tv The Last Word With Lawrence O Donnell MSNBC January 6, 2022 10:00pm-11:00pm PST
all right, thank you for being with us. anniversaries like this one are always tough. it was good to have you here. we'll see you tomorrow night. now it's time for the last word with, lawrence o'donnell. >> thank you, rachel. there's been some breaking news from liz cheney who, said that the committee is looking possibilities that donald trump's conduct was criminal, on january 6th. she said, they're not sure whether constitutes a crime or -- which is not criminal but they are death we focus on the
possibility of donald trump committing a crime on january 6th. >> you know, it's an interesting -- liz cheney's role in the january 6th commission, which itself is shakespeare, which itself is a novel. the investigation is aggressive isn't the right word, but comprehensive in energetic. that alone is restoring a lot of people's faith in what congress can do, when they put their mind to. at the professionals that they hired, the energy, the diligence, the persistence that they're approaching it with. i don't know the resolution will, be with all these historians and all these people i'm talking to, people really looking to them to get it right. to get this moment right. to get that remit correct. they are inspiring confidence in the way they're approaching. this >> i'm sure one of the things that the staff and committee did one -- of the things they begin with,
is a blueprint laid out in robert costa's book, peril. before they were able to collect evidence, themselves, there was that book. i'm sure most, if not all, read that book. >> well done, lawrence. thank you. >> thank you rachel. we have new information, tonight. about what donald trump was doing during the insurrection, one year ago, that put democracy in peril. former white house -- testified to the -- she revealed some of which she told the committee. >> all i know about that days he was in the dining room, gleefully watching on his tv, as he often did, looking at the people -- hitting rewind. watching it again. that's what i know. >> an unnamed trump white house official, told cnn today that
don trump was, quote, letting it play out. letting it play out. today, standing in the capital rotunda, which one year ago was under the control of a trump mob. the president of the united states said this, >> you can't love your country only when you win. you can't obey the law only when it's convenient. you can't be patriotic, when you embrace and enable lies. those who stormed this capitol, and those who instigated and incited, and those who called on them to do so, held a dagger at the throat of america, and american democracy. >> last, year mitch mcconnell spoke even more forcefully about the attack on the capital, which he specifically called, terrorism. and, mitch mcconnell left no doubt about who held that dagger, at the throat of
american democracy. >> january six was a disgrace. american citizens attacked their own government they used terrorism to try and stop a specific piece of domestic business, they did not like. fellow americans beat and bloodied our own police. they stormed the senate floor. they tried to hunt down a speaker of the house. they built gallows enchanted about murdering the vice president. they did this because they had been fed wild, falsehoods, by the most powerful man on earth, because he was angry he lost an election. former president trump's actions preceded the riot for a
disgraceful, disgraceful election of beauty. there's no question, none, that president trump is practically and morally responsible for provoking the events of the day. no question about it. the people who stormed this building believed they were acting on the wishes and instructions of their president. >> today, mitch mcconnell said nothing. until the january six committee calls public hearings an issue and final report the most authoritative account we have of the trump white house on january 6th is in the best selling book, peril, by bob woodward, and robert costa. quote, trump called pence
around 10 am on january six is pence met with shorten jacob. pence excuse himself to take the call upstairs, alone. i'm heading to the capitol soon. pence told trump. i told you i sleep on, it i take a look with my team, all here any objections in evidence, but when i go to the capitol, i'll do my job. mike, this is not right, trump said. colin from the oval office. mike, you can do this. i'm counting on you to do, it if you don't do, and i picked the wrong man four years ago. as trump kept pushing pence, the presidents body manned, nick luna, entered and handing the president know, they were ready for him at the rally outside. his people were waiting. you're going to win pout, trump said. donald trump then delivered a speech to his fanatical followers. telling them to go to the capitol, and quote, fight like hell. one of the many lies donald trump speech was that he was going to go to the capitol with them. when the capital was under attack, the top republican in
the house representatives -- who sent the attackers to the capitol. quote, house minority leader, kevin mccarthy was calling into the white house, asking aides to connect with him and the president. mccarthy's offices on the second floor of the capital was being vandalized. his office windows were shattered. his detail had rushed him out. trump came on the line. you've got to get out and tell these people to stop. i am out of the capital. we've been run over, mccarthy said. he was intense. someone just got shot. i'll put a treat out, trump said. i've never seen anything like this, mccarthy said. you've got to tell them to stop. you've got to get them out of here. get them out of here. now. he never asked about mccarthy safety. and one remark stood out, well, kevin, i guess these people are more upset about the election than you are. donald trump's fifth and final national security adviser, keith kellogg, is quoted in
peril, giving donald trump similar advice to the man stephanie grisham says, was gleefully watching tv. sir, vice president is secure, kellogg told trump. where is mike? trump asked. the secret service has. him there down in the basement. they're okay and he's not going to get in the vehicle. he knows, kellogg said, that if they put your ass in the vehicle, they're going to take you somewhere. mister president, he added, you really should do a tweet. on capitol hill, nobody is carrying a tv on their shoulder. you need to get a tweet out real quick. help control the crowd up there. this is out of control. they're not going to be able to control this. sir, they're not prepared for it. once the mob starts turning like that, you've lost it, he said. yeah, trump said. trump blinken kept watching television. kellogg looked around and realize the west wing was nearly empty. meadows was in his office, but trump was essentially alone.
leading off our discussion tonight, bob woodward, two-time pulitzer prize-winning author, and robert costa national reporter for the washington post. they are the coauthors of the book, peril. thank you both for being here. on what is a sad in historic night, in this country. bob woodward, as we gather more detail to the very detailed account that you already have, in peril. what strikes you as the most important thing for people to know about what the president was doing on january 6th? >> well, there is more in the book about trump threatening pence. i want to be very accurate, and quote accurately, he said, you can to do this. other words, certify biden as
president. i don't want to be your friend anymore. you've betrayed us. i made you. your career is over. another point in all of this, trump said to pence, i picked the wrong man four years ago. and then you did the, >> you're gonna win tout. i think about it, put yourself in pence's shoes. here he is, the loyal man for four years, doing everything. i remember being in the oval office with interviewing trump and he had they always bring people in. and there is pence, standing there, at attention. almost eyes glazed over. this was the routine. so, trump says these things to
pence and is pushing him in a way that is rarely, i think, and perhaps never, of president's push to vice president. and then, pence, the wobbly had a number of points, he no doubt -- we lay it out, it's a pretty -- somebody suggested there should be a broadway player written about pence from our book. with what's on the record, and what else can be found out. it would be the story of an internal, political, and moral struggle, which pence went through. >> and, as we see in paul's, nothing has made pence more unpopular with republicans, than doing what he was legally
required to do. robert costa, don trump was asking pence, nothing less than to commit a televised federal crime, for donald trump, and for mike pence's own benefit to retain the vice presidency. mike pence, of course, refused to do that. in washington, apparently that can be portrayed his heroism. refusing to commit a federal crime on tv. >> i'm not here to declare heroes or villains. but, we see at the end of the day, in this story, donald trump was trying to use mike pence to weaponize ally. lie about the election. this took pence to the brink on january 5th, in the oval office. when trump didn't get what he wanted, he called abandoning giuliani and said, let's issue a statement and say pence agrees with us, even though he didn't. that happened on the night of
january 5th. and that will continue on january 6th. it's so revealing. pence doesn't even go to the white house on sixth. he works from home, then goes to the capital, avoiding the oval office. he once again, he's huddling with his lawyer, some on the phone. he said, let's get this letter out. let's go to the capitol. that doesn't make him a hero, and make some somebody who resisted trump for the first time, really, an entire vice presidency. he was being told, you will shake the constitutional core of this country, if you go up to that lectern on january 6th and walk away. because then you would have a sitting president, and sitting vice president refused to endorse the president. >> woodward, we know when donald trump was not watching tv gleefully, according to this new report, or when he wasn't just staring at a blankly, according to keith kellogg, he was continuing, during the attack on the capital, to try and influence senators and
house members. >> yes. i mean, again, you know, we look at this, let's put this in the context of biden's speech today. i thought it was a strong speech that biden has ever given. i'll say to you, caution i talked earlier today, and somebody who helped biden write that speech, or wrote read our book. one of the key elements, it's hard to pick out and say this is the key, or there are only five key elements, because it's a coherent portrait -- in my view of a crime of the constitution. to look at this system we have, and the certification process, which the president of the senate, that is the vice
president, according to the constitution. he has to get up before congress, and certify and count the votes. that is in the constitution. everything trump did in this alleged stolen election where there is no evidence. i wanted to read something, cost and i continued some of our reporting, even after the book came. a former senior trump cabinet officer who we talked to said the following. inevitably you're looking, how did this happen, what is the why? this former cabinet officers said, a basic feeling was, whatever ability president
trump had to control himself vanished on election day. and, in an important way, i think that says it. not that trump was an expert at controlling himself, but any particle of self control and that ability to strategize and so forth evaporated on election day, when he realized he lost. so, all of november and december were spent, trying to manufacture and enhanced and support it's called the big lie. i don't really use that term, but what is important -- there is no evidence. there is zero evidence as biden said today. as we show in the book, the trump supporters investigated
and ran it to ground, as they say. lindsey graham, of all people, and his chief counsel investigated rudy giuliani 90's memo. i brought them -- it's a half inch thick packet of allegations and none of them check out, at that and somebody said to senator graham, well, look, they're making these allegations. graham, after david, that the world is flat. that's what's rub bad, it does
not out of tiny fraud. i want zero to listen tomorrow what just rely on reporting that first appeared in your book. the president watching television in what chairman bennie thompson of the january six committee focus in on as those 187 minutes when donald trump did nothing about the attack on the capitol. let's listen to what the president put out today. >> we didn't see a former president who had just rallied the mauve to attack. sitting in a private dining room off the oval office in the white house watching it all on television. and doing nothing. nothing for hours. as police were assaulted, lives were at risk, the nation's capital was under siege. >> and robert costa, we now have liz cheney tonight saying that those 187 minutes of doing
nothing for the focus of a possible criminal offense by donald trump. >> as a reporter i have a slightly different taken all of this. was donald trump idol during that period? yes he was. but based on our reporting this is not someone who is having some kind of idol episode that comes out of nowhere. this is more like a football coordinator sitting in a box and watching a team on the field. this is someone who along with john eastman, the conservative lawyer, was cooking up a strategy to do one of things either overturn the election or delegitimized biden's entire presidency. essentially tried to convince the country that biden was a fraud president and tried to make it possible for him to govern. and that eastman memos, if you read those two pages, and read it again, this was a coordinated pressure campaign with a tenth.
so while he was idle on the day of, and that is an area of scrutiny to be sure. it is the days prior and the attempt to overturn the election that to me as a reporter, is almost a bigger story. >> robert costa and bob woodward, thank you so much for your invaluable reporting in peril. and thank you very much for joining us. thank you on this important night. i really appreciate it. >> thank you. >> thank you both. coming up, judging by the insanity level of donald trump's written public statement today. there was an agonizing day for donald trump in exile in florida. donald trump's niece, mary trump will join us next with her insights about what was going through and what is left of the mind of donald trump today. um today. at libertymutual.com so you only pay for what you need. isn't that right limu? limu? limu? sorry, one sec. doug blows several different whistles.
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hour, donald trump has a new worry tonight about a possible criminal referral about the generous six committee to the justice department about what donald trump was doing on january six. >> it is absolutely clear. we know from firsthand testimony study watched television while the attack was underway. we watched the attack happened on television. we know that he did not walk the very few steps to the white house briefing room, get on camera immediately and tell the people to stop and go home. >> as people were begging him to do it. also ivanka trump. >> exactly. so the president of the united states is responsible for the security of the branches. so for a president to, through either his action or inaction, for example, attempt to impede or obstruct the counting of electoral votes which is an
extra -- proceeding of congress. we the committee are looking at that. we are looking at whether he did something that constitutes a crime. but certainly it implies dereliction of duty. >> joining us now is mary trump, the niece of donald trump. she is the author of the reckoning our nation's trauma and finding a way to heal. her new podcast is the mary trump show. thank you very much for joining us on this important night. i don't days like this i for one wonder about the fragile mind of your uncle. and i think you just heard bob woodward possibly talk about a source telling him that whatever was left of donald trump's ability to control himself, whatever particle was left up that, disappeared on election day. >> i think that that is
probably true. as you know, and as we have discussed before, that was a narcissistic injury. the likes of which he never suffered before. i'm probably never imagined he would. and there was no way for him to recover from it. the only way he could mitigate the effects of that is to pretend that it hadn't happened. which is the beginning of the big lie. and why he is so desperately trying to pedal it. unfortunately for us, practically every elected republican has all estate his ability to believe in it because they have allowed him to perpetuated. they have portraiture waited it himself's. and that is in part what led to the insurrection last year. >> the news that liz cheney made tonight, coming at the end of this day with your uncle watching all of it he hates a lot of people but liz cheney
has to be right up there at the top of his list right now. how do you think that he reacts that this committee will make a public finding and referral to the justice department on the belief that he committed a crime. >> well first representative cheney considers not a badge of honor. i don't want to overstate this because we have seen donald get away with so much. but even he at this point must be feeling the walls closing. if he has any sense he would feel that way. the january six committee is doing an extraordinary job at putting the pieces together, of putting a case together. and there is no doubt in my mind that if they are as discussing to make this referral they have everything kneeled down. >> so, your uncle issued three
written statements today. he is banned from twitter. and so he is just filled with madness, the one coherent sentence that i could extract from it is the democrats want to own this day of january six so they can stoke fears and divide america. i say let them have it. because america sees through their lies and polarization's. this from a guy who planned to seize this day for himself and have a live tv event today which i think at some point he realized no one was going to carry on live tv. >> yes. i think again most of that is just rejection. almost everything donald trump says recently is some form of rejection for another. which suggests that there is some level of knowledge about his own guilt here. but i think his canceling of that event is significant. it's sort of reminds me of the
circumstances that led to his video last year. clearly he did not want to make. somebody banished and convinced him that he had serious legal liability. and he did not have a choice. which is why impart i am guessing that he canceled today. but nobody can stop him from making those appalling written statements. and i have to be honest with you. i prefer them because they don't get as much place, certainly i don't think that they have as much impact on the people who still follow him. and yet it gives the rest of us and insight that we really very much need into his state of mind. since he is still the de facto head of the republican party. e de facto the president today, kept about how donald trump lost. it is a don champs name he kept saying, in effect as, those talking or to him, you lost. . he did so multiple.
times made me think about the way the intelligence community priest president, before talking to people at vladimir putin, about what might irritate them, if you want to irritate them. one make them make them feel more comfortable, one might make them more uncomfortable. if that is your strategy. this seemed to have some passages in there that were absolutely true, and important for america to hear, but the white house and the president had to know, would go straight into donald trump's heart. >> i thought it was masterfully done, it's a long lines of a psyop. it's designed, in those rural parts, it was designed to make a clear, to everybody listen to the speech, what's the reality of the 2020 election was that, donald trump lost badly, and
joe died in is the legitimate president. and make it clear to -- except for maybe himself. >> mary trump, thank you for joining us. we always appreciate it. >> thank you, lawrence. >> coming up, even after 27 years, as a police officer, nothing prepared congressman val demings, which she experienced a year ago. she spoke about that in the house, today. and she will join us next. next. d a personalized plan that helps you build a future for those you love. vanguard. become an owner. i brought in ensure max protein, with thirty grams of protein. those who tried me felt more energy in just two weeks! (sighs wearily) here i'll take that! (excited yell) woo-hoo! ensure max protein. with thirty grams of protein, one gram of sugar, and nutrients to support immune health.
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this violent mob, who had total disregard for her oath. their families, and their safety. as a former police chief, i shall never forget what i witnessed one year ago, today. an america should never forget, police took should, because i saw them fighting, with every ounce of strength, courage, commitment and energy that they could muster up. but, you know what's, as
members of congress both in the upper chamber and lower chamber, we have taken an oath. but some have forgotten that oath. i want to thank the police officers for defending, and protecting but they did so much more, they also protected our democracy. also protected our many people call themselves patriots. but true patriots don't lie, they don't steal they don't cheat. they are cowards. they don't pull lies for political or financial gain. our democracy stood, and the enemies of our democracy lost. >> joining us now,
congresswoman, of florida. she served as an impeachment manager in the first impeachment trial of donald trump. she's now running for united states senate, in florida. thank you so much for joining us on this important night. you talked, today, about people who have forgotten their oath. what did it feel like to have no republicans come to the house, other than former house member and former vice president dick cheney, and his daughter, liz cheney? >> let me know -- it's been a year, but it feels like it was just yesterday. what happened on january 6th, a year, ago i don't think any of us who care about this country, and those who really call a shelves to periods, will ever forget that day. i was extremely disappointed
that there were only two republicans there. i spent 20 years as a law enforcement officer and i could not tell you the political party of the -- that i worked with. we had a mission to fulfill, and we were laser focused on that mission. in the worst of times, that's when we are supposed to come together. so, to see no republicans there, when we are commemorating one year after the most vicious attack on america can soil since 1812, was absolutely a shameful. >> the first segment tonight, i showed how a year ago senator mitch mcconnell blamed donald trump personally for the attack on the capitol. kevin mccarthy did to, a year ago. kevin mccarthy was silent today, but listen to what he had to say last year.
>> some say, the riots were caused by antifa. there's absolutely no evidence of that. conservative should be the first to say so. the president bears responsibility for the states attack, why mark brighter's. he should have immediately denounced the mob, when he saw what was unfolding. these facts require immediate action from president trump. except his share responsibility during the unrest. and ensured president biden could successfully begin his term. and the president's immediate action also -- which is why i think a fact finding commission and, censure resolution would be prudent. >> so, he was opposed to impeaching the president, at that point, but he wanted to censure the president of the united states, who ease now in service to, every day.
-- former president. >> lawrence, you know, sadly, i talked about people, like kevin mccarthy, today. those who have forgotten their oath. those who will push the big lie for political, or financial advantage. so, a year ago, when kevin mccarthy gave his speech -- because what was coming out of his mouth was exactly where he should have been, but where has he been since then. where was he today? president biden said today, do we basically want to live in a nation that lives in the light of truth, or in the shadow of lies? i can only believe that kevin mccarthy, because it's politically advantages for him to do so, has chosen to live in the shadow of lies.
>> marco rubio did not have the courage that temporarily mitch mcconnell and kevin mccarthy had. he actually said on the senate floor, i think politics is made this crazy. everybody in this crazy has lost their minds on politics. that's where rubio said after the attack on the capital. it was republicans, and republicans only, who lost their minds and attacked the capital. trying to kill police, and we're trying to hang mike pence. >> even though we rubio said last year made no sense, what has he said today? what has he said since then? we're talking about a united states senator who voted against an independent commission to investigate --
to get to the bottom of what happened on january 6th. so, that we can make sure it never happens again. rubio certainly not going to get in this fight. he does not have the courage. i talked about him today as well. two patriots are not cowards. they have the cowards to stand up for what they know is right. florida can do better than marco rubio. >> val demings, thank you so much for joining us. we appreciate. it >> thank you. >> coming up, as i've shown you no one has publicly laid out the case against donald trump, and the terrors -- that's what he called it. better than mitch mcconnell did, one year ago. what is the state of the criminal case against donald trump, tonight and ryan reilly, will join us next. n us next.
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that president trump is practically, and morally responsible for provoking the events of the day. no question about it. the people in the building believed they were acting on the wishes and instructions of their president. >> if he's the commander-in-chief and leader of our country, and he's calling for help -- we thought he was calling for help. >> we have a criminal justice system in this country. we have civil it occasion. and, former presidents are not -- new kathy, all former law professor at georgetown
university. msnbc legal contributor. -- senior justice reporter, for huffpost. neal katyal, there was a case laid out their, of sorts. you have liz cheney, tonight, with the breaking news that the committee is examining the possibility of criminal conduct in whatever trump did, and did not do, on january 6th. >> exactly. lawrence, i write a piece in the atlantic, today that, basically started with those mcconnell quotes, that you laid out. i think liz cheney is absolutely right. she didn't refer to the staff chief by name, but it's 18 usc 15 12, and forbids, a conspiracy, or a decision to try and obstruct an official proceeding. at this, point it's very clear that there needs to be an investigation into higher opts. not just trump, but the other's, like banning, like jeffrey
clark, like john eastman. like yes, congress has been looking at this, but we don't know whether the justice department is. that's my concern. merrick garland gave a great speech yesterday, talking about how nobody is above the law. but, there's still no sign that there is an official law enforcement or criminal investigation against the higher ups. it might be going on in secret, but there is reasons to suspect that it probably isn't going on. >> and ryan reilly, you've been covering the over 700 foot soldiers in the trump attack, on democracy, on january 6th. danny rodriguez is one of them. that's the person we saw in that video, between what mitch mcconnell had to say, in his interview with fbi. saying clearly, what mitch -- when mitch mcconnell believed. which was, donald trump sent them to the capital. they believe that the president
was sending them there. >> yes, that's right. there's an interview with one of the detained ones that was air last night, from his jail cell in d.c.. he's talking about how trump had called him to come to the capitol. he didn't understand why trump wasn't speaking out for him. he was caught on camera decking police officers. that's why he was there, to stand up for what donald trump had said. you hear this in case after case, after case. people saying over and over again, the election was stolen, and this is what they saw is the logical reaction to that. they were told that there was this massive crime, and this is how they responded. i think the legal question is a very tough one. we have the first amendment in this country, so that has there's -- a path it's blocked off to, assert extent, about pursuing trump -- inciting a riot. you go to brett inverse ohio, and that case in terms of how
restrictions -- and how the prevention's for the amendment, in terms of inspiring violence, as long as it's not directly related to these things. there are other pathways, based on one neil -- going forward. >> neil, ryan's been covering these defendants of these cases so closely, he could quote from every one of the cases. so many of them say donald, trump sent me there. you have the video of donald trump sending them there, telling them to go up to the capital, and to fight like heck. lying to them and saying, he was going to walk there with them. can that be linked up in some criminal action against the president? yes. absolutely. i think the key facts add up, after, while all the rights are going, on what is trump? do he sits on his hands for 187 minutes i think both for, trump, and the rioters, there is no
first amendment offense, with due respect with those just said. the first amendment does not protect that kind of conduct. to me, the most heartbreaking thing, lawrence, a year ago, tonight, republicans and democrats, who've condemned the rioters, and trump, or at least as an actions, and's actions -- some commentators said, this will be whitewashing forgotten. i said, no. this is a turning point. this is when people start into the obvious, and the republican party's realize what donald trump has brought. i was unfortunately wrong. because i doubled down on this, time and again. we're now at a point where a year, and there hasn't been an investigation against higher ups, to our knowledge, and none of the higher ups have been singled out in a new law enforcement way. >> neil, no one can blame you for believing what you saw.
kevin, to see with the republican leaders among the house in the senate said, in their respective bodies. about donald trump being responsible for this. mitch mcconnell and kevin mccarthy both said it. to believe they were going to run away from that position in a short time, would've required some winery meeting, that none of us are capable of. neil tatiana, ryan reilly, thank you both for being here on this important night. >> thank you so much. >> thank you. >> tonight, president biden made some very important phone calls, to some members of the house and senate staff. who as the president put it, sprang into action, to defend the capitol and our democracy. on this very day, last year, the president said, those house and senate staffers were some of the, quote, unsung heroes of that day. and the president just wanted to thank them. tonight's last word, is next.
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trying to rewrite history. they want to you to see election day as the day of insurrection. and the riot that took place on january six as a true expression of the little people. can you think of a more twisted way to look at this country? to look at america? i cannot. twisted. that is tonight's last word. the 11th hour starts right now. good evening once again. i'm ali velshi, they 352 of the biden administration. we are now one year from the violent insurrection that left us would searing visuals of trump supporters staging a brutal attack on the capital building and, more importantly, on american democracy in action that day. lawmakers marked this day with