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tv   Andrea Mitchell Reports  MSNBC  January 27, 2021 9:00am-10:00am PST

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[ no audio ] i'm getting a signal i'm going in and out. can you hear me now? we're 43rd in the world in genome sequencing, totally unacceptable. as part of the american rescue plan, we remedy that situation and do the appropriate amount of genomic sequencing, which will allow us to spot variants early, which is the best way to deal with any potential variants. dr. fauci? >> yeah. one other thing i think people need to understand is that, as we all know, rna viruses mu, taet all the time. that's what they do. that's their business. and there are very few, but they do have been occurring, that is you get one that has a functional relevancy to it the way we've seen with greater transmissibility, possibility of greater virulence, but also importantly for us, what i mentioned in my opening comments, what is the relationship between the mutant and the induction of antibodies
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by the vaccines that we do? so, supplementing what dr. walensky said, that together with the cdc's expansion in getting more realtime sequence genomic surveillance, the nih will be collaborating with the cdc in looking at what the functional characteristics of these are. for example, we will be monitoring in real time the effect of antibodies that we induce with the current vaccines and with future vaccines as to what impact they have on the ability to neutralize these mutants. and as we see them getting further and further to a more vulnerable part, that's when we trigger the kinds of things that i mentioned in my opening remarks, namely making a version of the same vaccine that in fact would be directed specifically
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against the relevant mutant. all of that is going on in real time literally as we speak. >> plan on doing these on a regular basis. the next briefing will be on friday. thank you for your patience and for all your great questions. appreciate it. >> i'm andrea mitchell in washington where we've just been listening and watching for the first time since the biden administration took over since the inaugural of a dramatically different covid response team, fighting the pandemic for president biden. the focus is entirely on science and getting the faltering vaccine rollout on track. president biden has just signed an executive order invoking the defense production act to do just that. >> right now, i want to level with the public, we are facing two constraining factors. the first is getting enough
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supply quickly enough. and the second is the ability to administer the vaccines quickly once they're produced and sent out to the sites. we are taking action to increase supply and increase capacity, but even so, it will be months before everyone who wants a vaccine will be able to get one. >> this is as the biden administration is also rolling out a bold climate agenda. next hour, president biden will be signing executive actions aimed at elevating climate change to a national security priority. we'll be hearing from his veteran team, global climate envoy, john kerry, the former secretary of state, and gina mccarthy, who used to lead epa. and the president's cabinet continuing to get on the job. newly confirmed state antony blinken was sworn in moments ago. he'll have his first briefing later this afternoon. joining me nbc news chief white
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house correspondent and "weekend today" co-host kristen welker. a doctor from johns hopkins and a member of the advisory board during the transition and an epidemiologist at bellevue hospital in new york. and our medical correspondent dr. john torres. kristen, they had a lot of problems with the live stream, the quality of that. i'm hoping you were able to hear the big headlines out of this briefing today and the big changes from what we saw before. i think big changes include restoring scientific integrity across the federal government. what tone does that set? >> reporter: well, i think that the administration and the president aiming to set a tone of transparency, andrea, and there you had those officials leveling with the american people about the fact that this is going to get worse before it gets better, that there are some significant supply shortages, and that they cannot just film a
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switch and have this problem get turned around overnight. at the same time, you heard one top official there, when i asked my question about the concerns that have been voiced by some governors across the country who have said, look, yes, we are encouraged by the fact that you're moving to get more supplies and more vaccines out to the american people and in states across the country, at the same time it's still not enough. that is how dire these shortages are. so you heard one of those top officials say, we hear you. and that, i think, is going to be the crux of what the biden administration is going to try to do to increase the communication so that they are real about what needs to happen. now, in terms of what the administration is vowing, it is our understanding and our reporting, that president biden has in fact signed an executive order to jump-start the dpa, which basically means he will unleash and get the ball rolling on getting more supplies to the
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states that need them to administer the vaccines. and they're going to increase vaccine production, aiming for 300 million doses that can be administered by the end of summer. now, you heard the clarification. this doesn't mean that 300 million people will be vaccinated by the end of summer, but it means that that's their goal, their bench mark in terms of how many vaccines they would like to be able to have access to by the end of the summer. so presumably the summer, the fall, is when the administration is signaling people should start to see things start to go back to normal. but this is a critical test and it does come as the president is saying, he cannot do it unless congress acts, unless congress passes that $1.9 trillion relief package, because that's where the real resources, that's where the real money comes from. still a lot of work to be done and these briefings on almost a daily basis now, andrea. >> for the first time we're
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seeing the cdc leading the charge here, leadoff with a new head of the cdc. the cdc was sidelined back in january 2020 after issuing an early warning about what was happening in china, and that was nancy messenger from the cdc. so they did not take a leave -- of course the biden administration getting back into the world health organization, but the vaccine forecast is still troubling. they're only talking about what they may get in hand. there's hope about johnson & johnson, which is a single dose, maybe applying for emergency use authorization in another week or so. where do we stand on all of that? >> i think the key question on everyone's mind right now is when am i going to get vaccinated, when are my loved ones going to get vaccinated? 50 million vaccinated, 300 million doses by the end of --
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excuse me, 200 million doses by the end of march, 300 million by the end of summer. that's not the entire american population. we have a couple rough months ahead. in light of the new variants that are emerging, the one from the uk appears to be more transmissible, contagious, possibly more virulent. either way, it will translate to more disease and death. we need to be doubling down on masking in this moment because we're not all going to be vaccinated tomorrow. you know, i think the other thing that was promising from dr. walensky's comments is that they really are working with state and local health departments to figure out the supply chain, figure out where doses are along that so they can give much more accurate forecast to people on the ground as to how many doses to expect not in a day or two but how many doses to expect with a couple weeks'
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advance notice so they can make appointments for people to come in. >> and one of the least hopeful signs, of course, is the projection of there could be 514,000 american deaths by the end of february. >> it's really true. it illustrates how important it is for there to be execution of this vaccine plan, access to the affected treatments that are now available because more people will lose their lives. i liked about the briefing that it's not an individual ak the tif ti, vaccinating the country, preparing for what's coming and taking action is a team activity and finally we have leadership of that team and we were able to hear it, see it, and i think that has to gave lot of hope to
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local and state health officials, doctors, others, knowing that somebody really understands the challenges they're facing and is working to get them addressed. >> and dr. sharpstein also, andy slavitt's message to the governors like larry hogan is we hear you, we see you, because we have horrible stories of cancellations, thousands of people getting their appointments canceled with no notice, senior citizens standing in line for hours and then not getting the vaccine all over the country. >> well, i think part of the issue is that the governors didn't know what was coming and may have, you know, given some extra optimistic news to people about available vaccine, and now they're scaling back. there needs to be much more of a rit l between the state and federal government where the federal government says, just like they indicated, here's what's going to happen in the next three weeks, then states will have the responsibility of doing a good job, planning with that. seitz going to be a partnership. but i really am so glad to see
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the federal leadership, which is just so important for such an approach to work. >> no grandstanding by any political leaders. all science. let's talk about variants. i heard a couple thing, first of all, they'll increase the surveillance, just as there wasn't enough testing, there's not been enough genomic sequencing to spot variants early on, to keep track of them. also that they are hopeful that since johnson & johnson has been testing in brazil and in south africa, that they will get new information, new data from johnson & johnson very soon about how variants are, you know, being created or appearing, i should say, in those countries. can dr. john hear me? dr. john torres?
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i'm having difficulty hearing dr. john. >> i can answer that if that would be helpful. >> dr. gounder, if you could answer. i think the point was how effective are the current vaccines going to really be. we think they're effective, but we'll get new data on their effectiveness against those variants because the populations being tested in brazil and in south africa, i should have said. >> yeah. i think that's going to be really important information. what we are seeing is with the pfizer and moderna vaccines, the immune response you get from that may be a little weaker versus the new variants but still strong enough that you should still be protected. what concerns us is more of this trend with the mutations to words the vaccine is working less well. it's not that these vaccines don't work now. they still work. but we want to be prepared for what may yet be to come. >> kristen welker, the whole point here was that this is not
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a white house briefing. this is a scientific briefing led by the cdc. this fits with joe biden promising when he was about to become president during the transition that as soon as they got the data they were going to jump on this and have the cdc be center stage as it always had been, the most respected organization globally. we're hearing from people who left the administration is they were putting out -- deborah birx said there were data being released which had nothing to do with what she was working on and rewritten by the political teams. >> reporter: it was stunning to hear that admission by deborah birx that she was surprised by the information in those briefings, she was very clear she had not put there herself and had not signed off on. of course, the question she is now facing is why not say something at the time? that's something that we'll
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continue undoubtedly focus on. but the bottom line, andrea, this does fit into the broader backdrop of the biden administration trying to pivot from that, trying to move forward and do things very differently than we saw during the last administration. and, again, the question looming over all of it, will it be enough to address the critical concerns and crises ongoing in this country? >> kristen, i also wanted to play you a portion of what the newly confirmed secretary of state antony blinken had to say to a reduced number of people because of covid when he arrived at the state department today. >> we've never been in a moment quite like this before. the president is committed to getting us through it as quickly as possible so that very soon we can all gather in person again and have confidence that the foundations of our democracy are strong.
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we at state have a role to play in all of this, and i believe it starts with rebuilding morale and trust. >> and kristen, he certainly knows that the place has been hollowed out, fewer than 1,000 people have left, so fewer diplomats to even address the issues, career diplomats fired or forced out for participating or cooperating with the impeachment when they were, you know, ordered to by the court, by congressional subpoenas. so, you know, there's a whole different tone and another big difference was the first phone call with vladimir putin necessitated by the expiration, pending expiration of an arms control deal, the nuclear arms treaty, the new s.t.a.r.t. treaty, which has to be renewed before february, but also the fact that for the first time a u.s. president, first time in four years a u.s. president was raising tough issues with vladimir putin, navalny, the
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protesters, human rights, ukraine, interference in the american election, all of that in just their first phone call. >> reporter: and everything that you're saying, andrea, fits into that broader backdrop of morale and tone, messaging, restoring confidence and trust that you just heard the secretary of state speak to. and i know you're going to be in that press conference with him a little later on today and he'll undoubtedly get a number of questions about that, how is that specifically going to work. but there was no more stark indication than the pivot under way than that phone call you referenced between president biden and president putin. i am told the call should not be seen as a pivot as it relates to russia or a reset, that rather, as you point out, president biden felt as though he needed to have that phone call because of that critical arms treaty, the new s.t.a.r.t. treaty, which is going to expire next week, and that he did raise concerns
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with the president on all of those different topics you talked about -- election interference being at the top of that list undoubtedly, and that the goal is to set a tough new tone with russia, which underscores the tensions, andrea, that exist between the two countries. >> okay. they did agree on the arms control extension. the russian parliament votes on that today, but the kremlin readout is it was business-like and frank, and frank is diplomatic talk for a tough, cal. my apoloies to dr. john torres for the audio difficults. president biden is showing his commitment to fighting climate change today, preparing to sign multiple executive actions that will make climate change a national priority. he signed orders to rejoin the paris agreement and pause federal gas drilling online. john kerry will be joining the white house briefing any minute to review the administration's moves. joining me, former
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democratic governor of california, jerry brown, climate activist, known for his global leadership on this. great to see you again. president biden is also -- >> great to see you. >> -- directing the federal government to conserve at least 30% of land over about a decade. is that an aggressive enough posture to take for the u.s. right now? >> well, it's a good first step because for four years america has done knock. so ultimately, some people like ian wilson from harvard, says we must set aside as people 50%. but good, take the next step, because we've been in the climate wilderness for too long. and the co2, the green house gases, are still emitting, coming out of china, the u.s., and the rest of the world. damn serious. even the plague itself, this virus, is exacerbated by changes in the climate. and there could be more viruses to come. and when you see the response,
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inadequate they think it is, we have to get very serious about reducing the assault on the atmosphere that currently is occurring every minute of every day going forward through a change. >> and there's a brand-new u.n. poll bearing out exactly what you're saying showing that 64% of people globally say climate change is a pressing emergency. explain why it should be as the president is defining it today in executive order a national security issue. >> look, the world for thousands of years had about a billion people. now we're close to 8 billion and growing. not only billions of people but we have coal, oil, and gas methane that are emitting, going into the atmosphere and changing the chemistry that has sustained human existence and biological life on the planet, in the world.
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we are playing with great danger. we're altering the chemistry that makes life possible. so, yes, we have to get more conservative, more realistic, and reduce the human assault on the very atmosphere and the very systems that allow human beings to exist. so that's what's at stake. biden is taking more action than any other leader of america ever and more than most of the leaders of the rest of the world. so this is really good news. but to make it really work, we have to work with china, and we have lots of issues with china, just like on the matter of the nuclear danger, we have to work with putin and russia. we have to work very closely. so that's the dilemma. we have lots of what i would call smaller problems but we have to face these bigger problems like climate, like nuclear danger, in a very serious way with people that were that we're increasingly
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calling our adversaries. >> and that's the balancing act that president biden is going to have to navigate. you're so right. what does he say to republicans and some democrats that these moves on climate are going to kill jobs? >> well, he just says you don't know what the hell you're talking about. if we don't alter the heat-trapping gases that are now going up every minute of every day, we're going to have a massive job loss because the basis of our economy is the production of agriculture. it's the absence of these tropical diseases in northern climates. so it's not a question of losing jobs. it's a question of preventing a job catastrophe. so the republicans, like they are on who won the election, are all wet. they've got their heads in the sand. it's quite extraordinary. but biden is going to have to talk truth to the republicans as
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he is to the american people. we save jobs by going through energy, reducing heat-trapping gas, not increasing them, and that's just the way it is. his jobs program, the investment, infrastructure, and his climate program are long overdue. they're great. and i think we're going to get as much support from biden -- well, we must. if we don't, we're in deep trouble. and the republicans, like they say, trump won the election, they're out to lunch. half of them are cynical as hell. the rest of them are dumb as doo-doo. and biden, common sense, been around forever, know what is the hell the score is. he's a breath of fresh air. thank god we've got him. >> during the campaign, he had to straddle the fracking issue because of pennsylvania and other critical states. how does he deal with a coal state senator like joe manchin, a democrat who has shifted his
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views, former governor, shifted his views on climate, still holds a key vote in advancing the president's agenda in a 50/50 senate. >> great problem. biden's got a problem because coal and oil and gas have a lot of power in the world. by the way, president xi in china has his coal and oil communists. they want to keep pumping. they want to keep digging. the fact is we have to go to a radically different basis for our energy economy. yeah, biden will have trouble getting that vote. he may not get it. may take another two years to get more senators. but one way or the other, we're going to respond because the climate is changing such, the sea level is rising, and people will increasingly wake up. how much biden can do, not clear yet. one thing we know, he'll do a hell of a lot more than donald trump. he'll do more. enough, probably not. in fact, certainly not.
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but we have to build the support. the media has to take climate seriously. and as people get the message, then america, china, russia, india, the world will make the change that we have to a net-zero carbon emission economy. >> former governor jerry brown, straight talk as always. it's so good to see you. thank you, sir. thanks for being with us. >> thank you. we have a bipartisan group of congress members who call themselves the problem solvers caucus. they were critical in getting that last covid relief stock measure passed before the end of the year. they met for the first time yesterday with the president's top economic adviser, brian deese, about the $1.9 trillion proposal, this after lawmakers from both parties demanded more details from the white house and a sunday conference call with deese how that would happen. josh gottheimer, and fred upton
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join me now. welcome, both. good to see you together, working together. congressman gottheimer, what are your concerns, if any, that you haven't gotten good answers to about this $1.9 trillion package? >> well, right now, my biggest focus is making sure we get something passed and into law and so my biggest concern is figuring out how to get a bipartisan package out. the democrats and republicans can get behind it because as you've reported, andrea, we're looking at 425,000 deaths in our country, the numbers keep going up. we have a lot of families who are hungry and a lot of businesses that are hurting. the key is how do we get vaccine money out fast and support out fast to get more shots in the arms, to help -- unemployment is going to roll off those extra dollars in march, and more direct support out to folks. the questions we've had are about making sure we can get a bipartisan package out the door as quickly as possible. >> congressman upton, what do
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you do? there's so much opposition in your own party in the house as well as what you would be facing in the senate. >> well, we need some answers here. we want to know where has the $900 million president trump signed into law the last couple weeks, where has that been spent? where are there still needs? in michigan, we have a huge demand for getting the vaccine deployed into people's arms. do we have the right resources for that? this is something that i think that we can pass with a wide majority in both democratic and republican parties to try to get the money to try to get into the loop to get that done. but we also look at our small businesses. there was a big issue in the last round that didn't quite get done and that was to provide liability relief, particularly for small businesses, to protect them against gross negligence claims. a lot of different issues. i'm not sure we're going to be
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ready to move, on this thing as quick as some may think. we have a lot of questions and we want some answers. but at the end of the day, we have divided government. we have to work together to get things done. there's a real need to get something across the plate. >> congressman gottheimer, what about the $15 an hour minimum wage? is that one of the first things that might have to go or might have to be compromised, might have to be less than $15 or phased in? what are you thinking in terms of the progressive wing of the party? >> a great question. obviously, in jersey, where i live, we have that level of minimum wage to help folks out. as you know, people are hurting now. it's kauai i think we need to get more direct support out to families, especially the working poor who are making minimum wage, and families who are really struggling, which is where i think those checks need to get to fast. i've heard from a lot of republicans. i know that's an issue. the bottom line is we have to sit together, and as fred knows, he does an unbelievable job in
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congress, and we work closely with problem solvers with our friends in the senate, a bipartisan group there, the issue we want is how do we find a place where we can all agree and get it done quickly, as fred pointed out, to get that help out. so i think we have to talk and be willing -- the president said this two days ago, he would be willing to negotiate on some of these items to get a bipartisan deal done. that's how we should always govern and means we should talk about issues like this. >> congressman upton, is there any appetite among republicans for doing anything on the minimum wage? >> that's a real difficult hill to climb. i mean, as we look at the small businesses that have really been truly mostly impacted, it's the restaurant industry. we don't have a $15 minimum wage here in michigan. a $15 minimum wage for restaurant industry would be a killer. it would be. i think it would be very difficult to have virtually any republicans support in essence a doubling of the minimum wage
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knowing that it will impact many of these small businesses and we just put them over the edge for good. >> congressman gottheimer, you've talked about getting something done quickly. some of these benefits, unemployment insurance, the mortgage waiver, they're running out in march. can you get this done by march? and with impeachment pending, isn't there really only a three-week window to get something agreed upon, at least? because the partisan divide is just going to become so much worse once the trial begins. >> the window is tight, but the challenges are continue tock mount, as you know, as the spread continues across the country and people, families, small businesses, our local towns and communities which need extra help, those challenges aren't going away, so we have to act fast. we've don it in the problem solvers caucus and you saw us do it at the end of to get that past package done. but there's no reason if we
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don't sit down we can find the areas we can agree and pass that and get it done fast. obviously, there's a lot of agreement around the vaccine piece and the unemployment to make sure in march when it comes off we're ready to help people out and start again and get those checks out. i think there are places clearly where we can find common ground and we're not going to stop until we get there with this group. so i think that's our job, frankly. >> and congressman upton, speaking of impeachment, the republican party in michigan voigted to censure you because you voted to impeach former president donald trump. you're one of the ten in the house. what's your reaction to that and that kind of punishment in arizona, cindy mccain, other republican parties around the country taking action? >> well, i've said all my career i'll support the president, any president, when i think that he's right, and i'm not going to support him when i disagree with him. in this particular case, i took the stand that i did not agree
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with him and i was one of the ten in fact that voted that way. i understand that the sentiments of a lot of loyal party followers, but that is not who i am, and i believe that the oath of my office supersedes any allegiance to really any president. >> such a pleasure to have you both together to try to be crossing the divide as you are. congressmen josh gottheimer and fred upton, thank you, the problem solvers caucus. >> thank you. >> thank you very much. republicans appear to be on track to acquit former president trump on impeachment charges, at least sustaining they have concerns about whether or not he incited the january 6th riots at the capitol but 45 republican senators voted tuesday to dismiss the trial as unconstitutional on legal grounds that don't get to the substance of the charge. five senate republicans broke away. a small bipartisan group of
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senators is trying to gain support for a censure of donald trump, a much lesser slap on the wrist. joining us now, capitol hill correspondent kasie hunt and white house correspondent yamiche alcindor. what's the latest, kasie? >> the latest -- >> if you have to go to jen psaki, go right ahead. >> i have to go to jen psaki. this is the noon hour of the briefing. >> -- keep promise to take swift and bold action that addresses the climate crisis, building on his day one actions of rejoining the paris agreement and strengthening our clean air, water protections and holding leaders accountable. today he will take executive action to tackle the climate crisis at home and abroad while creating good-paying union jobs, building sustainable infrastructure, and delivering environmental justice. i'm thrilled today as a part of our effort to bring policy experts into the briefing room, we're joined by two special
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guests who will talk about today's executive orders. i will play bad cop when they have to go. gina mccarthy and my former boss, former secretary of state john kerry. a big day for boston in the briefing room. with that, go ahead. >> thank you. a big day for boston every day. today president biden will build on the actions he took in day one and will take more steps to fulfill commitments he made to tackle the climate crisis while creating good-paying union jobs and achieving environmental justice. in his campaign, he and vice president harris put forward the most ambitious climate vision that any presidential ticket had ever embraced. and he spent more time campaigning on climate than we have ever seen.
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the president also has consistently identified the climate crisis as one of four interrelated existential crises that are gripping our nation all at once. and he's demanding answers that can address all four. and he's not waiting to take action, getting us started on his first day in office because science is telling us we don't have a moment to lose to fight against all four of these crises in a way that recognizes their intersectionality. he's always committed the u.s. to reenter -- i'm sorry -- he's already committed the u.s. to reenter the paris climate agreement, and he committed us, as well, to start undoing the assault on our environment that has occurred over the past four years. and he is now taking additional action to really target the challenge of climate change. so today for me is a very good day. just one week into his
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administration, president biden is continuing to move us forward at the breadth and the pace that climate science demands. today's executive order start base saying it is the policy of this administration that climate considerations shall be an essential element of u.s. foreign policy and national security. that's where the big guy comes in. it gives my colleague, john kerry, the first ever international climate envoy, the authority to really drive forward a process that will restore american leadership on climate throughout the world. and you will see and hear more about that from secretary kerry. but here at moment, we have to do our part or we will not be able to make the kind of worldwide change that climate change demands. so this executive order establishes a white house office of domestic climate policy and
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it directs everyone who works for the president to use every tool available at our disposal to solve the climate crisis because we're going to take a whole of government approach. we're going to power our economy with clean energy. we're going to do that in a way that will produce millions of american jobs that are going to be good paying, that are going to be jobs that have the opportunity for workers to join a union. because as president biden has often told us, when he thinks of climate change, his first thought is about jobs, and it should be, because people in this country need a job, and this is about making that happen in the most creative and significant way that the federal government can move forward. we're going to make sure that nobody is left behind. i'm not just talking about communities in terms of environmental justice but workers as well.
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this order takes historic strides to address environmental injustice. it creates both a white house interagency task force to address environmental justice as well as an advisory council. it directs the department of health and human services to create an office of climate change in health equity, because afterall, climate change is the most significant public health challenge of our time. and it tasks the department of justice with establishing an office of climate justice, because we know the communities who are being heard and we know we have to start enforcing the standards today and ensuring that they are part of the solution in places that we can invest. in fact, it commits 40% of our investment in clean energy towards disadvantaged communities so they can benefit from the new jobs that are available and see that better future. president biden's order establishes a working group on
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coal and power plant communities, because we have to make sure that in this transition every agency in government is using every tool at their disposal to drive resources to those communities. and it fulfills long-standing commitments to leverage our vast natural resources to contribute to our clean energy future. it places a pause and review on new oil and gas leases on federal public lands and waters consistent with a promise president biden has repeatedly made and has been very clear in the face of efforts to distort his promise. it sets a goal of doubling offshore wind production by 2030. in addition, he plans to sign a presidential memorandum that aims to restore scientific integrity across the federal government and earn back the public's trust, making a
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commitment to base solutions on the best available science and data. so today is a very big day for science and for our efforts to power our economy with good-paying union jobs. thank you very much. >> good afternoon, everybody. it's great to be here. let me say first of all what a pleasure it is to be here with gina. i am a big fan of gina's. we work very closely together. during the campaign when we sat down to bring the bernie sanders folks together around the biden climate plan. she is the perfect person to be tackling the domestic side of this equation, which is complicated. and nobody knows the details better than she does, and
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nobody's going to be more effective at corralling everybody to move in the same direction. it's also an enormous pleasure for me to be here with jen psaki. she mentioned that nobody was her boss, but i had the privilege of working with her. and she seven years ago -- we gathered in the state department briefing room. she's traded up, obviously, but she has not given away any of her fundamental principles and commitment to telling you all the truth, telling the american people the truth, and doing so with great candor and transparency. i'm very happy to be here with her. the stakes on climate change just simply couldn't be any higher than they are right now. it is existential. we use that word too easily. we throw it away. but we have a big agenda in front of us on a global basis,
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and president biden is deeply committed, totally seized by this issue, as you can tell by this executive order and by the other initiative getting back into paris immediately. that's why he rejoined the paris agreement so quickly, because he knows it is urgent. he also knows that paris alone is not enough, not when almost 90% of all of the planet's emissions, global emissions, come from outside of u.s. borders. we could go to zero tomorrow and the problem isn't solved. so that's why today, one week into the job, president biden will sign this additional executive set of orders to help move us down the road, ensuring that ambitious climate action is global in scope and scale as well as national here at home. today in the order he will sign that gina has described to you,
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he makes climate central to foreign policy planning, to diplomacy, and to national security preparedness. it creates new platforms to coordinate climate action across the federal agencies and departments sorely needed. and most importantly, it commissions a national intelligence estimate on the security implications of climate change to give all of us an even deeper understanding of the challenge. this is the first time a president has ever done that. and our 17 intelligence agencies are going to come together and assess exactly what the danger, damage, and potential risks are. the order directs the state department to prepare a transmittal package seeking senate advice and consent on the amendment to the montreal protocol, an amendment that by itself, if ratified and fully
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enforced globally, could hold the earth's temperature by 0.5 of an entire degree. not insignificant. and it sets forth a process for us to develop an ambitious new paris target as well as a u.s. climate finance plan, both of which are essential to our being able to bring counties of the world together to raise ambition and meet this moment when we go to glasgow for the follow-on agreement to paris. so that's the only way for world to succeed together, my friends. again, this is an issue where failure is literally not an option. as he committed to doing on the campaign trail, the president is announcing he will host a leaders summit on climate change less than three months from now. on april 22nd, earth day, which will include a leader-level reconvening of the major economies forum. we'll have specifics to lay out
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over time, but the convening of this summit is essential to ensuring that the -- that 2021 is going to be the year that really makes up for lost time of the last four years and that the u.n. climate conference, cop-26 as it's called, which the uk is hosting in to make sure that it is an un, qualified success. the road to glasgow will be marked not just by promises but by progress at a pace that we can all be proud of. and gina is going to be putting her efforts into making certain that that is true. the world will measure us by what we can do here at home. so with these executive actions today, we believe we're stepping further don that journey. thank you. >> all right. let's start with nancy. >> thank you so much. secretary kerry, a question for
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you, then for administrator mccarthy. you talked about the fact that it won't really matter what we do very much in the rest of the world doesn't do the same thing. but the u.s. has had a fairly rocky relationship with china recently. how do you plan to try to bring both china and india to the table? >> well, before i answer that, let me just say that the issue of making a difference, ie, what we do at home, what i'm saying is you can't solve the problem alone, but our doing things makes an enormous difference. when gina succeeds in pulling together is essential for our ability to have credibility in the world. with respect to china, obviously, we have serious differences with china on some very, very important issues, and i am as mindful of that as anybody, having served as secretary of state and in the senate. the issues of theft of
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intellectual property and access to market, south china sea. run the list. we all know them. those issues will never be traded for anything that has to do with climate. that's not going to happen. but climate is a critical stand-alone issue that we have to deal on in the sense that china has 30% of the emissions of the world, we're about 15% of the emissions of the world, add the eu to that and you have three entities that are more than 55% or so. so it's urgent that we find a way to compartmentalize, to move forward, and we'll wait and see. but president biden is very, very clear about the need to address the other issues with china. and i know some people have been concerned. nothing is going to be siphoned off into one area from another. >> a question for either of you
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on coal. your executive order talks about oil and gas on federal lands, but it doesn't really say much about coal. what is this administration's policy when it comes to coal? >> well, in terms of the oil and gas decision, it was to make sure we take a little pausz and review the entire strategy of how we're looking at public lands. so it will include looking at what new leases ought to be approved and sold. it's looking at our ability also to look at coal in that mix. so the program review is going to look at how we manage public lands consistent with climate but also consistent with the marriage between climate and really growing jobs of the future. so it will be in the mix to be looked at, but it is not at this point included. it was not part of the commitments on the campaign. but we're going to take a close look at all of i would. and can i just add on your comment about china, which i'm not going to speak to the international dynamic, but i am going to say that part of the
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challenge that we face here is a challenge that president biden has already started to address with his buy america pledge. we have to start not just shifting to clean energy, but it has to be manufactured in the united states of america, you know, not in other countries. and there is going to be a large discussion about how we make sure that a lot of the investment is about building up our manufacturing base again. that's great jobs. that's often hopefully union jobs. but it is also a wonderful opportunity for us to recoup the benefits of that manufacturing and lower the cost of clean energy. part of the way we're going to get there is by making sure the federal government buys american and that the federal government looks at its procurement across every agency so that the breadth of what we see -- communities
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and to begin to tackle the very challenge, the existential challenge of climate change. >> thank you. a question for both of you. can you give us a sense of when you expect to have the so-called ndc or u.s. target for cutting green house gas emissions as part of the paris accord? and can you also give us a sense of how ambitious you plan to make that number? will it be 40%, 50%, higher than that? >> i'm the dude who's supposed to deliver this in a timely way, and he sets the timing. so basically we want to make sure that the ndc is something that can be announced before the summit on earth day. and so we're going to be out of the gate working with the agencies to see what kind of reductions and mitigation opportunities there are and also, again, to look at our
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public lands to make sure that we can continue to store carbon in our soil, to work with agriculture and others, to look at how we better manage our forests so we're not seeing the devastating forest fires that we've been having before. the f government, every agency, you'll see many of them specifically tasked in this executive order will participate in the task force that we're going to have to actually develop the most ndc we can to deliver the kind of boost that secretary kerry is looking for to be able to ensure that our international efforts are robust and sufficient to address the challenge internationally. >> just to follow up on that for secretary kerry. how do you assure international partners that the u.s. will stick to whatever you propose after having seen the trump administration take the u.s. out
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of the paris accord? >> that's precisely why we're going to stick by it. i think our word is strong. i've been on the phone for the last few days talking to our allies in europe, elsewhere and around the world. they are welcoming us back. they know this administration already has a significant part of what has brought us -- will bring us to glasco which was the paris agreement. the obama-biden administration had great credibility on this issue. having president biden driving this forward is enormously meaningful to the folks there. they know i was deeply involved in the negotiations in paris and now asked by the president, by president biden to make certain that we do the same in glasco, if not more. i had no one question our credibility at this point in time. someone probably will.
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be answer will be that i think we can achieve things in the course of the next four years that will move the marketplace, the private sector, global finance, innovation and research that know one, no political person in the future would be able to undo what the planet will be organizing over these next months and years. this is the start of something new. i don't know if you read larry fink's letter of blackrock the other day, yesterday. there's a new awareness among major asset managers, commercial banks an others about the need to be putting resources into this endevour. i think the proof will be in what we do. we're not going to throw around
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a lot of big promises. we're going to try to bring to table to help inform her and the folks she's working with what we're picking up abroad and what people are doing abroad and the steps they are taking and now we have to measure ourselves against them and they will measure themselves against us. we're well aware of that. >> cities and states have picked up the initiaives to move forward on clean energy. we are talking at solutions that we're not asking anybody to sacrifice but add to their advantage. if you look at the record over the past four years, while the prior administration might have wanted energy, clean energy to head in a different direction, it's gone faster and farther than anyone ever expected. the idea that we could with this new work that we're doing
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together send signals to the marketplace who are purchasing at federal level and are relooking at different ways of having on the ground change, we can build that demand. we can grow significantly millions of clean energy jobs. all of a sudden the question won't be whether the private sector will buy into it. the private sector will drive it. this is going to be a signal setter. the way the federal government ought to set on what our values are. what we think the future needs to be. this is a value latent effort that will benefit jobs, benefit our health and lead to the future we want to land to our children. >> two in front and we'll come back. >> mr. secretary, there are oil
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and gas industry workers who are watching you both who will hear the message that the take away to them is that they are seeing an end to their livelihoods. what do you say to them? those people who president trump struck a cord with on the campaign trail when he promised to save their jobs. what is your message to them now and the oil industry executive who is are listening? are you putting them on notice today? >> we didn't come here to put anybody on notice except to the seriousness of president biden's attempt to do what needs to be done to deal with this crisis. it is a crisis. with respect to those two workers, no two people are more concerned about it and the president in the united states has expressed in any comment he's made about climate. the need to grow the new jobs that pay better, that are
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cleaner. you look at the consequences of black lung for a miner and measure that against the fastest growing job in the united states before covid was solar power technician. the same people can do those jobs. the choice of doing the solar power one is a better choice. this is happening. 75%, 70% of all the electricity that's come online in united states in the last few years came from renewables. not -- coal plants have been closing over the last 20 years. what president biden wants to do is make sure those folks have better choices. that they have alternatives. they can be the people to go to work to make the solar panels. they were making them here at home. that's going to be a particular focus of the build back better
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agenda and i think that unfortunately workers have been fed a false narrative. no surprise -- for the last female years. they have been fed the notion that dealing with climate is coming at their expense. no, it's not. what's happening to them is happening because of other market forces already taking place. tlps a lot of money to be made in the creation of these new jobs in these sectors. whether it's green hydrogen that's going to come. whether it's geothermal heat or whatever it's going to be, those are jobs. the same worker who works in south carolina today putting together a bmw, which happens to be made there and is currently
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an internal combustion can put it together. quality of life will be better when she's put her team together that produces choices for us that are healthier, less cancer, cleaner air. the greatest cost of america -- the greatest cause of children being hospitalized every summer in the united states, is environmentally induced asthma. that will change as we rein in what we call pollution in this country. i think that workers will see that with the efforts of the biden administration, they're going to have a much better set of choices and it will create more jobs than stuck where we were.
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>> we talked about the civilian conservation corps. that's the opportunity to put younger people into work. if you look at this it's set up a task force that's looking at these coal communities, communities that are really relying on their local energy and utility. it talks about how we can put people to work using the skills they have where they are. to look at those old abandoned oil and gas wells that are spewing out methane. all the mines that haven't been properly closed that are doing the same. that has great impact on climate but keep an opportunity for those individual workers to have work in their own communities. we're not going to ask people to
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go from the middle of ohio or pennsylvania and ship out to the coast to have solar jobs. solar jobs will be everywhere but we need to put people to work in their own communities. that's where their home is. that's where their vision is. we look at those opportunities for investment so we can get people understanding we're not trying to take away jobs. when we say climate change, people are going to think jobs just like president biden biden he hears the word climate change. we're going to do what secretary kerry says and start investing in new technologies and new manufacturing. that includes the large manufacturing like cement and steel. that's work that we should be doing