke executive privilege to protect people like jeffrey clark. so he -- i think he's in a very dubious position legally, now to fall back on the fifth amendment. the chairman of the commission has said we're going to ask question by question, so he can't just broadly invoke the fifth amendment against self-incrimination. he will have to invoke it question by question. and that makes it very difficult to do, i think, and his attorneys to sustain the broad effort of noncompliance and nonresponsiveness. he's very much in peril if he does not cooperate, at least when he comes back on the 16th, for the contempt citation being voted by the full house. >> i also want to ask about former white house chief of staff mark meadows. he's agreed to cooperate with the committee, he's been citing
executive privilege, but his new book reportedly includes portions about january 6th. you think he opens himself up to not being able to claim executive privilege from the committee because some of that information is in a book? >> i absolutely do. you can't have it both ways. you can't write a book in which you divulge privileged conversations with the president and get paid for it but then invoke executive privilege before a committee of inquiry by the united states house of representatives. that's just not going to fly. i think mark is smart enough. i know him very well. we worked together on our committee together when he was in the congress. he's smart enough to know that he could put himself in legal jeopardy and doesn't really want to do that. so he's going to thread this needle carefully, but i think a brick wall of noncooperation is not mark meadows' style and not in his interest.
>> let's turn to russia. we were talking about it in our last segment. president biden will hold a call with president trump on tuesday. there are tensions about russia's military build up on the ukrainian border. what do you want to see president biden doing, what the best options on the table? >> let me say at the beginning, i don't think we have great options. but i do think this is a very grave moment. i think you can't overstate the risk here. the russians have 40 to 50 combat ready battalions they're putting together. it looks like they're going to focus on four or five areas of potential attack to dilute the ability of the ukraiians to respond effectively. they're building up to a total of 175,000 troops. they're prepositioning equipment. they had maneuvers with half
that number of troops in the summer that looked menacing. now we know that was probably a preview of what they're doing now. a full-scale invasion of ukraine is going to be a crisis of unprecedented proportions in europe. and for the nato alliance, and certainly in u.s./russian relations. so the call between president biden and president putin is one of the most important that's going to occur in the biden presidency. we can all just hope president biden can be decisive enough to dissuade president putin from this following. but i believe longer term for russia, this is going to have grave consequences that will be long lasting, and i hope and pray that vladimir putin ultimately decides to decyst,
but using this to extort pledges from the west about ukraine sovereignty, about ukraine's ability to join whatever alliance it chooses, it simply is an unacceptable kind of proposition, and i think putin probably knows that. so it's a very grave situation that could have unintended consequences including other kinds of military engagement with russian troops. >> we'll keep an eye on what happens tuesday. congressman, thanks for joining us today. >> my pleasure, joe. thank you. the politics of abortion, how ugly will it get? that's next. ♪♪ this flag isn't backwards.
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capitol hill as a lawmaker, eventually becoming the senate majority leader and then the republican presidential nominee in 1996. joining me now, don callaway, democratic strategist and founder of the national voter protection action fund, susan del percio, republican strategist and msnbc political analyst, and david jolly, former congressman from florida and msnbc political contributor. susan, first of all, i want to ask you about this big news in the last hour. your reaction to the passing of bob dole, and what lessons do you think lawmakers today can take away from the senator? >> well, joe, i think your interview with andrea mitchell at the top of the hour about his dedication, senator dole's dedication to serving the country and getting things done, i hope that will imprint on the current congress. i'm not sure it will. but it is so important to remember about the late senator his devotion to country and
public service. and yes, he could be a prickly guy when it came to politics and didn't like to lose, but when it was all over, he went to get the job done. in the majority, in the minority, it didn't matter. he wanted to serve theminority, didn't matter, he wanted to serve the american public and knew it was best served when government worked for them. >> david, your thoughts. looking back on the life and legacy of senator dole, does it remind you of better times, especially within the republican party? >> yeah, it does, joe. and i agree with susan, when you think of bob dole, he was a politician that saw his role as one of public service. he served his fellow americans. he served his country. he did so on the battlefield, incurring lifelong injuries. and he did so in the house of representatives and in the senate. and ultimately as one of the presidential nominees for one of the two major parties, the republican party. i do think there is some
bittersweet contrast today to recognize a politician from yesteryear that even though he did endorse donald trump, he appeared at the convention with donald trump. it was clear his practice of politics stands in sharp contrast to our most recent republican president. that legacy is one he leaves and it's one for the taking for today's republican politicians. >> don, what do you reflect on in terms of bob dole's life and legacy? >> bob dole is fundamentally a good man. in 1996, the clinton/dole campaign is the first campaign i was actively involved in. i can recall being diametrically opposed to bob dole on anything that had to do with the american politics of the day, from performance rights to welfare reform and things of that nature. i certainly never being in any existential fear or believing
there was a serious threat to the direction of the country if bob dole had won. and that's fundamentally because of the way he conducted himself as both majority and minority leader in the senate and presidential standard-bearer. he was a gentleman, he was kind, cautious with his words and thoughtful with the way he approached his public service. that's something anybody across the political spectrum can take from today. >> i do want to switch gears, we have new reaction from congresswoman ilhan omar, her first tv interview his lauren boebert making anti-islam remarks. the congresswoman is slamming gop leadership for not taking action. >> mccarthy is a liar and a coward. he have doesn't have the ability to condemn the kind of bigoted islam phobia and anti muslim
rhetoric being trafficked by a member of his congress. >> why doesn't he have the ability to do that? >> because this is who they are. >> david, as a former republican congressman yourself, do you agree with congresswoman omar there? >> yes, kevin mccarthy is a liar and a coward, she's absolutely right. he would like to say boebert issued an apology. in politics, whether it was an apology or not, it wasn't contrite, and that's the basis of omar's complaint against mccarthy. right now mccarthy doesn't have the votes in his own caucus to be speaker so he play indicates boebert and greene and others. if the republicans end up winning 40 to 50 seats, he'll abandon boebert and greene then because he doesn't need them, he'll have enough votes in the larger republican caucus.
ilhan omar is exactly right. >> just this week alone, don, in the house you have twitter feuds between marjorie taylor greene and nancy mace in the senate. a group of republicans held up a major defense bill and nearly forced a government shutdown because they wanted to stop vaccine mandates. is that what we can expect if republicans take back the congress in 2022? >> it depends on what david just said, whether or not the majority of seats will be taking up by crazies and whether or not mccarthy will pat the crazies on the hand and ignore what they're saying so they don't have an active voice in the governing of their majority. the more concerning aspect, of course, kevin mccarthy has failed as a leader. we point that out pretty much every week in this segment. but the more concerning aspect is the remarkably nonsubstantive individuals that republicans are sending to congress as they
pursue this ideology of send the craziest person who can say the wildest thing the loudest. that seems to be the animating principle among house republicans, more so than any type of fealty or budget or defense. we will see a lot more remarkably unsuitable and unqualified people, i.e. boebert, i.e. marjorie taylor greene. this is just the beginning of this confederacy of dunces. >> susan, your thoughts on omar's thoughts about mccarthy and republican leadership. >> i agree with david and don. she correctly points out that kevin mccarthy, he's not even a leader anymore. let's just call him a spokesperson for himself. he's just out there for himself. he is in fact a liar. he's a coward because he's scared of his own conference.
and that just shows that this is not a man in any position to have any leadership position whatsoever. and it is greatly disappointing to see that this is how the republicans choose and who the republicans currently choose to support. >> real quickly, i want to ask each of you, we're tight on time, but if roe v. wade is overturned by the supreme court, does it help or hurt republicans' chances in 2022? don? >> to be determined. >> all right. david, what are you thinking? >> i think it's a wash. i think the issue is much more complex than the fierce advocates on both sides. >> and susan, what do you think? >> it depends on where you're looking at. for example, in georgia, where democrats have done very well with moderate republicans or independents in the suburbs, how will women there react? because i don't think you'll see the same responses we did in virginia with youngkin. so there is an opportunity for democrats in certain places of
the country. >> all right. a lot of news to cover right now. i thank all three of you for helping us break it down. susan, david, don, thank you so much. have a great rest of your sunday. in just a few minutes, the attorney general for michigan on the parents' charge this weekend in that deadly school shooting and the questions that remain for school officials. remain for school officials to the owner of a large manufacturing firm. i've got anywhere from 10 to 50 projects going at any given time. i absolutely have to be sharp. let me tell ya, i was struggling with my memory. it was going downhill. my friend recommended that i try prevagen and over time, it made a very significant difference in my memory and in my cognitive ability. i started to feel a much better sense of well-being. (vo)revagen. healthier brain. subaru and our retailers believe in giving back. that's why, in difficult times, we provided one hundred and fifty million meals to feeding america.
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good day from msnbc world headquarters in new york. i'm joe fryer in for alex witt. breaking news, former republican senator and presidential candidate bob dole has died at the age of 98. the elizabeth dole foundation announcing a short time ago the former senator died early this morning in his sleep. senior white house correspondent kelly o'donnell now with a look back on his life. >> reporter: bob dole always possessed humility and dry humor.