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tv   Weekends With Alex Witt  MSNBC  January 2, 2021 10:00am-11:00am PST

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who are in the senate right now. this list includes a lot of the president's longtime allies. people who have already been coming out making allegations of voter fraud, like ted cruz. senator marsha blackburn, their reasoning is interesting here in that they say that because of allegations of voter fraud and they don't make any claims of actual voter fraud or evidence, they say because of allegations and because of widespread public mistrust, they say of these results, they want to see a voter commission do a ten-day review, and once that's been contacted, then they would vote to certify the electoral results as stands. those allegations and that mistrust have been fanned by these very senators. they are complaining about, using their own allegations and their own efforts to create mistrust as reasoning for not voting to certify the election.
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so real circular reasoning here and, of course, we'll see what happens with this process. there are a number of members of the house who have said they'll raise objection to the certification process in a few different states. we'll see, though, what happens in the senate, because each state, the senators have to individually certify or not certify. it's unclear as these senators will be behind you know, not backing the results at any state or only one or two states. a lot we could still see happen and of course, thsis what president trump wants to see. while this doesn't change the likelihood at all that he will succeed in having congress not certify these election results, it adds to the theatrics the president has been seeking around all this. >> indeed it does.pettypiece. joining me, timely interview. senator chris van hollen.
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curious about your reaction to more of your republican colleagues joining the attempt to challenge the election results this coming wednesday. let me go through their names, sir. there are seven elected officials already, senators cruz, johnson, langford, daines, kennedy blackburn, braun and four incoming elects, loomics, marshall, hagerty and marshallsville. are you clear on the plan? how do you interpret what we're just hearing today? >> alex good to be with you. first of all everyone should understand they will not be successful at overturning the results of the election. joe biden and kamala harris will be sworn in on january 20th as president and vice president, but they are doing a lot of damage. these are political arsonists at this point in time. they are undermining the integrity of our democracy. many of them talk about how the united states, there needs to be a voice for freedom of democracy
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overseas. but what they're doing is taking a blowtorch to that idea here at home. reckless, feeding into the false narrative that donald trump has sought to spread from day one, even though out of 60 court cases, 59 have gone against them and the 1 for them a trivial matter. everybody who's looked through the allegations have found them to be frivolous and false yet these are people through their own political purposes are undermining our democracy. it's a shameful day. >> fas you're borrowing a phrase from axios, head line today calling president trump "the" gop arsonist. your description there. tell me what there is to gain by this, sir? i mean what is the point of all of it? is it only to cause chaos? if to your point, this will do nothing but allow joe biden to officially become the president
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of the united states, come january 20th. >> well, a lot of the leaders in these efforts want to claim the trump mantle. they want the support of all the trump followers. a number thinking of running for president themselves. this is a clear case where they're putting their personal political ambition over the interests of the country, and senator sasse, i disagree with him on many things, to his credit pointed out exactly that. that these are individuals motivated by their own political interests. again, trying to be trump wannabes in the sense of getting his followers, but doing so at the expense of the integrity of our election process and our democracy. >> senator, take a listen to freshman senator josh hawley of missouri first one to say he will challenge the results. in fact, here's what he said wednesday. take a listen. >> you got 74 million americans who feel disenfranchised, feel
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like their vote doesn't matter. this is my opportunity to stand up and say something. to stand up and point out that there were irregularities in this election. there needs to be an investigation. >> so to your point. is he doing this for self-serving purposes? is he one of those trying to grab the trump mantle, if you will? >> i think it's very clear senator sasse pointed it out on this. that's exactly what's happening here. there is a race to succeed trump as leader of the new warped republican party. i say "warped" because donald trump lifted it up and that's what we're seeing here, alex. it's very unfortunate, and sad, to see individuals put in their own personal political ambition above the country on such an important issue, like this. the integrity of our democracy. but that is what's happening. >> and taking a day that is
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usually just a mundane, procedural issue. right? how often do we talk about this particular event? curious how long you think it's going to play out? will it be quickly remedied or might we talk about this even into next weekend? >> oh think, quickly remedied. because the process in the house and senate is limited by the statute of the government. of this process. the big question will be, how many states where they challenge the outcome, and so they'll about discussion and vote on those. but i am absolutely confident that by the end of the day on, you know, on january 6th, we will clearly affirm the fact that joe biden and kamala harris will be sworn in on the 20th. but the damage is still very real here. i mean, because here you have josh hawley talking about people
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who feel disenfranchised yet the president is elected. we have winners and we have losers. joe biden has tried to bring the country together. hillary clinton, who ended up losing by tighter margins in many of these states, despite her disappointment, nevertheless acknowledged reality of the vote. yet donald trump refuses to do so and here you have republican senators going along with this you know, fraudulent narrative he's pushed out. >> senator, not only does the president refuse to go along with the results, he's encouragiencourag encouraging supporters to take to the streets and protest january 6th. the "washington post" reporting there are at least four rallies expected and some led by people trump just pardoned by the way. what are your concerns about both what could happen on the streets on wednesday and the fact that the president encourages it? >> well i have great concerns. because we have worked towards a
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peaceful transfer of power throughout our nation's history. and yet we know that the president has encouraged people not just to take to the streets but we know from his contact at rallies he often encourages people to take things into their own hands and we've seen that most roechecently. the proud boys engaging in vandalism, and really racial attacks, and tearing down a black lives matter flag, black lives matter flags in washington, d.c. so what trump is doing is encouraging this kind of contact, undermining the peaceful transfer of power. encouraging them all to come to washington on this very important day, where we now have these republican senators also taking a blowtorch to the process. again, they will not be successful at overturning the election but they are
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undermining public confidence in our system at a time when we need to be coming together. >> yeah. reminding viewers in wake of the last rally for donald trump in washington, there were four stabbings. fortunately no loss of life, but talk about chaos. right? let me ask you, senator, about the $2,000 covid proposal blocked almost immediately after it passed in the house. why didn't senate leader mitch mcconnell allows senate to vote on it? >> he was just dead set against this. as was majority of his caucus and many members of his republican caucus are hiding behind senator mcconnell. we have this very important election going on in georgia. on tuesday. you had the two republican senators there, perdue and loeffler, last minute come out in favor of the $2,000 payments. an 11-hour conversion, but they just showed their ineffectiveness when the leader of their own party, mitch mcconnell, refused to even allow
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a vote on this issue. they were just -- slow walking a relief package from day one and did not want to provide this additional relief to the american people. >> senator, do you think the fact, to your point, that they are behind mitch mcconnell on this. is that because he now claims the gop leadership mantle in this country no longer belongs to president trump since he has been voted out of office? again, certified on wednesday, but is that why people are lining up behind mitch mcconnell for the power of mitch mcconnell over that of the president? because they're disagreeing with what the president asked for specifically in these $2,000 stimulus checks. >> right. their refusal to really challenge senator mcconnell and demand an up or down vote. right? senator mcconnell put the vote, the $2,000 individual payment but they did not push him through to vote on that. really, hiding behind him in many ways.
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what i think is that it shows their inability to deliver for their constituents, because this was a case where the democrats in the senate were supporting the $2,000 payment. it had already passed house of representatives and, of course, president trump was willing to sign this. so it was just those republican senators blocking this important relief. >> senator, i want to ask about the covid vaccine rollout with about 12 million vaccines delivered. upwards of 3 million actually injected, if you will, into american's arms. what is the situation there in maryland? who do you think is to blame for the slow rollout? >> it has ban slow rollout in maryland. it is getting better. i think that there are multiple problems. i will say at the federal level, it's very important that the trump administration release the monies, the $4.5 billion, that was tained econtained in the cs
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relief bill to help states, get the vaccine into people's arms. i don't think we had enough of a plan in our own state of maryland and i don't think we had enough of a plan at the national level. clearly, the trump administration did not have a plan. we've got to get this together. i'm really pleased incoming president joe biden is very focused on this. obviously they've thrown up a lot of impediments to this new administration, but i know that they're going to focus on it with the seriousness it rear requires, senator chris van hollen. thank you for your time. hope i see more of you in 2021. you just heard senator vchrs van hollen. up next i talk with representative tim rying about it. about it.
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the coronavirus pandemic.
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less than a week the u.s. added another million cases surpassing 20 million yesterday. more than 248,000 americans died from the virus. almost 12.5 million doses of the coronavirus vaccine distributed here in the u.s. just over 3 million people have actually gotten the first dose. that is far fewer than the 20 million doses the government hoped would be given by this point. republican senator mitt romney called lack of a comprehensive federal distribution plan inexcusable. despite warnings from the cdc more than 7 million people traveled through airports in the last week according to tsa. five consecutive days more than a million people traveled by plane in a single day and that is "the" most of any stretch of days during the pandemic. on the covid beat this hour for us, nbc san brock in miramar, florida, and scott cone be in san jose, florida. begin with you, sam, at the hospital in miramar, florida. rolling out second doses of the covid vaccine. hard to believe it's been close
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to 21 days already. has are you seeing there? >> reporter: exactly. 21 days. in some cases, alex. good afternoon. good to be with you. a population of people that understands not only on the front lines of health care, they're on the front lines of history. 7,500 give or take health care workers within the memorial health care system in broward county already vaccinated. we're seeing hundreds more coming in with the health care community. over my shourd a corridor of people lined up. they ge registered. total number of appointments listed 301. 300 more people vaccinated today. of that population, though, alex, a fraction getting their second dose. six to ten people, i'm told. one of them autumn, clinical section chief for this particular pod. autumn had her first dose 21 days ago. you're watching history being made. one of the first people in the entire country getting dose two of the pfizer vaccine.
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awe inspiring to watch. folks come in, get vaccinations, a cooling off period observed 15 minutes makie ing sure everythi goes well. an anesthesiologist talked about the momentum nature of this moment. >> as a health care worker we're tired and want things to get back to normal. alternative of not getting the vaccine seems pretty grim. bigger mission, take care of all americans. we're all nervous with a fairly new vaccine in a virus situation, but end of the day, i trust the science. >> reporter: you know, alex, minutes before this i also interviewed head of emergency medicine for regional hospital and asked what it melt like to come out get vaccinated. he talked about the emotion of it and setting a good example for the community. i don't mean community at large also the health care community. according to the public health director in riverside county,
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california, 50% of frontline workers there are rejecting taking the vaccine right now. that's within health care. the idea, demonstrate the fact it is safe, science is proven's so far almost all people i spoke with said they've experienced minimal if any side effects at all and want that message conveyed to the public. this won't work unless nf people go out and get the vaccine. happening on the ground level now. history being made here and throughout the country as well. >> thank you. those folks are leading by example. equally stunned by the numbers in riverside county, california. 50% health care workers saying, no, not yet. remarkable. speaking of california, go there now. officials reporting new cases of the mutant covid variant. scott cohn in northern san jose. how are officials dealing with both the new strain on top of the climbing infection rate
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there? >> reporter: it's the latter point really has them concerned, alex. the new strain, they know it's here. it's been detected in california. not clear how widespread it is. to an extent, academic look at the numbers this state faces. 47,000 statewide cases added just yesterday. in a state that is already closing in on 2.4 million cases total. then there's the issue of the intensive care beds. still a huge issue. state-wide, intensive care bed capacity is effectively at zero. even in the pockets where there is some availability, it's stull rough. here in santa clara county, home of san jose and silicon valley, a county of 2 million people all of ten beds. here at regional medical certainty, serves east side of san jose a more vulnerable population, at capacity. have been for a while.
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new variation of the virus, not hospitals, they're full. >> we've been 100% capacity for weeks. and, you know, the biggest strain issen 0 the icu. our biggest challenge is yet to come. it's going to be january, i suspect. with that said, there's definitely light at the end of the tunnel. this vaccination, while it doesn't make you super human or bullet-proof it offers all of us a lot of confidence. it's a step in the right direction. >> reporter: one of the interesting things here as well that the doctor told me is that they've learned so much. remember, this is one of the first places in the country to deal with covid-19. so they've learned a lot more about how to treat it, but at the same time, he said there's a certain sort of almost ma nonot that's set in wondering when it will end as we close in on almost a year they've dealt with it here. >> again, northern california
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one of the first places hit overall. thank you. in this country, that it. thank you, scott. joining me now, a field epidemiologist and professor of epidemiology as fielding school of public health. good to see you. welcome back. how concerned are you about this new strain of the virus? and when might we know how widespread it actually is? >> hi, alex and happy new year. this is definitely an important topic to be covering right now, because this new variant that we have seen wreak havoc in the uk has been discovered here in southern california, in florida, in colorado and that's just places we've been looking. we have not done a very good job at viral surveillance here in the united states. what we know about this variant is that it is more contagious and in the uk seen it spread very, very rapidly. since they have more data on it we need to look to them to see what's happening. a variant with, that has increased capacity to spread can wreak havoc especially in a
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place like the united states where we have uncontrolled spread already. this is something that is very concerning and we need to be taking action right now to reduce opportunity for spread. >> absolutely. this is on the heels of california which as you know reported its deadliest day of the pandemic yesterday. stunning. 585 deaths in a day. hospitalizations breaking records. we know southern california, san joaquin valley ran out of icu beds. what's happening there that is driving up the deaths, the severe cases so that these icu units are overflowing? >> well, you know, here in los angeles county, we're the most populace county in the u.s. a lot of people are here, people mixing. you just mentioned have not been following guidelines. a lot of travel. we've had a lot of mixing of households. had house parties broken up here.
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restaurants opening secretly. a lot of issues, but the bottom line is -- and now this more contagious variant and may have others as were el. we don't have a lot of viral surveillance ongoing and kind of not aware of what is happening here, and we could have other variants that are more contagious, more capable of spreading. this could also account for a large piece of this. the thing is here, no matter what variant is spreading, no matter what is happening, the way to prevent having this virus continue to spread is to do the things we know we can do. staying home. not mixing with other households. wearing a mask. hand hygiene. all the things we talk about all the time. and we do need to add viral surveillance on to this and of course, get vaccines into arms. we have a lot of vaccine in stock right now. it needs to get into arms asap. >> listen, hearing you echo what we all know. we can say it backwards and forwards in our sleep now. things we must be doing.
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right? i'm worried about the health care workers and all those, particularly an l.a. county doctor describing the overwhelmed hospital and intensely sick covid patients as calling it mentally, physically, emotionally draining. what's your reaction to hearing that? do you think a lot of doctors are experiencing that same feeling? there is a frustration that we keep saying the same thing over and over again? here's how you can help -- people just aren't doing it? >> alex, i'm with you 100%. we're all frustrated seeing this and i want to say there are a lot of people out there doing the right thing. these people should be thanked for really taking the initiative to stay home, do the right thing. but we really are at risk. the doctor you mentioned is not wrong. this is a war against a virus. we all need to be taking part in this wartime effort to be able to beat this very, very -- very, very wily enemy we have, this
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virus who is becoming more fit, more capable of spreading. the danger is increasing. i try to explain to people here, for example, the risk today is much greater than it was a few months ago. a few months ache in august there were potentially 1 in 800 people walking around l.a. county, for example, with covid-19, able to infect others. just around, the last week these numbers vary a little day to day, somewhere between 50 to -- 1 in 50 to 100 people are walking around with covid-19. the risk is so much greater than weeks ago. now is the time to hunker down. to do the right thing. if not for our health workers, for everybody in the community. our health workers are particularly important. i've spent my entire career working in places like the democratic republics of congo watching it happen with ebola outbreaks extended for lengthy periods of time. fatigue in the health workers. they're tired. they're human, doing everything
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to get in front of it, we need to get behind them to stop the spread. >> sure they don't want to hear it but i'm sure expecting a surge from holiday travel. will that come your way in california? >> i would be shocked if it didn't. we know -- you just mentioned. 7 million people traveling. i mean, we know how this virus spreads. so we have -- we're going to have this surge upon a surge upon a surge. it's literally a viral tsunami and time to head for higher ground. we all need to be able to stay home, do all of these things. i know it's tiring to hear this same mantra over and over again. but those are the things we need to do and also we need to get these plans in place to get people vaccinated, ba you it isn't just about what's going on here in california. it's what's going on everywhere. as we know, an infection anywhere is an ainfection everywhere here in the united states. >> yeah. >> we don't have closed borders. >> thank you so much. good to speak with you again, despite the content what we're having to hear again and again
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from you. appreciate it, though. meantime, house republicans getting more support in the senate in their fight to stop the election certification, but will it make a difference? ohio congressman tim ryan is next. next. new projects means new project managers. you need to hire. i need indeed. indeed you do. the moment you sponsor a job on indeed you get a short list of quality candidates from our resume database. claim your seventy five dollar credit, when you post your first job at
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breaking news. a group of nearly a dozen republican senators led by ted cruz announcing plans to object to certifying the electoral college's votes next week. in a joint statement released today saying "we intend to vote on january 6th to reject the electorates from disputed states as not regularly given and lawfully certified these statutory requisite unless and until that emergency ten-day audit is completed." joining me former presidential candidate and ohio democratic candidate tim ryan. welcome back. good to see you. as you know, congressman, this announcement comes after we learned republican senator josh hawley at leastededly 140 of
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your gop house members are planning also to object to wednesday's count. what is your reaction to all of this? do you find it surprising how many lawmakers are standing behind the president on this? >> i've been in politics for about 20 years, alex, and this is the absolute most cynical approach i've ever seen, and i've seen a lot over the last 20 years, as you have, but to attack our constitution, to attack the electoral process in such a cynical way is really beyond me, and it just goes to show you the amount of control that the president still has on republican primary voters with all of these people, a lot of them thinking about running for president, are scared to death of donald trump, and they don't want to cross him. i think it's cynical. i think this is exactly why people hate politics now, because people are in it for themselves and they're not in it for the greater good or
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protecting these institutions that have made our country what it is over the last 200-plus years and it's cynical. that's the only word i can come up with. >> it is cynical. unfortunately there are those echoing the exact same sentiments. ask about whether your republican colleagues follow through on thatif that happen, does this end in any other way other than a confirmed win for joe biden? >> that's the only outcome. i mean, they're going to bang their chest, they're going to go on the networks and get a lot of press. they're going to appeal to the extreme base, really, the tail's wagging the dog here and be able to do that and go back home to their perspective states and brag about it, but it's going to end with a vote in the senate and a vote in the house against what they're trying to do, and we'll all move on with our lives and joe biden will be inaugurated january 20th. >> hmm. talk about the battle for the increased stimulus payments. senate republicans blocking that
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bill for $2,000 checks for the fourth straight day. that happened friday. you and your democratic colleague have been proposing $2,000 checks since, what? april? what do you think about this now becoming the focal point in congress? is it too little, too late? >> well, seems that way. mitch mcconnell and the republicans in the senate have no interest. seems to me. to bring this up for a vote. this is a $2,000 one-time payment. congressman canha and i said $2,000 a month until we get out of this mess. so at least for another few more months, because the waitresses, the waiters, the bartenders, those people working as many hours as they used to work and making about half the pay. they're not getting unemployment benefits. so these check wos help those people who are doing everything they're asked. working hard, playing by the rules. they're putting forth theest. they're not taking advantage of any government program, but they
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still can't make ends meet, and it's mind-boggling to me that this is not penetrated the mind-set in the united states senate. we've got to push them, but i think these elections here in georgia coming up could maybe tip the balance in our favor to maybe get that $2,000 payment and hopefully even maybe for the next two months. really making sure people don't have to file bankruptcy, they don't destroy their credit. we're trying to protect that. >> how confident the new congress after being sworn in will be able to provide? does it all hang on georgia? a lot laying on that race, right? >> i think everything hangs on georgia. with the country, what it looks like next couple of years, if the democrats win both seats or one seat versus the republicans winning both seats, but both republicans in georgia have said they support the $2,000 payment. it's not like there's not pressure mounting on some of these republicans to support it.
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who knows what the world looks like in a few days, but i'm hopeful that people will recognize that the vast majority of americans are hurting. businesses, restaurants, retail. he'll who work in those industries are really hurting and we've got to respond to them because they haven't done anything wrong. that's underlying here. they haven't done anything wrong and this is a good country. a decent country. and we should be supporting those people who are working hard and playing by the rules. >> and the wealthiest country in the world, i might add. >> yes. >> let me look ahead to tomorrow? how's that? when congress convenes it will vote for speaker of the house. you challenged nancy pelosi back in 2016. does she have your support tomorrow as she seeks to retain her leadership post? >> yeah. i think she'll be fine. this is a good, another good parlor game, but no organized effort against her. you know, we're all very, very disappointed with the results in the house and in the senate. but we're not here to, in any way deep six the democratic
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party. i think joe biden is the new brand for the democrats. which is really good. because he appealed in pennsylvania, michigan and wisconsin and helps us address some of those concerns we've had. >> anyone you know of challenging her in a legitimate challenge? come tomorrow for the speakership? >> not that i heard of. so the real choice is between nancy pelosi and kevin mccarthy. and, you know, nancy pelosi in her defense has protected us from some of the more liberal ideas in our party. she's been there to protect us from some of those, and i think that's the choice. it's going to be between her and kevin mccarthy. >> okay. ohio democrat congressman tim ryan. never a choice not have you on again. thank you so much. >> thanks. a presidential historian michael beschloss says he's never seen a president lie so continuously and outrageously as
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president trump. which lies are worst of the worst? that's next.
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as the president makes new false statements days before the georgia senate runoff, calling them illegal and invalid a new piece on looks at trump's many falsehoods and debunks them. taking a look, nbc reporter, good to see you. looking ahead to the georgia senate runoff election, first of
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all, how do we expect the president to react to the results? >> i think either way we're going to hear him say the system is broken. there's voter fraud. he lost that state. it's going to be really hard for him, even if republicans come out with a big win and secures them the senate, i don't think you'll see him say, oh, well, all is okay. he'll stick with a falsehood. one of the most consistent falsehoods the idea voter fraud plagues the american election. the popular vote is where voter fraud cost me that race and said it before the 2020 election and after the 2020 election. i don't think 2021 will be any different. >> sounds like his chosen narrative. there you go. what about his response to the coronavirus pandemic? listen to him in february of just last year. 2020. >> part of the thing is, want to keep it the way it is. you don't want to see panic. because there's no reason to be
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panicked about it, but we have it so well under control. i mean, we really have done a very good job. >> so -- february 2020, that's what he says. what are the results of his misleading claims on covid? >> he said that kind of thing so many times. i went back through the quotes for the story. just stay calm. it will go away. no one really know what's will happen. we knew what would happen. we had a very contagious virus and he knew it was very contagious telling reporter bob woodward at the same time it was much more deadly than the flu. we knew it would be a scary port and experts told me it didn't model the behavior they needed to see. public health experts needed to see him wearing a mask. he's often questioned about. even though we know masks really work. over and over again he made it seem like it wasn't as big a deal as we know now it was and we knew then. just needed the president to be saying it.
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>> in your article you mentioned trump pushing that birther lie about president obama. essentially helped launch his campaign bid. in what other ways has trump's lies helped him politically? >> he sort of created an ultimate reality with his alternate facts led him to say everything i'm doing is spectacular and loves to blame president obama or democrats or whoever was up in front. make aoc sometimes, but the ultima ultimate reality is, it's an unusual thing in politics, but very scary when it comes to moments of crisis. that's where trust in the president and a president telling you the truth is really critical. what i talk about michael beschloss about how a president's ability to call a nation to go to war, during crisis, that's where your faith in the president is critical and so consequential and the president really changed this.
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>> and the factually incorrect, almost cliche for a politicians to lie, but why does donald trump lie so much? why don't hi supporters care about facts? >> you know, i'm not -- i think his supporters see things the way he wants to tem them and so much distrust of the media and he's sown that distrust for years. you hear him tabbing into people's emotion. his great talent as a politician, but i think supporters who don't like the media want to say, he must be telling the truth. also what michael beschloss told me, you say something so big, people may not believe it's exactly true but don't think you could make a false claim that huge without a grain of truth. >> yeah. >> and realize those things. >> reeppeats them find and time again. great article. thank you, my friend.
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poised to take over california's seat and incoming senator alex padilla joins me to talk about his new post. post.
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. can you imagine what the memo would be thinking now as i ask you if you wanted to be the next u.s. senator of the united states for the great state of california? >> are you serious? >> this is the official -- this is the ask, brother. >> i'm honored, man. and i'm humbled. >> and that was the most that alex padilla went from california secretary of state to california's u.s. senator designate. he will place senator kamala harris. alex padilla is joining me right now. alex, senator designate, i'm going to call you alex because it's easy for me, given my name
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as well, until you're officially sworn in. i wondered how those things happened. give me a quick run-through of what you felt in that moment aside from the emotions. i mean, you got a heavy mantle you got to carry. >> it is. it's a tremendous responsibility. this is even more trying times we're living in right now, a long list of issues to get to work on, but covid is clearly front and center. we're seeing the national numbers and the california numbers day in and day out and a disproportionate impact on communities of color and working families. so i'm excited to get to work, but is urgency is there to make progress quickly. >> absolutely. i know you said covid, covid, covid first on your agenda, but you have yet to be sworn in. but you're entering, as i said , this heavy mantle, it's an intense environment in the senate. how do you interpret the plan by your republican colleagues to
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object during the certification process coming on wednesday? >> you know, it's -- i've been thinking about that. it reminds me of when members of the senate take the oath of office, as i'm looking forward to in the days ahead. you know, we swear to uphold and defend the constitution of the united states, not to defend conspiracy theories and baseless attacks on our democracy. so it's going to take a little more time to finalize the results, but no doubt it will get done in a couple of days. it reminds us of the work we have to do to restore the standing of our democracy. it's sad to see that it's partisan and divided. we saw the failure to pass the $2,000 survival checks as just the latest tragic result of it, but the veto override and the passage of last week's stimulus package tells me there's still hope to get things done. >> but all of these things you're chronicling, sir, does this change your thinking how
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you might be able to work effectively across the aisle? do you have hope of repairing rifts between the parties? >> i do have hope. and 20 years of experience to build on. as a member of the state legislature, i worked with democrats and republicans to get things done. even in my current position at secretary of state, i've been coordinating on both sides of the aisle to deliver accessible and secure elections during the covid-19 pandemic. so i know it can be done. it takes work and relationship-building. that's what i'm ready to do. >> as we look ahead to wednesday while you and your colleagues will be inside the capitol on that day, d.c. police, as you know, bracing for large protests outside, many pro-trump groups have indicated plans to be there. there are a minimum of four rallies expected. what are you expecting to see that day? do you have worries? >> well, it's always good to be vigilant and aware of what's
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going on. we support free speech. people are welcome to express their views in a peaceful manner. at the end of the day, congress needs to accept the electoral college results. but it will get done and joe biden will be raising his right hand january 20th. so many people looking forward to the start of the biden-harris administration and i'm one of them. >> for sure. you mentioned the increased $2,000 covid relief checks, something that has eluded democrats. have you spoken to minority leader chuck schumer on what you're first priority would be and if that would be one of them? >> he's been great as has the rest of the senate democratic caucus and their well wishes and welcoming me to the senate. so i think there's not just democratic support but bipartisan support for increased direct aid to american families that passed the house.
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no doubt it would pass the senate. and so that's part of the tragedy because of the urgency. there's people struggling to stay in their homes. small businesses struggling to keep their doors open, they need help and they need help now. >> alex padilla heading to the senate. we'll be glad to see you representing my home state of california. >> thank you, alex. happy new year. >> you too. campaigning shifts into high gear in georgia with the balance of power at stake on capitol hill. the associated press today calling georgia an early defining moment for the upcoming president. we'll go to the latest on the neck and neck runoffs next. nofft with our highest concentration of prebiotic oat intensely moisturizes over time to improve skin's resilience. aveeno® healthy. it's our nature™.
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good day, everyone, from msnbc world headquarters here in new york. welcome to weekends with alex witt. here's what's happening at 2:00 p.m. eastern, 11:00 a.m. pacific time. we have breaking news to share as capitol hill is bracing for a showdown in just four days. more republican senators announcing today that they are at least in part joining the fight against the election results. seven sitting republican senators, including ted cruz and four incoming senators say they will object to certifying the electoral college votes. the group we intend to vote to reject the electors from states as not regularly given and lawfully certified the statute