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tv   All In With Chris Hayes  MSNBC  July 6, 2021 12:00am-1:00am PDT

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and somebody trying to show her up. we'll never know definitively whether that was the case but that seems 100% to be the case there. so we've got this in some cases, it's just hard for me to buy in to that -- if you can find me a counter example of someone else failing a marijuana test and letting them compete, i can ride with you. i don't have a counterfactual that says that. >> i didn't even get to the nigerian team that they're trying to throw out. it's just a hot mess. bomani jones. that's it for the readout. all in with chris hayes starts now. >> tonight on all in. six months after the attack on democracy, new video and new arrests in new details on the investigation into the capital insurrection. then, how america missed the biden goal of 70% vaccinations by july 4th. >> the red states probably have a lot of people that are very very conservative in their thinking. and they think, well, i don't have to do that. but you're not thinking right. >> plus, the cruelty is the
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point. adam is talking about donald trump. and the twice impeached former president gives up the game on stage. >> you didn't pay tax on the car. i don't even know -- do you have to? does anyone know the answer to that stuff? >> david cay johnston has answers to all this stuff and he joins me on a super sized addition of all in starting now. good evening from chicago, i'm chris hayes. happy 4th of july. as the nation celebrates independence day this long weekend, we are also about to mark six months since the insurrection at the capitol in january. the department of justice has now arrested more than 500 people in connection with the attack. we are tracking a lot of different developments in those overlapping investigations. over the weekend, we have new details in the case of a former virginia police officer who, we should note, is not the only former police officer named
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thomas robertson. he is facing multiple charges after allegedly participating in the january 6th insurrection. according to prosecutors, robertson and another off officer entered the capital building, posed for this photo in front of the statue, making an obscene gesture. and boasted about their exploits and social media. robertson writing, quote, we actually attack the government. the right in one day took the acting u.s. capitol. after his arrest in january, pending trial on the condition that he could not own any fire arms or weapons. we'll, days later authorities found eight firearms at his home but the judge decided to give him a second chance. now, prosecutors are asking the judge to revoke robertson's release, saying he has, once again, violated those same conditions by, and i quote here, possessing a loaded rifle and pipe bomb at his home in purchasing an arsenal of 34 firearms online. they say robertson also tried
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to hide the transactions, indicating payments on venmo were for wedding photos. yesterday, robertson's lawyers responded to prosecutors with a truly special defense that reads in part, quote, mr. robertson was an antique gun lover. the guns he largely purchased but did not possess were antique guns from the world war ii era. so it's fine to them, apparently? because he bought them and not yet pick them up and he just really loves antique world war ii guns. i should know, world war ii guns are still guns and lawyers themselves admit they're not actually antics. there is an official definition for this. the u.s. government says firearms are only antique if they were manufactured before 1898, long before world war ii. but anyway, the guy just loves apparently to buy guns even when judges tell him not to. a judge will decide whether robertson will remain on pretrial release early next month. some other rioters on the capital january 6th have tried harder to hide evidence of their wrongdoing. a new review by the associated
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press finds at least 49 defendants are accused of trying to erase incriminating photos, videos, and text from phones or social media accounts documenting their conduct as a pro donald trump mob that storm congress. experts told the ap that they had a desperate willingness to -- once people realize they were in hot water. and they can, quote, service powerful proof of peoples consciousness of guilt and make it harder to negotiate plea deals and seek leniency in sentencing. there's also a new category of climbs, the department of justice -- capital insurrection. recently, the fbi has been making a flurry of arrests. in cases involving alleged attacks on journalists who are documenting the right on january 6th. the first was a 43-year-old illinois man named shane jason woods, and he allegedly assaulted media equipment set up on capitol grounds and then ran into and tackled a camera man, causing him to fall to the
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ground and drop his camera. the fbi went on to arrest several more people allegedly involved in similar taxes. we saw them documented as you see there at the virginia man, seen in this video smashing up media gear outside the capital. he allegedly bragged of his actions to a friend later that day via text. more of the horror of the attack continues to come out day by day as these cases move forward. this newly released court exhibit shows the disorienting and claustrophobic conditions officers were in on the frontlines as they tried to keep out the mob. [noise] tomorrow is a six month mark. six months since the worst attack on american democracy,
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arguably since the civil war. and it's still not over, of course. they continue to rest in charge more and more people per day. scott macfarlane is an investigative reporter who's been following all the details of these cases and he joins me now. scott, let's start with the former police officer robertson and his case. a sort of remarkable brief i have to say by his defense attorneys to advocate for their client and i'm not quite sure the judges gonna buy it. >> it's striking chris for a few different reasons because first about his defense lawyer is arguing that mr. robertson has no evidence of having the guns. if he did have the guns, they're antique guns because he's an antique gun hobbyists. but those specifics aside, here is where we are six months after the insurrection. so many back and forth arguments for defendants and prosecutors who simply have to be held in jail pending trial. trial itself? that's a long ways off. the first major trial to be
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scheduled so far with this insurrection chris is the accused oath keepers group. the trial date is late january 2022 which is a year after the insurrection. it's worth mentioning that people are being held in jail pre-trial which means that they'll have served a year in jail just to get to the trial date. the point here chris is that work closer to the starting line bend to the finishing line of most of these cases. >> yeah that's a really good point and you know we talked about this before. the sheer volume and capacity issues of that d.c. office which is dealing with it. you mentioned the oath keepers and it seems to me that the vast majority of folks that have been apprehended have been released like the oath keepers and something that comes out in the -- how can erode simply small sort of vanguard of very coordinated folks were to these key moments of breaching the outer perimeter and the inside of the capital. i want to play a little bit from the times documentary and
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oath keepers and talk about where those cases stand right now. take a listen. >> the oath keepers and far-right ministry group are also here. >> we had met already outside d.c. -- >> the leader said that the ready to follow trump's orders and take members of what they call the deep state into custody. they're organized and staging their military stout equipment neatly on the ground. and later they put on body armor. they talk on radios and chat with her supporters on a walkie talkie on solo. >> we have a good group. there is about 30 and 40 of us. we're sticking together and sticking to the plan. >> sticking together, is taking to the plan. 30 to 40 of them. how many have been apprehended and what do we know from government filings about how they're approaching that group? >> yeah chris there are three groups that were focused most intently because they're kind of the heart of the action right now. three far-right groups and the oath keepers being one of them. the proud boys being another and the most recent to be
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charged is the three percenters. this case is in its infancy right now. the oath keepers have made some progress. there are about 20 accused oath keepers. facing that conspiracy charge of peeling equipped for action that day of plotting and planning. prosecutors have secured three plea agreements of accused oath keepers and in all three cases the defendants have agreed to cooperate and health with the investigation. and just last week, chris, the prosecutors told the judge that they had productive plea negotiations with the other defendants in that case. it's an early win for the feds. >> we also saw from that video, every time i watch from the video i turn attentive to more and more details of the equipment that people have, certain people have. you know, there's a guy walking around with a baseball bat. you have folks famously with the plastic hand ties. but in that video we just showed, someone's got a strobe light on them. you can see, it's truly bizarre. you've got this sort of
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inversion in which the people attacking the police and the perimeter are equipped with precisely a disruptive crowd controlled devices that normally the police have and are being wielded on the police themselves. >> like a chemical spray, a hockey stick, a sharpen flagpole, and they got their hands on the police right shields. they used those riot shields against police. you have cases here with the feds alleged defendants are armed with makeshift weapons ready for actions. other cases where they alleged that the defendants found things and made them ready for action. as we sit here at the six month mark, a couple of lines jumped out at me. you have 516 federally charge defendants at least right now. the capitol police chief says that they're at least 800 legally in the capital and there may be more to come. but also another top line, chris, a lot of police and military veterans and a few locally elected government officials among those charged.
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they really stand out. >> scott mcfarland has been doing fantastic work on this day and day out. thanks so much for making time for us tonight. i want to bring in congresswoman elaine luria, she's a democrat of fortunate serving on the select committee investigating the january 6th insurrection. congresswoman, i guess my question for you is given how complex the legislative environment is in the capital right now, the biden agenda right now and competing apparent of have a fragile recovery as we emerge from covid-19 and battle this new variant, why did you want to be on this committee? what was your reaction to it? >> as you may know, i served in the military for 20 years and i took the oath of office very seriously when i first took it when i was 17 to my entire 20 year career and serving as a member of congress. and like you just showed in this last clip, the former police officer who is the very person who took an oath to defend his community and uphold those laws, the very duty that
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he had to upload those laws, he's the one breaking those and trying to disrupt the operations of our government and certifying our electoral results. and brutally attacking this mob of police officers. there's so much more to know about what happened on january 6th and this is just incredibly important work that we must do and ensure that something like this can never happen again and to protect our democracy and our government and our country moving forward. >> the original proposal which was printed out by a bipartisan commission and the details have been worked out with the ranking member on the homeland security, john katko. republicans voted against it. mitch mcconnell killed it with the filibuster in the senate. the select committee is there instead. the benefit that among other things that first idea had is that those commissioners would sort of be working on this full-time and how much of an enterprise do you foresee this in terms of just your own portfolios as a member of congress and the resources that you're all gonna have to pursue this?
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>> well, you know, this is very important work and i think all of us -- it's a small group and we're waiting on five additional nominees for minority leader mccarthy to fill out the committee and understanding how important this is for the country and to get to the bottom of the events on january six so those on the committee will be complemented by staff and will work at this tirelessly until we get to the bottom of the task and truly we will take the information where the investigation leads us and nothing is off the table. there is so much more to know about would happen on that day. what led up to the events of the six? why did we have better intelligence? why didn't have better preparation for this? why did it take so long for the national guard to arrive and reinforce the police? there's so much information to know so i think we just have to underscore the importance of this and put that due diligence and focused on to this effort to get the answers. >> are you confident you just mentioned that there are five members who will be names but
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minority leader kevin mccarthy. speaker pelosi names eight members, you among them. several democrats, and one republican. are you confident that there are members with whom you can in good faith and gauging cooperative inquiry into this extremely awful awful moment in american history and sort of get to the bottom of it and lay out the facts? >> i'm confident that there are people that we can do that in good faith with. i'm confident that liz cheney, who's part of the committee with us now. i can't really comment on minority leader mccarthy's deliberations as to who he's gonna nominate for this but i can guarantee you that people who are currently nominated and serving on this committee will do it impartially and non non biased way because this is a very important vote. >> do you sense on capitol hill people i've noted this before and even playing the sound that kevin mccarthy himself casting
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blame at donald trump for the insurrection and calling him frankly what was happening. the day everyone came back, although the majority of republicans voted against it, there was a sense of the trauma and the urgency and the horror of what happened and how close we came to something truly truly awful. and that's ebbed overtime. it's been an effort to whitewash it. do you feel that on capitol hill? >> i think it's still very real, very alive. very tangible for the people who were there. for the capitol police officers. i walk by and i say hello and i thank them for what they did and the situation they were in where it was dangerous and they were risking their lives to protect the capital and the lawmakers and the staff in the building during this insurrection. so i would say that it's very tangible and the fact that there are all of these charges, i think that the last person on the show mentioned 516 up to
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maybe 800 people who could potentially be charged as well as the people we mentioned who are packing media and journalists outside and i think the more we see of these images, the new york times took a very compelling video and understand that coordination an angle that this was taking place simultaneously. i think the more we learned, the more horrifying this becomes. >> congresswoman elaine luria who is been selected to serve, representing her district in virginia. thank you so much for your time tonight. >> thank you. >> all right, america has officially come up just short of president biden's ambitious goal to have 70% of adults partially vaccinated by the 4th of july. there's a shockingly easy way to figure out whether your state hit the mark or did not. we'll talk about that and the alarming spread of the delta variant next.
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may be a sign of a life-threatening condition. do not receive botox® cosmetic if you have a skin infection. side effects may include allergic reactions, injection site pain, headache, eyebrow, eyelid drooping, and eyelid swelling. tell your doctor about your medical history, muscle or nerve conditions, and medications including botulinum toxins as these may increase the risk of serious side effects. see for yourself at 70% of adults, partly vaccinated by the for the july. at least one shot. at least as a country we were not able to reach that. 67%, just shy. that said, 20 states have hit the goal, vermont, massachusetts, connecticut, maine, new mexico, new jersey, rhode island, pennsylvania, maryland, california, washington, new hampshire, new york, illinois, virginia, delaware, minnesota, colorado, oregon, washington d.c., puerto rico and guam have also reached
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the 70% mark. look at those states. what do they have in common? when you step back, look at the map, it's hard to ignore the fact that all these states basically our blue states. states carried by joe biden in the 2020 election. the rest of the country, particularly in those when trump won big, they are still struggling to get their vaccination rates up despite the highly deadly delta variant. mississippi is the lowest vaccination rate in the country just over 46% with one dose. we are trying to get them and others like them closer to the goal. -- last night, he won the pulitzer prize on his work in the covid pandemic and how america failed it. and, let me first give my thanks about the polls or it was great work.
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i want to talk about the divergence we are seeing in vaccination rates and in the beginning there was a lot of variables about states that ran hard and did a good and bad job. the further on, the more these underlying political shull shull surf -- sources give warring dynamics in the pass of combatting the virus. >> the pattern you identify show how polarized america's attitudes through the pandemic, and now to vaccinations, have become. i would send a small note of caution caution that, it's not the only factor driving this. of >> course. >> there are issues of trust, and so on. even in states that have met biden's goal, there are still going to be pockets of unprotected and unvaccinated people. it's really important to keep maintaining that push for more vaccinations across the board,
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not to be complacent, especially as we are seeing the delta variant, which is much more transmissible, just pummeling unvaccinated communities going around the u.s.. >> the u.s. always had a hard time mobilizing collective effort to undertake aspects of pandemic control-like tests and, testing, quarantine. batted that from the beginning. now it seems we won't go back to that. vaccination is really the key. what do we know about the delta? what are the three rules you lay out in your piece? what does that mean for american policy at this moment? >> the three rules are simple. the vaccines are still holding their own against the variance. the second, the variants are pummeling on unvaccinated people. third, the longer we have it, the second dynamic can continue in the less likely the first will hold. we will get the evolution of
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more transmissible variants that may start to really eat into the protection the vaccines provide. delta hasn't quite done that yet. one shot, it doesn't provide great protection against but to full vaccinations, it still seems to do so. no vaccine is perfect now, in the higher transmission rates get -- the more you will get a cases and hospitalizations. >> right. >> we should be resting on morals here. we should be trying our best to drive down the spread of delta, across the country. especially in unvaccinated communities, sadly using a lot of the measures you said that we haven't done very well at, chris. >> i saw this today, the white house on thursday saying it will send a specials plays --
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this is the same problem in many cases. low vaccination, you see a rise in case it is a vaccine, those will be the most resistant political and -- saying you can't have your wedding this july, we thought you could. you are dealing with the same core problem of the resistance, i'd on the vaccination side, or on the public health measure side. it's in important consequence of the erosion of trust that we had over the year and a half and it's like once you have the
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genie out of the bottle is hard to put it back in. we commend them for taking measures to do that. some measures like mask mandates have been rolled back to quickly, now we find herself in a difficult position where, we have sort of gone all in on vaccines, as the one protective measure that is going to save us and yet, in a lot of communities, vaccination rates are not high enough. that is not even considering people who want to benefit from that. immunocompromised people who -- who still are not eligible for vaccines. it is a difficult spot we find ourselves in even though the big picture is we rosier than it was. the optimism we are feeling is kind of ten u.s., and a lot depends on how will we do over the next few months
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domestically and internationally. >> we played at the open west virginia -- jim justice. in many places, republican officials have just kind of given upon it being their job. givethey are not anti backs, but they haven't put the shoulder to the retail -- will. we west virginia is far below the threshold a vaccination rates. we're talking about the deadliness here. take a listen. >> red states have a lot of people probably that are very, very conservative in their thinking. they think, i don't have to do that. you are not thinking. right they are in a lottery to themself. we have a lottery that basically says, if you are vaccinated, we will give you stuff. you have another lottery going on. it is the deaf lottery. >> the death lottery is a
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pretty good phrase. and reinforces the fact that we are still staring down the barrel of thousands of unnecessary deaths over the next couple of months over the summer. >> i agree. i think it will be a tragedy. those deaths are, once again, take hold of the most vulnerable communities. i want to sort of remember, we are all in this together. in the pandemic this remained a problem, even if we are vaccinated. you may personally feel very safe right now, and rightly so, but my third point and it stands, the longer we lao this to continue, and for the majority of the world that remains unvaccinated, the more likely you are going to get the emergence of variants that actually do beat the production that the vaccines offer. we are still making the same mistake as last year, treating
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this purely in individualistic terms. if you only ask am i safe, and with a vaccine only on that he may make decisions that will jeopardize you in the long term. we are in this together. we cannot stop until everyone is safe. >> and young, very wise words. as always, thank you for coming on. >> thanks, chris. >> here's a question -- can you still run for office as a republican if you denounce donald trump for -- say was camping for doing just that. that's next. that that's next. , right? sadly, not anymore. wow. so sudden. um, we're not about to have the "we need life insurance" conversation again, are we? no, we're having the "we're getting coverage
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hello, colonial penn? texas governor greg abbott is
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when i was diagnosed with dupuytren's contracture, i waited to get treated. thought surgery was my only option. but then i found out about nonsurgical treatments. it was a total game changer. learn more about the condition at now facing a high-profile challenge from within his own party, with allen west announcing his candidacy this weekend. was, to move from florida to texas after he lost reelection in congress and then stepped down last month as a chair of
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the republican party has been critical of abbott even participating in a protest of the governor's mansion over covid restrictions last fall. governor abbott easily won redirection in 2018 and 13 points. he hit just 44% in a poll last month. donald trump won texas by just five and a half points last year. so what is this challenge from the right mean for greg abbott, but more broadly texas republicans and republicans across the country? kristen soltis anderson as the founder of the polling and -- firm echelon insights, and tim miller the former manager for jeb bush's campaign. former spokesperson joins me now. kristen let me start with you. i know that he's faced a lot of political headwinds, the handling of the freeze in texas i think particularly hurt him quite a bit. i don't think that from the
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perspective of the median voter that he has been too liberal. and so i just wonder what incentive structure it creates for republican politicians when you see someone like allen west having abbott from the right and conducting the governance of texas going forward. >> will the incentive structure is if you're running for office and gives you a way to raise money and gives you intention and prominence and incentives to run for office short of being interested in the act of governing. in some ways allen west and primary of greg abbott doesn't surprise me a lot. whether greg abbott -- his job approval right now is mid forties as you showed and that chart. he's not primarily driven by disaffection with his style of governing. it's not necessarily about left or right or about the handling of things like the energy crisis in texas. if you have moderate republicans and fans of abbott that are not necessarily --
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added allen west is not necessarily the care for that issue. if on the other hand it's sagging because far-right republicans are viewing him more skeptically that's when you have to take it more seriously. and there's no real way over the last decade, more conventional republicans have beat back primary challenges with the exception of one thing and that is take it seriously. taking it seriously, putting your effort in to making sure that your opponent doesn't just get to have free reign and defined the race and doesn't have anything to have republicans beating back challenges from the far-right to do so. >> okay but my concern is some ways is the take it seriously issue is the main issue. i mean, west shows up at a protest of the covid restrictions at the governor's mansion. we saw this in ohio, state republicans elected members and the party itself or going nuts because of any sort of public health precautions. so taking the primary challenge seriously may concern bending the governing decisions to head
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off primary challenges in ways that will negatively affects public health or whatever the issue may be. >> well here's the good news for you, chris. the texas legislature is only in ten weeks every other year so they're actually through that session and you might have to call them back again and there might be a minimal amount of governing happening from greg abbott going forward. but i think so. i talk to republican consultant for rolling stone articles a few months ago about the party there, and the problem of all of the republicans facing is that donald trump and his ill attempts, when he called saddam hussein-like numbers out in rural texas, southern west texas and dipping those numbers in the houston suburbs and the dallas suburbs. and this is obviously a microcosm of the country but it starts there. and having this primary will mean that greg abbott will have to shore up that part of the state where he needs to have those saddam hussein-like numbers. what does that mean? we see these national guard
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troops going down to the border. there could be vigilante efforts by the state of texas to crackdown on immigrants on the border. i mean, that could be a real life example of a governing action that abbott might take now to shore up his flag to deal with someone like west. >> there's also news of another candidate, republican candidate in a crowded field and ohio, j.d. vance, who is a venture capitalist and yale law ground and i guess hollywood screen writer and producer. basically punches every elite tip possible. hates the elites. he's gonna deliver for average folks. he tweeted back in 2016 some nasty things about donald trump and it was reprehensible because it was against muslims. he said he was voting for evan mcmullin. he's now apologies-ing for that, kristen. he's asking people not to judge him by those tweets. he sincerely regrets saying them.
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and none of this is surprising, but the ritualistic, almost stalin us gravelling and self criticism struggle system -- in the era of trump is still remarkable to behold. >> bear in mind that there are a lot of republican voters who didn't necessarily love donald trump in the 2016 primary but as his presidency went along, many warmed up to him. even at the same time that republicans are losing voters. so when someone like j.d. vance says, yeah i wasn't a fan in 2017 but i change my tune. there are a lot of republican voters that sympathize with that perspective. so what i find in my research is that most republican voters are less interested in someone who has loyalty to trump the man and has been consistent ever since day one on that front, and they're more looking for someone who represents the kinds of fights donald trump has oriented the party toward. and that i think is the
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strategy you're seeing j.d. vance try to deploy in ohio. >> yes, i've read some of kristen's polling on this and i think the data is clear. donald trump, his ethos is what republicans like. that is whether choosing. they're not forced into it. it's affirmatively our vision. for one-timer can leadership should be. with the country is and who owns the country. who gets to violate and transgress, and who doesn't get the violin transgressed which i think is key. and i think that more than the cult personality, tim, is the core driver here. >> i think that's true, but you might be being a little generous. i think it's still about loyalty to trump. it's still part of the big picture here. even if it's 40% of the primary electorate. that's still a lot. the ohio senate races a perfect microcosm of what's happening in the paris. you have fellow christians
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watching us, lord help us, j.d. vance running for the seat. you have marco rubio supporter josh mandel, you have john kasich, you have all of these people. if you look at their twitter feeds, they're like shrines to donald trump. it's shameful. we are six months now passed his uptempo to overthrow the election. this could have been a race between three people of differing visions. you know, j.d. vance, josh mandel more tea party, other candidates more traditional establishment. it's not that. it's a competition to, yes, do what you guys are saying and represent that fight that donald trump bites and the people that need to be torn down and the people that need to be defeated, the elites in the left. but it also is an effort to suck up to just one guy. and it's very much still happening. j.d. vance is the starkest example of the flip-flop. but it's happening across all of these republican primaries.
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>> but i find remarkable at all is it's so preposterous flee obviously plotting away hawks there-ism. all of these people discovered this believe yesterday. everyone's just trying to get over, but because we're seeing how much you can turn people into marks people hit it to. will we consult whatever -- they'll by whatever we saw them if we give it to them in this package. kristen. >> i think if you actually -- the example that comes to mind most is less about the ohio senate race and more think about all of the members of congress who right after january 6th came out and were very critical and said he was responsible, etc. almost like the ones my from does shows that republican voters had a moment of, maybe we turn the page from the sky. but pretty quickly that went away because there is nobody else in the control room. there's no other leader of the
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party that has stepped up to sort of fill that void. and so as a result, donald trump the de facto leader of the party and there's no incentive to cross him. >> if donald trump decided to wage a campaign to make hang mike pence a litmus test for the republican party, the vast majority of republican officers would get behind hanging mike pence. and that is a grim, dark asked thing to say but it is the g.o.a.t. truth right now. it is that bad. i truly believe that. kristen, you're shaking your head but i truly don't think there is a line. i really don't. >> put it on a hot, kristen. you know you would. put it on a hat. >> i don't think there's an actual line. i do not think that there's an actual line of moral transgression that could be crossed at this point that people would blanch out. that's part of what's so dark about this moment. is that there's no actual thing to cross over and people say, that's too much for me. i don't think it's there. maybe it is, kristen. maybe i'm wrong and the polling
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shows it's there. >> well, thankfully i've never actually pulled the exact proposition that you just made but i do think that there are lines where you do see moments where donald trump would say or do things that some people in the party would brush off and others would just say they didn't believe it was real they didn't believe it was happening. they didn't think it was being trusted. that's why push back against the idea that they would just indoors some sort of horrible thing just because donald trump said so. i think there's a lot of other complexity going on there. and hopefully, my god, i hope nobody ever back something is horrific is that. >> i have to say i think a lot of things have been endorsed. that's why i find myself in such a disquiet about the state of the nation. kristen soltis anderson and tim miller, thank you both. next, the author behind the phrase that would define the trump era. adam serwer joins me on his phenomenal new book, why the cruelty extends beyond the past four. years after this.
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through donald trump's term in office, his term was shocking and dark and left people wondering how can the people in line with an be so cruel? and october of 2019, the atlantic answered the question. cruelty is the point. they coined a term from this distant moment. there's a new book out with a new title of why the as they became the cultural touch point it did writing
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adam serwer joins us tonight. congratulations on your great book. it's more about rhetoric, it's policy that this cruelty was substantiated. talk about what you mean. >> obviously cruelty is an individual problem. all human beings are capable of cruelty. but we talk about it here in politics you can demonize group and justify denying people rights and political constitutions and process. from the beginning of the 2016 campaign with donald trump, he was all about attacking groups that were seen as external to the republican coalition, and blaming them for the struggles of his base in a way that would allow him to engage in, as president, to justify using state force against religious and ethnic minority who he blamed for the country suffering. i think, our system, it
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incentivizes this because between the gerrymandering and the electoral college it talks about the conservative numbers of electorate. it's urgent for the party representing that to tell the group they are on the verge of destruction so that anything they do, in order to prevent the -- ash justified. the apocalyptic rhetoric donald trump used all the time. that's how you end up with people justifying horrible things. the horrible things then become her and -- horrendous acts against impending doom. something like donald trump becomes a hero standing in between you and annihilation, instead of a narcissist who enjoys being called to people weaker than he is. >> you read about also the thrill that the sort of throw transgression which is a theme that comes up in the title essay as well. someone used the term i think
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of via signaling, to talk about the opposite of -- >> it's a display of power. it's also a way to form community. >> yes. the >> de politicize menaces i -- metaphor i use is when you're in elementary school, kids teasing other kids, you want to join in because you want to be cool or hear afraid to say something because you don't want to be the next target. and that teasing becomes a community formation where the tv -- the kid seizing the kid on the outside, they form a bond through this active transgression. they know they are doing something bad, they know they're doing something mean, but they are forming a line that says we are us and they are them, therefore anything us does is against the them is identify. -- justified. >> that thinking shows up, and a great essay here that wasn't
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published about police units, the us versus them thinking, it really flourishes both in rhetoric and action in the way the police units talk to the public. you make an argument, basically, in the essay that they should be abolished, they should not exist. why? >> on unions advocate for their workers. the difference is, police unions, because they have the authority to use lethal force in order to protect the public, they have an interest in maintaining a level of impunity for that use of force against the public where they are meant to attack. it not only undermines the communities trusting them, it makes it difficult for them to do their. drop it talks about the authorities doing their job and silences them by saying he's getting out of line and using their authority. the unions called surveyed the public eyes the enemy, rather than defending people.
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ultimate power corrupts, absolutely, no power like -- without accountability for that kind of power, it necessarily develops a contempt for the public it's meant to serve. when we talk about non democratic government to understand authoritarian rhetoric is not upholding to the people and they will boost their powers because they are not being held accountable democratically. this is a kind of negative feedback loop, that has been created where the police units are mistrust by the public, particular members of the public that suffered the most from high crime. internally, officers who abuse their powers, or misbehave, are protected from that misbehavior both by the structure of the system in which they work, and by the fact that the officers who stick up and say discussion have the kind of power he has, would be silenced and ostracized by other members of the community, in part because of the existence of the union.
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>> i gotta say, you are running throughout this journey and it's been a moral begin. very early on, you were clear about the scope of the moral threat that was supposed, and not just by the specifics of donald trump or who he was, but by the movement, and the urges in american life that gave rise to him. they haven't gone anywhere, have they? >> no. like i said, this is a structural probe -- problem. it's an issue of racial pollers them between the two parties. the kind of arguments in the book, they go back to the founding fathers. all men were created equal they said, and we want to read a constitution that protects the ownership of slaves. these unfulfilled promises in the declaration of independence of the founding promises of our country, our constant sight of conflict because the people who
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are denied those promises want to be free, and they demand. it >> that's right. >> the people who don't want to defend those -- they deny what they are owed under the constitution. donald trump is the lives money station of. that and long predates him, it's been a thing of both parties. it's something we struggle with as americans, and will continue to, regardless of what happens to them. >> the new book is called the cruelty is the past and -- it is the point. check it, out out now. thank you for joining, us adam. >> thank you so much. >> don't go anywhere. much more to come on our super sized patriot to july 4th, july 5th addition of all in. continues after this. s after this try microban24 bathroom cleaner. simply spray and wipe away to easily dissolve soap scum, and kill 99.9% of viruses and bacteria initially. then reapply and allow to dry on tile
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