tv Yasmin Vossoughian Reports MSNBC January 30, 2022 12:00pm-1:00pm PST
he may pardon all of those january 6th insurrectionists who stormed the capitol. and assaulted police officers as well. meanwhile, the current president, president biden, set to spend this week focusing on gun violence after a series of high profile crimes including the murders of police officers around this country. plus, as he tries to find a solution to a showdown with russia over ukraine, another foreign policy crisis is becoming increasingly hard to ignore. >> and we're also covering that weekend weather. still causing major problems for millions of americans. oh, what a storm it was. that is ahead. wegood win with new developments from former president trump, who used his rally this weekend in texas, to tease not only a presidential run but presidential pardons. this time, for all january 6th rioters. >> if i run and if i win, we will treat those people from
january 6th fairly. we will treat them fairly. and if it requires pardons, we will give them pardons. because they are being treated so unfairly. >> want to bring in nbc's julie tsirkin on capitol hill for us covering this. julie, great to see you. some could argue having heard what the former president said last night he was essentially saying, listen, if you rise up in favor of me, i will protect you, not only now but in the future. a lot of troubling stuff coming out of the rally yesterday evening. the question on so many people's minds, especially when it comes to reaction is amongst republican members of congress. what are folks saying that you're hearing so far? >> yeah, i don't think people are necessarily surprised, even lawmakers in congress, democrats and republicans with the former president's rhetoric. he's been downplaying quite frankly the violence of january 6th the last several months, and last night during this rally, he escalating it, taking it a step further, as you said, saying,
hey, if you vet for me, if i'm elected in 2024, and if i run, which by the way, he hasn't signaled yet either, he'll pardon those 700-plus defendants charged by the justice department for their role in the capitol insurrection on january 6th. you have a member of the january 6th committee reacting with our colleague alex witt, just last hour. take a listen to hot she said. >> to say that those who participated in that violence are being treated unfairly is really contrary to the rule of law in america. it's pro-chaos. it's pro-law breaker, and it's really not what anyone in a trusted position should be suggesting. >> now, yasmin, i agree with you, the most interesting thing here i think is the reaction from republicans. we saw that today from susan collins, from senator lindsey graham, an ally of former president trump, saying today on abc, listen, i don't think it was appropriate for former
president trump to make those comments. of course, trump and his staff were across pennsylvania avenue, not really in harm's way, where graham, other republicans and democrats, of course, were on january 6th, hiding from the former president's supporters on that day. so he spoke out about that. i also in the last couple weeks have been seeing more and more republicans, republican senators, mike rounds, for example, of south dakota, coming out and saying that this big lie is what it is. saying that the election wasn't stolen, saying president biden is the sworn president. when i talked to him a couple weeks ago, he did tell me he thinks more and more folks will be coming out in the coming months. more republicans not afraid of former president trump's backlash anymore. and also as we get into these next couple months, we have to pay attention to what former president trump said yesterday about protesters, encouraging people to go out in d.c. and atlanta, in new york city, in these places that have live investigations going against him, and protest much like he did encourage that violence on
january 6th. >> yeah, i'll believe it when i see it. re, more republicans coming oint the coming months to detract from, deny what the president is trying to push, this big lie. thank you, julie. >> want to bring in harry lipman, former u.s. attorney and former deputy assistant attorney general in the clinton administration. welcome. >> great to be here again. >> so this is a narrative that is especially being pushed kind of on the fringes of the republican party, the former president being part of the fringe of the republican party. the narrative, for instance, these folks that are being prosecuted when it comes to storming the capitol, to beating down police officers, to taking part in violence at the capitol, are being treated unfairly. it's a narrative that is being spun by an organization called justice for j 6. they rallied at the capital a few months ago.
i was there to cover that as well. i think the real fear is can the former president, if in fact he is re-elected to the white house, could he actually pardon them? >> yeah. and i would take him at his word. and the people who voted for trump last time around, i would ask them to really think about it, think whom he is championing here and ask, do you want another sort of four years of shock to the system as we had when he was president. for us, it's kind of a reminder of the great upside of having him lob grenades from the sidelines rather than actually implement them in office. but the plenary power is probably what he used to the greatest abuse when he was in office because it is virtually unchecked. if he wants to come in, and we have seen these people vividly now all of america has, who we're talking about, not just violent but attacking the rule of law itself. if he wants to come in and do a wholesale pardon as president, he can almost certainly do it.
>> so in this instance, it doesn't seem like it's witness tampering when it comes to the people who are being held with the former president talking about that. but if you look at kind of the big picture and the way the president has been involved in the january 6th committee's work and trying to keep people from testifying, at what point does it become obstruction? does it become in fact witness tampering, especially for those folks that are being subpoenaed by the january 6th committee? >> yeah, so it's a great point. first of all, i mean, in a larger sort of political culture sense, it is. right? it's propping up people who are villains and infidels in american culture, history, and society, to actually run afoul of the federal law, it has to be much more concrete. somebody has been called and he has to be shown to try to mess with a particular person's testimony. he's in a lot of hot water. i wouldn't include that potential charge against him. but the general notion that what he's doing is making a clear cut
case of really terrible and historic lawlessness into sort of a culture war, where half the people say hooray for the patriots. there's no doubt about that, as a matter of culture and politics. and that is very toxic in and of itself. >> while we have you, i want to pivot to the supreme court briefly. you think about the process. i was taking a listen to the daily a few days ago talking about the supreme court process now versus years ago. you actually helped shepherd justice stephen breyer through his confirmation process. it is so different now than it was back then. justice amy coney barrett, one of the most divided confirmation hearings we have sign our nation's history. back then, republicans and democrats were equally voting in favor of justices for their confirmation. how have things changed? and do we ever see ourselves going back to a more bipartisan way of judging on voting on the
supreme court justices? >> another great question. yeah, breyer, we had to fully prepare him, but it was 87-9. we knew he would be confirmed. that was like a walk on the beach, and his nominee, biden's, will be like a run through a nor'easter. the change is not the candidates, to be clear. it's the senators and the viciousness and sort of down and dirtiness of the politics. it's hard to see a kind of winding back to the more, you know, responsible and thoughtful days of yore. it seems to me we have pastpass point. the last three trump nominees were the closest ever and we're looking at a 50/50 margin. i think it's stable but razor thin. will they go back? i don't think so. i think the best case scenario is this nominee gets roughed up, takes all kinds of criticism about liberal activism and the
like and then goes through. i don't think could be more distrust and nastiness between the two great sides than there is now. and that's what prompts some of these what otherwise would seem very radical proposals to change around the whole system. have it be not life tenured, have every president get her or his choice. it's so degraded now that maybe that something like that has to be considered by constitutional amendment. >> it is such a frustrating, sad testament to our times. former u.s. attorney harry lipman, thank you as always. great to see you. thanks for getting us started. >> i want to turn now to a deadly six-vehicle crash in northern las vegas. nine people including the driver are dead. six more injured after a car sped through a red light, plowing into multiple vehicles last night. officers telling nbc news, children are among the victims. saying speed was in fact a
factor. they do not know if the driver of the car was impaired. one person remaining hospitalized in critical condition. the others suffered non-life threatening injuries. >> all right, let's talk about that winter storm. tens of thousands here on the east coast without power right now. dealing with some pretty cold temperatures, to say the least, in the wake of the powerful nor'easter that brought feet of snow to some areas and flooded coastlines. nearly 31 inches in massachusetts to be exact. but cities in new york and rhode island also reporting over two feet of snow. i got two feet of snow or so outside my house. massachusetts bearing the brunt of the storm with just under 40,000 customers still without power. according to power outage.us. kathy park reports from boston. >> hey there, yasmin. so millions woke up today with a whole lot of snow. some people measuring the snow in inches. others in feet. including here in boston.
we reported 23.6 inches of snow. so nearly two feet on the ground. tying a record for the most snow in one day. the state of massachusetts got the brunt of this nor'easter. white out conditions at the height of the storm, extreme wind gusts, 35, 40 miles per hour. but over in the coastal communities like nantucket, cape cod, they were clocking wind gusts at close to 90 miles per hour. some towns even had to deal with some flooding, and this morning because of the deep chill, the frigid air, a lot of the water, there floodwaters just froze over. it was an incredible sight. but as you know, this blizzard, the blizzard warning stretched from the mid-atlantic states all the way up north to maine. this had a huge impact on travel. thousands of flights canceled this weekend. also the rails, the roadways. it was certainly a mess during this storm. but things are certainly
improving. tens of thousands are still without power. but the main utility company here in massachusetts hopes to restore power to the majority of customers by end of day monday. yasmin. >> fingers crossed. here's hoping. thank you to kathd ykathy park that. want to bring in steve romo. something kathy mentioned, canceled flights. steve is joining us from laguardia in queens. i know a lot of folks were stranded yesterday, wanting to get out. they couldn't go anywhere with those white out conditions, one to two feet of snow on the ground. how are things looking today? >> yeah, what a difference a day makes. things are back up and running. they have been since about noon, about lunch time whrx airlines started to resume full service here. but they have a lot of flights to make up from yesterday. the security line here at laguardia, it is long. and there are a lot of frustrated people trying to make their way through right now. and people who are telling me
they're pretty used to this frustration. what a month it's been with all of the problems they have been seeing. if you think about first we had omicron during the holiday travel rush, along with the ongoing staff shortages that airlines have continued to see. now, this nor'easter causing this whole new fresh set of problems. you guys mentioned the cancellations. 98% of flights were canceled here from laguardia yesterday. it was not much better for other airports in the region. 4,000 cancellations nationwide on saturday. and not looking a whole lot better today. flight aware says nationwide there have been 7700 delays so far. 2700 cancellations. people are still dealing with, and that's in addition to all of the problems we have seen on the road. travelers are saying that they're pretty fed up with it, trying to find the bright spots, though. here's what some had to say today. >> come into new york, we did have a delay, but so far so good. we don't have any delays going
back to alabama. i have been checking regularly just to make sure because we didn't want something to happen at the last minute and then we weren't aware what was going on. >> so if you do have a flight, you want to give yourself plenty of time to make it through the security lines. people keep telling us the best bet, check that flight status and then check it again when you're on your way. yasmin. >> i tell you, it can be frustrating, the travel delays. it's really freaking cold outside. we have a lot of shoveling to do, but take a moment to step outside, breathe in the air. bundle up because it's one of those blue bird days after a major storm. and you have tew appreciate that, even if it's just for a moment. quite beautiful with all the snow out there. steve romo, thank you. appreciate it. all right, double trouble for the biden administration overseas. with president biden already facing off with vladimir putin over ukraine, here comes the north korean leader with a new headache for the administration. also ahead, swing voters and the big lie.
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kim jong-un appeared to carry out the boldest missile test in years overnight. both leaders' moves are increasing the pressure on the president, but on the home front on "meet the press" this morning, a message of unity and support for the president's policy on putin from the republican co-chair of the senate committee on ukraine. watch this. >> we're looking at putting together a strong package, which i hope we can pass next week, which would include sanctions, which would include more military assistance, which would include helping them to fight back against the cyberattacks the russians continue. this right now, chuck, in ukraine is where the cause of freedom is being waged in our generation. and we need to stand up and be unified with our allies and as democrats and republicans. >> momentary bipartisanship. biden is also getting assistance on his ukraine stance from the uk of all places, boris johnson now saying he will deploy troops across europe and will ply to moscow to meet putin in person. he says he's sending a clear message to the russian leader
that an invasion of ukraine will in fact not be tolerated. want to bring in helene cooper, who covers the pentagon for "the new york times." thank you so much for joining us on this sunday afternoon. let's talk through some of the options here. and specifically, speaking of obviously the announcement from the uk saying they will be in fact deploying troops and boris johnson saying he will go meet with vladimir putin. we know the united states committing to 8,000 troops to nato bases as well. will any number of troops, any amount of troops influence the decision made by the russian president? >> thanks for having me, yasmin. i don't think so. no, because these troops are all going to eastern europe and to nato allies. they're not going to ukraine. vladimir putin is well aware of just how far the west is willing to go to protect ukraine. we're certainly willing to sell them defensive equipment and maybe at some point if he goes
into ukraine, you will even see us willing to provide them with more offensive defensive -- offensive material weaponry, and that sort of thing, but that's about as far as we'll go. we will also do sanctions, as you mentioned. and whether germany joins up with the rest of nato and nato stands unified in the economic sanctions that the west and president biden is looking to put, impose on russia, that remains to be seen. those are both -- they're economic. when you start talking about troop deployments, both boris johnson and joe biden and nato, they're talking about troop deployments to eastern europe. they're not talking about sending troops to fight russian troops in ukraine. so that's an important distinction to make. i was talking last week with somebody at the pentagon who said quite frankly, we don't believe that these troop deployments to eastern europe
are going to stop vladimir putin from invading ukraine. what they will do, though, is draw the line, saying you can't go any further because if you start looking at poland or the baltics, these are nato allies and you would have a fight, a real hot fight, combat fight with nato on your hands. >> let me ask you this, helene, because i have been seeing a lot of analysis about the crippling economic sanctions, how the russian people don't necessarily agree with and/or support what the russian president is doing right now with the troop build-up on the ukrainian border. he has slipping approval ratings domestically, that these sanctions could be crippling, not only for the business class, for the wealthy of russia, of moscow, but those middle class, lower class individuals living in russia. it could cripple the people financially and economically. does the russian president even care? if he wants to stay in power, in
russia, he will make sure that happens. no matter what. >> you know, yasmin, figuring out what's going on in vladimir putin's head is a lost cause. i have tried to do that for years. but you're raising a really good point. because this all becomes how much can -- how much support will putin lose? he could lose support -- for all the queasiness about this invasion, among russian people, vladimir putin still has a lot of popular support within russia. what biden, what nato, what the west or the europeans are hoping to do is, like, really tap into decreasing that, and that's where the sanctions could help. also, what could also make vladimir putin come into trouble with his own population is if you start seeing thousands upon
thousands of russian troops coming back in body bags. you know, that's something that they're very skittish about. pentagon things he could swiftly go through ukraine in an invasion in days, actually, but at what cost? that's where you would start to see him running into risks with his own population. >> the difference is, vladimir putin does not rule based on democracy. he rules with an iron fist. so even if people decided not to go and vote for vladimir putin and/or support vladimir putin, if he wants to remain in power, he will continue to remain in power and/or put someone in the seat he could control. helene cooper, thank you so much. great to talk to you. >> we're going to continue this discussion on ukraine at 4:00 p.m. as well when i'm joined by alexander vindman, the former director for european affairs for the united states national security council. >> want to get to breaking news.
tragic news out of hollywood. beloved comedian howard hessman has died at the age of 81. hessman best known for his role as johnny fever in the late '70s sitcom wkrp in cincinnati. passed away following a surgery on saturday afternoon. his manager said the actor will be sorely missed and always treasured. >> just days after a sea of blue turned out for the funeral of an nypd officer gunned down in the line of duty, president biden will be visiting the city as part of a new focus on gun violence. a preview of that trip is coming up next. ng upex nt. ♪ ♪taking a break from all your worries ♪ ♪sure would help a lot ♪ ♪wouldn't you like to get away? ♪ ♪ ♪ sometimes you want to go ♪ ♪where everybody knows your name ♪
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the visit is coming as the city is of course still reeling from the deaths of two nypd officers after they were shot and killed during a domestic violence call in harlem. nbc's lauren egan is at the white house for us covering this. lauren, good to see you this afternoon. tell us more about the president's visit and the possible strategies the administration might be considering here to curb this violence. >> well, we expect much of that conversation on thursday to center on what specifically is happening in new york city. but that discussion will be reflective of what we're seeing going on around the country, as the covid pandemic hit, we started to see a rise in gun violence that has only increased since then. we expect the president to discuss with mayor adams a little bit of what this administration has already been doing to combat gun violence. he's going to talk about efforts from the justice department to crack down on the sale of illegal guns, including ghost guns that are purchased online, and we expect him to talk about
how his administration has allowed a lot of flexibility in how the coronavirus funds are being spent in states and cities. the president has encouraged local governments to use some of that money to actually hire more police officers to get more boots out on the streets, and he's urged states and cities to use that money to invest in community-based prevention programs. listen to what the chicago mayor had to say about combatting violent crime earlier today on our air. >> in the short term, we have to make sure that our police department is holding violent dangerous people accountable, but in the long term, we know that we can't just arrest our way out of this problem. we have to invest our way out of this problem. >> as big of a public health issue as this is, this is also becoming an increasingly larger political problem for the president. there have been polls that have shown that the president has very low approval ratings when it comes to how americans believe that the president can do on combatting crime.
and republicans are already attacking the president for this. they believe that that could be a winning message for them as we head into this midterm elections year. this is an issue that democrats are facing a lot of pressure to get control of, yasmin. >> all right, lauren egan for us, thank you. >> i want it turn now to one of the most consequential groups for the up coming elections, swing voters. we sit down with voters who went for trump and then for biden. the discussion, the latest caveats and concerns on a future of american democracy. with voting rights under attack and election integrity hanging in the balance, this particular group that he sat down with doesn't seem to think those are major causes for concern. in fact, they think it is something else entirely. >> how many of you would say you're concerned about the condition of democracy in america? show of fingers. how many of you are concerned
about the condition of democracy in america? >> because of the changing of the policies regarding vaccinations. >> why does that affect your view of the condition of democracy in america? i can understand why you're concerned about the issue as an issue, but why does it go to the condition of democracy in america? >> i think i kind of just interpret it as people's freedom of choice. >> my biggest thing is all the politicians are telling us the truth because we're starting to see it, whether it's republican, democrat, independent, we're having the same cycle of no one wants to be accountable for what we're asking them for. >> there's a lot of corruption. like donors and stuff, like who backs everyone. i didn't like how the primaries were run in 2016. they're stacking the deck. >> all right, joining me is rich towel, president of engagest and
moderator at the swing voter project. thanks for joining us. fascinating discussion there. i have to say f i could participate in this, i would love to. ie, be a fly on the wall to listen to everything these voters had to say gives us a glimpse of what to expect in the coming months and years. nonetheless, talk to me about your reaction to these folks not necessarily being concerned there about voting rights but instead something different and kind of more age old, which in fact is corruption and/or politicians lying, which we do see a lot of. >> yasmin, thanks for having me. i guess the issue is that the complaints i heard, particularly the ones you played around corruption and not trusting politicians are the same kinds of answers i could have heard 10 or 20 or 30 years ago. for only a few respodants in the group, i would say 3 out of 13, is the issue about voting rights and about gerrymandering first
and foremost in their minds when it comes to this topic. all the other ones had more populist types of concerns and it really shows the gap between the way the dialogue is happening in elite media, in elite circles and the way it has failed to trickle into the minds of the swing voters i'm talking to. >> why do you think that is? why do you think that there has been a communication breakdown when it comes to the importance of voting rights in this country, especially when it comes to swing voters? >> sure. the fact of the matter is if you take the networks that cover this on an ongoing basis and the collective size of the audience, it's a minuscule fraction of the population compare today the entire country. for most of these people, most of the news is not your show or msnbc or fox. it's local news sources, places that don't cover this topic. and for them, the issues that matter to them are the pocketbook issues, it's covid.
those are the things that are top of mind. >> let me show this poll from nbc news from january. the question of being interested in midterm elections. republican voters, 61% were in fact very interested. 47% of democrats. talk to me, rich, and some of the focus groups you have been holding, kind of where folks stand when it comes to interest in midterms, the importance they place on midterms. should democrats especially be concerned when they see numbers like this, only 47%, half, less than half, being interested in the midterms? >> yeah y should say that these respondents, keep in mind, they're a very narrow sliver of the population but they're important, the trump to biden voters. these are the ones both parties have to tight over. they generally do pay some attention to what's going on but they're not immersed in it. i describe them as lower information voters.
they're generally intelligent but they're not paying close attention to the things you cover, for example. we have to be mindful when we think about what matters in the minds of the people who are the target. they're very different from your viewers. and they're different from typical fox viewers. they're in their own separate category. and we have to just understand that these are people for whom other issues than sort of the future of democracy is the top of their agenda. >> rich, great work you're doing there. thanks for joining us. we appreciate it. coming up, everybody, with the failure to pass voting rights legislation or the build back better bill, has biden delivered at all for black americans in his first year? and can nominating the first black woman to the supreme court turn things around? host of the into america podcast trymaine lee is in the spodlite next with his reporting. next with his reporting.
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so one year ago, when the president was sworn in as the president of the united states, he promised to have the back of black america. entering office in the midst of a deadly pandemic and the most significant push for racial justice our country has seen since the civil rights era. he acknowledged in his speech the debt he owed to the black voters who put him and his party in power. in one of his latest episodes of "into america" trymaine lee sits down with yamiche alcindor to break down how joe biden's pledge to the black community is holding up and how things are looking as we're moving forward. >> you hear the frustration from the white house but also members on capitol hill that they are trying to target things to african americans who have disproportionately been impacted by discrimination and racism, but to do so in 2022 means you have to do it in a way that you won't gesued. that to me is also another conundrum you have to deal with, which is why when you see people and lawmakers talking about
things, they say this will disproportionately help african americans because it will end up in the courts. >> what do you think black folks in particular should be looking for in the next year or two of this administration? what substantive kind of policy issues or legislation should they pay attention to? >> based on my conversations with african american voters, with democratic strategists, and with civil rights activists, they should really be looking at voting rights to see whether or not there really could be or in some way some sort of filibuster change to voting rights. >> all right, joining me is nbc's trymaine lee, host of "into america." fascinating conversation there. your podcast is always so, so good, of course, with yamiche, even better. it's interesting, right, because yamiche kind of ended there or, you know, that kind of stopped at voting rights. i thought it was fascinating because i feel like to a certain extent, many of us feel like
voting rights or the passage of voting rights is doa. because of the joe manchin and kyrsten sinemas of the world. the question is, if in fact he can't get voting rights across the finish line, what has the president so far done for black america, black americans, especially when he made the pledge that he did? >> yasmin, it's been really tough for black americans, to put all their effort and faith in this administration, and so far, not get what they paid for in so many ways. when you see the all-out assault on voting rights all across this country targeting black americans, black folks are looking to the administration to push something through. certainly, the white house can't do it on their own. but then what about the promises of student loan forgiveness and higher federal minimum wage? but also, let's not forget this administration emerged out of the kind of singed ground of the so-called racial reckoning. we haven't seen any meaningful police reform as of yet. the george floyd justice in policing act couldn't get through congress. so black voters are saying, you
know, joe biden, you said you had our backs. what does it look like in the real world? >> so here's the thing, though. and i had this conversation in the last segment about the interest in the midterm elections. 47% or so of democrats are interested in the midterm elections. you would think come midterms, if you were a black american, you would say i want to give democrats more power, so they could get across the finish line legislation that will help us. are you hearing that at all in the black community? >> see, here's the thing. black voters have been pragmatic for a very long time and have been in survival mode for a long time. what black voters do not appreciate is when democrats in particular, the republicans don't even come to the community, but when democrats come around when it's time to vote and they'll maybe throw some money around for a get out and vote effort and make promises and then they don't see these democrats again. they don't see their values reflected in the legislation that so many democrats promise. so a lot of times people want to
turn to the people and say why aren't you motivated, coming to the polls? then they can hold the mirror back to the democrats and say you're not delivering any of your promises. why should we hand over power to you when we're not seeing anything in return? >> right, you're not staying in our community, you're not shaking our hands unless it's an election year. you're not talking to us unless you need us to win votes. so on and so forth. i know this episode happened before the announcement of the retirement of justice stephen breyer. now that the president has plemged to nominate a black woman to the supreme court, do you think that will help things when it comes to the black community and the president? >> there will be many, many black folks who will see this for what it actually is, a moment of history. they'll appreciate that joe biden kept his promise to put the third black person and the first black woman into the supreme court. onto the bench. but again, folks will want to see their everyday lives change. this is a big moment. it is history. it does show that perhaps
history will shine favorably upon this administration when it comes to those big racial benchmarks, but again, if everyday lives of everyday folks aren't changed in a meaningful way, the supreme court is just the supreme court. it's history, but it won't meaningfully change their lives in a way they can actually feel. >> it is such a good point. nbc's trymaine lee, good city you on this sunday afternoon. this week on into america, as trymaine puts together reconstructed a black history series dropping next month. he revisits an episode from last year's harlem on my mind. >> so cher paying tribute to the late betty white, sharing a clip on twitter of her signing thank you for being a -- singing, i should say, thank you for being a friend. the iconic theme song to the sitcom comedy "golden girls" singing from stage five in hollywood, the same place golden girls taped their show. she gives a taste of what you can expect from nbc's special
celebrating betty white, america's golden girl. let's take a listen. ♪ thank you for being a friend ♪ ♪ travel down a road and back again ♪ ♪ your heart is true you're a pal and a confidante ♪ ♪ and if you threw a party and invited everyone you knew ♪ ♪ you would see the biggest gift would be from me ♪ >> tune in to celebrating betty white, america's golden girl, tomorrow night, 10:00 p.m. eastern on nbc. it will also be available to stream the next day on peacock. >> coming up, one of the largest school districts in the country is no longer allowing excused absences for students who stay home over covid concerns. what options will the kids have? we're live in orange county, florida, to explain. n orange co, florida, to explain.
>> plus, the new push on capitol hill to address climate crisis. washington congressman pramila jayapal on the plan she just put forward when "american voices" gets under way, 6:00 p.m. eastern, only on msnbc. p.m. eastern, only on msnbc that's service i can trust. >> singers: ♪ safelite repair, safelite replace. ♪ (vo) verizon is going ultra and so is our best unlimited plan ever! mary, welcome to verizon's new plan with 5g ultra wideband now in many more cities. (mary) cool (vo) up to 10 times the speed at zero extra cost. our 5g data is foreals unlimited no matter how much you use. (mary) did you just say foreals? (vo) sorry. let's put it to work with six premium entertainment subscriptions included! (mary) shhh, i'm in the lead. (vo) go on, watch all you want. (mary) i love this show. (vo) and because a better plan deserves a better phone...
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welcome back, everybody. want to talk covid and schools. in florida, orange county public schools no longer allowing students to remain home due to concerns over covid. tomorrow, parents of some 200,000 kids will have to choose, send your kids back to the classroom or enroll in the district's home schooling program. nbc's stephanie stanton joining us from near orlando ahead of monday's change. good to see you this afternoon. talk us through this. what is the reaction on the ground ahead of this major policy change? >> yeah, yasmin, some parents say they fear their kids will be unsafe, but as you mentioned, orange county public school officials here say it's time to get back to business as usual, beginning tomorrow, they will no longer be offering students who stay home for covid concerns excused absences. this also includes quarantining. officials say that they hope that this will make things easier for teachers who have had to bear the extra burden for
allowing kids to do their work at home. you know, when the omicron variant surged here in the state, officials extended the opportunity for students to get their schoolwork and do it at home due to covid concerns. now they say the month of january, it will be over, and starting tomorrow, those students will no longer get excused absences. and they say that it is time to bring healthy kids back in class or face truancy, but some parents, again, they feel that this could be making their kids unsafe. >> we are putting the health and safety of our children first. we have had, you know, advice and consultation with our medical professionals that say that it is safe to return to the classroom. parents that feel that if their children are not safe or they have concerns, again, they can keep them home, but they just need to register for home
education. they would not draw funding for the district for home education, but they would be able to stay home in a model that would accommodate their needs. >> and district officials say this is in response to the fact that omicron cases are sharply dropping. now, officials say that if parents choose that home schooling option, they do have to formally withdraw from in-person teaching, but they say any time the parents or students feel comfortable coming back, they would have to reenroll. this, of course, officials say does not apply to students who are sick or test positive for covid. they will still be given those excused absences, yasmin. >> all right, stephanie, thank you. coming up in our next hour, everybody, a view from donald trump's texas rally you will not see anywhere else. i can promise you that. an inside look at some of the things trump's true believers are saying. and a group of black moms
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welcome. if you're still with us, thanks for sticking around. the race based playbook that republicans cannot seem to resist. even before president biden names which of the well qualified black women he is considering will actually be his choice for the supreme court, there are those on the right trying to paint this as a case of reverse discrimination. it left two republicans on the sunday morning shows facing an obvious question, how is biden's pledge any different from ronald reagan's which led to the choice of sandra day o'connor, but only one got their history right. >> i have looked at what was done in both cases. and what president biden did was as a candidate, make this pledge. and that helped politicize the entire nomination process. what president reaga