tv Don Lemon Tonight CNN August 6, 2021 11:00pm-12:00am PDT
listen to him, every day, on sirius xm satellite radio, as well. >> love that. >> you have yourself a good weekend. i'll see you soon. >> you, too. thank you, don. >> thank you. this is "don lemon tonight" and it is another night of fast-moving developments on multiple, big stories. we are going to catch up on everything that is happening. we will catch you up on everything that is happening. first up, new york's governor making it clear today he is not going without a fight. facing an impeachment investigation and multiple calls from top democrats to resign. the legal team for governor andrew cuomo attacking the state attorney general's bombshell report on sexual-harassment allegations by 11 women. just hours after one of them, a current staffer, known in the report as executive assistant number one, filed a criminal complaint against him. the attorney general's report included this selfie of her with the governor. her image, blurred, to protect her identity. the governor's lawyers, today, calling the investigation unfair. >> there has been no open-minded
fact finding, in this case. the investigation was conducted to support a predetermined narrative. >> his attorney claiming visitor logs from the governor's mansion, and e-mails that day support his denial that he groped executive assistant number one in his home office. >> she was at the mansion, that day, for several hours. she wasn't just working with the governor, she was working with other staffers. e-mails that she sent, while she was at the mansion, reflect that she was joking while she was there. she was eating snacks. and she even offered to stay longer at the mansion, when her work was done. >> the governor's attorneys didn't address allegations from a former member of his security detail identified in the ag's report, as trooper number one. >> the governor will address that allegation, himself, and so
i will let him speak for himself when he does. >> when will he do that? >> um, i can't give you a timeline but i know he wants to do it soon. >> so, the question is whether any of that will impress assembly members, who would have to vote on whether to impeach the governor. his attorneys have until a week from today to submit any, additional evidence. the attorney general's office putting out a statement, tonight, saying, and i quote, there are 11 women, whose accounts have been corroborated by a mountain of evidence. any suggestion that attempts to undermine the credibility of these women or this investigation is unfortunate. whether or not the new york state assembly votes to impeach the governor is, already, paying a political price right now. the latest-quinnipiac poll finding that 70% of new york registered voters say that governor cuomo should resign. and there is news, tonight, to tell you on the pandemic. half of the total population of the united states, now, fully vaccinated. and that is, indeed, good news. here is the bad news, though.
there are 90 million people who are eligible to get vaccinated, and are not. last night, on this show, you heard from two of those people. travis and kelly campbell, who both came down with covid. travis, speaking from his hospital bed. he was struggling to breathe, as he urged everybody to get vaccinated. >> please, please, don't wait. don't procrastinate. with the delta variant, it's stronger and faster and it attacks those who are not vaccinated or have more medical conditions. a diabetic or a person with [ inaudible ] will be attacked ten-times faster and harder. and it's -- it's not worth it.
if you are prepared not to take a vaccination, your friends will [ inaudible ]. >> and don't let anybody tell you. okay? listen. don't let anybody tell you that kids don't get sick with covid. an 11-month-old girl in texas who tested positive had to be airlifted to a hospital more than 150 miles away when no pediatric hospital in houston could take her. she is too young to be vaccinated. but the president had a message, today, for everybody else. >> please, get vaccinated. we can get this done. we just have to stay the course. and we just have to remember who we are. you've heard me say it, before. we're the united states of america. there's not a single thing, nothing, beyond our capacity, when we do it together. >> well, i wonder what they think of that at south dakota
sturgis motorcycle rally, this weekend. hundreds of thousands of people, expected to attend, despite fears of another superspreader event. last year's rally was linked to more than 600 covid cases. you think they'd learn. but, nope. governor kristi noem tweeting there is a risk associated with everything that we don't -- that we do in life. but the fact is we can mitigate the risk. we know how to do it and, that is, to get vaccinated. but in an america that is averaging more than 98,000 new cases, a day, the misinformation is killing us, just as surely as the virus is killing us. parents at a north carolina school-board meeting, furious, over a mask mandate for unvaccinated students and staff. >> i am not leaving, until you do a revote for the people, by the people, and of the people, now! >> okay. these are children, who aren't
vaccinated, by the way. whose only protection is the mask. one state, where too many people are not safe, that's florida. with 134,506 cases over the past week. a record high for cases recorded over any seven-day period throughout the pandemic. but governor ron desantis is locked in a battle with his own people, as several florida school districts are defying his ban on mask mandates. but the governor seems to care more about his feud with joe biden who, yesterday, said this. >> he was using your words about, don't be in the way. and he is saying, i am in the way to block too much interference from the federal government. your response, mr. president? >> governor who? >> desantis. >> desantis, reacting, today, exactly the way you'd expect him to. >> i guess, i'm not surprised that -- that biden doesn't remember me. um, i guess, the question is, is what else has he forgotten? >> the white house press
secretary, jen psaki, saying florida's governor is putting his political fortunes ahead of public health. >> not only is governor desantis not abiding by public-health decisions, he is fundraising off of this. >> and going on to insist there are no lockdowns coming. >> we're not going to lock down our on koeeconomy or our school because thanks to the president's leadership in vaccinating the american people and getting economic relief to those who need it. >> i have said this, before. misinformation is killing us, and killing our democracy. exhibit a. a new jersey gym owner and former-mma fighter pleading guilty, today, to assaulting a police officer at the capitol on january 6th. the first of the rioters to be convicted of violence against police, defending the seat of our democracy, that day. body-cam footage, obtained by cnn and other media outlets, shows that scott fairlamb, him following and taunting officers,
as they made their way through the mob. shoving one and punching him in the head. we have not bleeped the language, so you can see it, and hear it as it really happened. >> are you an american? >> you guys have no idea what the fuck you're doing. not one idea. don't touch me, bro. >> get the fuck out of here. >> don't touch me, motherfucker. >> his family must be so proud. and with that guilty plea, he is, also, clearly, proving the idea that this was about hugging and kissing and tourism, that it is utterly absurd. but you have known that, all along, haven't you? because you believe the facts. former-congressman denver riggleman, a conservative republican, is joining the staff of the house-select committee investigating what happened on
january 6th. the committee is now considering whether to seek call logs from the trump white house on the day of the riot. that, as we are learning even more, tonight, about the attempted coup that is, still, threatening american democracy. and how a trump loyalist and environmental lawyer tried to weaponize the doj to help the then-president in his scheme to overturn the vote. sources tell cnn that jeffrey clark told senior-doj officials, in late december, he knew sensitive information indicating chinese intelligence used special kinds of thermometers to change results in machines tallying votes. thermometers. it is unhinged, and it would be laughable, except this was an official in the justice department who became an assistant-attorney general, and was given a high-level intelligence briefing which did nothing to convince him to drop
his bogus claims of election fraud. this is where we are, right now. it was nothing less than an attempted coup. efforts to weaponize the doj. the insurrection, even the assault on the vote. it's all part of the threat to our democracy. and the threat is, still, there. the assault on voting rights is all about giving the gop the power to overturn the next election. and it is happening, right now. texas governor, greg abbott, calling for a special session of the state legislature in just a matter of hours to push voting str restrictions that democrats blocked by fleeing the state. it all boils down to a continuing threat to our d democracy. this was the week that we learned just how close we came to losing it. now, the question is will we heed the warning signs? the governor of new york making it clear, tonight, that he is not going without a fight. and his legal team attacks the
state attorney general's bombshell report on sexual-harassment allegations by 11 women. >> the governor deserves to be treated fairly. like anybody else in this country accused of something. what makes the perfect schmear of cream cheese. the recipe we invented over 145 years ago and me...the world's best, and possibly only, schmelier. philadelphia. schmear perfection.
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new york governor andrew cuomo fighting back against the state attorney general's report detailing sexual-harassment allegations against him. his attorneys focusing on discrediting his accusers today, including one woman who claims the governor groped her and file add criminal kplapt with the albany sheriff's office. cnn justice correspondent shimon prokupecz joins me now. slamming the findings in the
attorney general's report today. what do they have to say? >> yeah, don, as you said, this all comes on the day that a significant development occurred. we learned that the executive assistant number one who, perhaps, has the most serious accusation against the governor. accusing him of groping her and touching her breast. filed a criminal complaint with the sheriff -- sheriff's office. and today, the lawyers representing the governor, sort of, you know, pled their case, publicly. saying that she was wrong about some of of the facts. kind of, going after her, in terms of what she recollected from the day. what she was doing, that day. and here's how they described some of what was going on. >> she was at the mansion that day for several hours and she wasn't just working with the governor. she was working with other staffers. e-mails that she sent, while she was at the mansion, reflect that she was joking while she was there. she was eating snacks.
and she even offered to stay longer at the mansion, when her work was done. >> and, don, they then, also, went after another one of the accusers, lindsey boylan. saying that she was doing all of this, this accusation, she was the first women -- woman to come forward, to come public accusing the governor of harassing her. they are saying she was doing this, all, for publicity because she was running for political office here, in new york city. >> so, the governor's team, shimon, also, going after investigators claiming the -- the report was one sided and done to support a premeditated narrative? talk to me about that. >> yeah. so, they basically have been going after the investigators, the two lawyers that were hired by the attorney general to act as independent investigators. they've always been going after, specifically, one jun kim who used to work for the u.s. attorney's office here, in the southern district of new york. and worked with preet bharara. so they have kind of been going after him and they basically
said, like, look, this team came in with preconceived notions. they had a target and in essence, were going to do whatever they had to do to get after that target. they said there was impartiality. they weren't fair. they, also, claim, well, you know, the attorney general's office. they didn't give us an advance copy of this report. they didn't tell us what was coming. there was no reasoning for the attorney general to give them an advanced copy of the report or to give them any information about what was going to be contained in the report. but the governor's lawyers are taking issues with all of that. saying that they were not fair. that they didn't conduct this in any kind of fair way. look. the bottom line, now, is there's a criminal complaint sitting with the sheriff's office. the albany d.a.'s office now has to make a decision, whether or not they have enough information, enough to charge the governor with a crime. >> it was interesting to watch all of this and done over zoom, considering the times that we're in, on top of everything else. thank you, shimon. i appreciate your reporting. i want to bring in, now, criminal defense attorney, joey jackson, and former assistant u.s. attorney for the southern
district of new york, jennifer rogers. they are, both, cnn legal analysts and very qualified legal minds. very experienced legal minds. thank you, very much, for joining. good evening. joey, i am going to start with you. these are very serious, very serious allegations. you are the defense attorney. what do you think of the governor's defense today? >> i think, good evening, to you, don. and jennifer. i think they came out swinging and they need to. with respect to process and not getting information in advance. the fact is, is that, yes, there is a public-relations narrative here. he is governor. he has to hold the trust of the people. we have to know that our governor is not a criminal at all. but if you are going to conduct an investigation, it ought to be fair. there ought to be people on that investigation that don't have preconceived notions. there ought to be people on that team who perhaps have not had prior dealings which could call anything into question with respect to what you do. you are going to interview witnesses, you shouldn't be taking casual notes. you should, in fact, allow those
people to plead what they say and have transcripts available. and so, i do, as a defense attorney, i'm a former prosecutor, as well. i want the information. i want everything. if we are going to have have a fair airing of everything, give me everything. and so, don't just say it's process. he doesn't deserve it. he does. i'm for this. i don't want the rich and powerful to be treated any better than anybody else but i don't want them to be treated any worse. if our system is going to work, it has to work for everybody. the disenfranchised and the person -- i know we like grabbing people, taking and pulling them down, right, and giving them -- but he deserves his day. and i know, also, god forbid, right, you defend an issue involving in many me too times up generation, who are you? how dare you? they challenge credibility. do you have an axe to grind with respect to what you are telling investigators? could we believe in what you say? is there other information the report should have contained that might call into the question the voracity or the motivation by which things were said? and so, i could go on. but the bottom line is all i'm saying is this.
i don't know what happened. wasn't there. i know that 179 witnesses were interviewed. i know 74,000 pieces of information and text messages. but if you are going to have a report, make sure you interview the appropriate people. make sure the report is objective. and make sure it's objective to cross examination. last point, don, and that's this. you know, you could say anything in a lawsuit. you can say anything in a criminal complaint. you could say anything in an indictment. but guess what? when you get in front of a person in a courtroom, the defense attorney has questions. we call that cross-examination. and what you say has to pass muster with regard to that cross-examination, and i think, and i'm looking for, that forum where the governor's people, like they did today, have an opportunity to pick apart and to present their case, if not in a court of law, certainly in a court of public opinion. and i think the factual rendition that they laid out was pretty compelling, to me. >> okay. that's all we have time for. good night, everybody. joey, are you going to let jennifer rogers say what -- i know that you say you're a
former prosecutor, right? but you're the defense attorney, in this scenario. so, jennifer, you are the prosecutor in this sqcenario an you are a former prosecutor. investigators say they interviewed 179 people, reviewed 74,000 pieces of evidence, as joey just said. but his attorneys are going after two of his 11 accusers on the substance. how did they do? >> not well, don. i actually disagree with joey on this. i mean, first of all, the fact that they only went after two of these episodes out of 11 tells you something. it tells you that they have nothing to say about the other nine. and yes, they were not given an advance copy of the report but the notion that cuomo and his team didn't know what was coming? i mean, we all knew about these accusations. there were only two new ones. everything else was known to the public, much less to them. he was interviewed for 11 hours, weeks ago. he's known exactly what was coming, in this report. so, the notion that they couldn't cobble together anything on the merits for those other nine tells me a lot. and even for those two, it was very ticky tack.
i mean, having to say that executive assistant one was eating snacks and, therefore, she couldn't have been groped. you know, we are getting a little -- a little silly, now. so i do think that their defense on the merits was not good. i do, though, agree with joey on one thing and that's that, as this moves forward towards impeachment, he is going to have to have more due process than in connection with this report. he is going to bring forward his own evidence because if he doesn't, and he is removed, then he is going to litigate. we are going to have a long, protracted litigation on our hands about whether his due process rights were violated. new yorkers don't need that so, please, assembly, give him the process he needs. let's do this right. >> okay, jennifer. another question. >> okay. sorry, don. >> what'd you say, joey? quickly, please. >> listen. i think they went after the two because those were the two, with respect to criminal allegations. >> right. >> it's -- it's tv time. we don't have time to go over 11 witnesses. i'm -- i don't think the fact they didn't get to them doesn't mean they have defenses for
them. >> joey, they're not -- hang on, joey. joey. they're not working with a rundown of guests and commercial breaks. they could have taken -- it was over zoom. they could have taken -- they could have still been on the air and we would have been carrying it, had they gone on. >> i disagree with that. you are hired to defend someone. the civil allegations, that's different. go after me, take my money. but when we are talking about liberty and i am hiring a defense attorney, address that. that's what people are concerned about. is a governor criminal? or not? people assume every day in our court system. i'm worried and concerned about the fact that, listen, if there are crimes to be had or done, then attack that. and i don't think they were ticky tacky at all. credibility matters. the fact that you are running for manhattan, you know, for our president matters. the fact that you stay there all day after matters. the fact you said nothing to anyone matters. those are factual things. all i am saying is this. i don't know what happened. i do know that, as a defense
attorney, i like a full airing of everything. >> okay. let -- >> i filed criminal complaints. i did indictments. let the other people speak. >> i am running out of time, joey. yeah, let the other people speak. ha-ha-ha-ha! jennifer, you want to respond to that, please? >> yeah. i mean, i think we will learn more in the days ahead. listen. one thing they didn't respond to at all were the accusations by the state trooper and they wouldn't even deny it. i mean, his lawyer didn't even say this wasn't true. and we'll tell you more later. she said, oh, the governor wants to talk about that. i'm going to let him do so. there was a lot more they could have done today and they didn't. so we'll see what happens in impeachment proceedings and what comes out in the public eye. but he is in trouble with this. >> joey, you have very vigorous defense for your client. we can see why you're a successful defense attorney. thank you, both. i appreciate it. it was fascinating conversation, obviously, we will be covering this a lot more. thank you so much. so, we have got a lot more on today's news. new york assembly member who has called for governor cuomo's
impeachment reacts to his lawyer's defense. that's next. ♪ thousands of women with metastatic breast cancer are living in the moment and taking ibrance. ibrance with an aromatase inhibitor is for postmenopausal women or for men with hr+, her2- metastatic breast cancer as the first hormonal based therapy. ibrance plus letrozole significantly delayed disease progression versus letrozole. ibrance may cause low white blood cell counts that may lead to serious infections. ibrance may cause severe inflammation of the lungs. both of these can lead to death. tell your doctor if you have new or worsening chest pain, cough, or trouble breathing. before taking ibrance, tell your doctor if you have fever, chills, or other signs of infection, liver or kidney problems,
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thank you, assembly member, for joining us, again, this evening. we really appreciate it. what was your reaction to the governor's legal team, today? did they say anything that could change the minds of the assembly? >> um, i don't think so. in fact, i think that what he said -- what they said was, actually, very triggering to a lot of survivors. um, today, the governor's lawyer tried to paint him as the victim. um, their disgusting arguments included an argument that the woman he groped didn't show up as a quote/unquote real victim because she was able to walk out, smile, joke with other staff, ate snacks, cheese and crackers, in their specific -- like, you know, specific claim. and the claim that a survivor, after being violated, should act a particular way -- um -- otherwise, they shouldn't be believed, is really disgusting and vile and as you know, i'm -- i'm, myself, am a -- a -- you know, survivor of childhood-sexual assault. i was 13 years old when i was sexually assaulted by my teacher. and after my assault, i went to class and then i went to lunch.
survivors all over the nation were really triggered by today's response, and have been sharing what happened to them, and what they did after. and it is incredibly heartbreaking. but also, you know, i think it's really empowering to tell our stories because this is how our brains work to help us survive, right? this is how we make it. so, you know, i just think that was really important to say. that like, if you are a survivor of sexual assault, it doesn't matter if you had to smile or laugh it off. or go to a dance party. or drink until you throw up and pass out. or -- or make a joke. or have sex or forget or sleep or read a book or eat or even eat cheese and crackers. you are here, you survived, heir you are a hero. >> that said -- and i appreciate your saying that -- that said, do you understand, though, that the governor has to -- it's his attorney's job to mount a vigorous defense for him. you understand that, right? >> i do. i just think that that was a very stupid defense. >> okay. thank you. the -- the attorney representing
charlotte bennett, one of the governor's accusers, released a statement tonight that said, in part, the governor has made clear that he will continue his fight to stay in power. caring not at all about the people he has hurt and the consequences of his actions. it is time for the assembly to act. further delay is an affront to the women who came forward to -- and to survivors everywhere. similar to what you were just saying, your sentiments. now, she says that the assembly needs to act now. will you? >> um, i think that, you know, i, personally, feel like the process has been interesting. um, there are a lot of experts that have said that we don't need this, you know, kind of process. that the trial is where -- is in the senate and we write the impeachment articles. the trial's in the senate, et cetera. but i think that, right now, what is happening is that there is a judiciary committee that is doing an investigation to try to figure out what should go into the articles of impeachment. >> uh-huh. >> you know, we know that this
is a process that might take, you know, maybe, till the end of the month. or um, you know, or what we said from -- or chuck levine had said in his statement. and so, you know, i think that it's really important that we move quickly. i agree with what charlotte bennett said. i think that if we don't move quickly, um, you know, new yorkers will suffer. and andrew cuomo does not care about new yorkers. he only cares about andrew cuomo. he never cared about new york. he always, only cared about andrew. this is why he withheld information from the legislature, lied about nursing-home deaths, used his staff to write his book. and then, sexually harassed women. it's all about andrew and right now, we are facing an eviction crisis. we are facing a pandemic. we are facing, you know, huge amounts of need in new york right now, as we are still facing the pandemic. um, and our -- our governor is focused on -- on himself. >> yeah. now, i just want to clarify here. you said that you were a survivor of assault, right? >> yes.
>> okay. so the -- the governor is accused of harassment, at this point. there is no assault allegation. but with that said, though, and leads into my next question. several members of the assembly say that they were particularly disturbed by the allegation involving the governor inappropriately touching the state trooper on his security detail. were you surprised that his attorneys left that alone, today, assembly person? >> i was very surprised because that was one of the things that was, first off, new information. and also, the most -- um -- the most disturbing piece in -- in some of the report that came out. because, you know, we saw a lot of the -- um -- you know, a lot of these stories that came out. we saw nine of them come out in -- in the press, before the attorney general's report came out. and i think the detail and the fact that this was a person who, i mean, she was there to protect his life.
and he was there to ruin and threaten her's. >> i could -- yeah, listen, i could see that this is personal for you. um, and it hits very close to home and i really respect and admiring you for coming and sharing your truth and for being on tonight. thank you, assembly person nu. thank you so much. >> thank you for having the discussion. >> yeah, be well. a trump ally -- a trump ally within the doj makes up all sorts of things, right? all, to try to keep him in office. you have got to hear the claims that he is making. that's next.
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department official, jeffrey clark, told top brass at the doj that he had information that china used special thermometers to change election results. yep. so, joining me now is matthew dowd, former chief strategist for president george w. bush. he is the author of -- i know, matthew -- he is the author of the new book "revelations on the river." available for preorder, now. i mean, it just gets more absurd, by the moment. matthew, good evening, to you. the absurdities being pushed by trump loyalists and the doj. i mean, it -- they're really frightening. it -- it's another -- and just a growing list of efforts by the former president and his allies to undermine the election. and no matter how you slice it, they were, clearly, plotting a coup. >> yeah, this wasn't a spontaneous, sort of, emotional response that where passions got too high. and then, it resulted in some crazy behavior. this was a concerted effort. um, and i would say it's not
only undermine the election, which -- but it was to undermine our entire democracy and our constitutional form of government, that's been established for 240 years. so, the -- these folks, you would -- you would say, is bizarre and crazy, if it wasn't so dangerous and detrimental. and we're still suffering from it, i think. the destructive -- the destructiveness to our system is -- we're still feeling. and i think we're going to continue to feel, for a long time. so, i put him in the same category as somebody, like benedict arnold. a traitor to the country. and i put him in the same exact category of somebody, like benedict arnold, who tried to sort of defeat our -- our system of government. he is the same one, to me. >> well, matthew, the threat is still here. from the assault on voting rights to gop whitewashing of january 6th to the big lie. it really shows just how fragile our democracy. we talk about that all the time. and we're still at risk of losing it. last night, i said it's a fine democracy, if you can keep it.
>> yeah, you know, i always -- i always thought democracy's not a given. it's a gift. and democracy takes work and takes respect of others. and it takes the idea that all men and women are created equal. all of these things established that weren't perfect when we started and the leaders weren't perfect. but there was always, sort of, step by step by step to get there. i mean, today is the anniversary of the voting rights act of 1965. which came 100 years after the amendments to give african-americans the right to vote. and it took 100 years of pushing and shoving to get to where we were in the 1960s on the voting rights act. so we have to, constantly, push this. but there is no guarantee that our democracy survives. it is totally dependent on citizen action and citizen holding leaders accountable for their actions. and when that stops, that's when democracies are in trouble. >> well, how is the -- the
president doing? president biden doing? he is calling out the threat on our democracy. but what do you -- what do you think of his efforts to confront it? is it enough? >> well, i've said, for a while, and i think you and i have had this conversation. i don't think it's enough. i mean, i think joe -- the president -- president boiden's heart's in the right place. i think of lbj. lbj wouldn't have done that, unless he had been pushed. and pushed and pushed by martin luther king and all the other civil-rights leaders. remember, it took the selma-to-montgomery march just months before signing of that act. and so, i think joe biden, good person. but i think joe biden still believes in a system that no longer exists. which is that you have a equal, trustworthy partner on the other side of the aisle that -- that believes in the same principles as you. i don't think that exists, anymore, with the republican party. and so, i think that, like the texas legislators who went up there, like many of the folks
around the country. many people are pushing athey should keep pushing the president because i think the president is inclined to do the right thing. but sometimes, as i said, good people have to be pushed to do the right thing. because many times, the right thing is hard. >> yeah. sources are telling cnn that the house-select committee, looking into january 6th, is weighing whether to pursue logs from the trump white house on the day of the riot. are you worried about what we'll learn, if they get the records? >> well, i'm a huge believer in transparency. i don't think our government, through both democrats and republicans, has been as transparent as it needs to be. i see no reason why logs shouldn't be done that day. somebody comes in, somebody has a meeting, it should be filed openly, given to the press, given to the general public. we should be much more transparent and much more open in our governmental system. especially, in this day and age with technology. i think what -- if we actually access to them and this house select committee pursues this.
i think we are going to find out what happened on january 6th and what happened after election day. is much, much, much worse than we could possibly imagine. i think what we'll discover is the president, which would -- many of us believe was actively involved in trying to undermine our constitutional republic. i think that's definitely if we get access and we can get the information -- which, again, should be transparent to the public -- we will discover that the president was in a concerted effort to undermine our -- our u.s. system of government. >> and republicans are trying to undermine the right to vote. the access to the ballot box. governor greg abbott doing everything that he can to try to get those laws enacted in texas. even though the democrats fled the state. # some of them. we'll see what happens. we will talk to you right after the break, we'll talk about that. matthew dowd, we'll be right back.
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all right. matthew dowd is back with me. matthew, texas governor greg abbott calling for a new special session to try to force a vote on restrictive voting bills. democrats who fled the state last month to block it will have to decide whether they're going to stay out of texas. is this the best way to fight this? is there any more that can be done there? >> well, at this moment, procedurally, it's the only way to keep it from happening at this moment. ultimately i think that greg abbott is going to have to face the wrath of the voters in 2022, and that will ultimately be the decision in this lengthy period of time. but right now the texas democrats have the only power
they have is to keep a quorum from happening. how long they can maintain it is, i think, dicey. i think they're going to keep pushing it. i mean greg abbott is in a race to be the worst possible governor in the country. and if the only one he's got competition with right now is governor desantis of florida, i think, it's not only voting rights decisions and putting restrictions up. it's preventing local jurisdictions and schools from requiring masks. it's all the things about access to guns, creating more access to guns at a time when we lose 4,000 people a year to gun violence. i've lived in texas for 35 years. i've raised four children here. i've buried two children in texas, and it's a state i love, and i love the people. i cannot stand our leaders, and greg abbott is the dr. evil of texas government. everything he does is cruel and craven. >> listen, you mentioned ron desantis of florida. today questioning joe biden's memory after the president
yesterday jokingly referred to desantis as governor who? it's only going to get worse, this feud between them. there's only one side here that is putting lives at risk. am i wrong about that? >> no, not at all. and just the awful thing is that governor desantis and governor abbott, the two of them are trying to blame immigrants. they're trying to blame immigrants for the spread of the coronavirus around the country. and if you really looked at the data, more people have died and more people have been hospitalized because of the decisions of governor desantis and governor abbott during this crisis and pandemic than have even come close to dying because of some immigrants spreading coronavirus. and so it's awful. it's horrible, but in the end, don, we can do everything we can. we can speak truth, which we should keep doing and keep having this conversation. but it's up to us and the rest of the voters to tell the politicians we are not going to stand for this anymore. >> matthew, i have to say that i
left home, seriously, without my tan suit because i actually planned to wear it today. this is the closest i could find. the viewers have seen it before. it wasn't in my office. i got to ask you about president biden's wardrobe, sporting that tan suit, strikingly similar to someone else who wore a tan suit and then got you know what for it. >> yeah, it's funny because the original wearer of the tan suit in modern times is ronald reagan. i don't remember conservatives or republicans criticizing ronald reagan for his suit wear. as we've all reflected back, don, and i actually think what started much of this awfulness is the reaction to president obama being in the white house. and why we're in the position now we are in with so many people being angry and so many people being divided in the midst of where we are, and so many people being upset about the diversity of america, which most of us know is a plus and will make us a better country. there is a segment of our society that the gop stirs up
that cannot stand the diversity of america. >> matthew, thank you. listen, i heard what you said about your children, and i'm sorry. i didn't want to interrupt the flow of what we were doing, but we're really sorry. we're proud of you. i love having you on. you're a good man. thank you and please come back, okay? >> thank you, don. always great to be with you. >> i know you have a daughter who is going away to college. >> i am so proud of her. i can't contain myself how proud i am of her. >> as you should be. thank you, proud dad. i'll see you soon. >> thank you. bye. governor cuomo's lawyers in attack mode in defense of their client as he faces a criminal complaint. stay with us.
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