tv MSNBC Live With Hallie Jackson MSNBC July 23, 2020 7:00am-8:00am PDT
house reaching a tentative deal that includes funding for testing, schools and direct payments to americans but falling far short of what's in the house democrats' plan, negotiations to resolve those conflicts still ongoing, raising the staxkes for the roughly 25 million americans that are about to lose expanded unemployment benefits at the end of this month. the labor department just out with an update on where that situation stands, another 1.4 million americans filing for unemployment last week alone, that is the first time that number has increased week to week in almost four months, bringing the total to 52 million unemployed americans since the middle of march. and the nation is about to cross the tragic milestone of 4 million confirmed virus cases. that's also topping 1,000 for the second day in a row, and reaching the highest number since may. a worrying sign that after weeks of concerns that rising
infection rates would translate into worsening death counts, that appears to be the direction we are heading to. nbc's kasie hunt is on capitol hill with new word on what we'll see in the senate republican bill that could be unveiled as early as today. david gura is in tulsa, oklahoma, where new unemployment claims are surging at levels the system can't keep up with. kasie, let me begin with you. secretary mnuchin meeting with mcconnell right now reportedly on the hill. what do we know about that and what do we know about the republicans' plan for this new bill? >> reporter: a little update for you just literally in the last few seconds. mitch mcconnell leading that meeting with steve mnuchin the treasury secretary to head down to the senate floor where we'll keep an eye for updates he might offer on where things stand here. we know that republicans have reached a deal with the white house in principle on the top line numbers for how much they want to spend and how they want
to lay that out, and it doesn't include this payroll tax cut that the president has been pushing, but that has really caused a large degree of disarray among republicans here in the senate. so they are going to include billions more for testing, although nowhere near the $75 billion the democrats included in their heroes act for that. we also know it will be $105 billion for schools, that's a huge focus for senate republicans here and we know that the price tag will be about $1 trillion, that's what mitch mcconnell wanted to limit it to. so this means now that republicans have put forward essentially their starting bid, and they still have to go and negotiate with democrats after this, because obviously house speaker nancy pelosi is in charge of the house of representatives. we'll hear from her just coming up in the next hour or so about her reaction to this proposal. she has said she told me a couple days ago $1 trillion is
nowhere near enough money for the relief that americans need right now and you're seeing that in the unemployment lines across the country, those additional unemployment claims, and of course reminding everyone that those extended unemployment benefits do run out at the end of the month, and there are still, eamon, a number of questions about how republicans want to structure that, both any additional direct payments to americans, but also how they may want to adjust what has been a $600 a week supplement for unemployment insurance from the federal government. so those outstanding questions still very important for so many americans out there who need help. eamon? >> we should note that mitch mcconnell was on the floor moments ago, he did not make any news in his comments about that bill. we're certainly keeping an eye on what happens there and bring it to you as soon as it does. david, walk us through the new unemployment numbers. there are real life consequences
that happen to the policies in d.c. >> reporter: this is a sobering trend for 18 weeks the country's had more than 1 million people file for unemployment insurance, a staggering statistic the likes of which we haven't seen in many decades. i'm here at this expo center in tulsa. folks lined up here earlier this week to get tickets to get help face to face with people who could help them with their unemployment applications and claims. to a "t" everyone i spoke to told me the supplemental benefit caycie was talking about $600 benefit from the federal government is crucial. all of them are looking for work but it doesn't exist at this point in time and for the time being they and their families are relying on the benefits. i'm here with shelly zumwalt, interim executive director of the oklahoma security division. walk us through the need for this. so many people who have come here by the hundreds to get help
with these applications and the story throughout the crisis is states are overwhelmed by the number of people applying for benefits and the systems to process them are out of date or unable to keep up. >> david, this is my sixth week on the job. a lot has happened in the six weeks. we are no different than any other state or the country, no one was ready for this pandemic but my agency in particular had technology issues, legacy technology neglected for years, decades actually. >> reporter: are you able to help everyone? people are lining up here, before dawn to get tickets. it's not bedlam. it's not a dmv out of hell where people are waiting all day to get the assistance they need. it's orderly and people come out saying they had their problems solved in many cases but there are tens of thousands of people in this state who need help filing applications. >> my job is to help every single one of them. the governor of our state said this is your mission, you'll accomplish it and i plan to help every person that deserves benefits in the state. >> reporter: is this a model for other states that have problem with their computing technology giving all the benefits to
people who need them? is what you're doing applicable or rely indicatable in other states? >> oklahoma is unique. we have counties within our state that don't have any cases of covid. this is an appropriate venue for new york or california but here in oklahoma we are able to do it in a safe way, people can socially distance, wearing masks, to make sure people invited into our space are safe. >> reporter: thanks for having me here as well. they'll continue to pass out tickets earlier in the week next week and two days when people can get the assistance they've gotten here over the last few weeks, eamon. this is just a story through this economic crisis, people needing the benefits in some cases waiting a long time to get those benefits, eamon, and programs like this designed to make that easier for folks who really are subsisting as they continue to look for work and jobs on the benefits for the state and the federal government. >> david, let me follow up really quickly on something that you said about folks there trying, who have been laid off to try to find something new,
because that was what was said from the white house in the initiative by ivanka trump for people unemployed to try to find something new. what are you seeing there on the ground in terms of opportunities available for people to transition or to switch from one career path or one job simply to another one and are they getting that kind of help that the white house was trying to push out there? >> reporter: we're in a part of the country where oil and natural gas is hugely important and a number of people i spoke with yesterday said they haven't worked in the industry before. that's a compounding priceis. energy prices are low going into the covid-19 crisis so they were experiencing job losses already. so many said as much as they're looking, the jobs aren't there yet. they understand the magnitude of this public health crisis, they understand the complimentary energy crisis as well. the jobs aren't there and they need something to fortify that safety net a little bit longer until the jobs come back. eamon? >> we'll see if congress can deliver on that front. david gura, kasie hunt, thank you for starting us off. as of this morning, more
than 30 states with mask man tates. minnesota, indiana, and ohio announcing new statewide orders in the last 24 hours. officials nationwide look for alternatives to another round of total shutdowns. pressure is rising around what happens next in some hot spots where the surges in new cases are not slowing down, including in florida and california, where many hospitals are at their breaking point. nbc's sam brock is in miami for us, nbc's steve patterson is in mission hills, california. sam, let me begin with you. give us a quick read on the situation there and how officials are responding to these staggering numbers. >> eamon, good morning. you talk about mask mandates, in south florida, that has been the case for weeks now, that cities themselves required mask mandates as the governor refused to do so, so far. in miami-dade county, where i am, about a quarter of all of the cases in florida have been recorded, they have put in restrictions on where you can eat. the question becomes at what point will there be roll-backs on gyms, salons, public spaces,
even beaches. to this point, our leadership here has been reluctant to put something like that in place. in the city of miami, frances suarez met with businesses the end of last week, kind of waiting for the other shoe to drop to find out if he'll roll anything back. the cases on the screen 380,000, 5,345 fatalities, the numbers in florida seem to be surging. here is the good news, eamon. in the last couple of days, underneath 10,000 new cases per day and not all daily case totals are created equal. yesterdays were better because the positivity rate came down, from 17.5% across the state to 13.5%, a one-day drop there of four percentage points and if you exclude people who already tested positive, down to 10.5%, the lowest the figures have been in about a month. we'll see if it is sustained. the trend is the key. florida did 100,000 tests yesterday, we talked to some folks about sort of what their motivation was for going out and getting tested.
here's what they said. >> i'm not feeling anything, just preventative measures. >> just want to make sure everything is perfect. >> i'm a flight attendant so it's important for me to know that i don't have it, as well as that i am not bringing it home to my family. >> reporter: >> that speaks to something the governor has been talking about, we're largely seeing younger asymptomatic people getting tested, but the big red flag right now eamon, florida leads the country at this moment in deaths per day over the course of the last week in terms of covid fatalities, almost 120 per day. for context in new york that number was about 7002 in march and april but staggering high compared to the rest of the country in florida. >> sam, stay with us for a moment. steve, california unfortunately overtook new york as the state with the most cases, indicating the worst is not behind us in certain parts of the country. talk to us about how hospitals there are trying to keep up with what they're seeing. >> reporter: so there are about
7,000 coronavirus patients in the state of california, about 2,000 of those requiring intensive care. hospitals really you can think about it as the current crisis is that of staffing for several of these hospitals, and having enough equipment to deal with the current spike, the current influx in the number of patients, whereas the looming threat is of course that of capacity, to help mitigate that, you find a lot of counties that are now scrambling for alternative sites, in case that severe spike comes to a hot spot near where those hospitals are, and then in the case of what you see behind me, which is these triage tents that are set up, to handle the surge capacity and a lot of cases you'll find hospitals have them, that are set up with negative pressures and they can treat infected patients to the best of their ability, but really right now, what you're seeing is a case-by-case basis. if you're a larger health system in the state of california in a
more populated metropolitan area you're able to move resources around so you could treat the hot spots and send resources to the places where the virus is hitting worse. if you're in a rural area in a smaller health system, right now you're finding there's a lot of trouble in those areas, and that's where the attention of the state is right now, but make no mistake. the epicenter of the coronavirus in california is right here in l.a. county. they've had a hospitalization rate over 2,000, the last four days, and coronavirus, covid is now on track to become the second leading cause of death in l.a. county. l.a. mayor eric garcetti addressed this when he was speaking about the reopening of the state a few months ago, in context of the current spike we're seeing now. listen to his words. >> as of today, covid-19 is on track to become the second leading cause of death in l.a. county after coronary heart disease. i do think we all can see in retrospect that some things did open up too quickly that, we didn't stick with the
methodology of do something and wait three weeks and see the effect, then take the next step. >> reporter: one thing he didn't address, which i think everybody is sort of waiting on is the fact that people are looking to see if there will be a return to another stay-at-home order. he said that's not going to happen this week, but those options of course are on the table as this moves forward. eamon? >> steve patterson, sam brock, thank you both for joining us. we're going next inside the new deal for a coronavirus vaccine, just how quickly can we make 100 million doses and how much is it going to cost? plus what's being called an unconstitutional occupation, mayors and governors fighting president trump's plan to send a surge of federal forces into more u.s. cities. we'll speak with one of those mayors straight ahead. stay with us. >> started this process and frankly, we have no choice but to get involved.
administration calls operation legend, which is already happening in kansas city, missouri, and named after a 4-year-old boy who was killed there. attorney general bill barr insists these extra agents will be different that be the tactical teams recently deployed to portland. >> this is a different kind of operation obviously, and the tactical teams we used to defend against riots and mob violence, but the operations we're discussing today are very different. they are classic crime fighting. these are street agents, they're investigators who will be working to solve murders and to take down the violent gangs. >> with us now is the mayor of albuquerque, new mexico, tim keller, who has been skeptical of the deployment of federal agents to his city, calling it politics standing in the way of police work. thank you for joining us this morning. i appreciate your time. give us a quick sense of why you
are skeptical when the administration says this will be different than portland, as you heard there, the attorney general saying it's investigators and others to help fight gangs in your city and elsewhere. >> i think the skepticism really comes from just the president's words actually as opposed to the a.g.'s. the president especially the day before yesterday clearly said that he was ready to incite violence in democrat cities as part of sort of a re-election strategy, and so for us, we've seen what's happened in portland. two weeks ago, they were just there to protect a building and then we see them picking up people in unmarked vans, so we're just really worried about a bait and switch and unfortunately, you can't really take the a.g. at his word these days, because of either something else going on, or because the president overrides it. >> the acting homeland, department of homeland security secretary chad wolfe said he doesn't need the invitation of
local mayors or officials to do his job. did the administration reach out to are before making the announcement and have they since reached out to you to give you any more details about it? >> this is also what's interesting about this program. they always reach out to us, and we have numerous documents, memorandums of understanding and agreements that outline what's in scope and what's out of scope, because we do work with the feds daily, but we got nothing formal, nothing in writing on this at all. so that's why it's very concerning, because they're saying what they need to say politically but left the door wide open for this to be anything they want it to be. >> i know that you said that there could potentially be the bait and switch, and that's why you're skeptical but violent crimes while they are slightly down in albuquerque, the city still does have a significantly higher violent crime rate than the u.s. as a whole. you even called on the state of new mexico last year to help you
out. if this is a real crime fighting partnership as bill barr described there, could you in fact use that help? >> you know, this is something where the answer is absolutely. so if something is in step with our community and the values that we hold, we would welcome the assistance, and we're not holding our breath, because we're still waiting on 10 million we were promised a couple of months ago from the same a.g., and so for us, you know, we keep asking for help. we do and say let's do it together, let's do it in step with our community, and then the funds never come, and then there's an alternative program announced at a press conference, and so that's why it's been really challenging to get actual help that we know our department needs, and we have the largest department in the state, so i also think, i know homeland security secretary has the ability to do what he's talking about, but you can't really come into a city as big as ours in a rural state and get much done
without working with our police department. >> what in your eyes or the city's eyes would be the federal government overstepping its bounds and if so, if they do, in fact, overstep their bounds, what do you plan on doing to prevent them from continuing that? is there any legal resource once you identified them doing so? >> you know, for us, federal authorities still have to adhere to city ordinances, so part of their oath is they've got to follow all the laws, even the local laws in the jurisdiction. for us, we are an immigrant friendly city, so there will be no targeted round-ups of folks who are undocumented. we also protect the right to protest peacefully, and so there should be no clandestine operations against protesters, targeting people of color. so these are all things that our city will hold them accountable for. we're prepared to do a couple of things. our attorney general has said he's willing to prosecute if these laws are not followed, and
at our city level, our city attorney as well, we'll look at either saying you got to only be in certain areas that are federal properties or say you have to follow the city law and hold them accountable if we break it just like we would anybody else. >> mayor keller, thank you so much for joining us. i appreciate your time this morning. >> appreciate it, take, care. >> you, too. coming up the race for a covid vaccine, the shot could be coming as early as december and the chances it might not cost you a dime. $9.95? $9.95. what's with all the $9.95 notes? i thought you'd never ask. it's about a life insurance plan with options starting at $9.95 a month. been seeing it on tv. we talked about getting more life insurance. remember how much your brother's funeral cost? yeah, his funeral expenses were a real eye-opener.
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the u.s. government is prepared to shell out some big bucks for a coronavirus vaccine, now closing a nearly $2 billion agreement with pharmaceutical giant pfizer. that money will be used to produce and deliver 100 million doses of a safe and effective covid-19 vaccine. it is the trump administration's largest investment for a vaccine. however, the potential vaccine itself is still in the testing phase, and it's really unclear just when it will be approved by the government, if in fact it is proven to work at all. meanwhile, president trump continuing to push for reopening the country now. not waiting for a vaccine. take a listen to what he said on fox news last night about getting kids back to school. >> i'd like to see the schools open. the country has to open. i really believe the democrats are doing this for a political reason. if you close down california,
it's a big state, you close down some of these places, it's not going to show. watch, on november 4th, everything will open up. >> joining me from the white house is carol lee. good to talk to you this morning. so the reemergence of the president at the white house podium was meant to bring a singular message back to the coronavirus response, but between those briefings this week and his multiple interviews, it seems to be doing the opposite, because he's really focused on cognitive testing. >> reporter: eamon, the white house clearly thinks that these briefings are going well for the president. announced they're adding another one today at 5:00 p.m. here at the white house. so the president will hold his third briefing in as many days. he started returning to these briefings on tuesday largely to dig out of a hole he's been in, in terms of how americans are viewing his response to the coronavirus pandemic. so he's having another one today. he seems to like how they're
going. i know speaking to white house officials they feel he's largely been able to stay on message. however as you mentioned there are moments that stand out. also in the briefing yesterday for instance he talked about returning to schools. he said that kids are less likely to transmit the virus, that's not something that's been proven. still there's a lot of questions about whether or not that's true. we do know that the white house press secretary said on fox news he plans to focus on schools in the briefing. we'll expect to hear more from him about this issue. >> carol lee live for us at the white house, thanks, carol. joining me is dr. howard ko, former assistant health and human services secretary for the obama administration. the $2 billion pfizer deal, talk about the likelihood this will be available to the american people soon. is it common for a government or
any agency to sign some kind of agreement before a vaccine is actually in the pipeline? >> over the last several decades the nation faced multiple challenges about vaccine supply, availability and timeliness in the face of an infectious disease crisis, i lived through that as assistant secretary through h1n1 and faced that through seasonal flu challenges. the strategy evolved over the last decade. it's important and high risk but i think something the nation has to do in the face of this terrible pandemic. this is the fifth agreement the u.s. government has made with the pharmaceutical company in recent weeks. pfizer, this is the one you just described, there have been previous ones with johnson & johnson, astrazeneca and novavax and the gamble and hope is that when one of them is found effective and safe in phase three trials, there will be
enough doses to immediately disseminate to the public and offer protection that we so desperately need. say, eamon -- >> sorry, go ahead. >> i should say there are many questions ahead about how to have the supply meet the demand, whether we can make the supply available to other countries and also make it available at a low cost. so there are a lot of irv usssu ahead of us. >> this is logistically challenging to think how you'll roll these out and make sure people get them. let me speak or ask you, sir, about hospitalizations for a moment. because we're seeing hospitalizations peak in some cities web coronavirus happened we were lucky it was at the end of flu season. going into the fall rapidly approaching another flu season and anticipating a second wave of the pandemic. it has to a pretty grim thought. is there anything we can do to minimize that double impact of the flu season and the pandemic
colliding this fall? >> this is where we need coordination and a one-government approach going forward as much as possible. we need federal, state and local coordination, not just on covid but on flu season coming up, as you noted. we're going to have seasonal flu vaccination efforts starting in a couple of weeks probably and so messaging that to the american people, making sure that people are protected from covid and seasonal flu vaccine going forward is critically important. we have to do everything we can to help front line health care workers who are so overloaded right now in these overwhelmed hospitals. hospitalizations have gone back up as well as cases and deaths, so this is a critical time to maximize prevention, make masks a universal effort across the country, and keep the public alert and humble and aggressive about public health. >> and of course, there is always the debate in this country that is still raging about masks, believe it or not. mask mandates still not enforced
in all of the states in this country. you're talking about a one-government approach. you have the white house finally saying wearing a mask can help, but there's still no federal mandate. is that the right approach or should there be a federal mandate? >> eamon, i think there should be a federal mask requirement. i think we should have done this a long time ago. we have a pandemic that's spinning out of control and we need to protect americans with everything we got. it was good to hear yesterday that three states, minnesota, indiana and ohio have now put forward state requirements, so we have now over 30 states with that sort of standard, but we need all 50 states, we need a national requirement right now if we're going to offer americans maximum protection in this time of crisis. >> dr. koh, if it wasn't bad enough the news that we are hearing, there's a little bit more uncertainty now and stuff to worry about because the fda apparently is recalling hand sanitizers with methanol. can you tell us more about that,
tell our viewers go to fda.gov to get the full list which hand sanitizers not to use. what should people be looking out for with the new recall? >> well, we're just hearing about these new reports about toxicity of these hand sanitizers that are coming predominantly from mexican companies, so it's a time for americans to be very careful as always, check that fda website and not buy the products for now. focus on using soap and water, and to get us through this time, and this is yet another example of how we have to be careful and cautious, stay on top of the developments and try to promote prevention and public health as much as we can. >> dr. howard koh, thanks for giving us the facts. the man coordinating covid testing for the nation admiral brett giroir joins andrea mitchell next hour on nbc. up next, inside isis, a rare interview with the kidnappers
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iphone 11 pro on us when you buy one. because everyone deserves the best. this is unlimited built right. only on verizon. an interview with two of the isis terrorists dubbed the beatles. it's been five years since we learned the tragic story of kayla mueller, the 26-year-old american aide worker who traveled to a doctors without borders hospital in syria in 2013. the very next day she was kidnapped by isis and is believed to have been killed in 2015 after being held captive for 18 months. but many questions about her death and time in captivity have long gone unanswered. now in an interview obtained exclusively by nbc news, two isis terrorists are admitting their involvement in her captivity for the first time. here is nbc news chief foreign correspondent richard engel with that exclusive. >> reporter: among her captors a
group of british citizens nicknamed the beatles for their accents, including a man known as jihadi john, who was later killed in a u.s. drone strike, and these two men, who were captured in syria, and are now being held in u.s. custody in iraq. in the past, the men pretended to have no idea who kayla was. did you ever meet kayla muler? >> huh? >> reporter: kayla mueller? >> didn't meet any foreign. >> reporter: but in an exclusive interview obtained by nbc news, the two men give detailed accounts about her and how they got her parents' email address to send ransom notes. >> i took an email from her, i took an email from her myself. she was alone and very scared, in a room by herself that no one would go in. >> they're admitting that they were there. of course they're not going to tell the dark side of the story. >> reporter: the muellers and the families of james foley,
steven sokolov and peter kasich, also killed by isis v been pressing federal prosecutors to charge the men. >> and they need to be brought here. they need to be prosecuted. >> reporter: but the case has been held up. a british court ruled in march that the united states can't use crucial evidence against the two men gathered by british investigators unless the united states promises they won't receive the death penalty. >> i don't think anything should be taken off the table. >> reporter: and the muellers say they fear the so-called beatles will get a light sentence if tried in the uk. >> you know, that's a recruiting tool for the terrorists. look, these guys did all these terrible things, torturing and killing americans. eh, they walk away in five years. that can't happen. >> we're reaching out to president trump, attorney general barr, and the doj. we don't want this to go away.
>> reporter: nbc's richard engel joins us live now from london. richard, good to talk to you. how likely is it that these two men will be brought here to face charges now that they've further incriminated themselves and give us an update on what would the significance be to the families of the journalists and kayla mueller and others if in fact they are not brought here. >> reporter: so the second question is very easy. it would be incredibly important to the families. it would give a sense of closure. it would give a sense of justice. the families today put out an op-ed written collectively in "the washington post" calling on the trump administration not to ignore this case, to push it along, and specifically to bring these two alleged beatles, who are held in u.s. custody in iraq, to the united states. now, the first answer is a little more complicated and it
goes to this legal complication. the best evidence against these two men, and they are british nationals, or they were, they had their nationalities stripped, but they grew up in this country. the british authorities have extensive files, incriminating files we understand on them. a much stronger case than u.s. authorities have and the issue is this british court ruled that the evidence gathered in this country can't be transferred to the united states, to a u.s. court, if that evidence is going to be used in a death penalty case. so if the death penalty was taken off the case, and they were instead being charged with multiple life sentences, then that legal blockade wouldn't exist. so right now, they're in u.s. custody, they're in iraq, and there is this question about where they can be tried and which evidence can be used and now the families are coming forward to say hey, let's not ignore this. let's move this along, because
they're worried that the men could either get off on some sort of loophole, escape, something could happen. >> richard, is there some kind of negotiation between the two countries taking place or is this playing out in a judicial process where we are expecting perhaps some decision, whether it be in theater or in the uk or here in the u.s.? >> reporter: all of these, all of the parties, including the beatles, are being represented by lawyers so there is a process and you saw the legal authorities in this country rule that they wouldn't hand over evidence to the united states if it was a capital offense. so there is a process, but the process has been slow, since they're being held in iraq, by the u.s. military. there is not a lot of transparency there, which is why you're now seeing the families come out and pushing this case saying don't ignore it. we want this case to have some
sort of closure, and they also worry about the optics of this. >> right. >> these two alleged beatles have been held for a long time now under dubious conditions, and they won't want them to become martyrs. they don't want their isis supporters to come out and say look, the u.s. isn't giving them a fair trial, a fair justice anyway. bring them to the u.s. give them their day in court, and let justice be on it. >> all right, richard engel, keeping the spotlight on that very important story, thank you as always. house speaker nancy pelosi about to hold her weekly briefing where she'll update on the latest in those negotiations, over more financial relief for millions of americans. we have just learned that senator chuck schumer will also be there, joining her. we'll keep an eye on that for you and bring it to you live, when it gets under way. a moment a federal courttemporarily pull armed forces off the streets of portland or give them the green
light to continue. oregon congressman earl blummenauer calls his presence in his hometown a "declaration of war." he joins us now. when you walk into an amazon fulfillment center, it's like walking into the chocolate factory and you won a golden ticket. all of these are face masks. this looks like a bottle of vodka. but when we first got these, we were like whoa! [laughing] my three-year-old, when we get a box delivered, screams "mommy's work!" mommy's work. with this pandemic, safety is even more important to make sure we go home safe every single day.
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protest zone. we don't have the decision yet. it follows a volatile night on the protest line where the city's mayor was teargassed by federal officers dressed in tactical gear as he stood with demonstrators. you see him there standing in front of the fence that protected a courthouse. mayor ted wheeler's attendance drew anger from some in the crowd who shouted for his resignation. last night marked the 55th straight night of demonstrations. erin mclaughlin is in oregon. hours before the protest began, the mayor signed an order passed by the city council banning police from cooperating with federal officers. did there seem to be any change in the way the evening played out? >> reporter: ayman, we do know portland police did declare a riot over twitter pertaining to the activities of protesters in the nearby justice center. but for the most part, the
police continuing -- the portland police continuing their hands-off approach we've seen over the last few days here in portland as protesters have turned out at the federal courthouse to have their say and rale against the federal agents. let me let the camera pan over and show you around. you can see the projectiles, the missiles that were launched over this fence towards the courthouse, towards the agents. the agents responded with teargas. ted wheeler, the mayor was here. he's very controversial because he is also the police commissioner. many of these protesters are out here to protest overreach on the part of portland police including jennifer christiansen. she was arrested during monday night owes protesters. she was charged with a misdemeanor felony. she told me she was here to have her say. she wants to see police reform within the city.
meanwhile, we are waiting for this court decision from this very same federal court that heard just yesterday arguments from oregon's attorney general for a motion for a temporary restraining order to stop federal agents from making what she argues are unlawful arrests of protesters here in portland. that decision could come by the end of the week. ayman. >> nbc's erin mclaughlin, thank you very much for that. i want to bring into the conversation oregon congressman earl blumenauer. thank you so much for joining us. we're waiting for a federal judge to weigh in on the argument from your state's attorney general. yesterday the judge sounded skeptical. he said police use unmarked vehicles all the time and lawful arrests are always terrifying to the individuals being arrested. do you believe what's happening in your district is unconstitutional? >> i think it is.
it's certainly pushing the limits. there's a difference between what happens in terms of ordinary policing in units and when you have federal agents anonymously come in, unwanted, unprepared, unwelcome against the wishes of the local community and the local authorities, the governor, the mayor. nobody wanted them there. we were working hard. we've had challenges in portland, make no mistake. some of the demonstrations had activities that were illegal. we absolutely decry that. we are not in favor of that at all. but the community, working to try to deescalate, deal with the real challenges. all of a sudden the federal government comes in and starts acting in a very aggressive manner, making the decision worse. many people saw the account of one of my constituents who went up and just asked one of the
federal officials a simple question about what they were doing and he was beaten. his wrist was broken. these activities are making it worse, not better. i think we're seeing a test run for what donald trump is going to do elsewhere. we saw it in lafayette park in washington, d.c. where, for a photo op for a picture with a bible, peaceful protesters were moved out, and this is the same thing on steroids. >> so let me pick up on that point if i can, congressman. you brought up president trump and what he plans to do as a test run in portland and other cities. he vowed yesterday to send federal law enforcement officers into cities with a high crime rate. but what's your message to those cities who will be dealing with a federal presence as well? >> well, we've already seen many of those mayors make it clear they don't want help like this. work with the local officials when necessary. we don't need to have another
battleground. for heaven's sakes, if you ask those officials what they'd like help with, they'd like help dealing with the coronavirus and the pandemic. they'd like help dealing with the president doing his job which he was asleep at the switch for four months as the pandemic rages. help us with the underlying areas of discontent in terms of homelessness and access to health care. doing this, opening up another front as a photo op i just think is outrageous. >> congressman earl blumenauer, thank you very much for your time this morning. i appreciate it. >> my pleasure. thanks to all of you for watching this hour of "msnbc live." i'm ayman mohyeldin. after a quick break, more on the unemployment crisis and the latest news on capitol hill with my colleague chris jansing.
we must defeat this virus. we had hoped with this legislation, the heroes act, we put forth ours two months and one week ago. they said they needed a pause. they still are not prepared. they didn't use the pause to prepare. what we've seen so far falls very short of the challenge we face in order to defeat the virus and to open -- in order to open our schools and our economy. science, science, science and science seems to be ignored. the delay, the denial have caused deaths. we can do something about it but we must have the appropriate response to it in terms of