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tv   The Lead With Jake Tapper  CNN  December 11, 2020 12:00pm-1:00pm PST

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and i'm not sure they can pay their rent when the new year begins or make their mortgage payments. it's affecting everyone from farmers to students, seniors to veterans and red states, blue states, small towns and big cities. that's why the congress needs to act and act now on the covid package. i spoke to my two friends who are still in the congress, the vice president and soon-to-be secretary of hud. we have to get this done. they're pushing hard. but it doesn't look so good right now. but it has to get done before they go home. millions and millions of americans simply can't wait any longer. we shouldn't. we can't get bogged down in issues that don't help people. state and local governments need the help. not only that, as i said for months, we need to protect the central personnel like law enforcement, firefighters, to make sure everything is in place and effectively distribute the vaccine so that we can do that. this relief package won't be the
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total answer even if it gets passed, but it's an important first step. there is so much we have to do. these crises have ripped the blinders right off the systemic racism that exists in america. the american people now can see clearly. black, latino, native americans nearly three times more likely to die from covid and more likely to get covid to begin with. black and latino unemployment rates too large, too high. communities of color are left to ask whether they'll ever be able to break the cycle where in good times they lag, in bad times they're hit the hardest, and in recovery they take the longest to bounce back. vice president-elect harris and i knew we would have our work cut out for us when we got elect elected, but we also knew we could build a team that would meet this unique and challenging moment in american history. some are familiar faces. some are new in their roles.
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all are facing new circumstances and challenges. that's a good thing. they bring deep experience and bold new thinking. above all, they know how government should and can work for all americans. for secretary of agriculture, i nominate tom vilsack, an outstanding two-term governor of iowa. the best secretary of agriculture i believe this country has ever had. he was there when the great recession was pummelling through america. over eight years, he saw a record-breaking investment to bring us back. he implemented the recovery act to help rural communities recover and rebuild. tom helped expand markets around the world for american farmers. he improved our food safety standards. he helped millions of children and families receive healthy meals. he wasn't anxious to come back. he wasn't looking for this job.
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but i was persistent, and i asked him to serve again in this role because he knows the usda inside and out. he knows the government inside and out. we need that experience now. one in six americans and a quarter -- a quarter -- of the children in america are facing hunger. the opioid crisis in rural america is a rural america crisis, as is the climate crisis with droughts, floods, wiping out crops in small towns. farmers and small businesses in small towns are reeling with the pandemic and the economic downturn. tom knows how to get immediate relief to those most in need and address the crises -- not one, the crises, facing rural america. he knows how to build back better for all americans. he helped develop my rural plan
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for america in the campaign, and he now has the dubious distinction of having it carried out. it's a good plan. that includes making american agriculture the first in the world to achieve net zero missions and to create new income for farmers in the process, use the soil to capture carbon, and it will ensure that usda promotes true racial equality and inclusion. he recognizes the history of discrimination and will root it out wherever it exists. i've known tom for a long time, and i'm confident he'll get it done. for secretary of housing and urban development, i am really pleased to nominate congresswoman marcia fudge, who i might add could do many jobs beyond the one i'm asking her to do, but i think the job i'm asking you to do, congresswoman, and critically important to
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everything that the vice president and i believe how we're going to build back better. as a former mayor, she understands how to manage challenges and forge solutions at a local level. for 12 years in congress, she's represented the great city of cleveland. you know, though i think of her most significant political feat was being elected president adeltus. she developed an entire career fighting for working people on issues from affordable housing to urban revitalization. during the great recession, her district was hit hard by the housing crisis. she spent the past decade working to improve blighted neighborhoods, work to help communities. she also understands where you live, impacts on your health, access to education, jobs and
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economic opportunity, zip codes should not determine the outcome on all those issues. she's going to bring the same vision as hud secretary, using every lever at her disposal to help the millions of americans facing evictions, trying to pay for their mortgages, find their way through this crisis. and i think you'll see that she's going to lead our charge to make housing more affordable and accessible. she worked to increase home ownership as a means toward wealth generation, particularly for communities of color. it's not just dealing with the other issues. we have to be able to build wealth in communities of color. she's also going to help us build back better by working across the idealogical spectrum to help with hud's mission. here's what hud's mission is, to create strong, stable, inclusive communities in
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quality-affordable homes for all, end of quote. marcia will be the first woman to lead hud in more than 40 years and the second black woman ever. i'm honored to have her serve and i thank her for being willing to do it in this biden-harris administration at this critical moment in history. for secretary veterans of affairs, i nominate dennis mcdone a. former white house chief of staff, deputy adviser, deep in capitol hill. i've known dennis for a long time. he shares my belief that we have many obligations as a nation, but we have only one truly sacred obligation: to prepare and equip our troops that we send into harm's way and to care for them and their families when they return. he regularly travels, as i did, to iraq and afghanistan to meet directly with our servicemembers, to see what they were going through, understand
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the strain and the impact on them and their families. he would visit them as i did often at walter reed to see firsthand the visible and invisible wounds they brought home. he knows the cost of war on veterans and their families, from the toll on their physical and mental health to the access to good-paying jobs. and he's a fierce advocate and a relentless workhorse. and i believe, and i think everyone who has ever worked with him, knows he is a world class manager with an innate understanding for how government can and must work for our veterans. he worked closely with our then va secretary bob mcdonnell and with congress to increase the va funding, to ensure veterans get the benefits they earned and they deserve. by the way, he knows we have a very, very steep hill to climb in getting more funding, more docs, more psychiatric nurses, more folks out of the private
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sector into the va. that includes implementing veterans' choice, a bill led by my friend bernie sanders and my late friend and american hero, john mccain, and signed into law by president obama in 2014 to help veterans access quality health care that they need when they need it. and in this role, i've given dennis a clear mission. fight like hell. fight like hell for our veterans and their families. and anyone who has worked with dennis will tell you he'll move heaven and earth to fix any problem and get the job done. he'll also work closely with our secretary of defense designee lloyd austin and the entire cabinet and jill as first lady to pull every lever to help us build back the va better than ever. and dennis is a family endeavor.
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his wife cori leads a nonprofit connection with veteran families in local communities so they can help each other out and build a stronger country together. we're both -- both our spouses feel incredibly strongly about this and have for some time. of all the veteran families nominated as va, i believe it's one of the most important decisions one can make. dennis will always be there fighting for you, as will the vice president and i. for the united states trade representative, i nominated katherine tai. a trusted trade expert, a dedicated public servant who knows government and who spent her career leveling the playing field for american workers and their families. that's not hyperbole, that's a fact. she currently serves as a chief lawyer on trade for the powerful house ways and means committee.
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she earned praise from both lawmakers in both political parties, and from both labor and business as well. now, that's a feat across the board. but all kidding aside, i've gotten more calls complimenting me on your appointment than you can imagine. during the obama-biden administration, she was a chief force in unsafe trade practices from china, which will be a key priority in the biden-harris administration. she understands that we need a more strategic -- to be considerably more strategic than we've been in how we trade, and that makes us all stronger, however we're made stronger by trade. one that leaves nobody behind. she's going to work closely with my economic and policy security teams. trade will be a critical pillar in our ability to build back better and carry out our foreign policy, foreign policy for the middle class.
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when i announced my candidacy, i talked about a foreign policy for the middle class. i meant that in a literal sense. she also brings a sophisticated understanding of the threats of climate change to trade as well as addresses the climate crisis with urgency. she also embodies a powerful immigration story of america. her parents were both born in china. they moved to taiwan and then came to the united states where katherine was born. her parents became government scientists at walter reed and nih, inspiring their daughter to pursue a career in public service. katherine says she's the first american-born member of a family and a second-generation u.s. government servant. if confirmed, she would be the first asian-american and the first woman of color to serve in this position. our nation, our economy, our workers, our businesses, we're fortunate to have her serve in
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this role. as director of the white house domestic policy council, i spent some time convincing this wonderful public servant, but i'm appointing susan rice. former united states ambassador to the united nations, former national security adviser to president obama, former cabinet member, team player, tough negotiator, trusted public servant who i've known fior a long time and not only admired but became friends with. she'll lead and coordinate my policy agenda. she's going to elevate and advise the policy council to help us build back better on every issue across the board. she worked closely with my director of national economic counsel, brian dees. she'll work closely with my
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national security adviser jake sullivan and the national security council. together they'll outline economic policy, foreign policy and national security unlike ever before. this is a big and critical role. that's why i asked susan to serve. she's been there. she knows what it takes like she did in helping mobilize the entire federal government to end the ebola crisis. her voice is particularly needed at this critical moment. a granddaughter of immigrants, descended to slave people, susan will be an effective and tireless champion for all americans. she knows i'm really thrilled. she was willing to come back, be at my side in the white house. to each of you on this team, you have my gratitude and gratitude of the vice president and me for answering the call to serve again. to your families, thank you. we know the sacrifice you're making to allow your family member to serve as they are going to, god willing.
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and to career civil servants at these agencies, we look forward to working with you, because we know how many talented people are there. it's time to rededicate ourselves to the mission, our government agencies we're entrusted with, and to the american people, help is on the way. i promise we're not going to let you down. may god bless you and may god protect our troops. now i'm going to turn this over to the team starting with our next secretary of agriculture, tom vilsack. tom? >> thank you. the podium is yours. i guess they'll clean it off first.
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mr. president-elect, madam vice president-elect, i'm honored by the trust you placed in me to return to the vital work of the usda. at a very critical moment for so many families and communities throughout america. and to begin that work by embracing the full benefits of a diverse and inclusive senior leadership team in the department, as i was proud to do in my previous tenure. and to continue the important work of rooting out inequities and systemic racism in the systems we govern and the programs we lead. when abraham lincoln established the department of agriculture, he called it the people's department. i look forward to making good on that moniker for all people as we build back better.
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i happen to be celebrating a birthday on sunday, one of those round numbers that causes you to reflect on your life. thinking back on the path of my life where it began in an orphanage in pittsburgh, pennsylvania, to iowa where my incredible wife christy and i raised our family and the home we've made there, to standing here today, being given a chance to serve our country once again. i feeley norm enormously lucky grateful to live in a country where pasts like mine are possible. a country, the president-elect often says, is defined by possibilities. but unfortunately and tragically, not all have experienced those possibilities. so i consider it my duty and my responsibility to help expand those possibilities for all
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americans at the usda. i know firsthand the character of the dedicated public servants who work hard each and every day to fulfill the mission of that department, and i'm especially grateful for the chance to get back to work alongside them. one of our first charges will need to be to contribute all we can as a department to aid in the response, reviving rural communities and economies, addressing dire food shortages and getting workers and producers the relief they need to hang on and to come back stronger. when we emerge from this crisis, we're going to have an incredible opportunity before us to position american agriculture, to lead our nation and the world in combatting climate change, and reaping the new, good-paying jobs and farm income that will come from that
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leadership. to make landmark investments in communities throughout rural america, especially those mired in poverty for far too long. by adopting the 10, 20, 30 rule of congressman jim clyburn that sets aside 10% of federal funding to communities where 20% of people have been caught beneath the poverty line for 30 years or more. and to ensure that every child in our country, and all those who are in need, have access to safe, affordable and nutritious food. we need to build back a vibrant and resilient rural economy that creates new possibilities for manufacturing workers, for family forest owners, for farmers, ranchers and producers that helps to make life better and richer for them and safer for all of us. and under my watch, the usda will be a team player, working
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with our sister agencies to advance issues of shared interest from rebuilding our infrastructure to fixing a broken immigration system to combatting and fighting the opioid crisis. i look forward to pursuing that work on behalf of the american people and especially those who live, work and raise their families in rural america. i will end by expressing my profound gratitude to the president-elect and vice president-elect for this amazing opportunity to serve. thank you. mr. president-elect, my good
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friend madam vice president-elect, to my family, my friends, my sorority sisters, my constituents all. i thank you for the opportunity to join this remarkable team and work on behalf of people in every city and community. to serve all those who are struggling and looking for the fair shot we all deserve. when i think about the enormity of the task ahead of us, i'm reminded of the book of matthew where it is written, foxes have holes, birds have nests, but the son of man has no place to lay his head. there is dignity and there is grace within every woman, every man and every child in this nation, including those who live on the outskirts of hope, those who work hard but still struggle to make it work, and those who have no place to lay their head. it is one of the highest responsibilities of our government to see them, to see
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their dignity and to lift them up. i remember the feeling i had as a kid of the safety, security and peace of mind contained in one word: home. i remember the comfort of knowing that no matter what happened, i could always go home. but far too many americans live without that feeling. more and more have had that comfort ripped away. the crisis of a pandemic that has threatened their lives, the crisis of a recession that has swallowed up jobs, hours, wages and lifelines. the crisis of injustice that has forced communities of color to make it in america with one dream tied behind their back. each crisis chips away at their hope, at the promise of our nation. but i believe that hope is on the way. because i know that president-elect and vice president-elect are building a
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team that is grounded in dignity. and our task at the department of housing and urban development will be to stand up for the dignity of all americans and deliver the promise of our nation to all those left out in the cold. we will take on the deep-set roots of poverty and homelessness. we will fight for housing in every community that is affordable, decent and safe. we will help more americans secure the dream of home ownership, to close the gaps of inequity, build wealth and pass it on to their children. we will pursue creative development projects to shape our landscapes and skylines, we start the engines of cities that have stalled out and launch new opportunities in hometowns across america. but perhaps most importantly of all, we will help people believe once again that their government cares about them, no matter who
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they are. that we understand their problems as the president-elect often recalls his father's words. i am honored to have this chance to help restore the people's faith, to deliver for them and make them proud, and to build back better alongside this dedicated team. i thank you for the opportunity to serve. >> mr. president-elect, madam vice president-elect, i'm deeply humbled by the trust and confidence you have placed in me and have confirmed by the senate will be honored to serve as secretary of veterans affairs.
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the president-elect has vowed to restore the soul of america and unite our nations. this can bring every american together, caring for america's veterans and their families. as you have said, this is a sacred obligation, and i know that for you and dr. biden, it's also very deeply personal. i've been inspired by the veterans in my life as well. today i'm thinking of my grandpa mccdonough, a marine, and all te marines i spent time with at walter reed and in the white house. i'm thinking of the veterans i'll have the ability to serve in and out of government, how they put the uniform to work, to continue serving our country as civilians. i'm also thinking of one of my
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high school football coaches back in minnesota. an iowan, joe samuelson. he stormed the beaches of normandy, and at home hospice at the end of his life, he and his family were grateful for the compassion of the va. when he passed, his wife gave me his copyiaching jacket, one of most prized possessions. coach samuelson's jacket reminds me of why we're here. our men and women in uniform have had their country's back, and when they come home, we need to have their back. the president-elect said his marching orders to me and it was very clear. fight like hell for our veterans. we're going to work to get our veterans health care, respect and dig nnity they deserve.
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it means giving them every opportunity, making the va welcome for all veterans, including women veterans, veterans of color and lgbtq veterans, and keeping in faith with our incredible military families a families, because they need to have our back, too. the veterans themselves, your demanding jobs have been made even more difficult by the pandemic. to you and to the many dedicated vets' service organizations who include vets, survivors and their families, i look forward to being your partner, one united team in delivering care and support that's second to none. finally, taking care of our veterans is not a job for the va alone. every federal department and agency has a role to play, and i
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will fight like hell to make that happen. even though only 1% of americans wear the uniform, under president biden, every american will be called upon to embrace our responsibility, to support our veterans and our military families. mr. president-elect, madam vice president-elect, on behalf of my wife kari on our family, thank you for this opportunity to serve. may god bless our troops, our veterans and our families, and as a nation, may we always give them our very best just as they have done for us. thanks very much.
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>> mr. president-elect, madam vice president-elect, i'm grateful for this opportunity to serve and look forward to working with you, with our partners across the administration and with the bright and dedicated public servants at ustr to deliver for the american people. when the president-elect approached me about taking on this role, two memories from my past spring to mind. the first was from when i initially joined ustr in 2007. i was filling out paperwork and providing information about my family history. my parents were born in mainland china and grew up in taiwan. in the 1960s, president kennedy's immigration reforms welcomed them to america as graduate students in the sciences. my dad would become a researcher at walter reed, helping the army
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advance treatments for afflictions of the american vas fighting in the american war. my mother tried finding treatments. it wasn't until decades later filling out that paperwork that it occurred to me i became an american before my parents, the very first american in our family. the second memory that came to mind was from several years later when a colleague and i from ustr went to geneva to present a case, suing china before the world trade organization. we sat down at the table. she, whose parents had emigrated from south india, and i, whose parents had come from taiwan, and my heart swelled with pride as we raised our placard and stated that we were there to present the case on behalf of the united states of america.
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two daughters of immigrants there to serve, to fight for and to reflect the nation that had opened doors of hope and opportunity to our families. those memories fill me with gratitude for being an american and for what america is at our best. and they remind me of the extraordinary responsibilities that come with the honor as we navigate our relationships with the world. trade is like any other tool in our domestic or foreign policy. it is not an end in itself. it is a means to create more hope and opportunity for people, and it only succeeds when the humanity and dignity of every american and of all people lie at the heart of our approach. i am proud to join with leaders who instill their policy with purpose and who never lose sight
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of the humanity and dignity, the opportunity and hope that make trade a force for good in our nation and the world. i am very proud to be an advocate for american workers, to stand up for ingentlemeningenuity around the globe. i look forward to helping lift them out of their current crisis, and i look forward to the time to fight for all of america once again. thank you. >> thank you so much, mr.
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president-elect, madam vice president-elect. i'm honored to join this tremendous team. today we confront a profoundly connected set of crises, a relentless pandemic, a struggling economy, urgent demands for racial equity and justice, a climate in need of healing, a democracy in need of repair, and a world in need of renewed american leadership. in the 21st century, our foreign, economic and destiny is intertwined. challenging these impairments is second to me. service is in our blood. my paternal great-grandfather was born a slave in south carolina and joined the union
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army. he went on to get a college degree, become an a.m.e. minister, and he founded the borden town school in new jersey, which for seven decades provided african-americans with vocational and college preparatory educations. two generations later, my father, emmett rice, served as a tuskegee airman and as a governor of the federal reserve. my maternal grandparents came to this country from jamaica with no education. but working for decades as a janitor and a maid, they saved and they scraped to send all five of their children to college and on to professional success. my mother, lois rice, was known as the mother of the pell grant program which has enabled 80 million americans to reach college. and as she liked to say, not bad for a poor colored girl from
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portland, maine. but today, for far too many, the american dream has become an empty promise, a cruel mockery of lives held back by barriers new and old. that is not good enough for any american. but we know that throughout our history, americans have forged opportunity out of crisis. after the civil war, we ended slavery and enshrined the concept of equal protection under the law. during the great depression, we established the workers progress administration and civilian conservation corps. after world war ii, we enacted the g.i. bill. in the 1960s, we abolished legal segregation, established voting rights and enacted medicare and medicaid. now at the foot of yet another
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bridge between crisis and opportunity, i'm honored and excited to take on this role. joe biden and kamala harris' vision for our future is expansive but achievable. america must finally become a nation where every child, from akron to arkansas, from the bronx to brownsville, from the sioux nation to south central los angeles, can dream without limits and make her dreams come true. i have no illusions about the difficulty of making that vision real. but we are here to get hard stuff done. our top priorities will be to help end the pandemic and revitalize the economy so that it delivers for all. to bring dignity and humanity to our broken immigration system.
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to advance racial equity, justice and civil rights for all. to ensure that health care is accessible and affordable, and to educate and train americans to compete and thrive in 21st century. i profoundly believe that we all rise or fall together, absolutely all of us. so, mr. president-elect, madam vice president-elect, i promise you, i will do everything i can to help this country i love to build back better, to make our government deliver for all americans and for working families, and to bring the american dream far closer to reality for all. thank you very much.
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good afternoon. over these past few days and weeks, we have announced members of our administration who will help us meet the unprecedented challenges facing the american people. we have brought together a health care team that will help contain this pandemic once and for all. an economic team that will help build an economy that works for working people and all those looking to work. and a national security and foreign policy team that will help keep our nation safe and restore and advance our leadership around the world. today we are announcing leaders who will help deliver immediate relief to every corner of our great country, from rural
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communities to big cities and every place in between. leaders who will help care for our veterans and their families. an advance opportunity for all americans at this consequential moment in our country. at a time when one in eight households said they didn't have enough money for food in the past week, we need leaders who understand that no one should go hungry in the united states of america. at a time when one in six renters are behind on rent, we need leaders who will not only help provide relief to all who need it but help address the affordable housing crisis in america. i was in high school by the time my mother saved up enough money to put down a down payment on a home. and i understand the dignity of home ownership and the importance of making the american dream a reality for
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everyone. at a time when veterans, including those i've represented in california, have been strained by almost two decades of war and economic hardship, we must have leaders who will treat all who have worn our nation's uniform and their families with the dignity and respect they have earned. leaders who will be focused on doing what is in the best interests of the american people. who will negotiate trade deals that are good for workers and good for our economy. who will address the defining challenges of our time, from combatting our climate crisis to advancing racial justice. that is what these remarkable americans will do. i know them well, and some are very dear friends. these leaders have different backgrounds and life experience.
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they bring to their roles different skills, perspectives and areas of expertise, and they all reflect the very best of our nation. they are all dedicated and compassionate public servants, and all of them are ready to hit the ground running on day one. so, mr. president-elect, congratulations on these outstanding choices. i look forward to working with each member of the team and the whole team that we are bringing together to meet the urgent challenges facing our nation. and to rebuild our country in a way that lifts up all americans. thank you. >> thank you, all. welcome to "the lead." i'm jake tapper and you have been watching president-elect joe biden and his newest staff picks speaking in wilmington,
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delaware, biden starting off today's event with an attempt to assure the american people that the vaccine is safe and effective, and the scientists who made those decisions were not pressured by politics. that seemed to be a nod to breaking news just in to cnn. sources saying white house chief of staff mark meadows told director steven hahn that if he does not authorize the pfizer vaccine today, he should submit his letter of resignation. let's get straight to cnn's kaitlan collins at the white house. kaitlan, what are you learning about this message between them? >> mark meadows told mr. hahn that if they were not prepared to grant that emergency authorization for pfizer's vaccine by the end of today that he needed to be prepared to resi resign. we're told it's a sign of the president's frustration, but
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this week he's been venting because he's seeing other countries roll out their vaccines and their citizens getting shots in their arms, so he's been frustrated how the emergency use has not been extended for a vaccine. we heard from the secretary this morning that they are working on this, that it's potentially days away, and that the authorization could come as soon as this weekend, yet the president's patience seems to be wearing thin and that is why he was tweeting this morning about the fda, telling them to get the damn vaccines out, and that led to this phone call between mark meadows and steven hahn. the question is whether he is actually going to be fired, and if the president is really going to go out there and fire the fda commissioner with six weeks left to go in his administration given this is the biggest thing they're dealing with right now, jake. >> i saw the president's tweet. he misspelled the word "damn." one thing i wonder about, kaitlan, there have been
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concerns about the president putting political pressure on the scientists. that has undermined confidence in the vaccine which, of course, is the last thing we need right now because we need about 70% of the american people to get this vaccine when they can. how did hahn respond to this reported threat? >> so he put out a statement saying that it was being misrepresented that he was told he was going to be fired if he didn't get it out. instead he said the fda was encouraged to continue working expeditiously on this pfizer vaccine. that's certainly not what the white house believes that the fda has been doing. you're right, jake, there has been the question of whether or not there is political pressure being exerted over the fda and really what they're going to accomplish if they did fire the fda commissioner because that could only potentially further undermine the confidence this vaccine has gone through, all the right process and decision making that it needs to go through, and so that's really the ultimate question that the white house is facing here when it comes to this. we should know there has been multiple tense conversations between the white house chief of
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staff and dr. hahn over the last several weeks. this phone call was really a culmination of all of that altogether. the president is not even hiding that he's pressing the fda. he said the only reason they got through it so quickly was because of his pressure, which the white house denied he was pressuring them at all, jake. >> let's go to someone who was on the advisory panel that met yesterday and voted in favor of recommending emergency use authorization of the pfizer vaccine. he is also the director of the vaccine center at children's hospital in philadelphia. dr. offitt, first i want to get your opinion of this reporting that dr. hahn improve the authorization of the vaccine today or clean out your desk. we all share this urgency, but isn't this inappropriate? >> it's just meaningless sabre rattling.
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pfizer submitted its emergency use authorization on november 20th. for three weeks the fda went through every piece of clinical data that pfizer had for all these 44,000 patients that were participants that either received vaccines or received placebos to see if there were any inconsistencies with what pfizer submitted and all the primary data. then they provided to us, the vaccine advisory committee, not only pfizer's application but their assessment of all the other data. so two huge documents we then got to review. on thursday after having reviewed that and discussed all that, we recommended approval. it was very clear that the cdc met on friday to basically look through the same data that we, the fda, looked through, with an understanding they were meeting on sunday because they assumed sometime in the next couple days, either tonight, friday night, or saturday that the fda would grant approval, which would be typical. then on sunday they would vote on it because the cdc wouldn't vote on something that hadn't
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yet been approved by the fda. the administration says do this or else is ridiculous, they were doing it, anyway. i think it's all show and it means nothing. it certainly doesn't rush the process in any sense, so people shouldn't be frightened that that's what's happening. >> to be clear, dr. hahn, in your view, was probably going to authorize this today or tomorrow, anyway? >> exactly. >> the but i have to say, one of the concerns that there is about the vaccine is there are so many skeptics in the public right now, according to polling. it's about one-third of the american people. a number of them are in minority communities, black communities that historically have been treated as guinea pigs, like the tuskegee experiment, and they're very skeptical of the government. this could undermine confidence in the vaccine, i would think. is there a concern?
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>> hopefully people will be convinced by the compelling nature of the data. this is a 440,000-person testing. it was 95% effective in people over 65. african-americans were represented, a little over 9% of the participants were african-american and who represent about 13% of the population, so roughly equivalent to this trial looking like what america looks like. when you launch a vaccine like this, you're not trying to answer the question, do you know everything? you never know everything, the question is do you know enough? the benefits of this vaccine clearly outweigh, at the moment, the risks. >> so the message from you, a member of the advisory committee, is the vaccine is safe, people should take it and
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ignore the president's buffoonery, or sabre rattling, you called it. that's what i'm hearing from you. >> absolutely. the president is completely off point in this process. >> dr. offitt, thank you so much for what you do and thank you for being with us. olivia knox, let's start with you. you heard dr. offitt. u it's possible the fda was going to approve this vaccine today or tomorrow, but now there is concern that there is skepticism and it could undermine the vaccine. >> anyone, american governors, american lawmakers, american scientists, american health advisers, members of his own cabinet, the attorney general, its. i'm glad you highlighted the polling. the polling is pretty scary. there are large numbers particularly of women and of minorities who are, according to
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recent polling by the associated press, hardnosed about taking the vaccine. we >> mia, they made point to note that the vaccine was safe and he told me he will be vaccinated in public if appropriate. what does this accomplish? donald trump is on his way out the door. why do this? >> this is a terrible, terrible thing, given what we know about the skepticism that many, many people have. people i talk to and people you a you all talk to about this was rushed and they didn't do their due diligence in this vaccine. you have the doctor saying something different, people
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should look at the data but people might not want to look at the data and not how people think about these things. they see what this president has done with this phone call and this real pressure. this is a real dangerous, dangerous thing that happened today. when i read the story, my stomach dropped because it is only going to feed the skepticism and feed the view maybe people shouldn't take this vaccine because it has been politicized and maybe it was rushed. i talk to white men, black men, all sorts of folks, they are so skeptical of this vaccine and to have this happen today, there needs to be some sort of widespread education campaign. dr. offit is one person. you saw joe biden talk about this today. but this needs to be much more front and center. i think obama said he might take this thing live on television. it might not be the best viewing but in terms of a public education campaign about this
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vaccine, that is going to be certainly necessary because people are deeply skeptical and with good reason. >> not according to the science. >> right. >> historically, they might be skeptical. >> i think two things, yeah. >> politicizing it. in terms of the science they shouldn't be skeptical. i'll get it as soon as i can. it's amazing to me operation warp speed an accomplishment of the trump white house and he continues to step all over it. thank you both. millions of americans could be getting their first shots as soon as monday as we wait for fda emergency use authorization that could come any moment now. but ensuring everyone gets a vaccine quickly may depend on the other vaccine still in trials. take the so-called dark horse of the covid-19 vaccine race being developed by johnson & johnson which requires just one dose. cnn's stephanie elam is taking part in the j&j vaccine trial and here she shows us what it's been like. >> reporter: everyone in this office is here in the pursuit of
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science. >> hopefully, i'll develop immunity over the next few weeks. >> reporter: art clinical research will administer shots to about 200 people and part of a randomized covid vaccine trial for johnson & johnson. >> i think enough is known that i'm very comfortable with getting the injection. >> reporter: but not everyone is, especially since trials have been sped up to battle a coronavirus crisis that is out of control. ni nationwide, some 40,000 people are taking part of this trial, including me. i'm not just reporting on this phase three covid trial, i'm part of it. i wanted to do this because i wanted to see how the science worked and i wanted other black people, other people of color to see someone like them going through this process. >> generally, it's important that you study people from many different diverse backgrounds because you can have a different side effect profile or you can
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have different dose levels if it's a drug. >> what the united states government did was shameful and i am sorry. >> reporter: yet america's history of unethical medical studies on people of color has led to generations of fear, most notably, the aborent decades long tuskegee experiment in the '90s. it was to treated hundreds of black men without their consent. what do you hear from people, from those demographics that are more tess hesitant? >> rather thinking of this as an opportunity to get access to a new therapy earlier there is more suspicion this could be an unsafe program so there is definitely. >> reporter: but not all are fearful. this 22-year-old perez is waiting for his shot. >> i know a lot of people like within my ethnicity would be, i guess, skeptical of it?
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but me, not really. >> reporter: i signed the paper work and they have asked me all of the things they need to know about my personal health and i've had my blood drawn and i've been shown what i'm taking home with me and how that in this is going to work and how i'm going to update them about any symptoms, any feelings that i have after i get the vaccine. all that is left? is to get the needle in my arm. i don't know whether or not i'm going to get the placebo or the real vaccine. in fact, no one here knows what i'm going to get. it's all decided by a computer somewhere place else. even though the vaccines are approved in the approval process, america needs more doses to cover the population and great interest in candidates like this one from johnson & jon johnson. for one thing, it's one shot unlike the moderna and pfizer vaccines. >> it gets shipped to us frozen in the regular freezer setting and we are allowed to store in the refrigerator about 28 days.
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>> reporter: nurse princess is here to give me my shot. >> all right. deep breath. small pull. >> it felt like getting a flu shot with you now i've got to sat he sit here and make sure no adverse right effects. i still very solid about my decision to do this. >> no rash at the injection site. >> maybe this will get people out there to trust in science and medicine and how hard these people work. i can tell you as far as my experience after i got the shot, the next day, i was waiting to see if i had any pain or sniffles. nothing felt out of sorts for me at all. i did check in with dr. kim. he told me some people who get the placebo felt sick afterwards and those who got the rile thing don't get sick at all. i don't know what i got and i won't know for two years.
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what i'm hoping people of color, anyone who is skeptical will take a look at someone like me and think, okay, i can do this too. because it really could save lives. when you look at how this virus has been decimating in california the latino community and black people as a whole, i really hope that people understand that these vaccines are here to help. jake? >> you're a very cool lady. thanks so much for doing that pels and thanks for doing that for humanity. appreciate it. more on breaking news. the white house now threatening the head of the fda to get a move on final approval of the pfizer vaccine. the head of operation warp speed is going to join me live next. stay with us. what'd you get, ryan? it's customized home insurance from liberty mutual! what does it do bud? it customizes our home insurance so we only pay for what we need! and what did you get, mike? i got a bike. only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty. liberty. liberty. liberty. ♪
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>> announcer: cnn breaking news! >> we start with breaks new in our "health lead." authorize the coronavirus vaccine today or furyou're out.
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that is message that mark meadows told hahn to submit his resignation letter if he does not okay the u.s.'s first coronavirus vaccine by the close of business today. dr. hahn is disputing the story which was first reported by "the washington post" but sources say the authorization was already expected tonight or tomorrow with the trump white house hoping to ship out the first doses within 24 hours. health experts are warning this is going to be a long process to widely distribute a coronavirus vaccine taking months and that the pandemic could get drastically worse before then. in moments i'll speak to the head of operation warp speed dr. moncef slaoui will the vaccine rollout and when you can expect to get vaccinated. first, kaitlan collins, what are you hearing happen during this call between white house chief of staff meadows and dr. hahn of the fda? >> reporter: as this cal