Skip to main content

tv   Washington Journal 12172021  CSPAN  December 17, 2021 6:59am-10:02am EST

6:59 am
at c-span.org or on our free video app c-span now. >> c-span is your unfiltered view of government, funded by these television stations and more including media com. >> internet traffic and we never slowed it down. schools and businesses went virtual we powered a new reality. at mediacom, we are built to keep you ahead. >> mediacom supports c-span as a public service, along with these other television providers, giving you a front row seat to democracy. >> this morning on "washington journal," dr. ira breite talks about the current state of the coronavirus pandemic. then, former trump health and human services official hall mango on the one-year
7:00 am
anniversary of operation warp speed --paul mango on the one-year anniversary of operation warp speed. as always, you can join the conversation by phone or send a comment by text message, facebook, or twitter. ♪ host: good morning and welcome to "washington journal." it is friday and the end of another busy newsweek in washington, d.c., as we close to the end of 2021, there are major news stories percolating, from the search of covid-19 case -- surge of covid-19 cases, to rising inflation and falling unemployment rates. congress is working on major issues in legislation, including the january 6 investigation of a major voting rights bill and the president's build back better legislation. with all of this going on, our
7:01 am
question is, what is your top news story of the week? we will open up our regular lines, that means republicans, we want to hear from you at (202)-748-8001. democrats, your line is (202)-748-8000. independents, you can call (202)-748-8002. keep in mind, you can always text us at (202)-748-8003. and we are always reading on social media on facebook at facebook.com/c-span, on twitter at --@cspanwj, and you can always follow us on instagram, also at --@cspanwj. we start this morning by talking about the omicron variant with president joe biden coming out this week and urging americans again to get their vaccine, so on thursday, president joe biden came and spoke about the spread of the
7:02 am
covid-19 virus, and he talked to the white house. here's what president joe biden had to say. [video clip] pres. biden: i want to send a direct message to the american people. due to the steps we have taken, omicron variant has not spread as fast as it could have like it did in europe, but it is here now and spreading, and it is going to increase. for the unvaccinated, we are looking at a winter of severe illness and death for the unvaccinated. for themselves, their families, and the hospitals they will soon overwhelm, but, there is good news. if you are vaccinated and have your booster shot, you are protected from severe illness and death, period. number two, booster shots work. three, boosters are free, safe, and convenient. about 60 million -- 16 million people have one. so go get your shot today. go get boosted. if you had your first two shots,
7:03 am
if you have not, go get your first shot. it is time, it is past time. we are going to protect our economic recovery if we do this and keep schools and businesses open of we do this, and i want to see everyone around enjoy that. i want to see them enjoy the fact that they are able to be in school, businesses are open, and the holidays are coming. get your booster shot. it is critically important. if you have not gotten your booster shot, get your first shot. we are in a situation where we have 83% of american people who have gotten one shot 12 years and older, 400,000 shots per day now, 202 million are fully vaccinated, 57 -- excuse me, 570 -- excuse me -- i do not want to read, i'm not sure i have the right number. the total number is what? 57 million boosters, one million
7:04 am
a day. but the whole point is, omicron is here, it is going to start to spread much more rapidly at the beginning of the year, and the only real protectionist to get your shots. if you got one shot, and you have not gotten it yet, it will help. if you have everything, including your booster, you are in really good shape, so move now. move now. [end video clip] host: here is data from a story on cnn.com that shows where we are when it comes to vaccinations here in the united states. as of wednesday, only about one in six people in the u.s. are fully vaccinated and boosted against covid-19, leaving hundreds of millions at risk as the threat of the fast transmitting omicron variant blooms. the latest forecast published wednesday by the u.s. centers for disease control and
7:05 am
prevention show that new covid-19 hospital admissions may reach record levels in the coming weeks, while at me cases and deaths may reach levels last seen during last winter. the cdc's predicted increase in covid-19 deaths will bring total deaths for the pandemic to 837,000 to 845,000 people by january 8. an average of nearly 120,000 new cases are being diagnosed each day, according to johns hopkins university, 50% more than one month ago, and more than 1200 people are dying every day on average. we want to know what your top news story of the weakest. let's -- week as. let's start with rita, from jacksonville, alabama, on the independent line. good morning. rita, good morning, are you there? caller: yes. host: go ahead, rita. caller: ok, i would rather see
7:06 am
the news i think, but not republicans or democrats. one of the news stations put on the declaration of independence and run it for 24 hours and let people see, and the constitution of the united states, and let people see what is the rules and regulations of the united states. host: do you think that not enough people know it is set in the decoration of independence and the constitution -- said in the declaration of independence and constitution? caller: yes sir. people has never seen that. i have been trying to get the constitution and declaration of independence, a copy of it, but where do you go and find that? host: you can usually find a copy of both of them either on the internet, and i bet if you call your congressman or senator, or even your state
7:07 am
representative, they would be more than happy to send you a copy of it. caller: well, i think everyone should read it, everyone who can read and write. there are a lot of people who cannot even read or write. i am a senior citizen, and i know what i am talking about. host: let's go to jay, calling from wake forest, north carolina, on the republican line. good morning. caller: good morning. i would like to talk about two subjects, so give me a little time. i would like to talk about crime in january 6. crime, has anybody seen the video of the black guy in the subway sneaking up behind the taiwanese woman, grabbing her by her neck, choking her and beating her after death? somebody needs to do something about this crime. this morning, a bunch of the companies that gave millions of dollars are being looted by
7:08 am
byrne and lute activist, and that is funny as hell. january 6, i would like to ask me a question -- sq question about this -- ask you a question about this but what is the end goal with going after donald trump the way you all do? do you think it immediately if you keep smearing online about him -- let's be honest, if you think about it, the media is responsible for january 6 because if you had not lied every single day for five years and made up stories about donald trump, like kavanaugh was a rapist, a russian asset, the covington kid, jussie smollett, he was assaulted by two white guys, the hunter biden story. the way i see it, the media is responsible for january 6, but what is the endgame? do you all think some obama judge in d.c. is going to do what, put an arrest warrant out for donald trump?
7:09 am
is that with the media and left want? let's go to steve, calling from ohio on the independent line. good morning. caller: [laughter] it is euclid. host: euclid, sorry. caller: like the mathematician. my god. i am hearing you in the background. host: steve, go ahead. caller: you know, -- oh. i just saw a piece from a gentleman from india, from yesterday, and he said that where we are standing right now is on the precipice. i said a year ago that the worst thing that could happen with this virus is -- host: let's go to tony, calling
7:10 am
from walcott, connecticut, on the democrat line. good morning. caller: hey, good morning, jesse. boy, what a busy newsweek, huh? i am a democrat, and i am so disappointed in my government. fentanyl pouring in from over the southern border. my president told me in july that i would be over the virus and have it under control. it is raging out of control. they let this gas out, but my gas and oil prices are going up and crazy. the crime is out of control. i do not understand what the heck is going on. they cannot cash bills. my taxes -- it is terrible. thank you. host: let's go to carol, calling from california on the democrat line. carol, good morning. caller: good morning. hi. i have a few concerns. i have been paying attention to
7:11 am
the mark meadows events, and the fact that they are able to evade tested time before congress, and in the meantime, i have been following the story that a lot of legislatures are bringing in election administration officials, so these are apparently republican lead. i am not sure. in the future, ok we be sure our elections are fair and just? our democratic ideals and bipartisanship and the founding of our country is being eroded by just people cannot seem to get along in government. if we cannot get along in
7:12 am
government, however going to get along in the world and set an example? these are some of my concerns. host: let's go to ann from jamaica, new york, on the democrat line. good morning. caller: good morning. can you hear me? host: yes we can. caller: my topic is the january 6 commission and the viruses picking back up so much. i am listening to a few callers. i always knew a part of america was ignorant, that i just hear so many ignorant people calling on there. the january 6 commission, we are now hearing now all the things they're coming out about, mark meadows, and all the different things, and i happen to live in new york city, who, thank god, a lot of us are vaccinated.
7:13 am
i am an 80-year-old woman and fully vaccinated. it is nice to be around civilized people because america is an ignorant country. i am hearing this as people are calling. they are so ignorant. host: another issue going on in washington, d.c., revolves around president joe biden's build back better legislation, which has apparently been delayed until 2022. i want to bring to you a story from "the hill newspaper" that shows where it is right now. president biden's climate and social spending bill, which appeared to have strong moments when it passed the house one month ago, now appears to be in danger of collapsing in the senate. democrats now concede there is no chance of passing the build back better act before the end of the year as they had hoped. a senate republican eight on thursday said that senate
7:14 am
majority leader charles schumer and republicans are close to a deal to confirm a block of nominees and hold it over until january, which would clear the senate calendar for the rest of 2021 and allow senators to go home for christmas. more importantly, there is also a chance the entire build back better bill have to be reworked to accommodate senator joe manchin's opposition to including a one-year extension of the expanded child tax credit in the bill. once again, the build back better bill, the boat in the senate will widely not be until 2022 -- vote in the senate will widely not be until 2022, depending on whether the they can meet joe manchin's concerns on this. chuck schumer came out and talked about shifting the senate attention away from the president's social spending bill to voting rights. here is what senator schumer had to say. [video clip] >> madam president, as we continue working to bring the senate to a position where we
7:15 am
can build back better, senate democrats spent the past few weeks engaged on a discussion addressing another urgent priority, protecting the right to vote and safeguarding our elections. yesterday, i joined with a number of my colleagues and detailed conversations about how the senate will get voting rights done in time for the 2022 elections, including advancing the freedom to vote act and the john lewis voting rights act. in state after state, republican-led legislatures are approving the most crony and voter registration laws we have scenes and segregation, and they are doing it on --draconian voter registration laws we have seen on segregation. they have passed rules on voting rights that we have seen since segregation on an untimely partisan basis. senate democrats are working to find a path forward to respond to these attacks by passing legislation like the freedom to vote act and the voting rights advancement act.
7:16 am
part of that conversation involves finding ways to restore the senate so it can once again work as it is supposed to, as it has worked for generations before the gridlock of the past decade or so. these conversations are ongoing. the fight to protect voting rights is far from over in the senate. [end video clip] host: just like with the build back better bill, there is also an opposition in the democratic party on the voting rights bill. nbc news has a story talking about where opposition is on the voting rights legislation. senate democrats eager to salvage the victory as they lose hope of finishing the build back better act before christmas have turned their attention to voting rights legislation. still, two key obstacles remain, senators joe manchin of west virginia and kyrsten sinema of arizona. it is not clear democrats have a path to win over their two colleagues divorce vote on the
7:17 am
bill, despite significant shifts from other moderates, and a frustrated voting base clambering largely for congress to act. large, simmering frustrations among leaders appear to be boiling over as the pressure joe biden to do more to encourage them to act. progressive advocacy groups revved up pressure campaigns fearing time is running out of t of time as with as that threat to democracy. they have held meetings with colleagues to find a path forward. mark warner of virginia and john hickenlooper of colorado said this week they are ready to change the senate rules to allow a vote on election overhaul, but despite this movement, it may not be enough. once again, that is what is going on in the senate. today, we want to know what your top news stories of the week are. let's go to mike, calling from cary, north carolina, on the republican line. good morning. caller: good morning, merry
7:18 am
christmas. it is not being covered -- well, it is to a degree, but very little. you cannot help but say the story of the week is the epic failure, the continued epic failure of president biden, his cabinet, and his policies, and for the most part, the utter denial that this is even happening by them. i am a republican and identified myself as such, but i try to be at least fair when analyzing this stuff. we have got the southern border out of control, along with people coming across the border. we have chinese manufactured fentanyl, killing people all over the country, whether that is by design or not, i have no idea. we have the crime issue mostly concentrated in large, urban
7:19 am
areas run by democrats. we have inflation, the economy, covid. it goes on and on. this week, they are tap dancing on the head of a pen, and everybody knew this, there was no way they were going to get this monstrosity of a piece of legislation with the thin margin -- they don't even have a margin. it is a 50/50 tie, and it is kamala harris, that is their majority in the senate. they were delusional to even throw up a massive piece of legislation without having a solid majority in both chambers of commerce. again, they set themselves on fire, so now they're going to pivot to voting rights with what? a week before christmas? and all this talk about voting rights, ok, you are not going to get anybody to say, i disagree with voting rights. behind-the-scenes, you are getting people who are bringing
7:20 am
up the constitution. first of all, most of these laws are not draconian. when you tell private parties that they cannot bring food and water to people in a voting line, and then also do election hearing at the same time, that is not preventing people from voting. the democrats are way over there skis again on this particular piece of legislation because what they are accusing the republicans of doing, they might not like it, but it is in the constitution that voting and the electoral process is managed at the state level. this is very clear. host: let's go to ron, calling from waynesboro, north carolina, the democrat line. good morning. caller: morning. host: go ahead. caller: yeah, i would want to speak on the voting rights also. host: go ahead. caller: one word we are leaving
7:21 am
out, the one word we are leaving out his legal. we are not trying to stop the black people or mexican people from voting, we want the american citizens to vote or to be don't want their dead vote. and now there is talk about we are trying to stop people from voting, their voting rights taken away, that is not it. we want legal votes. host: republicans came out on thursday with -- including lindsey graham, to talk about what was going on in the senate, and to celebrate the stalling of the presidents build back better legislation. here is what lindsey graham from south carolina had to say.
7:22 am
[video clip] >> the good news for the american consumer, there's not going to be anymore inflation in your stockings because of build back better. i want to thank senator manchin and others were standing their ground. my belief is that build back better never gets better, and it will never get better. you cannot make this thing -- you cannot put lipstick on a pig, and when it comes to inflation and deficit spending, this is a monster pig. [end video clip] host: once again, we want to know your top news story of the week. let's go to diondre from miami, florida, independent line. caller: good morning. thank you for c-span. my personal opinion, top news story, which a lot of people are talking about, recently, a top u.s. general is threatened
7:23 am
possibly first strike, nuclear, against russia with the ongoing situation in ukraine, and i feel a lot of concern, and this is something that would not lead to anything good, and around this time of the year, the u.s. military should explore other options that would be beneficial for national security in the interest of nato members, states, everything, but talking about first-rate options, nuclear, that is just way, way, way too extreme. i think people are just like, you know, not talking about that as it should be talked about, and we really need to be antiwar, anti-nukes. we need to denuclearize and find a way towards dialogue and more
7:24 am
co-cooperation with these large powers that have nukes to blow everybody up. we cannot just be letting this not be a main story, but that is it. host: that's go to eric, calling from buffalo, new york, on the democrat line. good morning. caller: good morning. how are you doing? host: just fine. go ahead, eric. caller: one of the top is voting rights. voting rights. we cannot have these states implanting laws that the legislatures can overturn votes. just one example, we cannot partisan votes, like the guy said, legal votes, but it is proven, a lot of republicans voted illegally. down in florida, you have the old folks home where they voted
7:25 am
illegally to cover virginia with underage voters. there are tons of problems, but there has to be voting rights to straighten this all out. host: let's go to charles, calling from richmond, virginia, publican line. good morning -- republican line. good morning. caller: how are you doing? i think one of the biggest problems we've got is the united states is understanding why people vote, too. what you do is try to set up a district where you don't have black voters and white voters. if a politician is decent, he will find out that everybody will vote for him, so you treat everybody right, and there are no restrictions because that is a joke. talking about the virus, 700 billion people on earth, 700 billion.
7:26 am
and all of us get together, you know, and you have got to wear masks. take your shot, you know, and hopefully it will work out for you, and you will not get sick. but that is the reality. it is not build back better. if you live in an old house, the united states is an old house, and it needs to be painted, the doors are bad, things are bad in the united states. you have to spend money in order to survive in this country of ours because people out there with road and bridge work, and all you are is a statistic. you know, we should fix that bridge. we need to fix up our country. in 1955, they started building
7:27 am
highways. nobody understood, why all these highways? well, we see now, so let's not be stupid and worry about one or two politicians that is trying to run for president and who knows what the hell they are trying to do. you are blocking our country from succeeding. host: let's go to mike, calling from laurel park, new york, democrat line. good morning. caller: hi, jesse, how are you doing? a couple of things. i guess the biggest one i felt last night's the continuation of the january 6 tool the republicans tried to pull. this thing was actually planned. they were giving guided tours to these maga nuts, showing them which entrances they could get into and out of. these people should be tried for
7:28 am
treason and thrown in jail. the other one, they were so much misinformation. biden has nothing to do with the price of gas. gas companies can pump out as much gas as they want. they are trying to make up for the money they lost last year, the year before, and since 2000 nine. they can pump out more, but they are not doing it. he has nothing to do with supply chains and ships from china, and all of this goes back to covid anyway. people not getting shots, not coming to work, and all of this. so he has no response ability for that. they did not pass any bill yet, they passed a bipartisan infrastructure bill, bipartisan. this has nothing to do with biden's deflation, and these people should understand that. host: let's talk to mic from sarasota, florida -- make from sarasota, sort of, independent line. caller: good morning. i guess the biggest story is the
7:29 am
american people are not stupid, but that story has not been played. i looked on the web about omicron. it is the weakest. they have found so far, verified by the medical people in south africa. and this is from "the new york times," not exactly a right wing publication. only one of 43 people detected required hospitalization, and there has been zero deaths. in fact, omicron might be the end of the pandemic. you get the same natural immunity from it that you get from the other variations. so all this hysteria -- i guess they just liked the way omicron sounds. number two, voting rights, this is very famous for the democrats. name a bill something that contradicts its content. it should be called, cuts never lose an election again act. when you read go through the actual bill, all it does is put
7:30 am
the control of all voting, which the constitution allows to the states, in the hands of washington, d.c. i think we have too much of their already. host: let's talk to don, calling from new york, republican line. caller: good morning. yeah, what i want to talk about is you are talking about all these diseases you get, coronavirus and everything else, who brought that in? biden let all these immigrants come in, they ran through the country, and he loaded them up and put them throughout the country to bring more disease on the people. this man has got alzheimer's disease, and people know it. he has drugs being pumped into him to keep it moving like a robot. and then you have chuck schumer, another one, talking about how he cares for children. yet, him and his people, they found back in ohio and kentucky landfills of body bags of babies
7:31 am
steam cooked, steam cooked, and he is the one who legislated, so that dirty old men chuck schumer should not talk about children. what we are going through with the murdering and killing in this country, and they're worried about the raid on washington, d.c., but they don't talk about other cities that the democrats okayed to be burned and people shot and killed in the streets. all of this going on is because the democrats and their mindset are control freaks. host: let's go to brian, calling from maryland on the republican line. good morning. caller: good morning. happy holidays, thank you for having me. i just want to talk about the build bug better program as my fellow republicans talk about independence from china, being self-sufficient and not relying on gas and oil prices. the joe biden build back better plan is to help build our
7:32 am
country up so we can reach that and build for the future to give the kids a chance to be a great generation. we talk about putting a deficit on our kids, but we do not want to put our kids in the possession -- position to be successful for education. instead of child tax credit the past year, it has been very helpful feeding kids. we need more of the same. amazon, all these delivery services using our roads, you cannot tell me that we need the roads and bridges fixed. i do not understand how you can say we need to stop being dependent on the people, but we do not want to build our nation up. as far as the voting rights act, even with the d.c. statehood, this is all about my fellow
7:33 am
republicans being considered we will not win the war eventually. if we have a message to the people that will help the people , we should not be concerned about necessarily losing the election. we would have smaller government, as far as the government needs to be as big as it needs to be, and i do not hear a whole lot of information or stats on dead people voting or illegal voting. i don't remember none of that. host: let's go to benny for michigan on the independent line. good morning. caller: the morning. hi, jesse. thanks for c-span. i wanted to talk about the inflation on the costs of inflation instead of complaining about the democrats. if you look at the tariff the previous president put on, and the $6.8 trillion in the four
7:34 am
years that the previous president was in office, and, finally, the virus that heat just about that he just about let destroy the united states before it was caught and controlled, those are the things the republicans do not tell you. i am not a republican or democrat. i am an independent, and i vote for who i think is best for the nation, t-1, jesse. host: one of the other stories in washington, d.c., is the continuing investigation into what happened on january 6 at the u.s. capitol. "usa today" has a story that talks a little about what the investigation is finding out, and i will bring that story to you. ohio republican representative jim jordan is among lawmakers who texted with mark meadows, chief of staff to former president trump. he forwarded a text message to meadows regarding a legal theory that then vice president mike pence that prevented the
7:35 am
certification of electoral college votes from the 2020 election, according to cnn. the text message was revealed this week by the house committee investigating january 6. the message he forwarded originally came from pentagon inspector joseph smits, according to reports from cnn, political, and nbc. jordan confirmed that text's authenticity to cnn. representative adam schiff read part of the text messages allowed monday before the committee voted to hold meadows in contempt for defying a subpoena. the house did earlier this week vote to hold meadows, former president trump's former chief of staff in contempt for his refusal to cooperate with the january 6 select committee. here is the vice chair, liz cheney, on the house floor on tuesday, talking about that vote. [video clip] >> january 6 was without
7:36 am
presidents. there has been no stronger case in our nations history for a congressional investigation into the actions of a former president. this body must investigate the facts and details, and we are entitled to ask mr. meadows about the nonprivileged material he has produced to us. speaker, i am sure you will hear my colleagues this afternoon say that there are privilege issues here that must be resolved before we can move forward. any arguments the court's need to resolve, privilege issues first, is a pretext. we will question mr. meadows about emails and texts he gave us without any privilege. mr. meadows' role cannot be privileged. nor can his dealings with a member of this body. this committee must get to the objective truth and ensure january 6 never happens again. [end video clip] host: let's see what some social
7:37 am
media followers are saying is their top news story of the week. here is one tweet that says if they had just stopped these gatherings, and sometimes they liberally increase them. they continue to tempt fate, it is unbelievable. it never would have happened if they stop super-spreader festivals. here is another tweet that says it is almost time to start thinking about income taxes. that is the process where our money is taken from us and handed over to wealthy people and corporations. all our government spending goes to the national debt right now. whose idea was this? another tweet that says the most important issue this year and in future years is too try and convict all people involved in this january 6 insurrection to start a civil war, including trump and his fascist supporters tweet tweet. another says the bill to stop partisan gerrymandering and republican tyranny of the
7:38 am
minority is not have 10 senate republican votes to get over the filibuster, that, too, is dead. they will not be any democracy in this decade post-senses. another tweet that says we have to stop sending military countless billions of dollars until they can show us where the money goes. how many unnecessary generals occupy the pentagon? there is billions of waste there alone. the unholy alliance between the military and congress must stop. and one final tweet that says, tough negotiations usually right up until the real deadline, not arbitrary deadly -- dates. the arbitrary deadline for filled back better is the midterm. once again, we want to know your top news stories of the week. we will get back to calls and a second. first, i want to highlight a few upcoming programs that are coming on c-span this morning. live at 1:00 p.m. eastern on
7:39 am
c-span, national security advisor jake sullivan will be here, speaking at the council about president biden's first year in office. live at 2:15 eastern, the outgoing head of the national institute of health, francis collins, will talk with "the washington post" about his leadership through three residential administrations, live at 2:15 p.m. eastern on c-span. and on c-span2, the senate is in session at 9:30 eastern to consider president biden's nominations to his negative and judicial branches. as always, live gavel-to-gavel coverage on the senate on c-span2, c-span.org, and on the new c-span now video app. once again, we want to know your top news stories of the week. let's start with michael, calling from beacon, new york, democrats line. good morning. caller: good morning, how are
7:40 am
you? host: go ahead. caller: two things. first of all, until the right media from fox, oan, until they start telling the truth to the people who listen to them, this country will never come together. that must change, they have to start telling the truth. secondly, i say this with heartbreak, trump and the congressman, they must be held accountable for what they did prior to january 6, and this is treason. until they are handled properly, this country is in big, big trouble. thanks a lot. have a good weekend. host: next hot -- let's talk to rich, ohio, republican line. caller: yeah, lots of good points. i wonder how many times we have to pay for something until we get it. we have been paying for gas
7:41 am
taxes every year, c 20ents -- 20 cents out of every gallon, now we have an infrastructure bill that should've been there all the time, but it is not there, we have to fill it up again because it is somewhere else. we only get 20 cents on the dollar to do infrastructure. we have a problem with good spending and bad spending in government, and bad spending can cause trouble and do real damage . one example is when we bought military equipment for our military and the next thing, they are turning it over to our enemy. we would like to get that back and not spend the money in the first race, or that research that could be going on in china. we should not spend 10 cents over there. i will listen to your answer. host: let's talk to emilio from georgia on the demo -- amelia
7:42 am
from georgia on the democrat line. caller: please allow me to say a few things. i have been a "washington journal listener for years -- "washington journal" listener for years. i am sad to see how the republicans -- and i do not want to be insulting to anybody, but it is time for them to stop listening to fox news and get some information somewhere else because it is just sad to hear the things they say. they compare the january 6 with lying. people, don't you understand what losing the democracy means? do you want to be living in a country where you cannot walk, you cannot eat, you cannot do things because under the rules of dictatorship?
7:43 am
trump is a con man. please, jesse, do not cut me off . this is very important. the more you listen to the republicans, they are calling, complaining about the build back better plan. i mean, a plan that is to help the people, the working people, the poor about cutting the prescription drug price, doing things for the people, the elderly people, increasing home care for people who are disabled at home, helping families, doing so many things for other people. the republicans get in office, and all they do is do things for the rich people. when trump passed all those tax relief, what do they think this means? host: let's go to bruce from massachusetts on the democrat line. good morning. caller: good morning, jesse, how
7:44 am
are you? host: just fine, go ahead, bruce. caller: happy holidays everybody. most important thing going on, i believe, and has been for quite a while now, is our right for democracy. really i have a problem with certain things. three in particular. not trying to be derogatory, but are -- but i had a hard time understanding why it is hard to fix stupid. i hate to be derogatory like that. one of the other things, i find it impossible to give anyone common sense. that being said, we do not understand or a lot of people do not understand, i do not know why, that we are in big time trouble. our top stories, we are still fighting for democracy.
7:45 am
republicans are a big danger. the other thing i want to mention is when i saw the january 6 insurrection, and i was talking to a psychologist at the time, live when it was going on, unbelievable how that conspired. so, there are veterans out there who i saw on january 6 at that insurrection. i want americans to know -- and i am a veteran, my whole family was, that there are veterans out there who are totally against that. host: let's go to terry from boone, iowa, on the independent line. good morning. caller: good morning. merry christmas. i wanted to call in. everyone is talking about the insurrection. ok, let's talk about the insurrection. you know what i find odd? i find it odd that all these
7:46 am
congressmen, senators, and people set up there for the whole summer of love in seattle, and, oh, it is going to be a summer of love, and look what happened, destruction, mayhem. they let it go on and on and on, and i think your vice president even told you that it was not going to stop after the election . they are going to keep doing it. they're going to keep doing it. well, and then it came to their house. when it came to their house, they got excited, and now they want to put people in solitary confinement, they want to send them away for life, hang them for treason. are you kidding me? what about all those people running the streets last two years, burning stuff down and the black lives matter, and the peaceful protest over people that all they have done is stopped, put their hands up, and dealt with issues after the
7:47 am
arrest instead of trying to do it during the arrest? they would all be alive today. there is one person out of this whole thing, and that is that breonna taylor gal. she is only one that is a victim. the rest of those people should have stopped ended with the law told him to do, and that lou that up that summer, and they rode -- blew that up that summer, and they rode into the elections, now the election is over, they cannot stop it. and they will claim donald trump for it. that is what the insurrection is about, people. wake up, america. host: from temple, texas, on the democrat line. good morning. caller: good morning. first of all, i want to say the last time i called in, i said that god was going to punish the republicans for what they did. and -- host: are you there?
7:48 am
caller: yeah, i am still here. i just want to say, i told them, and i feel for all the people in those storms that happened. those were storms that had 32 tornadoes, and those were storms, and i said he is going to pay for what he did to our people. i am not worried about what is going on because god is the one that causes the storms, and god caused the storm for those people, and what i am going to do is, i am going to leave it in god's hands. host: republican senator mitch mcconnell came out to the senate floor earlier this week on thursday to warn democrats against what he calls weakening the filibuster and attempting to attack the supreme court.
7:49 am
here is what mitch mcconnell of kentucky had to say. [video clip] >> as >> keep forming -- as cracks keep forming, some colleagues channel their frustration into even more dashed they recalled plans to new the senate and break the rules. at another national op-ed arguing democrat should attack the rule of law and impact the supreme court. two assaults on two branches of government reposed in the space of about two hours. entire generations would have seen either one of these unhinged proposals as armageddon for our institutions. but apparently, today's immigrants tried -- democrats tried both at once and called it wednesday. [end video clip] host: we want to know your top
7:50 am
news story of the week. greg from massachusetts on the republican line. good morning. caller: good morning. good morning. do you know what is going on over at cnn? you keep quoting them like they are the gospel of the news agencies. they have got a lot of problems over there with sexual crimes, big time. you have got a producer over there who is looking to have women and their daughters pose naked for them. it is horrible, and you keep quoting cnn. host: all right, let's go to joe, calling from pennsylvania on the democrat line. good morning. caller: good morning. the winter solstice is coming up really soon, so get prepared for that. the big national news i think is still the price of gas. it is horrendous, and the
7:51 am
inflation problem for the country would go away if gas came down one dollar. no one seems to be talking about inflation that much. it is the price of gas that is driving really so many pocket these days. and then, locally, the issue is this deal headed brown trout are still running the creeks out of lake erie, and fish for mary, pennsylvania. that is all. host: let's talk to paul from west palm beach, florida, independent line. good morning. caller: hi, jesse. thank you for taking my call. i want to talk about the january 6 incident. i was wondering why nancy pelosi has not been investigated for not protecting the capitol building.
7:52 am
is it her job to protect the building? there was going to be a big meeting with president trump. why was that not investigated? number two, a white lady was shot by a black cop, had this been the other way around, a white cop shooting a black person, the story would be a big story everywhere. i just. these things have been on my mind. thank you. host: let's go to ed from columbia station, ohio, on the republican line. good morning. caller: for. it is not just this show, but every show i have watched for years, and i have information. i am a conservative. every democrat called, almost everyone, but they always blame
7:53 am
the conservative news station. they have opinions and the news, and they stay with opinions. everything else is dominated, hollywood. look at the material, not one thing on who is running the country today, a joke. we all know it, the people are not stupid. cnn is going to take the reporters in washington. they have the election in six months, a blackout all the finance rumble, foreign, china, everything. the left, all they watch is hogwash. you want to talk about real truth, at midnight, we repeat them on prime time like 100 times. one they try to take off the air, and democrats try to take fox off because they are afraid of the truth, but the american people watch riots, and there is the cnn reporter peacefully talking. it is a peaceful protest, white is there things burning behind
7:54 am
it -- why are there things running behind them, people killed? the racism in this country is a nightmare. it is a lack out on this guy and tried to kill as many people as he could with that vehicle. he was let out for $1000, and he has a record of 50 pages, five felonies, and the same day, he tried to run over his pregnant girlfriend and her two kids. you see a blackout, nobody talked about it. host: let's go to jerry from taylorsville, kentucky, on the republican line. good morning. caller: yes. my comment is about climate control. they are spending all this money to try to help with climate change and everything, and nobody has stopped to think that the biggest reason of climate change with fires, floods, and
7:55 am
tornadoes we have had the past weekend as because of all the minerals that have been sucked out of the earth, diamonds, gold. we cannot replace anything like that. that could be part of the reason why. host: let's go to dennis, calling from toledo, iowa, on the democrat line. good morning. caller: morning. the biggest critic of donald trump when he was president was himself. it was him who picked people like jack sessions to the attorney general, and he was the one who complained about him more than i heard chuck schumer or nancy pelosi talking about his own cabinet members like trump did. they cannot figure out why trump lost the election? thank you. host: let's talk to mori
7:56 am
etta on the independent line. caller: good morning. i just want to say how ironic i find it that racist white people love to call black people monkeys. that is one of the first things they say to us. yet, that day on the capitol, talk about monkeys, they looked like monkeys. host: let's go to ben from woodstock, connecticut, the independent line. good morning. caller: good morning, jesse, and merry christmas. merry christmas, america. the biggest problem is the ignorance in this country. you have to get away from the news stations and look online. this news is corrupt. obama passed a bill that let people lie to you.
7:57 am
congress can lie to you, but you cannot lie to congress. they are all lying to you, wake up, america. it is time to see that this government needs to go. host: let's go to james, calling from sheehan, on the independent line. good morning -- from michigan, on the independent line. good morning. caller: good morning. glad to finally get through after two years. i am wondering, all i hear is build back better, but i am wondering, build back better from wet? -- from what? before mr. biden that income everybody had a job that wanted one. we were not at war with anybody. people on social security let myself, i could go to the store, buy groceries and gas. now, it seems like everything just went downhill. i just cannot understand it all and how it is going, but i am still wondering build back better from what? host: we would like to thank all
7:58 am
of our callers for calling in with their top news story of the week for arbor segment. coming up, -- for our first segment. coming up, dr. ira breite joins us to talk about the rise of covid-19 cases with the new omicron variant. later, this week marks the one-year anniversary of operation warp speed, initial shipments of the covid-19 vaccine. later, we will be joined by former trump hhs official paul mango, who was on the front lines of the effort. stick with us. we will be right back. ♪
7:59 am
>> this year, the u.s. supreme court took up two cases that could does this -- could decide the fate of roe v. wade. sunday, the author of the family road talks about the comp get it life and times of norma mccorvey also known as jane rowe. the activism of the courts decision and the impact her actions had on her and her three daughters. >> her life is such a window into this whole thing of abortion in america. the pro-life wish to say look at her and look at the cost of abortion. she never had an abortion and
8:00 am
what she actually is is a fascinating testimony to the cost of adoption. she struggled enormously, emotionally with what it meant to relinquish her three children to adoption. >> sunday night and you can listen to you and a on our new c-span now app. >> get c-span on the go, what's the day's biggest political events like on demand any time, anywhere on our new global video app, c-span now. it's all for free. download c-span now for free. >> "washington journal" continues. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2021] host: we are back.
8:01 am
we are discussing the latest developments in the u.s. effort to combat the coronavirus pandemic. good morning. guest: good morning, great to be on. host: let's jump into the current news. just yesterday, ecdc panel recommended the pfizer and modernity covid vaccine over the johnson & johnson one-shot vaccine for people who are 18 and older. why did they make this call? guest: the main reason they made this call was the rear side effect with the johnson & johnson shot. mostly women in the 20-39 age group would rarely get blood cots -- blood clots and many were fatal but many were not. because of that increase risk and because the shots are
8:02 am
generally less effective, the cdc panel thought it would make more sense to get the rna shots which are clearly more effective even though you need one extra dose. the j&j shots will still be available for people who want them, it's been a relatively small number of people who had them, about 60 million people who receive the initial vaccine in terms of boosters, less than a million. host: here in the capital region, we are seeing a bunch of schools and universities close to attempt to slow down the transmission of the covid 19 virus. you tweeted from your office earlier this week that it feels like march 2020 was less fear
8:03 am
and work resignation. what did you mean by that? guest: in march, 2020, when this hit, we were all terrified as to what was going on step we never closed our office but clearly, people stopped coming in. i ran with a skeleton staff. we didn't know what was coming next and there were a lot of unknowns and the hospitals were filling up even to the point where they have a guy like me who is an out patient dr. back into the hospital because they needed manpower to do that. with omicron, i'm seeing a mass of people calling with covid like symptoms and many of them end up having omicron which is easy to test for.
8:04 am
we are seeing these huge numbers we haven't seen before. as to posed to marsh when we were terrified as to what would happen next, i'm nervous about this. this thing spreads like nothing compared to the other covid's we've seen. it's like a common cold spreading. we have a playbook and we know how people are doing and reports are sort of fuzzy but it peers to be -- but it appears to be that the majority of patients are vaccinated so we have been handling everybody and telling them what to do, appropriately
8:05 am
referring people and then moving on. most people are doing better so we feel we are ready for it but having said that, the sheer number of people in new york getting omicron, it's shocking. host: define for our viewers when you say less bad. is it something like a common cold or something that could be like flu or pneumonia? what are we talking about here? guest: we really aren't quite sure yet. this is one of the biggest problems. we have the most data from south africa. it has very good data on their people in south africa has had
8:06 am
this longer than we have. we have a little lead time from them. it peers that it's a less serious disease. i will use were serious as few were people in the possible proportionate to the number of cases. the problem is is the south african population is not the west population. we are an older country, we are more vaccinated in some ways but less posed which is the estimate i so with 70% of people in south africa exposed to delta which means natural immunity is now providing protection from getting the disease again. we don't have anywhere near those numbers here.
8:07 am
the problem in the united states is there are some signs that omicron looks like it could be better and i do believe on an individual basis, if you get omicron come it's better to get omicron that it is to get delta. the problem we have is because this disease is a little bit unknown and we don't know what will happen and because it is so verily - virulent, the hospital systems which are already overwhelmed because it's december and it's flu season. it's the normal misery of the winter happening was to it can make it very difficult to get
8:08 am
routine care done because people have to appear in person to do it. host: our viewers can take part in this conversation and we will open up regional lines which means if you were in the eastern or central time zone, this is your number. few were in the mountain or pacific time zone, your number will be this. we are going to open up a special line for this conversation for medical professionals. whether you're a doctor or work in a hospital or are a nurse, we want to know what you are seeing out there so a medical nationals, we want to hear from you. you can always text us. we are always reading social media on twitter and sees that and on facebook.
8:09 am
we are now averaging around 120 thousand new covid cases per day in the united states. do we know how much of that is delta versus omicron? guest: we don't completely. the belief is that the vast majority of it is still delta. that's bad because delta clearly is happening in unvaccinated people. certain areas are having massive increases in omicron stop in new york, the rate has doubled in the last two or three days. it's shooting straight up. it's consistent with what we know about this. i have seen a lot of doubly vaccinated people who are getting homework ron and i've seen tripoli vaccinated people getting on with consistent with
8:10 am
what we know about the disease so far. some of the colleges have been having massive out breaks and the most famous one would be cornell which is a 97% vaccinated place in ithaca so was relatively isolated. they have more covid cases in tompkins county, then they have ever had at any point during the pandemic. it's just spreading. i don't think large chunks of the country has seen omicron hit yet but i'm sure it's starting to percolate. i'm sure the next few weeks will be very interesting. not a word we like to use. host: we know the delta variant and what we will call alpha, the first strain were particularly hard on people who had no
8:11 am
vaccinations at all. do we know if there is a difference for omicron when it comes to vaccinated nurses unvaccinated? guest: that's what we really don't know yet. we know that omicron has been less severe in south africa. it's a much younger population in south africa. it's been a more exposed covid population in south africa. what we don't know is that older or not vaccinated and haven't been asked those to any type of covid which is a chunk of folks, when we have those people exposed, will this be where they end up in the hospital and we have a problem for a we going to somehow get lucky? not to sound not optimistic that
8:12 am
anytime anybody has had a happy word about covid, they've usually been wrong. this disease has yet again said if it were thing it can do, sure i will do that. that is the fear we all have. do we have all the data on it? we do not. it emphasizes that being compared for the worst in covid is never been a bad idea. it means if you haven't gotten vaccinated, please get vaccinated. be ready particularly if you were older because covid is very much a disease that kills older people. it's much more so than younger people. younger people, it's the holidays. try not to give grandma covid christmas. do we know that natural immunity
8:13 am
for people who have had one of the earlier strains of covid-19 is effective from keeping them from getting the oma variance? guest: we know it is not physically effective. it doesn't help you to stop getting the disease. not necessary getting sick from the disease. we know people who have been exposed to the virus in south ever are getting omicron. what we don't know completely yet but we think is that having had the virus provides you with some protection in terms of t cell immunity, that's the later immunity from, ron just like starting to learn with vaccines. a way to think about natural immunity or having had the virus is to think about it as you had
8:14 am
one shot. good and you have some immunity. in the same way that getting one shot is good, it's still helps in terms of building up a broad antibody and there is a recent study that came out showing that a third shot of covid vaccine extends the body's ability, the variety of t cells by covid. having the immunity is probably helpful. is it enough and are you willing to take that chance when we know that getting the disease then getting a vaccine on top of it by its further protection especially given how things keep changing and mutating. host: let's let some of our
8:15 am
viewers take part in will start with al calling from watertown, tennessee, good morning. caller: i've got two questions in the comment. you cite with specificity, the numbers of injuries from the j&j vaccine was that how many injuries due to the mrna vaccines? host: guest: there are some injuries but not this particular one with the blood clotting was that given the sheer number of people who have had a on a proportionate basis, there is a far lower rate of significant complications. they have like at stomachs. caller: you just said you don't know how many have been injured by the mrna.
8:16 am
you just said that. guest: i will stop you there because we can play got you all day. caller: how can you recommend or not recommend the vaccine without knowing the number of injuries? guest: we know the number of people who die from heart disease related to covid is not a low number. we know what happens. the number of people who have died from heart injuries [indiscernible] we have given out aliens of these vaccines. we have had a long time, it's been out basically a year at
8:17 am
this point. you're not seeing physically bad complications from that. we give out vaccines all the time. my question to you is, do you know how many people have died from covid? you have seen people die from covid, i have seen people die from covid. out of these hundreds of millions vaccines, you have to look to find somebody who felt bad for two days. this is one of those things where i understand nobody wants to take anything and even i hate hitting shots. i don't like the needle, i get nervous, i need to have a diet
8:18 am
dr pepper or coke right afterwards. i get all of that but i also get that it's important thing to do this -- because the side effects are low, that we've given hundreds of millions of these things and that it really does help. you look at the data we have a lot of good data now that people get vaccinated do better than people who don't get vaccinated. host: you said you have a comment as well? caller: thank you for that courtesy. one of the things we need to understand about this conversation is that it no point in time to this doctor tell me where i can go to see a comprehensive listing of the numbers and talk -- and type of injuries with these vaccines. he may generalizations but no specific recommendations.
8:19 am
your trains to have critical thinking and medicals will so the doctor can have informed consent with a person. you say if you take the shot, more than likely will keep her from dying in the hospital. there is some chance of you being injured by it but nobody is willing to give you that information will step if your going to be a mouthpiece for the cdc and the fda, then why go to medical school? guest: i enjoy my time on c-span, thank you. host: let's go to denise calling from severn, maryland. caller: good morning at thank you for taking my call. i have a comment will step in my county, there are over 2300
8:20 am
students currently in quarantine. my youngest child is in quarantine now because there was an outbreak in her class. she does not have covid but there were two or more students who tested positive for covid and now the whole class is under quarantine. my question is, the board of education, two days ago just past a rule change stating that next year, that close contacts will not need to be quarantined stop my question is what are the negatives with his new rule change starting next year? guest: this is an important question. it does start melding from the
8:21 am
land of doctoring and has become the policy question. you have two competing factors here. would like people not to get covid but you don't want people's grandparents to get covid. that's one issue versus the other which is it's awful for kids not to be in school. one of the huge problems we had last year was that we kept kids out of school. i think we had to but it's bad. you have to strike that balance. with delta, we were able to strike this reasonably good balance for kids over five who could be vaccinated because it was less likely they would transmit within their family.
8:22 am
it seemed reasonable to say that this kid has covid in your class but it's mostly a vaccinated class and it wasn't like a super direct contact to just test, watch and be careful kind of thing. the problem we have with omicron and this is a problem of unknowns. because it appears to be so infectious and because it is almost like it is fast getting in fact it, by the time you figure out it's happening, it's too late. these the fears that some mike kelly's have had stuff is it even worth it to close down to school? we don't fully know yet. because we have the christmas holiday coming, we will have more time to get some of this data and see with going on and see where it goes. my personal opinion is it's
8:23 am
important for kids to be in school that it's all medically reasonable. it seems reasonable certainly would delta to keep schools open and keep classes open even if a kid gets covid not every school district will do it. it is a local decision but that's my personal opinion. host: what exactly is a close contact? i get an email every day for my children school system saying someone at the school has tested positive but don't worry. we will contact you if your child has had close contact. what is close contact and does a become different with this new variant what i close contact is with someone with positive was?
8:24 am
technically, we define close contact as within six feet within someone for more than 50 minutes at a time. that's everybody for kids. my kids are in their 20's don't have to do is this particular thing now. i remember those somebody has the flu or strap or somebody has lice. they would come through as these nose and you would tell them you don't know what to do. at this point, it becomes ridiculous. for fast -- for vaccinated, older kids," is still the definition but because the vaccination helps come most experts believe and i do that
8:25 am
would have to be basically in a tight space like a small room. it's like the practice room for musicians. in terms of omicron, we don't know. the fear is this thing really moves and if you have got one kid -- one guy or one kid in a room, you have a party in a club and everybody is sort of in contact but not really, that it will spread, the moment i'm not changing my definition. the general belief that if you maintain some distance and keep the windows open and that sort of stuff that you will be fine. we do not know yet. the problem with omicron is that
8:26 am
it's unknown in our population. host: are the close contact rules the same whether mass or unmasked? guest: if you are masked and i am asked in a tight room and the doors are closed but we are both wearing masks and i and up having covid, you're technically not considered a close contact. i would be exposed every single day. it is in my office. but i am wearing a mask. until back to our phone lines and talk to mark cohen from charlotte, north carolina. caller: good morning.
8:27 am
it's about the january 6 ryan host: let's stick to the topic. caller: the american people are comparing themselves to the south african population. there are no superior reaction but there forgetting the south african population is up option -- a population of 80% of the
8:28 am
people under 20 years old. the problem number is to stupid people are in the way, thank you. guest: i agree with the bigger point that we are not south africa will stop we are a much older country so there a young country and have less exposure to delta particularly in south africa which is still in large kinds of the -- in large chunks of the country. our biggest problem now is thinking we are smarter than's virus. we have been proven time and again that their optimistic
8:29 am
assumption does not work. i thing with omicron is not, i will probably say it's not as bad as delta. that seems to be what i'm seeing on the data stuff but because i have have been fooled again because i -- because i have underestimated. with this disease can do. i'm being real cautious and taking all the precautions, not in terms of showing the world down. this is in terms of vaccines, using masks in type places were indoors. until we know more, why wouldn't you do it because you don't want the economy to ship down because of fear.
8:30 am
people are not going out or buying stuff is they don't want to get the disease. host: we started off talking about the three vaccines currently out there. one of our social media followers has another question about. they want to know why there are only one vaccine that does not require refrigeration? are there other countries who've tried and succeeded in developing vaccines? guest: astrazeneca has one and the russians have come with them faxing in the chinese have come up with a vaccine. there are several vaccines out there but these are three that are approved for use in the united states. as americans we focus on the one more locally. issue with storage of the vaccine is always been an issue. because of that chemical nature
8:31 am
of the vaccine, some vaccines just need to be stored at a colder temperature breakdown and don't work and some don't. one of the goals and vaccine production is to try to get each stable vaccines. this was going to be great for office. my wife is a physician said we will stand in front of bars to get the kids one-shot thing. it had a lot of benefits in terms of why you would want it but for technical reasons, the mrna vaccine needs to be stored colder and more accurately were otherwise they will break down.
8:32 am
host: are you suggesting to people that they should or should not travel during this holiday season? you been going to bars and hanging out and you have friends with omicron, i'm not sure it's wise to visit your elderly
8:33 am
friends or family. many other hand, as a general rule in terms of getting there, i am ok with it you just have to be smart. unfortunately, we are asking a whole bunch of people to individually accept their risk. we try to make a one-size-fits-all ring and it doesn't always work but it's hard to individually assess. as a general rule, the concept of taking uber and going to the air and getting on a plane and seeing somebody, i am totally ok with that. host: max is calling from north miami beach florida, good morning. caller: good, a close friend,
8:34 am
her father died after taking the vaccine. why are we persistent on people taking the vaccine when people die from the vaccine? guest: let's make an assumption that everybody died within a few days of getting the vaccine actually died from the vaccine. let's put that out as a hypothetical. even if that were the case, the number of people who have died covid in any particular age
8:35 am
group is still so much higher makes it a reasonable risk. the second issue comes back to the hype? which is if you take the vaccine and you gotten a car accident the next day, is that from the vaccine? that's an extreme version but if you are a 75 are all person and you had a heart attack, it in from the vaccine, we are not totally sure. everybody can always give a story. i do not minimize the stories but the absolute number is at best a tiny number. for that reason, the vaccine clearly is beneficial to everyone who takes it in the
8:36 am
same way -- i live in new york city. every day, i walked was brought quite because it's between my house in my office. when i walk across the 150 feet, i take my life in my hands every day. we take a certain amount of risk by being alive and the risk from getting that shot is way the heck less than the risk for me crossing broadway and hoping i don't get killed by a taxi driver. i think that's how you have to look at it. that's one of the reasons you can't do nothing when covid happens. the vaccines really have been shown to be extremely safe and if you look at the risk-benefit, it's worth taking.
8:37 am
host: i will use your analogy to bring up an argument but i have heard since covid began about the number of deaths that covid itself has caused. we hear time and time again from people who say the people who are dying from covid had something else wrong with them so it's not really a death from covid but from something else and then they got covid and we are counting all these other deaths from other things as covid deaths. what would be your response to someone who argues that it's the comorbidity causing the deaths, not covid? guest: it's an interesting question. we are all going to die of something. the argument is if you are 95 years old and die, you are old.
8:38 am
he will die. i think you have to take that argument away. people do love -- people do dive something but you want to minimize though some things and covid is the sum. it's don't be flippant about covid because everybody old sounds bad step the second thing is more important that if you look at, if you decide you will not buy into these numbers. if somebody had leukemia, they will probably die of leukemia but they do have covid, even if you look at that, the sheer number of excess deaths, the number of people who died in 2020 or 2021 versus 2019 is large. the average lifespan the numbers
8:39 am
went down a few years in terms of lifespan. there is this absolute change that has occurred in something you can count objectively which is dead people. there were way more dead people and people are living less long. the one thing that has changed is covid so it's -- at its most base level there is more dead. host: good morning. caller: good morning. since the beginning, this thing has been basically a for-profit machine stop i tested positive when i went for a visit back to
8:40 am
maine stuff i tested positive on one of the rapid test and luckily boss was able to provide the more accurate pt our test and it was negative. the amount i had to pay to get the more accurate test was like $400. i was reimbursed for that which was lucky. these tests should have been provided to everybody for free. modernity and pfizer and i believe johnson & johnson as well have not released the patents for the vaccines for south africa or india, all these other areas that are heavily populated and suffering from
8:41 am
covid that you would think if it was this big of a deal because it is, wouldn't you want everybody to get vaccinated and not put up these financial walls were now you have to buy the patent? give the patent to people and president biden should force the issue. a lot of the profits from covid have been exponentially great for the people who got to stay in business like amazon and walmart and these big corporations. we close down all these small businesses and i know you're not a financial guy but i see why people don't want to get the vaccine. it's very heavily monetized. guest: the policy issues you ring up, particularly the covid
8:42 am
tests and i'm not a policy guy but as a doctor, i would love it especially with omicron's of everybody had a supply of rapid covid tests in their house. you want to get those numbers i know this has been in the paper recently has a thing but yeah, i think there are other countries that are giving out these things. the american health care system is not something i will soften the next four minutes. i'm a practicing physician but covid has bent health care in some ways and it's hard to get elective surgery done in some places. if you are in new york city the dock in the box places have lines out the door and i'm
8:43 am
pretty much sure how that so they are surviving also in terms of money, there is a lot of policy issues that have to be done but generally as a physician, you want to make testing is easy and cheap as humanly possible so the people actually get tested. you want to make that available to as many people in the world. one person coming back from one airplane can do this to a lot of other people. this is where we are as a people and not i as a person. i think the these are important points i agree we need to do a better job of getting this to everybody equitably. host: we are running out of time so you can get in a quick question. caller: i don't have a quick
8:44 am
question. i wanted to relate my case with covid. host: we have about one minute left. caller: how about if i'm just granted a chance to call back. host: let's go to maurice. do you have a quick question? caller: i don't think c-span would have this gentleman on the show if biden and kamala didn't question the vaccine from the start. the covid problem is the chickens coming home to roost. the genocide that happened in rwanda, which pretty here he similarities to what's going on now. guest: the only thing i can say
8:45 am
is the interesting similarity will be disappearing step i think people politicize this too much. we have to stop looking at this through a red and blue lens. everybody's got their problems politically and if i had one hope here, it's that at least come together enough to recognize this is a threat that affects all of us and that we have to work together even if we don't love everything that has to be done. host: we would like to thank dr. ira breite for being without this morning and talk mr. the coronavirus pandemic in response. guest: thank you for having me.
8:46 am
host: we will move door open for them which allows you to call in and talk about your most important political issue of the day and later, this week marks the one year anniversary of operation warp speed initial shipment of the covid-19 vaccine step we will be joined by paul manko who was on the front lines of the effort will stop right back. >> sees manager unfiltered view government, we are funded by these television companies and more including comcast. >> you think this is just a community center? it's way more than that. comcast is creating wi-fi
8:47 am
enabled listening center so students from low income families can be ready for anything. >> comcast support c-span is a public service along with these other television providers, giving you a front row seat to democracy. >> how exactly did america get up to its neck in date -- in debt. >> we provide people opportunity for all citizens. >> the student documentary competition 2022. if you are a middle or high school student, you can join the conversation by entering the c-span studentcam competition by creating a five or six minute documentary using c-span clips and answer the question -- how does the federal government affect your life? >> be passionate how large or
8:48 am
small you perceive the audience to be. in the greatest country of the history of the earth, it doesn't matter. >> remember that content is king member to be as neutral and impartial as possible in your portrayal of both sides of an issue. >> c-span awards $100,000 in total cash prices and you have a shot at winning the grand prize of three -- of $5,000. per competition rules and tutorials or how to get started, visit our website at studentcam.org. >> c-span shop. org is our online store you can shop any
8:49 am
time at c-span shop.org. >> "washington journal" continues. host: we are back and we will start our open form segment that means we want to hear from you on most important political topic of the day is. scope straight to our phones and start with walter calling from butler, indiana on the republican line. good morning. caller: good morning and thank you for taking my call. my biggest concern is watching this government make people afraid and ignorant because then your easily manipulated. i don't understand with this coronavirus why they call it a pandemic stop if you had green
8:50 am
issues are cancer or diabetes and the doctor said your survival rate is over 99%, we will get on with her life. less than 1% of people diagnosed with this coronavirus die. if you broke it up into old people, the chances of a 21-year-old person dying from corona is zero point 033. it's pitiful all the misinformation, wear our mask, don't wear our mask where a specific mask and goggles to protect your eyes and that's useless. it's a shame we are giving up our liberties for something, just enjoy your life it's pitiful how the government is mandating vaccinations put you better not ask for id for voting. it's all crazy stuff ice to swim
8:51 am
in the hudson river as a young kid and i drink water out of a hose. we have to live with some dignity and stop letting the government control you. host: anderson, texas is next on the democratic line. caller: my biggest concern about the government giving these people money to stay home, i think we need to let that go and not give them any more money. when i was 20, i got diabetes type one. i had two babies i raised and i never took a penny from the government. i think we are being too soft on these people who are going out and having more babies.
8:52 am
i was smart enough not to have more babies. i was too proud to take money from the government. i think we need more of that today. i see this as giving too much money out there and that's all i have to say. host: let's talk to peter calling from north conway new hampshire on the republican line. caller: good morning, i'm calling about the democrats constantly preaching that the rich should pay their fair share. i went to irs. go to get a report on distribution of income taxes collected and i discovered that the top 10% of income taxpayers pay 70% of all the taxes collected on the bottom 50% pay about 3% of all the taxes collected.
8:53 am
i am at the very bottom of the bottom, 50%. but i am still amazed that the democrats argue fair share, thank you. host: let's talk to janice calling from midlothian, virginia on the democratic line. caller: good morning. i want to say if mr. straw mr. trump would have taken corona seriously, a lot of this wouldn't be going on now. there is almost a million people dead. president, obama put a crackerjack medical team together. there was a few ebola debts but nowhere near what we have seen with covid.
8:54 am
i think there should be some accountability here. a lot of people out here are suffering because he thought this whole thing was a hoax. host: tina is calling from pennsylvania on the independent line. good morning. caller: good morning happy holidays. i would like to address miss janice who just called him. if it hadn't been for president trump acting with operation warp speed, we would have more deaths. the death toll in the democrat run cities were outrageous. he did everything possible, did i like his attitude, no. it i like but he did for cobit, absolutely. we got a vaccine that saved millions.
8:55 am
moving on from that, we had more deaths hunter biden then trump regarding all this free money, i get angry over this that the senior citizens living off social security for those living off of the ss di where they paid in and they get money, they didn't get any extra stimulus money. we have inflation going through the roof and these people are getting a 6.2 increase next month. the government has raised the cost of their medicare part d so they are actually not getting a raise. what can we do to help our seniors. had it not been for our seniors, they teach us that we have to do something and i have called washington, d.c. and they tell
8:56 am
you they work for us but they don't return calls or return emails. somebody needs to start concentrating on the elderly and disabled in this country and had it not been for kamala harris coming out and saying she did not trust donald trump, we might have more vaccinated today. i personally am vaccinated and boosted and i'm not afraid to get the covid. host: let's go to tony from salem, illinois on the republican line. caller: good morning and merry christmas. in august, we had the vaccine approved by the fda. in my understanding, the shots we are giving is the first shots that were brought out, none of the new fta shots have been administered yet.
8:57 am
why are we giving our kids and our young kids and our people in school a shot that is not fda approved when we have an fda approved shot that has not been released yet? thank you very much. host: let's go to chris from burlington, vermont on the independent line. good morning. caller: thank you for having this opportunity. i wanted to respond to the idea that it's a waste of time not to get vaccinated because there is a less than 1% chase -- chance of dying. the idea that we should only focus on the term dying is not wise. we now know after a couple of years of this experience is that even if you survive covid, there are multiple consequences to
8:58 am
your health that can occur as a result of getting covid. there were damaged lungs, like lots, all kinds of other health and biological problems that develop as a consequence of getting covid. the idea is to get vaccinated and wear a mask and social distance so you don't get covid and if you do get covid, not end up with a drastically diminished quality of life. you may not die but you may end up with a quality of life that is way lower than if you had protected yourself. one last thing about the kamala harris thing -- i don't think many trump supporters would trust what she says about the vaccine. in fact, i would think that if
8:59 am
they were supporters of donald's efforts and the vaccination development that they would get vaccinated because it would go against what kamala harris said. thank you for this opportunity and let's come together as americans. host: john is going from missouri on the democrats line. morning. yes. thank you for taking my call. it was not biden that opened the border, it was reagan. he said come across, and it was trump that took away our workers , deported them. we need them back. stop with the hatred. host: let's talk to bill calling
9:00 am
from georgia on the democrats line. bill, good morning. caller: i heard donald trump say that he understood how dangerous and ugly the disease -- dangerous and deadly the disease was and he said he was going to minimize it. i also heard donald trump ask the attorney general of georgia to find enough votes to overturn the election in the state where i live. lately, i have heard recorded conversations made between donald trump and other people and people that work for him etc..
9:01 am
there begins to show that there was an effort coming out of people around him or from him to overturn an election. more and more comes out, more and more is shown, more -- we hear more and more of the recordings. i am fascinated this does not upset the people of the united states, and i think that it probably will not be long when the prosecutors in new york, city of new york, and washington, d.c. and those people will spend the donald trump as families and others of his associates to jail. host: let's go to destiny on the
9:02 am
independent line from new jersey. good morning. caller: good morning. my name is josephine. host: can you turn your television down please? caller: sure. that's no problem. wait a minute. i'm try to shut it off. ok. the reason i'm calling is i started with one thinking about your open forum regarding the idea that like one person mentioned, that person got the shot for covid and the next day they got -- when i had gotten the flu shot, they told me it is not effective for at least two weeks. it is sad the individual passed away but you have to have an interim of time before the vaccine takes effect. it does not immediately become effective. that is number one. number two, we are talking sadly about what democracy is talking about, and this is what really concerns me.
9:03 am
i just never thought -- i have always loved the republican party always respected the republican party. my idol was eisenhower, but now, i am sad to say that the republican party has taken a fascist attitude. they like authoritarianism. i do not get it. when one individual is doing everything for the profit motive and you don't get it, $267 million. the republican party right now is paying $1.7 million to new york for trump, having nothing to do with him being in office, everything to do with his corruption. so now we are paying for the republican party, for his legal issues. when are you going to grow up and understand he is a con artist? thank you. host: let's talk to linda from
9:04 am
count and home, arkansas on the republican line -- mountain home, arkansas on the republican line. caller: i was calling about the vaccination. i was vaccinated and i was appreciative of donald trump for making it available. but i'm not sure if i got the right shot because they did not ask me if i was republican or democrat if i took the shot. so i'm not so sure these people have not taken the shot are democrats. everybody assumes they are republican but i do not know why. i was not asked that question. perhaps some people were. as far as somebody being an authoritarian, i did not think donald trump mandating masks are anything and i did not see him say you cannot employ somebody if you don't get a shot. i think the democrats are confused on which party is trying to rule the world. thank you. host: let's go to marilyn
9:05 am
calling on the republican line. caller: thank you for letting me call in. the first thing is we had this physician on the talked about the covid, but he did not talk about how people can improve their immune systems during this pandemic. we are a very unhealthy country and there are lots of studies that say that if you take care of your health, if you take vitamin d, if you take k2, zinc, it helps boost your immune system so if you happen to get sick, regardless of if you have a vexing or not, then you have better outcomes. so folks need to look into taking care of their health. the other comment i had was, love c-span and you guys are the best. host: let's go to randy calling
9:06 am
from millington, michigan on the democrat line. randy, good morning. caller: good morning, jesse. i would like to start by thanking you and all of the men and women that it takes to bring us this program and wishing all the best during the holiday season. my thing is i am curious to see what the phone calls are going to be like next fall if vice president harris claims all the republican votes are fraud and throw them out. we will see how the votes go or how the calls go then. thank you, jesse. i believe it is time democrats play like republicans. host: let's talk to edward calling from iowa on the republican line. edward, good morning. caller: good morning, jesse. sorry was not able to get my question in with your last guest.
9:07 am
but here goes. my wife and i waited almost two years before we got our vaccinations, waiting for more data, more signs if you want to say that. -- science if you want to say that. we went in and talked that our doctor and she tried to say in our best interest to get the vaccination. in two weeks, the day of the vaccination, i was sitting on my wife's deathbed holding her hand and watching her die. it it related? i don't know. did we wait too long? we did not have covid. my wife was a front-line worker dealing with customers on a daily basis. for almost two years, no covid. after we get the vaccine, like i said, in two weeks, it cost me my wife.
9:08 am
did we do it right or wrong? i don't know. i don't think anybody has that answer. i just wanted to let you know my side of covid. thanks. host: let's go to matt calling from pennsylvania on the independent line. matt, good morning. caller: how are you doing? thank you for taking my call. host: go ahead, matt. caller: i'm just reaching out. i wanted to talk about why people are not trusting what they are told and why a lot are not opting for the vaccine. i think they see the profit motives, i think they see the corruption in government, i think they see the straight line from the fda, the pfizer company, the modernity company. it is one stop for all of these bureaucrats and corrupt government officials. so that is why i'm calling. i did not have much to say. that was it. there is no reason show --
9:09 am
people should trust what we are told. i don't have my shot and my girlfriend does and she spread it to have her family. all of them boosted, injected, spreading it around. they all got covid. that is just what i wanted to share. host: let's go to debbie calling from swan city, massachusetts. caller: hi, jesse. i am calling to -- you know, the phone calls, when they are democrats, they are slaughtering trump. he is not even in anything right now. i just wish they would stop giving him so much popularity for presidency. they don't know what they're doing and as far as the viruses, i have a grandson that is a nurse that took all of the shots, the booster, and has partnered it also. and they are totally infected right now. one is testing positive and the
9:10 am
other is testing negative. they have had it for three days and i do not understand. they get no remedies, they don't tell him what to do, and he is an rn going to be a nurse practitioner. i wanted to straighten out what is going on with these shots, what are they doing when they do receive covid? all people that have gotten covid shots, they are with covid right now in my family, including the nurse and his partner and two of my cousins and daughter-in-law. i have never gotten the shot, i am 69 years old. i go everywhere, i wear a mask, i have nothing. i am staying away from them because i did an antibiotic test and they tell you either way negative or positive and it had the same reading. false positive. you cannot receive an antibody test. host: you do know the vaccine does not mean you will not get covid-19? caller: i understand that.
9:11 am
the point is went i went to read it at first, it had a whole different description, that i do have anti-bodies, and it could be from a different infection, not covid or omicron. it could be a false positive. they have never given me a definite. this is what i'm telling you, i have not been vaccinated. i was in a coma in 2018. due to pneumonia, and i received the shot in november, and in november 2017, and i was in the hospital for 39 days with pneumonia in,. -- coma. host: let's go to greg on the independent line. caller: good morning, jesse. [indiscernible] host: i leave in the city the
9:12 am
same way. i live in buie, maryland. caller: yes, sir. my initial comment, i beg and plead every time i call that you divide us by region rather than our proclivity toward one party or the other, because i refer to us as liberals and conservatives. having said that, the money issue is what scares me about this. the fact they changed the meaning of vaccine so that they could call this a vaccine. i am 73, and i'm not taking any kind of shots. i cannot stand shots. i am anti-mandate. if somebody wants to give vaccinated for the flu, i don't come down on them. finally, i could not stand
9:13 am
president trump as a human being, but as a president, i consider him one of the greatest , because he is probably the only president that lost money by running for president. have a good day. host: let's talk to roberta calling from minnesota on the republican line. roberta, good morning. caller: good morning. my point also is the discriminatory -- discriminatory factor and anti-constitutional bias toward anti-vaxxers, which i would pervert to be called a pureblood. i also have pretty knowledged nursing background, and i have been doing surveys along on my own behalf. i'm disgusted to the fact that they have not been very clear or honest with dr. fauci's connection with his wife being
9:14 am
in the nih and all of the political for-profit and all of that. regardless, i would like to say one thing, as a nurse, i have also noticed the jehovah witnesses and god bless them. they have the right to refuse to give whole blood products and we have always honored that as a religious exemption because we honored their constitutional rights. and we all know that whole blood products is a definite factor in saving people's lives, but the choice being their's. my point is why are they, with all of the controversy, with the data, and for-profit and all of this, and all of the repercussions from all of the mandates from know all, tell all dr. fauci you, they have not allowed any of the global virologists, epidemiologists to speak their point of view along with their data.
9:15 am
if they have, it is poopooed and lessened. my point is our constitutional rights are being violated by not being able to reject the vaccination without discriminatory mandating, all of it that goes along with it. i would like to say that president trump -- let's get over blaming him for everything. the man is human, we are all human. when we look at our country when he was in office versus what is going on now, it does not take a rocket scientist to figure out that we need to be more progressive and voice our opinions more and state -- host: coming up next, we will be joined by former trump hhs official, paul mango, on the one-year anniversary of operation warp speed, initial
9:16 am
shipment of the covid-19 vaccine. we will be right back. ♪ ♪
9:17 am
♪ >> when roosevelt mown toss arrived in the united states for the first time, he was 12 years old, and he writes that when he landed at jf a care -- jfk airport he had "a head full of life and belly full of tropical parasites." the dominican republic native admits he was an unlikely candidate for the ivy league but he eventually earned a phd in english from columbia's university. he ran the core curriculum from 2008 to 2018. the subtitle of his life story, how their great books changed my life and why they matter for a new generation. >> on this episode of book notes plus, it is available on the c-span now app or wherever you get your podcast. ♪ >> download c-span's new mobile
9:18 am
app and stay up-to-date with live video coverage of the days biggest events from live streams at the house and senate floor and key congressional hearings. the white house events and supreme court oral arguments, even our interactive morning program, "washington journal," where we hear your voices every day. c-span has you covered. download the app for free today. ♪ >> "washington journal" continues. host: we are back with former health and human services official, ira breite, here with us -- paul mango, here with us to talk about the operation warp speed anniversary, which was the covid-19 vaccine development, distribution, and manufacturing efforts. paul, good morning. guest: thanks for having me. host: tell us about your background and what your role
9:19 am
was with operation warp speed. guest: i have been blessed by this country. i had the opportunity to go off to the united states military academy, west point, graduated through the 82nd airborne division and went to europe and served over there. had a chance to attend the harbor business school and spent 30 years in the health care industry before joining the federal government in 2018. i was the chief of staff at the centers for medicare and medicaid services and became the deputy chief of staff or policy of the entire department. of health and human services. that is what i'm doing on january 3, 2020 when dr. robert redfield called and said i think we have a problem in china. so all of our roles on that day changed from what we were doing, and operation warp speed, which i know we want to talk about today, when that began ramping up, the secretary asked me to play the central operating and
9:20 am
liaison role between the department of defense, the department of health and human services, all of its support functions, and the white house. i spent my time for most of the year shuttling back and forth between different agencies and working with the team and making sure they had everything they needed. the operation warp speed team, to be successful. that was my role to support the team that enabled american industry to deliver millions of safe and effective vaccines to the american people faster than before. host: before we go any further, i want to bring to our audience what president trump said in may of 2020 when he announced the creation of operation warp speed. then i will come back to you, paul, and you can give us more information. there is president trump in may of 2020 talking about the creation of operation warp speed. [video clip] >> today i want to update you on this medical initiative called operation warp
9:21 am
speed. that means big and fast. a massive scientific industrial and logistical endeavor, unlike anything our country has seen since the manhattan project. you really could say nobody has seen anything like we are doing, whether it is ventilators or testing, nobody has seen anything like we are doing now within our country since the second world war. incredible. its objective is to finish developing and manufacture and distribute a proven coronavirus vaccine as fast as possible. we would love to see if we could do it prior to the end of the year. i think we will have very good results coming out quickly. in addition, we will continue accelerating the development of diagnostics and breakthrough therapies. the great national project will bring together the best of american industry and innovation, the full resources of the united states government,
9:22 am
and the excellence and precision of the united states military. we have the military totally involved. we are also working strongly with other countries who have great, great scientists, doctors, and we are all working closely together. they are viewing us as the leader and we are -- the relationship with other countries on solving this problem has been incredible. today, operation warp speed has brought together experts from across the federal government from laces like the nih, cdc, fda, and many other agencies. this historic partnership will bring together the full resources of the department of health and human services. with the department of defense, and that means the full power and strength of the military. that is really talking about the logistics. we get it when we get it. that means logistics of getting
9:23 am
it out so everybody can take it. host: paul, you have a book coming out called "warp speed, the operation at b covid, critics and the odds." how did operation warp speed first come about and where does the idea from it initiate? guest: we had a secretary, alex azar, the head of the department of health and human services at the time, and he had had 10 years prior experience in the pharmaceutical industry. he knew about the economics, about the risk threshold, the manufacturing processes, distribution. in the spring of 2020, it was march when we had made investments in vaccine development and we started looking at the time line he was dissatisfied and it seemed like it was business as usual. he is the one i conceived of a totally different approach to vaccine development
9:24 am
manufacturing and distribution and essentially what it was was performing all of the tasks in parallel instead of in series. the federal government assumed the financial risk for that. we invested in six vaccine candidates and started producing millions and millions of doses long before the fda issued its authorization, and that was a risk for us, but all we needed was one vaccine to be successful. to have an absolutely spectacular impact on the american people and economy. on tuesday, the commonwealth fund came out with a report that says in the first year, these vaccines, which were produced asked her than ever before, saved 1.1 million lives. american lives. there was an economic report that came out and said it saved the economy about $1.8 trillion, which translates to millions of jobs, so we did not mind making this financial investment. because the return. you talk about $18 billion and
9:25 am
return on that in the first year has been 1.1 million lives and $1.8 trillion. secretary azar and the experience in the industry was the spark for changing business as usual answer spending the normal ways of conducting business. that is why it happens quickly. host: you have written operation warp speed was the most successful public private partnership since world war ii. explain what you mean by that. guest: the federal government only enabled the success of operation warp speed. the private sector of the u.s. economy is the one that delivered it. everyone understands johnson & johnson, pfizer, and moderna. what they may not understand is the logistical success of operation warp speed where companies like ups, like fedex,
9:26 am
cvs, walgreens, walmart, and there was an information technology system that underpinned all of this by a company called palantir. these were the companies the innovated and i refer to it as industrial dexterity. i know that is a fancy term, but these companies pivoted from what they were doing input on everything and they committed themselves and resources to operation warp speed. i have to say unbelievable impact in terms of about 99.95% on-time delivery to the right place in the right quantities under stringent transport conditions. we had to transport some of these vaccines at -80 degrees celsius. fedex and ups developed containers that told us every two minutes, they sent us a signal, whether in the air, on the airplane -- in the air in the airplane, or on the ground in a truck, we got a message
9:27 am
saying the temperature range was satisfactory. unbelievable innovation. the federal government enabled success in many ways. the american industry delivered that success. that is what a public-private partnership is. we think it is right there with world war ii, with apollo, and how operation warp speed is. host: i know this is a hypothetical but i will ask you to theorize with us. theorize how it would've worked if operation warp speed had never been enacted. what would have been the situation in the back in without operation warp speed and the coronavirus? guest: there were many experts within the government and outside of the government, scientists, those in the vaccine community and major manufacturing -- -- vaccine manufacturing companies saying minimum 18 months. some said three to five years would be that.
9:28 am
i refer to some of the figures earlier about 1,000,001 lives saved and trillions of dollars of economic output. if we conducted business as usual, i would imagine we would be looking at close to 2 million deaths and not 800000 and we will be looking at an economy in shatters. i can only speculate but the experts themselves were the ones who claimed it would be a minimum of 18 months if not three to five years. quite an achievement on the part of american industry. host: let me take a second to remind viewers that they can take part in this conversation. we will open up regular lines. republicans can call in at (202) 748-8001. democrats, your line is (202) 748-8000. independents, your line is (202) 748-8002. keep in mind, you can always text at (202) 748-8003. and we are always reading on
9:29 am
social media, on twitter, @cspanwj, and on facebook, facebook.com/cspan. how did operation warp speed work with the fda to get vaccines approved so quickly? as a corollary to that question, one of the concerns we hear about vaccines is people are worried they were developed so fast that they may not be trustworthy. how did the operation warp speed work with the fda to assure these vaccines were approved and that they are safe? guest: it is a great question. we have to deal with -- had to deal with a very unique situation. the fda is a regulator needs to be independent. there was nothing we could do to influence their outcome. however, we did have to collaborate with them on a daily basis. there is a great physician that runs what they call the center for biomedical research, a fancy
9:30 am
center term, but that is the center that approved vaccines, dr. peter marx. we interacted with him continuously, but we cannot unduly influence anything he was doing. i think it is important for your viewers to understand these vaccines went -- underwent more rigorous testing than a typical vaccine. let me give you two examples. one is what dr. marx would say, the average number of participants in phase three clinical trials, the last trial before it goes to the fda for authorization, typically have 20,000 individuals in them. we had a minimum of 30,000. the pfizer and johnson & johnson vaccines had 40,000 in their trial. many more persons going through than a typical vaccine. also, there was a standard in
9:31 am
the past used that said we want to evaluate if there are any side effects within 42 days of the time the person gets the second shot, if it was pfizer and moderna, or the first shot johnson & johnson. over 95% of all reactions to a vaccine occur in that period. peter marx extended that for 60 days. you had a series of vaccines that have more subject than clinical trials and a longer interval to evaluate adverse effects. there is no vaccine that is perfect. but these have been proven to be safe and effective vaccines. the american people should not be concerned because while the fda changed its processes, it was working 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to evaluate the vaccines. it did not change its standards except for elevating them. that is how we dealt with the
9:32 am
fda and a spectacular group of career officials that were very rigorous. host: there are three vaccines that are the most well-known in the united states, the one from pfizer, moderna, and johnson & johnson. can operation warp speed take credit for getting all three of those vaccines out to the american people as quickly as they did? guest: we played an absolute important facilitative role. i do not want to take away anything from those companies. they had thousands of dedicated scientists, employees that did terrific work. let me tell you some of the things that we did. we made investments in those developments, helped structure and conduct the clinical trials, we used the defense production act to get the companies materials on a priority basis. we were in the middle of a pandemic. hear about the supply chain issues and we were facing the same thing so we had to intervene and tell companies the number one priority for your raw
9:33 am
materials and equipment, for your consumer rule supplies have to be pfizer, moderna, and johnson & johnson. we had to procure one billion needles and syringes because these vaccines use different sizes syringes and needles. we had to organize and enroll 50,000 vaccination sites so we could ship the vaccines to the right places, and we had to coordinate the company's activities. i mention ups, fedex, walgreens, all the while making huge investments in these vaccine doses. before they were approved so the companies have the financial security to put all the resources into it that they did. that is what the federal government dead, but i just want to mention that these private sector companies did spectacular work as well and that is why we call it a public-private partnership. it was really an ideal form of one and that is why we are so successful. host: let's let our viewers take part in this conversation. we start with melissa calling
9:34 am
from bloomfield, iowa on the independent line. good morning. caller: thanks for taking my call and merry christmas, everybody. i would like mr. mango to explain everybody about how dr. fauci is in charge of the nih and nah -- nih gave money to the ngos and the ngos gave money to the wuhan lab to formulate and make up the covid-19 virus, and what he thinks should happen to faucher she when this does come out about wuhan making this vaccine up. thank you. guest: thanks for the question. i do believe dr. fauci should be more transparent with us. i do not think he has been fully transparent and i think that is an issue and has affected his credibility. he's a great scientist but has become a poor spokesman for either of the administrations. let me talk a moment about the
9:35 am
national institutes for health because they actually grant about $30 billion for research around the world every year. it is about 50,000 different grants that comprise a total of $30 billion. the wuhan lab, through the echo health alliance, was $3 million and one grant. i'm not defending dr. fauci at all, but i think what the nih really has a problem with is oversight. i'm not sure how anyone can contract 50 grants per year in $30 billion and i think what needs to change his level of auditing and oversight the nih actually conducts when it issues these grants. i think that is where there was really a mishap. hopefully the truth comes out, hopefully dr. fauci is kind of implicated in that, but if he is, he ought to suffer the consequence. host: let's go to daniel calling
9:36 am
on the democrat line. daniel, good morning. caller: good morning, jesse. thank you for taking my call. happy holidays to everybody around the country. if i was a few years younger, i would like to have taken classes -- some of your classes. what i want to address is this gentleman does not seem to have any shame. i want to ask him if he is a co-conspirator to covid murder. what i'm getting at is, during the covid updates and conferences, dr. birx and found she were sitting on the side -- and dr. fauci were sitting on the side and trump would not let them speak. we have heard dr. birx testimony on 60 minutes.
9:37 am
he played political games with this virus. he is guilty of covid murder. before i get too emotional and hang up, thank you, jesse. guest: i have a different perspective and different experience, because i was in the middle of it. i was not privy to the conversation the president had with dr. fauci and dr. birx at the white house. i was part of a team called operation warp speed. president trump was the executive sponsor of the initiative and gave us everything we needed to be successful, resources, the support of the federal government. i think you had a clip earlier where he made a really big announcement in the rose garden may 15, 2020 about how high of a priority this was. he gave us access to him once a month or every couple of weeks actually to make sure that he was providing all of the support we needed.
9:38 am
so i don't -- i am not privy to everything that gentleman talked about, but i can say our interactions with the president as part of operation warp speed team were spectacular. and he played a key leadership role in that success. host: did the federal government put enough money into operation warp speed? when it first started, the public-private partnership was first launched in may 2020 and provided $18 billion for vaccine development. it was initially funded with $10 billion for the cares act. did we put enough money into operation warp speed. -- speed? guest: i talk about this in the book. i think the answer is we have the resources needed to get the job done. we were never short of funding. that was not our rate-limiting factor as they say in business. really it was a lot of equipment, materials, and raw
9:39 am
equipment we had to fly in from across the world and set up or expand about 27 different manufacturing facilities. we had to hire and procure thousands of laborers that were skilled to do this. those were really -- if you say what where the right-limiting factors of what we needed to do in a short period of time, it was more the physical issues we had to deal with, not the financial issues. we wound up spending about $30 billion before i left, and all of that money was readily available for us again. i talk about that in the book. we had it taken from different accounts during the fall, but it was available and was never a constraint for us. host: there has been criticism of operation warp speed and one criticism comes from senator bernie sanders who's tweet i
9:40 am
will read. "despite receiving billions from taxpayers to develop the vaccines, drug companies remain a more interested in increasing profits but saving lives. but let us be clear, the investment was not to make more money for drug companies, it was to crush covid." do you think that drug companies have profited unreasonably from operation warp speed and their work on the covid-19 vaccine? guest: absolutely not. i was involved in some of the contracting, at least for viewing the contracts, and negotiations that went on. we are basically paying $20 to $25 a does. i don't know what senator sanders value he could put on preventing 1.1 million deaths in the first year. i think it is hard to put a value on that but we can, economically, come back to the analysis that it basically prevented about 1.8 trillion
9:41 am
dollars of damage to the u.s. economy, and the federal government paid $18 billion for the vaccine. i think it would have been 1000% return on investment. did the pharmaceutical companies need to earn a margin? absolutely. you should not criticize them for that. that is what permits them to continue to innovate or attract the best talent in the world and permits them to build the most modern factories in the world. i do not think we should ask of anything less. host: let's go back to our phone lines and talk to connie from pennsylvania on the democrat line. good morning. caller: good morning, everyone. merry christmas and happy new year. paul, i have a question. since you were so involved in getting this off the board, why, after president biden became president, did you let the skepticism of this vaccine go, and this is why we have these
9:42 am
variants coming because of the unvaccinated? it is a disgrace. because you are not pushing it and telling everyone what you are telling us tonight. is it because you wanted to write a book, is that why you waited? tell me this answer because i think it is a disgrace from the administration, the last administration, that they did not tell everyone you need to get this vaccine. if trump wants to take credit for warp speed, why is he not trying to get everyone vaccinated? host: go ahead and answer there, paul. guest: thanks connie. i spent 33 years in the commonwealth of pennsylvania so glad to hear from you. let me mention a couple of things. one is in the fall of 2020, the now president biden came out and said i trust science and vaccines but i will never trust the vaccine development under president donald trump. vice president kamala harris said the same thing effectively. they were not first in line but probably second in line to get
9:43 am
there vaccines the week after vaccines were approved by the fda. that did not help us when they were bad mouthing and denigrating these great vaccines. on the day we left office january 20, 2021, what the biden administration said about operation warp speed was that they had to start from scratch, that we left them a mess, and we did not have a plan. i think that was politically motivated because they wanted to take credit for whatever happened thereafter. the day we left, the cdc reported 1.6 million americans had been vaccinated that day, but this is unfortunate that it has been politicized. it was politicized by the biden administration. one other thing in the book that you might find interesting, there is a transition period that began around thanksgiving of 2020. during a typical presidential
9:44 am
transition, there is a thing called a landing team that comes from the new administration that would come in and spend time with the existing administration so it is a smooth handoff. we set up half a floor on the headquarters of hhs, the humphrey building, hundreds of conference rooms and so forth. the biden team never showed up. no one ever showed up. did they conducted zooms and so forth? absolutely but they never showed up for a transition. it was not exactly a collaborative spirit they created during the transition period. when we left and they said we left them a mess, they had to start from scratch, they did not have a plan, which were all three false. they were sending signals that they did not want to collaborate. they asked a doctor to leave, the chief scientist, the brilliant strategist behind the vaccine selection of operation warp speed. so we were getting signals from the new administration that they
9:45 am
did not want to work with us. the book is -- has nothing to do with that. it has to do with a great american achievement. it is not a political book, it is a celebration of american and what america can achieve when the government enables success. hopefully that helps. host: let's talk to edward calling from new jersey on the independent line. good morning. caller: thank you for your government service and my question is, i would like to know how you felt when trump would get on stage and sabotage your work by hyping people, giving credence to anti-vaxxers. i would like to also say, did you try to block money to states for the vaccine rollout? guest: yeah. a couple of things, first of all, the operation warp speed's interaction with president trump was nothing but professional and
9:46 am
i thought spectacular. sure there were a number of other things going on at the white house but we were not involved with that. our team was at the health and human services, working on behalf of the american people quite honestly. the support we got from president trump, as i said previously, was spectacular. in the summer of 2020, we delegated $200 million to the states for the purpose of helping them prepare for vaccine administration. they continued to ask for more money but i used to get a report every week as to how much of that $200 million they drew down. by december 31, after we had already released vaccines four to six months later, they had drawn down 1% of that. so it was a little bit -- there was a little dissonance between the fact they had only used 1%
9:47 am
of the money we allocated for them yet they continued to ask more and our physician was clear, as soon as you use the $200 million, we would be happy to send you more but we will not allocate you more money until you use what you -- what we gave you. host: hopefully we will never face another pandemic like this one. history says there probably will be one in the future. what did we learn from operation warp speed that should be repeated in the future, and what did we do wrong with operation warp speed we should not do in the future? guest: great questions. first and foremost, what we learned and hopefully we continue to encourage is the american pharmaceutical industry had invested in some technologies that permitted us to develop vaccines faster than ever before. this messenger rna technology, mrna, people have heard about it, moderna/biontech pfizer.
9:48 am
we had a good vaccine within 10 days the virus, the dna sequence of the virus of january 2020, was as real -- was revealed. we had to test it and manufacture it. that was the fastest before. one is continue these investments in technology. number two, the federal government when it is in a public health emergency, should draw upon the talents of the private sectors. we brought some folks into the government to had never had government service before. for your viewers and listeners who are talking about greed and so forth, one doctor worked for one dollar. he worked seven months for one dollar, just to put it in perspective. this was some of the leading world experts in their field, vaccine manufacturing and development, and of course distribution, so really it is
9:49 am
acquiring the talent necessary to respond. number three i think is giving that talent the resources and trust to get done what they need done. this was a team of professionals who knew precisely what they were doing and they did it extremely well. what we did was give them the resources to be successful. those are things that hopefully we can repeat. what would we do differently? one is there was no access manufacturing capacity for vaccines in the united states in the spring of 2020. we had to scramble to set up, as i mentioned before, expanded 27 different manufacturing facilities. most of the vaccine manufacturing in the world is done outside of the u.s.. we need to develop the domestic capacity for that. i think it is something we do not want to have to face again. i think we would hopefully do very differently the next time.
9:50 am
i think second is with some of the viewers -- what some of the viewers and listeners mentioned, the messaging for two years is muddled on this. i do not think the federal government is nearly as capable as we should be in the area of social media. communicating via social media and listening via social media. someone can get up and stand behind a podium and say wear a mask, get a vaccine, but that is not the way america communicates these days. the federal government is probably 15 to 20 years behind the rest of american industry when it comes to its social media presence. i think those are two things we would do differently. but the lessons learned, i do articulate all of these in the book about both sides of the coin, as you described it. what we learned we want to do again and how we would do things differently if we had a chance to do it again. so hopefully those will be enduring lessons anyone who
9:51 am
unfortunately faces a subsequent pandemic can draw upon. host: let's go back to the phone lines and talk to tom calling from kansas on the republican line. good morning. caller: good morning. i thing my question has been answered. i wanted to know what president trump -- what his rule was as far as operation warp speed, and i think i understand now. thank goodness for that administrative team of scientists and doctors. and manufacturing companies that gave us the vaccines. thank you. that was my comment. guest: thank you. these were great americans who worked on this, patriots who sacrificed a tremendous amount to do this. i can attest firsthand they were unbelievably committed to this mission of saving american lives. host: let's talk to kim calling from nashville, tennessee on the independent line. morning. caller: can you hear me?
9:52 am
host: we can. go ahead. caller: first of all you said $18 billion for vaccines, does that include money for research? guest: yes it does. it was about $2.5 billion per vaccine candidates, six of them, getting us to $15 billion, then another $3 billion in distribution and storage and of those types of things. so it does include early development investments which happened in january, february, march, into the summer. caller: listen, i just wanted a quick yes or no. he said the fda has worked independently. is this the same fda that changed the wording that allowed big pharma to do what they did with the opiates, which ultimately -- hello? did you --
9:53 am
host: i think we lost can but you got part of your question. can you answer for her? guest: i think she said something about opiates and changing language. i'm not familiar with that. i apologize. i was not part of the federal government during that time, so i did not follow that closely. host: let's go to joe calling from new jersey on the republican line. joe, good morning. caller: hey, doctor, good morning. i think you did a wonderful job with the vaccine. you took away the bureaucracy. it was the greatest example of entrepreneurship. using the private industry to innovate and make our country work the way it is supposed to be. people are always throwing stones at one side or the other. they sent out information beginning when the vaccine came out, they said they would not take it if it was a trump vaccine and then joe took credit when he became president.
9:54 am
at the same time, he is opening the southern border to a super-spreader event where you have 2 million people coming across the border untested and unvaccinated and no mention of that, especially since they have been caught, released, and shipped through our southern border through southern cities. wouldn't that create a delta and omicron variant? guest: i have to say the logic is a bit untidy with this administration in terms of lockdowns and mandates and bans on the one hand and border being open on the other. i want to make a point i want to come back here, operation warp speed was about a spectacular american achievement, not a political book. i don't want to delve into the politics of what is happening now hoping the american people will read a story about -- even in the time of great ideological divide and political nonsense, a group of folks could come
9:55 am
together and really do something spectacular on behalf of the american people. there were democrats and republicans, it was a political, on the team. they had one mission in mind, to save american lives. the team felt it every day because we would get reports of americans dying today, 700 americans, so that is what their singular focus was. they did a tremendous job of blocking out the politics. i do not want to dismiss it because everything had to take place in the context of a political environment but the book is really about a great american achievement, not about politics. i wanted to make sure the listeners and viewers understand that. host: let's talk to linda calling from new jersey. good morning. caller: how are you this morning? host: i am fine. caller: i am calling and i am a democrat. my son is a primary scientist for johnson & johnson
9:56 am
pharmaceuticals. warp speed sounds like a cartoonist. the merck manual of 1982 has covid listed in its with the symptoms, with a care, everything. for anybody to say that's trump got anything moving, that they had been working on the covid for 15 to 16 years, i don't know. i don't know who this guy is, but you are taking or trying to give trump credit. the transitions, trump was playing -- donnie was playing golf. he was not transitioning. he never even conceded the election that he lost. host: go ahead and respond
9:57 am
quickly before we run out of time, paul. guest: well, a covid and coronavirus is a generic term. the scientists in january 2020 said this was a novel coronavirus, meaning the first time a human had ever been infected with it. there are a lot of common cold called coronaviruses. so if the merck manual had something in 1982, they did not have this form, called sars-cov-2, a novel coronavirus. the entire world had to adapt to this weather that is the development of diagnostics, therapeutics, and development of vaccines. i complement your sign. he is a scientist at johnson & johnson, one of the great companies with whom we collaborated, and they did a spectacular job of giving us a safe and effective vaccine. host: do we know where the name warp speed came from for operation warp speed and who came up with it? guest: we do.
9:58 am
it came from dr. peter marx, somewhat ironically. peter marx as i mentioned earlier in the show is the head of the center for biomedical evaluation and research, the part of the fda that evaluates vaccines, or in this case, emergency use authorization. he was a bit of a star wars group b when he was young and he -- his intent -- groupie when he was young and his intent was there with that name. we recognize, and so does peter, that he partially regrets using that term because he things in many ways it caused some americans to think this is happening too fast. i come back to what i said earlier, which is the fda elevated standards for approval and granting of these emergency authorizations with any more
9:59 am
persons going through the clinical trial and longer interval to evaluate whether there would be side effects. i do not want to denigrate them in any way. they did an extraordinarily rigorous job of evaluating these vaccines. host: we would like to thank paul mango, the former deputy chief of staff for policy of the department of health & human services during the trump administration and the upcoming author of the book "warp speed, inside the operations that beat covid, the critics, and the odds." we would like to thank paul for talking us through the one-year anniversary of operation warp speed. paul, thank you so much. >> thanks for having me. have a merry christmas too. host: same to you. we would like to thank our viewers, callers, and social media followers for being with us for another "washington journal" this morning. stick with us for other programming on the c-span networks later on today, and join us tomorrow morning at 7:00 for another edition of
10:00 am
"washington journal." have a great friday, everyone. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2017] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] >> coming up on c-span today, the white house covid-19 response team will give an update on the omicron variant and vaccination efforts at 11:00 a.m. eastern. national security advisor jake sullivan recaps the biden administration's first year live at 1:00 p.m. eastern. and dr. francis collins, outgoing director of the nih, discusses his departure and legacy with the washington post,
10:01 am
live coverage at 2:30 p.m. eastern on c-span, g c-span.org, or the new c-span now have. >> c-span is your unfiltered view of government. we are funded by these television companies and more. >> we are facing our greatest challenge. that is why sparklight is working to keep you connected, so it is easier to do your part. >> sparklight supports c-span as a public service, along with these other television providers, giving you a front row seat to democracy. c-spanshop.org is c-span's online store. browsed c-span products, including

60 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on