tv Yasmin Vossoughian Reports MSNBC January 8, 2022 1:00pm-2:00pm PST
jill and i are here for harry, but he wouldn't want us to really be here for just him, as everybody has referenced. landra, we're here for you and for the family. eulogies are for the living. you know, it's a true love story when you're still talking about your first date 60 years later. harry never tired of telling the time you two kids had to push start his car, making your way down the road with wide smiles on your face. my recollection is he called it, when he told me the story, one of those, quote, moments that turn a life and then stay with you until the last breath. landra, what a life you turned
together. until his last breath. lana and rory and leif, josh, key, all the grandchildren, great-grandchildren, seeing and hearing you talk about him today, it's clear. my dad used to have an expression. he would say, you were blood of his blood, bone of his bone. you are the product of harry and landra reid. what a gift. what a gift god gave you. what a gift that was and is. elder ballard, president obama, vice president harris, second gentleman, governor, thanks for the passport into the state. and iris and chuck schumer and
paul and nancy pelosi, members of the nevada congressional delegation, senator cortez and representatives horsfod and lee and titus, members of congress, democrat, republican, past and present, distinguished guests, what a gift harry reid was to the state, to this nation. and to so many of us individually. i know he's smiling right now. only harry reid at his sendoff would sandwich a speaker between former president of the united states, carole king, and the killers. thanks, harry. you've always had a great sense of humor. he always had to win. and he always did.
you got me again, but he always got me. the first time i met harry, i got a call asking whether, as i had just been elected at 29 years old to the united states senate, hadn't even turned 32 yet, he was newly -- i was a newly elected senator. he asked me to campaign for his election for nevada's senate seat being vacated by a man i had only just begun to know, alan bible. the first thing when we met, i met him in nevada, we were talking about where he's from, and he said, well, i used to have to go out and shoot mad dogs. i thought, what in the hell am i doing here? i swear to god. i used to go out and shoot mad dogs. and i'm thinking, bless me, father, for i have sinned. what's going on? harry lost that general election by less than 600 votes to paul axle, and he never let me forget thinking that i probably cost
him those 600 votes. i'm only kidding about that piece, but i probably did. but when he asked me to come back and campaign for him when he ran for the house in 1982, he won that time, and he won in '86 and would go on to serve in congress together for more than 30 years. we worked together with barack during the eight years we were in office, and even when harry was done in the senate, he was never really done, as all of you from nevada know. he'd ask me to campaign for an awful lot of nevada democrats, many of whom are here today. i could never say no, although you probably said, oh god, he invited biden into my district? well, i talked to him often during this past election, taking his advice and landra can tell you, coming to his home on
more than one occasion and visit and get his advice, and where i should be going in order to win. after we won, one of the things that harry did, which was sort of incongruous with harry, as you've heard today, he sent me a text. i've saved it. it said, i'm so proud, joe. you're my brother. we won. well, it made a big deal to me. it was a big deal to me that he felt that way. if you know harry, he never wrote what he didn't believe. it made me feel good. he gave me a sense of confidence. i felt like he was my brother. i counted on him. and i know so many of you felt that same way about harry as well throughout his career and your great relationship with him. over five decades, we became genuine friends. an irish catholic kid from
scranton, pennsylvania, and a latterday saint from searchlight. you think i'm kidding. harry was like the guys i grew up with back in scranton and claymont, delaware. harry would always have your back, like the guys i grew up with. harry had mind, and he knew i had his. although i sometimes wondered, when i was trying to make an important point to harry about whether he really did have my back, as he hung up. but to tell the truth, every time -- every time he would do it, i knew it was the real harry. it was him. he had all he needed. he didn't want any more or need any more. we did share some similarities. barack said, we have loving families, wives who are smarter and better-looking than we were.
and harry and i both like to talk a lot. i'm just testing whether you're asleep yet. but whether you served with harry for decades or you were new to america just a few days ago, you wanted harry in your corner, and that's not hyperbole. his toughness was disstingtly nevadaen. his remarkable journey has been told by so many because it has been traveled by so few. the desert shack he called home. miles to hitchhike to school, a boxing ring where he always got up, family tragedies endured, the cancer he and landra fought, the halls of power he walked, the state he transformed, the
country he shaped, he was proof that there's nothing ordinary about america. ordinary americans can do anything given half a chance. we, the people, are pretty damn extraordinary. america's an idea, an idea that anybody, given a shot, can reach their potential. harry was extraordinary, though. he and i grew up in different sides of the country, but we came from the same place where certain values ran deep. first, loyalty, faith, resolve, service, your word. it was pounded into my head from the time i was a child. joey, you're a man of your word. without your word, you're not a man. and he met the marker, what i
always believed was the most important thing which you can measure a person by, their actions and keeping their word. if harry said he was going to do something, he did it. he didn't do it the modern-day rationale is, when i told you i would do that, i didn't realize this would happen. no matter what happened, he gave you his word. he kept it. you could bank on it. that's how he got so much done for the good of the country for so many decades. that's how he literally saved, we forget it, social security during the bush years. stopped yucca mountain from becoming a nuclear waste site. secured the votes for the affordable care act. it's how he helped us rein in wall street, the excesses and repealed "don't ask, don't tell." it's how he created nevada's first national park and conserved lake tahoe and how he
always championed native americans and tribal communities. so much more. none of it was easy. not a lot of it was particularly popular when he was doing it. the thing about harry, he never gave up. he never gave up. he never gave up on anybody he cared about. like every great leader, he led the democratic caucus not just been speaking but by listening, by hearing all points of view and finding a common ground. harry cared so much about his fellow americans and so little about what anybody thought of him. it was all searchlight, no spotlight. always appreciate the private comfort, and so does jill who's
with me tonight, that he offered me and jill in difficult moments in our lives. we know we're not the only ones. since his passing, we've all heard those wonderful tributes, the gracious way he would console grieving, the grieving and encourage someone living with a disability. i still have that picture of our buddy, max baucus. max losing three of his limbs. harry's standing in front of him in the wheelchair holding his cheeks, and you know -- max knew. max knew harry cared about him. the generous way he would empower a new colleague or insist that the new moms and dads on his staff would put their family first, even before their job and do it always. the genuine friendships he made with the capitol police, been
recognized three times because he wore the uniform. a friend in need, harry's voice was soft and gentle. in praise of himself, he was stone cold silent. pursued a fairness and prosperity, his voice would echo and will echo for generations in this state. look, let there be no doubt. harry reid will be considered one of the greatest senate majority leaders in history. i've served longer than all but about 12 united states senators, served there for over 36 years. i have had the honor of serving with a few of those names to be on that short list. for harry, it wasn't about power. it was about the sake of power, about the power to be able to use power to do right by people. that's why you wanted harry in your corner. and that's what we should
remember as a nation today. harry knew better than most how difficult democracy is, but the idea of america itself is under attack from dark and deeply forces. we're in a battle for the soul of america. landra, i remember sitting in a room with harry when he was supporting me for president, and my explaining to him, the reason i decided to run when i had decided i was never going to do that again was watching all those neo-nazis come out of the fields down in virginia, chanting anti-semitic bile, carrying nazi flags. and he asked me what, i said, we have to restore the soul of america. no one knew it better than harry. protecting democracy requires
vigilance, stewardship, but harry's life shows if we're all, from our darkest days, we can find light and find hope. just look at his life. it's just about every respect, harry reid came into this world with the odds against him. he believed life, and he lived it. and he left it believing anything was possible. he's demonstrated that anything's possible. look at this incredible family. harry, in his small way, reminds me of my dad. my dad used to say, joey, never explain and never complain. i remember one day we were having an event when i was running for my, guess it was,
fifth term. we were at my house. i was feeling a little sorry for myself, talking about a family loss of a daughter. and my dad said, i'll be back in a minute. he left the house. we were waiting for people to show up. went up to the local hallmark store and came back with a cartoon that was in a little brass plaque with two sections to it. two clips from the cartoon character "hagar the horrible." and one, hagart, the viking, on his ship, had been moving along near the rocks, lightning comes out of sky, chars the horns of his helmet, breaks the mast of his ship, and he's looking up at god and he's going, god, why me?
and the next frame is a picture of hagar on the ship and the voice coming down from heaven saying, why not? that was my dad. what makes you so special these things wouldn't happen to you? why not? stand up. get up. never bow, never bend, never yield. that was harry. never complain. that's what i admired so much about him. above harry's desk, as we all know, in the senate office, was a giant portrait of mark twain. they both, harry and mark twain, loved nevada, and they both knew how to say things we know to be true about ourselves and about our country. for harry, it was this, as he
said himself. he said, quote, i grew up around people of strong values, even if they rarely talked about them. went on to say, they love their country, worship god, never shunned hard work, and never asked for special favors. that's harry. that's america. here's someone mark twain himself would have written about as a defining character in the american story, had he known harry. to his staff, known as team reid, you lost an incredibly genuine role model. but we see you carrying on hmr's legacy. people of nevada, you lost a
beloved son, but his spirit's always going to burn as bright as the desert sun. as a nation, we lost a giant american. a plainspoken, honorable, decent, brave, unyielding man. may this be his legacy. call on each of us to be our best and speak truth from the heart, to take up the remaining rounds of harry reid's good fight for the america we all love. what a gift. i mean this from the bottom of my heart. what a gift. what a life of a nation he turned until his last breath. landra, god bless you. god bless the entire family. may god bless my friend, harry.
a great american. and god protect our troops. >> the president there wrapping up funeral services for former senate majority leader harry reid, concluding the speakers throughout the day. we have heard from the family members, from the five children of the former senator, from speaker nancy pelosi, senate majority leader chuck schumer, from former president barack obama, and current president joe biden. biden saying there harry reid will be considered one of the greatest senate majority leaders in history. his life showing that for all our darkest days, we can find life and hope. and harry would always have your back. the former president saying sometimes the people who motivate us most, harry reid would say, are the people who
believe in us the least. and few people have done more for this state and this country than this driven, brilliant, sometimes irascible, deeply good man from searchlight, nevada. i want to bring in former senator carol moseley braun and alaina beverly, an obama white house aide. thanks for speaking with us, guys, we were looking as we were looking at the conclusion of the services there, the president and former president. senator, what stuck out to me here was the sense that former senator harry reid always got things done, and he never forgot where he came from, from abject poverty, essentially, to become who he was throughout his life, always carrying that with him. at one point, speaker pelosi saying he never forgot his north star, fighting for working families like his own and to
fight for nevada. can you talk more about that? >> absolutely. and frankly, i'm honored to have been invited to participate in this recognition for senator harry reid. he was a wonderful, wonderful man, a great american who loved his country, who had basically core values that we should all try to emulate. he gave everything he could to his country, and can i'm grateful to have had the chance to know him. i served with him in the senate. he was -- he had not risen to leadership when i was there, but we became friends, and quite frankly, i was so impressed with harry reid because of his heart, because he always was willing to give to others, and particularly the underserve and had people who didn't have a voice. he was always there for working americans. he was there to speak truth to power. he did that all the time. and again, he never forgot where he came from.
he was extraordinary in that regard, and particularly in a washington that's so cynical, that has turned its back on so many people, harry reid was, again, the north star that would keep us facing our real challenges, which is serving the american people and particularly the american people who don't have a whole lot of money, who don't have the ability to hire lobbyists and whatnot. and that's where harry came from, and that's where he -- he never diverged from that. and i was always so grateful that he stayed the course, that he did what he could do to help little people, and i told a story earlier about how he helped black baseball players who had been kept out of the -- out of major league and even minor league baseball during the time of the negro leagues, and harry went out of his way to help shape a pension system for them. he had three negro league
players in his state. i had one in my state. and he was able to do magic. i couldn't do it. i mean, i was a freshman and the guys wouldn't listen to me, but we would -- we'd try to get pensions for these negro league players and harry made it happen, and i'm sure it was only, like, 50 of them at the time, and it's probably less now, but the fact is those men were -- got the recognition and the financial support to live their twilight years in dignity. and i am just always to grateful to harry reid for that. so, i could tell story after story. there's lots of stories to tell. but the fact of the matter is, he was an extraordinary man. these speeches have been wonderful. joe biden was terrific. barack obama was fabulous. and so, listening to the speeches, i was sitting here nodding my head in agreement with everything that was being said. and just grateful to have known him. he's graced us all and was a real contributor to our country. >> alaina, talk to us about the
relationship former president barack obama had with harry reid. and i say that because of that story that obama told about sitting around at a dinner table with reid in which there wasn't necessarily a lot of talking going on from harry reid, and then to suddenly get a kiss from him and say he was so proud of the work that they had done together with that administration, and of course, the former president talking about the rescue plan, saying it would not have gotten done if it were not for then senate majority leader harry reid. talking about the affordable care act, it would not have gotten done if it weren't for then senate majority leader harry reid. talk to us about that. >> absolutely. well, what i heard in the speech was a man eulogizing a dear and true friend, but also someone who was responsible for helping
to shape the real landmark legislation and legacy building legislation that came out of his administration. so, as you mentioned, the american recovery act, making sure that people got jobs and pulling us back from the recession, making sure we stabilized our economy to the affordable care act in ensuring that over 31 million americans had access to healthcare and health insurance and making sure that the policies that were developed out of the obama administration were able to make it through and secure that agenda. but you know, senator reid and barack obama were -- are very different people, but what came through in the eulogy was so much of how they were almost, you know, brothers of the same democracy. brothers who believed in the importance of our institutions.
a need to address progress over perfection, the ability to compromise, the ability to do what is best for the american people. so, what i heard again was a friend who was -- someone who was eulogizing a dear friend but also someone who eulogized a man who made an important mark on the american people. >> carol moseley braun, alaina beverly, thank you both for staying with us as we conclude our coverage for the services of former senate majority leader harry reid. straight ahead, everybody, our special report, january 6th, the year ahead. we'll be right back. , january 6, the year ahead we'll be right back.
in-depth look at the challenges that we face in this new year following the anniversary of the january 6th insurrection. one year later, the political divide is wider than ever, and if the way in which lawmakers on either side of the aisle chose to observe the day is any indication, the road ahead is going to be bumpy. democrats led events thursday to reflect on the attack, sharing their personal experiences, leading a moment of silence, and holding a candlelight vigil. republicans, on the other hand, stayed mostly silent and absent from the capitol. some issuing statements, but mostly just to call out democrats for politicizing, as they put it, the insurrection. i was there on the capitol steps on january 6th and saw firsthand the truth of what happened. democrats are not exaggerating for dramatic effect. it was scary to both see what happened and hear from protesters who chose violence over democracy. >> i was actually just speaking to someone, a man who came up from florida. he doesn't know how many days
he's actually going to be here. he said himself he is part of a militia group in the state of florida. he breached the capitol building. he said to me, personally, that this is not the end. they're not going to take this anymore. think about how depressing this is. he said, the next time, we're going to come back with weapons. >> the lack of consensus over an event that once had both parties condemning it and the former president who helped incite it is branching out and will likely spill over into everything from the panel investigating the attack to voting rights and the impending midterms. the january 6th select committee is now ramping up their probe as the new year is beginning, despite the lack of cooperation from trump and his top ally, the panel has, quote, redoubled its efforts as they work to release a report before the midterms. committee chair bennie thompson indicated just yesterday, in an interview with npr, that the panel will ask former vice
president mike pence to voluntarily meet with lawmakers. pence, who was escorted out of the senate chamber that day as rioters chanted "hang mike pence" outside could offer valuable information, particularly on conversations within the trump white house leading up to the attack. the committee is also planning future public hearings during primetime, aiming to make the truth of that day more widespread and discount the conspiracy theories still festering among so many republicans. the latest polling showing a majority of republicans still believe claims that have been proven false, things like biden's presidency is not legitimate, that there's widespread voter fraud, and that trump bears little to no responsibility for the attack on the capitol. gop legislatures across the country are continuing to enact voting restrictions in an effort they claim to safeguard elections, putting democrats in a tough position ahead of the midterms that could make or break their power in washington.
the push to pass federal voting rights to combat these state gop efforts is continuing into this year with the president set to speak next week in support of two bills that senate majority leader chuck schumer says he will call up for a vote this month. but with moderate democrats like senators joe manchin and kyrsten sinema still wholly opposed to filibuster reform, the chances seem slim to none. the new year's biggest political challenge though, comes in the form of a former president gunning to get back his spotlight and possibly his job. trump is expected to re-emerge on the campaign trail this year and get more active as the midterms near, pushing candidates that endorse his big lie and testing the waters for a potential run in 2024. so, what can be done to stop donald trump that has not already been done? joining me now, miles taylor, former dhs chief of staff and
cofounder and executive director of the renew america movement. he was revealed in 2020 as the anonymous author behind a "new york times" op-ed and subsequent book criticizing former president trump. miles, it's good to see you, thanks for joining us on this. we appreciate it. sorry to come a little late to you. as you know, we were obviously covering the services for former senate majority leader harry reid. so, thanks for sticking with us. let's talk about some of the reporting that we are getting today that you are part of a new group with former trump officials including stephanie grisham, olivia troye, and anthony scaramucci to try and stop trump from re-entering, trying to take back the white house. can you confirm that? >> yeah. look, i can confirm that my organization, the renew america movement, is pulling together and convening these discussions. you know, the names you mentioned, they are people who have confirmed on their own acourted that they're going to be participating in the conversation. we have a number of other people
who have not spoken out previously against the ex-president, some who have and out of respect for them, we're going to keep that list very confidential. but yes, we want to have this conversation, because this has gone on long enough, okay? donald trump is continuing to exert a dominating influence, not just on the republican party but our politics. it's not just a dominating influence, it's a deeply detrimental one, and i think we can agree that his influence in our public discourse is toxic and even more so than that, as we saw on january 6th and for four years of his presidency, it's frankly a threat to democracy and our national security and i don't say that hyperbolically, i genuinely mean it. so it's about time to get some of the people who previously worked in his orbit and defected together to find ways to organize to blunt his momentum, both in the midterms and any potential future 2024 run. >> so, what's the plan? what are you going to do? and who's to say it can actually
make a difference? >> well, there's a lot of big questions here, yasmin, and i don't want to get too far ahead of the conversation. i mean, i will say, this is an exploratory discussion among these former officials about what can be done, but here's what potentially could set this apart, i mean, depending on what the group decides to do, there are a few things. one, there is not yet been an organized effort since trump left office of his former officials to try to blunt his momentum in the u.s. political system. two, and more importantly, i have not seen an effort, a really credible effort from the center right to go have what i would call electoral effects, to go win races on the ground and stop some of these extremist candidates donald trump has embraced. let me give you a few really scary data points, yasmin. our research at renew america movement has shown there are at least 75 congressional candidates in this cycle who
support the notion that the election was stolen from donald trump. there are around 50 congressional candidates in this style who have ties in one way or another to qanon, and there are two dozen candidates for public office in this cycle who are either at the riots and insurrection on january 6th and some of them actually stormed the capitol. this is bad. and he's backing these people and putting money behind them, and i hope that there's an opportunity to get officials to join together in stopping some of these candidates and if you stop donald trump's candidates in 2022, you blunt his momentum for any future run in 2024. >> okay, so, i want to understand you correctly. so, what you're saying, essentially, is you want to engage center right candidates that were -- that are likely running in these districts to combat some of these kind of extremist notions, folks that are running, obviously, believers in qanon, believers in the big lie, in a way to kind of blunt the force of a possible reemergence of the former
president, is that accurate? >> that's one option. there are other folks in this group that are going to get together on monday who have different ideas about how we can go after this problem and counter the rising political extremism we see in our system. but again, that is one way is systematically identifying the most extreme candidates that donald trump is backing and working against them, either to support moderates within the republican party or perhaps in some cases, to, yes, flip and go support some democrats. now, i'm not saying that there's full agreement among this group. we'll see what folks bring to the table of what they suggest, but this needs to start with a conversation of fellow travelers in this space about doing something. >> okay, one last question, miles, before i let you go, because we are short on time here, and that is, who's to say that these center right republicans will actually want your support? we have seen, so far, a lot of republicans not wanting to accept any sort of anti-trump support because they know and understand that if, in fact, they do, the former president
will come after them. no republicans -- well, a small majority or a small number of republicans have stepped out away from the foreman president. >> yeah, i mean, yasmin, you hit on something very important here. it's fear. i mean, there's extraordinary amount of fear in the republican party about going against donald trump, and that includes among exofficials. i would be lying if i didn't, you know, if i said that there were, you know, a lot of officials willing to stand up right now. a lot of them share my opinions about donald trump, but they're terrified to speak out. they're worried about their jobs. they're worried about their physical safety, because this guy is vindictive. but i will say this. what we have found is you don't need to go persuade a majority of republicans to go against donald trump. our polls show that around 20% or 30% of republicans are sick of this, and they want to move on. if, in some of these key races, you can even convince two, three, four, 5% of them to either withhold their vote from an extremist candidate or vote
for the other side, you can have a real electoral effect and influence the course of that election. that's who we're reaching out to is the rational republicans across this country who want an alternative. >> miles taylor, thank you for sticking with us. i appreciate it. good to see you. i want to bring in peter baker, chief white house correspondent for the "new york times" and an msnbc political analyst. peter, good to see you. talk to me about what we just heard from miles, right, this strategy in a way of engaging center right candidates, leading up to the midterms, he talked a lot about as we all know and we've discussed on numerous occasions, these extremist candidates, qanon believers, folks that are promoting the big lie, running in the midterm elections. is this something that you think could actually resonate or are republicans just too darn scared of the former president? >> yeah, that's a good question. i mean, i think miles taylor understands perfectly well that the trump faction of the party is, you know, in ascendance right now and dominating the party.
his point is, if you have to have a fight for the party, you have to fight and this is a party that has defined itself now for four or five years as the party of donald trump. there wasn't a misstatement when donald trump jr. said, this is no longer their republican party, this is donald trump's republican party. what people like miles taylor are trying to test is whether in fact that is the case and challenging republicans to say, is it a party that stand for something bigger than one person or is it donald trump's party? the polls suggest it is donald trump's party, at least for the most part right now and he has a pretty good record of winning endorsements in republican primaries, punishing those who stand up against him, as you says, people are voting with their very clearly with their feet. they're either leaving office in some cases like adam kinzinger and some of the other republicans who have been anti-trump or they're losing primaries to trump-like candidates and that's a lesson that every republican is watching. >> i actually spoke to the mother of ashli babbitt, peter,
just a few days ago when i was in d.c. for the anniversary of the january 6th insurrection. she didn't want to come on camera with me, but i actually asked her if she regretted whether or not her daughter had come to washington and stormed the capitol, and she said, no. and i said, do you still believe the election was stolen? and she said, yes. and that stood out to me. obviously, for so many reasons, one of which is because her daughter is now dead, no longer with us. but also because of the fact that one year later, she still believes strongly in the fact that this election was stolen and that in a way, her daughter's life, the loss of life, was worth it. and that, it seems, is what this country is dealing with right now. as we heard from the former president or from the current president, i should say, that day, right, coming out strongly and saying our democracy is in peril, there is still a large swath of people in this country that believe the election was
stolen, and will continue to believe that as we head towards 2024. >> yeah, of course, it's a tragic situation, the loss of life is always tragic, and i think you're right, though, what's really interesting here in the larger sense of things has become an article of faith for many republicans, in fact, most republicans, the article of faith is the election was stolen. it's not based on evidence. there isn't any. it's not based on facts, because there isn't any. and you're not going to be able to talk a lot of people out of it, at least a certain percentage of that party at the moment is just going to be convinces of this no matter what and donald trump has done, you know, a very persuasive job of making that the reality within his party, even though, again, there is no evidence of it whatsoever. and that -- that is corrosive to a democracy if 35% of the people, 75% of one party, doesn't believe that democracy actually works based on no evidence whatsoever, that's corrosive in the long-term. >> peter baker, as always, thank you. it's great to talk to you today. coming up, everybody, what
can congress actually do to make sure we don't see a repeat of january 6th? virginia congressman gerry connolly is with us next. virginia congressman gerry connolly is with us next age is just a number. and mine's unlisted. try boost® high protein with 20 grams of protein for muscle health. versus 16 grams in ensure high protein. boost® high protein also has key nutrients for immune support. boost® high protein.
once upon a time, at the magical everly estate, landscaper larry and his trusty crew... were delayed when the new kid totaled his truck. timber... fortunately, they were covered by progressive, so it was a happy ending... for almost everyone. welcome back. congress is faced with a task of what to do to prevent a repeat of january 6th. democrat representative gerry connolly from virginia was trapped in the house chamber as insurrectionists breached the capitol.
he joins me now to talk about the path forward in a deeply divided congress. congressman, thanks for joining us on this. we appreciate it. you have said there was a time during that insurrection in which you feared for your life. how can we make sure something like that never happens again? >> well, i think that's, you know, that's a question with lots of layers by way of answers, right? so, all of us, as president biden said the other day, have to rededicate ourselves to democratic constitutional principles. all of us have to dedicate ourselves to the idea that we're going to abide by the results of free and fair elections, even if they go against us. all of us have to dedicate ourselves to condemning the use of violence as a tool of politics. and all of us, frankly, have to
call out those who are willing, by word or deed, to jeopardize the democracy we cherish. >> is that enough, i guess? that's my question. right? >> no, i -- >> are we at a place of in return? >> yeah, no, i don't think that alone is going to solve the problem. i think we have to ferret out extremism. i think we have to hold those who were violent on january 6th last year to account, legally, judicially. you know, people need to go to jail. people need to pay big fines. people need to understand there are consequences for their actions so that others who might have had that thought realize that doesn't pay. but i also think, as the january 6th commission is proceeding, we also have to hold to account those political leaders, those
violent elements of organized groups like the proud boys and the oath keepers and others, they need to be held responsible because they were absolutely preaching violence, and the violent overthrow of a free, fair, accurate election.free, fair, accurate election. >> in a way, it is easier to make choices to hold the leaders of the proud boys accountable, especially because of what they stand for. but a what about the kevin mccarthys of the world, what about the jim jordans of the world, what about the former president of the united states who may very well run for president yet again? jim jordan, if, in fact, republicans win back control of congress may very well be the head of a committee. considering his involvement in the lead-up to january 6th, those text message exchanges that we now know happened, that's troublesome to a lot of folks. >> yes.
i think it's a terrifying thought that the leadership, a lot of the leadership of the republican caucus would actually be in positions of power if the republicans, god forbid, were to win majority control of the house. that's why i think the midterms are so critical, and that's why i've said democrats need to be at def come 2. we got to get the message about what the at stake, what we're doing by way of our agenda, and rally people to the flag. i mean, this is a critical moment for american democracy, and this election more than any in recent living memory is pivotal. >> i was actually taking a listen to the concession speech of former presidential candidate al gore, and wondering to myself if a speech like that will ever
happen again in our country. representative jerry connolly, thank you for spending time with us today. coming up, our special coverage of the capitol, the year ahead, continuing. ntinuing . um, she's eating the rocket. ♪♪ lunchables! built to be eaten. okay everyone, our mission is to provide complete balanced nutrition for strength and energy. woo hoo! ensure, complete balanced nutrition with 27 vitamins and minerals. and ensure complete with 30 grams of protein. ♪ ♪ how did panera come up with the idea with 30 grams of protein. to combine their famous mac and cheese with their iconic grilled cheese? by saying yes. yes to new inventions! yes to clean and fresh ingredients! and yes to living life to the flavor-fullest. panera. live your yes. now $1 delivery.
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sentenced to 90 days in prison after she brought her 14-year-old son inside the capitol during the attack. spencer is one of many women on the far right who are more engaged than ever before. with me now to discuss is cynthia miller idris, author of "hate in the homeland: the new global far right." cynthia, welcome to you. you wrote the role of women in extremist violence has normally taken a backstage. now that's changed dramatically, especially when we look at the events of january 6th. >> that's right. i mean, we have always had a few handful of women leaders across the extreme right, but for the most part these were women who were sewing the ku klux klan yufrmz, home-schooling children, sending newsletters about how to raise a pure family. there were some exceptions, again, in other forms of
extremism, but in terms of the far right, they had a backstage role and only played about 6% of the role of far-right extremists overall were represented by women. and the arrests so far show about 13% of those arrested were women from january 6th. so it's more than doubled what we had been seeing on average. that's a major change and they're playing more leadership roles. they were more violent on january 6th and we're seeing them take leadership roles in social media and online spaces to recruit and radicalize women and pull them in. >> i want to read for folks a little bit of your piece from "the new york times." counterextremism tools designed to address threats from fringe groups cannot meaningfully confront the threat from the political mainstream because extremist ideas are no longer limited to an isolated, lone-wolf fringe. the united states should focus less on isolating and containing a few bad cells and more on
reducing the fertile ground in which anti-democratic and violent extremist ideologies thrive. it needs a public health approach to preventing violent extremism. what does that look like to you, cynthia? >> great question. i mean, you know, what we saw on january 6th, i think, is a perfect example of this. again, only about 16% of those arrested had any kind of affiliation or formal tie to an extremist group. so for the vast majority of these people, they were relatively spontaneously moved to violence. they thought they were the heroic actors of democracy. so they went down the rabbit hole of propaganda. we can't combat that problem by focusing on the traditional tools of extremism, which include counterextremism tools like surveillance or infill administration or getting
informants. it's the same way we combat diseases like cardiac disease where you focus on educating the public about healthy habits of eating. that's a public health approach that we know can reduce the incidents of violence at the end by getting people to understand through digital literacy and media literacy and other civic education approaches. what are the values of democracy? how do you recognize disinformation? what does progressed look like, and build resilience rather than focusing on violence. >> cynthia miller idris, thank you so much if she joining us this hour. really appreciate it. and thank you for joining us. i'm yasmin vossoughian. i'll be back here tomorrow, 3:00 p.m. eastern. reverend al sharpton and "politicsnation" starts right now. good evening, and welcome to
"politicsnation." tonight's lead, a red flag. right now i'm consumed with the promise of this new year, even after a week spent reflecting on the worst moments of the year that just passed. it is apparent that this will be a period of reckoning as the forces that mobilized against our democratic system on january 6th, 2021, set their sights on another election cycle, the midterms in november. we can hope that this time they confine their efforts to the ballot box where americans are supposed to work out their political difference peacefully. but unfortunately, we cannot be sure. many on the far right bristoled at the efforts by president biden and the democrats to to condemn former president trump's role in the attempted coup. they have their own n