tv Ayman MSNBC January 9, 2022 6:00pm-7:00pm PST
and so many questions left unanswered from the january 6 insurrection. i'll ask a sister and brother-in-law to roseann boilin who died during the insurrection what accountability would look like for them today. plus imagine introducing yourself to your colleagues while hiding under chairs and fearing for your life. that was the experience freshman congresswoman sarah jacobs had during her first week on the job. she'll join us live to share her story. then as we were just discussing there, new texts reveal the even more concerning influence that fox news host sean hannity had on the previous administration. we'll break it down with our sunday night panel. let's get started. with every day that has passed since the january 6th attack it
has become more and more clear just how damaged we as a country are. the insurrection exposed both the deepening fault lines in our population and cracks in the very structure of our democracy. it opened a wound many of us want to heal from but find ourselves quite honestly unable to. a sentiment president joe biden reiterated thursday on the anniversary of the attack. >> the way you have to heal is recognize the extent of the wound. you can't pretend. this is serious stuff. we got to face it. that is what great nations do. they face the truth. deal with it. and move on. >> president biden is right here. how can we heal when our cries for justice and accountability have largely gone unanswered, when the people and the party that stood to benefit from overturning the election results refused to even acknowledge the realities of what happened on
that day? when after a year of investigation no one has been held accountable outside of some of the foot soldiers in trump's mob. a national healing process is necessary. don't get me wrong. but as i found out over the past year it is also something that the families who lost loved ones on that day are also struggling with. this is roseann boyland one of the five people who died at the capitol on january 6th. though i didn't know roseann personally we both came from the same hometown, went to the same high school. a year ago to this day her brother-in-law justin cave who was a friend of mine in high school reached out to me on facebook and asked if i would be willing to hear her story. that sparked a year-long investigation into the circumstances surrounding her death. now in the months before january 6 her family and friend believed she had fallen deeper and deeper into the qanon conspiracy theory world undergoing a rapid radicalization. they had no other way to explain how she went from an apolitical woman who was devoted to her
extended family into a hard core supporter of donald trump. now in the months since roseann's death her family has struggled to find answers as to how exactly she died. it is a question that a lot of people in this country have. now according to the medical examiner's office it was because of a prescription drug overdose. a conclusion that didn't make sense to the family given the video evidence from that day. as the republican party has tried to distort the narrative of the january 6th attack, roseann's family has had to deal with her death being used for political ends by the republican party. much like our national search for healing and accountability the family's efforts to uncover the truth often left them with more questions than answers. joining me now are justin and alana cave. this is their first ever live tv interview together. they are sister and brother-in-law of roseann boyland who as i mentioned died at the capitol on january 6th. guys, thank you so much. it is good to see you. i know it's been a year since
your sister died. we just came out of the holiday season. we have talked about this in the past you and i. tell us how you and your family are doing. what were the holidays like this year without her? what did you tell your children who i know were very close to their aunt ro-ro about why she wasn't with you. >> yeah, this last six months have been really difficult. we went straight from thanksgiving, or excuse me, six weeks, we went from thanksgiving to christmas to new year's to the anniversary, so it was really hard for all of us in the family. our oldest daughter who is 6 wanted us to say that christmas just wasn't the same without ro-ro. our youngest daughter who is 5 had mentioned that all she wanted for christmas was ro-ro to be back. so it was pretty difficult trying to explain to them that's not how it works. and i would tell them all about
it one day but, yeah. it was awful. >> we went out of town for january 6 and we had some press requests and decided to turn the television off and try to spend some time together as a family. for me it was hard watching lana's parents on january 6th, you know, you could see it on their faces having to wrestle with the memories from a year ago this week when this tragedy happened. you know, it was really difficult. >> i was going to say i appreciate you taking the time this evening. i know how difficult it is for your family. i really appreciate you joining me this evening to talk about this. as i mentioned, it's ban year to the day since you actually reached out to me in the immediate aftermath of roseann's death. you, yourself, made a lot of headlines when you called for the 25th amendment to be invoked against president trump. how do you feel about that a
year on? do you have any regrets? do you still stand by that given everything that has played out since then? >> i do. it was really difficult. i've actually done television in the past myself but nothing will ever prepare you for losing a loved one this way. and we had every major media press publication outlet in this country and seven or eight other countries contact us or try to contact us and the reason that i reached out to you is because i know you. of all the other press that reached out to us i didn't play soccer with them as a kid like i did with you. and so for me that was comforting. >> on a national level, there hasn't really been any accountability for what happened that day. some of the low level rioters have been punished but no one at the top has been held accountable. what would accountability look like to you and your family to your parents both for what
happened to roseann but also for the broader riot and insurrection itself? >> well, i think that the people that have been saying the big lie, the perpetrators and enablers of the big lie need to be stopped somehow. the social media has made a huge platform for them to be able to spread all of this disinformation and they are purposely targeting people. so i just wish there was a way that it could be stopped on a level of individual as well as -- >> you know, what we really want to accomplish i think is to try to have something positive come from this. given the circumstances that is going to be really hard to do. but we don't want to see this happen again in our country. we don't want this to happen to somebody else or to another family.
i think that is why we agreed to do the podcast to try to shed some light on roseann so that maybe there's other families out there or other people that could recognize this or if they see something similar happening with a loved one. the main thing is we don't want this to happen again. >> it's a really good point. you definitely talk about trying to prevent this from happening again and, yet, to some extent you have the republican party which continues to downplay and brush january 6th under the rug. even some of the people who originally condemned trump for what happened that day have back tracked. i'm sure you've seen them as well. some of his fellow republican colleagues. are you surprised by this and are you, as somebody who lost a loved one to this conspiracy theory but at the same time to the big lie, are you insulted by their attempts to downplay the event where roseann was killed? >> you know, it is disheartening.
i'm glad to see there is a january 6 committee. the last special committee i can remember was benghazi. so to see congressional republicans call this the unselect committee or to kind of shrug off the congressional subpoenas is a little disheartening because i think that is the effort we need to figure out what really happened here. but yeah. it is difficult. lana and i have watched so many hours of footage from that day, so many hours of footage from the scene right on the steps of the west terrace where roseann died. you know, it is hard to call it a peaceful protest. and for us personally we don't know what accountability looks like but we all have to try to work together to figure out how this happened, why this happened, and what we'll do to make sure it doesn't happen again. >> lana, since the podcast came out i know there's been new footage that has emerged in the area where roseann died in the tunnel there on the capitol.
i know that you have been really spending a lot of time trying to piece together the final minutes of what happened to your sister. did you learn anything new from this footage that came out? what does that reveal to you about her final minutes? does it bring you any closer to some of the answers you're looking for? >> it doesn't bring me any closer to the answers but i was very surprised to see her actually inside of the tunnel. a lot further in than i originally thought. so that was really hard for me to see because she was so claustrophic and hated people being around her. even if she was just in the tunnel without a bunch of people that would be unlike her. but then you have all of the people surrounding her. it was uncharacteristic of her but sad to see that something had that much power over her to
think that was necessary to do. >> right. where she would end up on the steps of the capitol building during anne electoral process on a riot line. that wasn't like roseann. >> it seems like so out of character for her from what i've learned from both of you and what we've learned over the past year. has it changed your perception at all about her and what she believed when and why she went up to the capitol on that day, lonna? >> no, it doesn't change. i know that roseann has always wanted to help people and that's one of the things i tell our daughters is, you know, one day i'll explain this to you but all you need to know for right now is that roseann loved you so much and that she was trying to help you and other children so it doesn't change. >> you know, roseann was into this qanon thing and you hear these words lately on the news like radicalization or extremism
and i think it is safe to say right now at this point in our country we have a problem with extremism and it is going to look different for different people. you know, me personally for the last year i've been trying to wrestle with my own thoughts and emotions and feelings and anger even and i think the trauma for a lot of people can be a path to extremism. we just need to address some of the issues we've been having as a country moving forward. you know, over the next couple years. we're going to move into the midterm elections, the next presidential election. i really wanted to say to everybody, you know, i have a lot of conservative friend and family and half of our family are conservative and half of our family aren't. my friends that are conservative think i'm liberal and my liberal and progressive friends think that i'm conservative. what i want to say is whether you cast a vote for the republican party or democratic party you are not talking about the enemy. you're talking about your friends, family members, co-workers, and neighbors. it is important we all remember
that as we move forward together as a family, community, country over the next couple years. >> justin and lonna cave i want to say thank you very much to you. i know how difficult this time of year has been. thank you for letting me tell your story. at the same time, i do want to tell everyone if you haven't already be sure to check out the msnbc original podcast "american radical" it is a five-part investigation into roseann boyland's life and radicalization and her ultimate death at the capitol. all five episodes are out now wherever you get your podcasts or you can scan the qr code on your screen. still ahead many americans watched the insurrection play out live on tv but imagine being inside the house chamber at the time. i'll speak with freshman congresswoman sarah jacobs about her experience next. plus, ted cruz came under fire this week from the right after accurately labeling the
capitol assault a terrorist attack. i'll take a look at why we should be labeling insurrectionists as domestic terrorists. first, richard lui is here with the latest on the massive, heart breaking story out of new york city. >> thanks. we have the latest on cause and casualties. the 120-unit building saw injuries on all 19 floors. some 200 firefighters were at the five-alarm fire. our nbc's kathy park has more. >> reporter: officials say this is one of the deadliest fires in new york city history. the fire broke out shortly after 11:00 this morning and was knocked down around 1:00. this was a five-alarm fire but did some extensive damage. the fire officials are telling us that it started somewhere on the second or third floor. while the fire spread quickly, so did the smoke. 19 confirmed dead. nine of them being children. ten adults. several people are suffering from smoke inhalation at this hour. right now officials say this is
still under investigation but earlier reports suggest that the fire was sparked by a malfunctioning space heater. tonight the community is mourning. this is a largely immigrant population and the red cross is on site to register the displaced. back to you. >> kathy, thank you for that. we're following the tragic death of comedian and actor bob saget at the age of 65. according to the sheriff's office he was found dead in his hotel earlier today. detectives found no signs of foul play or drug use. ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪
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i couldn't open the packaging, the sound of the doors closing and being locked, introducing myself to my colleagues as we were hiding under the chairs. grabbing my hand. fashioning weapons out of stanchions and pens and my high heels. ready to take on the rioters who were banging on the doors behind us. >> that was california representative sara jacobs. last january jacobs was just one of the 64 house freshmen who arrived in washington, d.c. for the first time eager to serve their country and constituents. but new job jitters would quickly take a turn when just days into the freshman's term as you heard there, their new work place would become this scene of a violent and deadly insurrection. congresswoman sara jacobs joins me now. thank you so much for your time. it has been a year. how do you feel a year later? what reflections have you had about what this year has been
for you? >> well, thank you so much for having me on. obviously this last week was a reele tough anniversary for our country and for me personally. i am very grateful i had a therapist prior to january 6th of last year i've worked with to process the trauma of what happened. and i think it is important to note that whether you experienced it first hand or whether you watched it on tv we all collectively suffered a trauma and i hope people are getting the help and support that they need. but it really clarified for me the job. which is that it is not about the policy disagreements we may have with each other as important as those are. it really is about whether we are doing what we need to do to protect and preserve our democracy. that is the job right now. >> you spoke to my colleagues at nbc news about how that day shaped your view of the work that goes inside the capitol. in part you said they tried to
kill me here on my fourth day. of course i don't feel the same kinds of warm and fuzzy's about this place. talk to me about that. how has your experience and the experience you went through january 6th impacted how you serve, what your priorities are as a congress woman? >> it has obviously clouded everything and in the beginning it was really hard to go back sometimes. that night after the attack i went and sat on the house floor and watched the rest of the proceedings and i felt it was really important for me not only because it was important we did our constitutional duty but i didn't have the last memory of that place being this catastrophic thing that had happened. and so for me, it really highlights the importance of the work. it really clarifies what we need to be doing. and it really has taught me just how fragile our democracy is and how much more work we need to do to shore it up.
>> you previously worked at the state department dealing with extremism, actually in other countries. did you ever think something like this would happen, could happen here in the united states? are we doing enough to prevent it from happening again both on the prevention of radicalism and extremism as well as an insurrection or attempted coup? >> you know, i never thought it would happen here. i guess looking back it's clear that there were some serious warning signs and thought lines that should have given us some clues it might be possible. when we look at these kinds of political violence what we often talk about is individuals who will mobilize around the fault lines in a society. and so i think for me it is clear that we need to hold anyone accountable who incited, encouraged, or committed these acts of violence. when we look overseas it is clear that immediate accountability from a first attempt is incredibly important in making sure we don't have
future such attempts. but that also we will never really be able to move forward if we don't get to the truth of what happened and if we don't have an honest reckoning of our past as a country both the gory and the glory and the racial injustice that has been a through line of it all so we can come together as a country and move forward with a common narrative. that is the only way we'll be able to really get to unity and that is what i and my colleagues are focused on doing. >> do you ever regret running for office? even before january 6th serving in congress had become increasingly dangerous. in 2017 representative scalise was shot at a congressional baseball game. you also have colleagues of yours like representative ilhan omar who receive death threats almost daily. they have additional protection. did that ever make you say, what did he get myself into? why did i run for this position?
>> it is certainly a difficult job and there have been difficult days since january 6 as i processed the trauma of what happened to me and our country. but i also feel so honored that the people of the 53rd congressional district in california entrusted me to help lead them in this historic time and i take that very seriously. and i focus on that every day when i go to work. >> let me ask you finally, looking ahead, do you think what happened at the capitol will motivate people to come out in the midterms? how do you feel about your party's chances given you are a year into it and everything that has played out, given what the party is trying to achieve and what has been stonewalled by the republicans so far. how do you think your heart will do come the midterms? >> i think it is incredibly important we recognize that protecting our democracy is not a partisan thing. it is going to take all of us regardless of our political
party coming together and deciding that our democracy is worth preserving. i hope that voters when it comes time will vote for candidates who support our democracy and support our electoral processes and support the will of the people being what gets implemented regardless of political party and i feel hopeful we'll see that. >> all right. california congresswoman sarah jacobs thank you so much for your time. we are grateful we had a chance to spend some time with you this weekment thank you. when we come back we'll take a look at why fox news host sean hannity's texts ahead of january 6 are actually terrifying. don't go anywhere. why does walgreens offer prescription copays as low as zero dollars? ♪ ♪ so you won't have a medicare in the world. ♪ ♪
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involved in the investigation into january 6th. this week the house select committee asked hannity to come before the panel to answer questions about his communications with the trump administration, with trump himself in the days surrounding the insurrection. the committee is actually bringing receipts to all this in that same request they actually unveiled a trove of new texts from hannity to trump's chief of staff mark meadows from that time. now, if this sounds familiar that is because just last month the committee released a flurry of messages from hannity and other fox news personalities, part of their investigation. but it appears their communication with the white house actually didn't stop there. express secretary stephanie grisham has revealed several hosts from the conservative network had a direct line to the white house residence. another former senior administration official told "the washington post" trump would sometimes dial hannity and lou dobbs directly into oval office staff meetings. i don't know how many times i
have to say this but this is not normal behavior for a news channel. let's be clear here. fox news channel isn't actually a news channel at all. it is the communications arm of the republican party. under former president trump the network effectively functioned and served as a state run media outlet. joining me to discuss is the president of media matters a progressive media watch dog group and ben collins a senior reporter for nbc news covering disinformation and extremism online. great to have you both with us. hannity's lawyer said that testifying would raise serious constitutional issues concerning freedom of the press. back in 2016 hannity declared on his own twitter account, i'm not a journalist, jack. in reference to jack dorsey, ceo of twitter, i am a talk show host. >> that argument here and some of the revelations totally
obliterate that. in one piece of information that was released hannity had an enormous scoop which was information about a supposed exodus from the white house press council's office if trump moved down a specific path. that is explosive news. instead of reporting it and sharing it internally at the network he did what a political operative would do and engaged in crisis management. even the little bit that's been revealed so far just totally obliterates any of those concerns as well as a pretty long track record of trump functioning more like an operative. he wrote a campaign ad for the campaign in the summer of 2020. i just don't think that argument has any validity here. >> ben, to angulo's point here can fox viewers tell the difference between who is a journalist, commentator, or host? how can that kind of line blurring be dangerous? at the end of the day they are watching. they don't know sean hannity knew about a possible coup or
possible insurrection at the capitol, potential violence, because he didn't report on it. at the end as angelo was saying he is involved in crisis management. you see hannity appearing at rallies with trump. >> fox pr tries to draw a hard line between what happens in the day time and at night on fox news. fox news prime is a different product and that to them is, their quote is standing up for what's right which is a pun or whatever but the line is increasingly thin and vague as to what to them is basically counseling republican candidates like donald trump and being a news network. that is the prime dishonesty is sean hannity knew this was bad. he knew what was happening on january 6th was a horrific thing, an attack on the capitol, you know, there was a riot that went too far at the very least. at worst it is an insurrection or coup. but in the year since then he has done nothing but down play
it, nothing but double down on donald trump who he was trying to talk off the ledge that day and just couldn't get to him. nobody could get to him in time really. and that remains the unanswered question. >> there is a stark difference here between what these hosts are saying on air and what they're saying in these text messages. it is a point that mehdi hasan and i were talking about, how much disdain and contempt they have for their viewers. why are they lying to their viewers saying one thing behind closed doors in private to officials whether it is about january 6th, whether it is about vaccines and covid and then what they're saying on the air to their viewers? >> that is of all of this, i don't use the word lightly, but it is a stunning level of deception even for fox news. this little bit of text that has come out. we've known they had political bias and were working with trump but this little piece we've
already seen shows something, and ben was getting to that before, which is that they know better. this shows very clearly and concretely that he knew better. that is the part i find so disturbing about the whole thing. they clearly have contempt for their audience. 774 instances of them undermining the election in the first two weeks after it was called for biden. they built the scaffolding for the attack while simultaneously once it became clear the scaffolding they built would be operationalized for something were behind the scenes trying to dial it back but that day, that night he was sending those text messages he was promoting the rally, had peter navarro on his radio show telling people it was like when washington crossed the delaware which was a sneak attack during the revolutionary war. he did know better but continued to push his audience down a path he knew had pretty high risk to it. >> ben, i am curious to get your thoughts. you track so much information and disinformation out there. could this disconnect between
public and private within fox just be a result of fox's attempt to try to edge out new competition like news max and oan which are even further to the right and then if you throw in websites and online news sites that are even more to the right of those news channels is this fox just simply making a business decision for viewers and ratings that, hey if we don't turn this way, if we don't offer viewers this more extreme perspective, we're going to lose our base to these more extreme outlets? >> yeah, i think the numbers tell the whole story. they made an attempt to distance themselves from donald trump in the weeks after the insurrection and it didn't work. people fled to news max, to oan. the people who watch oan specifically, those are people who don't want reality. they just want things that confirm what they already believe entire. i don't know if you've spent ten minutes watching that network but it is a pathway to a different reality entirely.
that is what happened in the months afterwards. they thought, hey. maybe we can move forward with a different messenger but largely the same themes as donald trump was pushing just minus all the coup stuff. and they realized it wasn't working. they were going to keep hemorrhaging all these viewers. they were finding news max on their dialer or oan. it is absolutely a calculated choice i think because the horse left the barn a long time ago with this stuff. or the inmates run the asylum. i don't know which expression you want to use here but they can't rein this in here. trumpism has engulfed the party. it has engulfed right wing media. they can't rein it in. it's too late. >> when you look at this -- go ahead. >> the question is really important because it doesn't just look back. it tells us where they are going and they are going to be plucking more and more things from the fever swamps and main streaming them. that conspiracy theory about the
data base for example was perculating for months online before tucker carlson did a big segment about it or even the fbi was involved in the false flag attack on january 6. you know, tucker carlson made that a thing. then a couple days ago he made ted cruz during his apology start to validate and reinforce that very conspiracy theory. so i think it means they'll get even crazier not just where they've been. >> you are seeing some of the discourse seep its way into comments made by people like ron desantis the governor of florida who peddles some of these conspiracy theories about what happened on january 6th. you can see how this situation is going to spread in the year ahead. angelo and ben collins, thanks to both of you guys. good to see you. coming up progressives are celebrating the re-ignited effort to expand the supreme court but nothing is ever easy in a split senate.
the push to expand the supreme court was reignited this week when the congressional progressive caucus endorsed a bill expanding the bench. the judiciary act of 2021 originally introduced by house democrats last april would expand the court from nine seats to 13. and the caucus's endorsement means the judiciary committee act will now have the support of well over a hundred house democrats. in reality, don't hold your
breath. the bill might be popular among progressives but it is going to need a lot more democratic support to make it through congress. plus as we know, it takes 60 senators to advance any legislation and democrats only have the slim majority. also weighing in on all of this president biden's supreme court commission. it was reported last month that the commission does not plan to make a recommendation on whether to expand the bench or not believe it or not. this is a major blow to those who actually support reforming the court. nevertheless the timing of the caucus's endorsement is key, backing the bill at the start of an election year gives progressive lawmakers fresh talking points. we'll continue to keep an eye on this legislative effort and see how it advances as we edge closer to primary season. before we go to break we have been following that deadly fire out of the bronx earlier which left 19 people dead including nine children. more than 60 others were injured. new york city mayor eric adams called this the worst fire the city has seen in some 30 years.
investigators believe the fire was started by a malfunctioning space heater in a bedroom. we'll keep you updated as we know more throughout this hour. when we come back, why the justice department is avoiding domestic terrorism sentences for january 6th defendants. i'll ask the former senior director for counterterrorism at the national security council about it. for people living with h-i-v, keep being you. and ask your doctor about biktarvy. biktarvy is a complete, one-pill, once-a-day treatment used for h-i-v in certain adults. it's not a cure, but with one small pill, biktarvy fights h-i-v to help you get to and stay undetectable. that's when the amount of virus is so low it cannot be measured by a lab test. research shows people who take h-i-v treatment every day and get to and stay undetectable can no longer transmit h-i-v through sex. serious side effects can occur, including kidney problems and kidney failure. rare, life-threatening side effects
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we are approaching a solemn anniversary this week and it is an anniversary of a violent terrorist attack on the capitol. the way i phrased things yesterday it was sloppy and it was frankly dumb >> i don't buy that. whoa, whoa. i don't buy that. >> all right. so i know that we've all had a lot of fun dunking on ted cruz this week for his embarrassing display on fox. he mean, honestly when you just
watch that how could we not dunk on him. but the interaction between cruz and carlson also demonstrated just how far the right is willing to go to dpas light you into thinking january 6 was not a i mean, to be clear here, the fbi defines domestic terrorism as violent criminal acts committed by individuals and/or groups to further ideological. now with that definition in mind, how could anyone honestly look at that video from january 6 and call it by any other name other than terrorism? what happened on january 6 was domestic terror, and that's why the next time tucker carlson or your crazy uncle or anyone else tries to call it anything but
that, we need to call out the hypocrisy. joining me is a former senior director for county terrorism at the national security council and for ford's school of public affairs. from a big picture here, and we'll get into the law later, but do you agree that what we witnessed on january 6 was if fact domestic terrorism? is there any other way to look at it. >> yes, absolutely. it fits the fbi definition. there is a statute under the patriot act or clause under the patriot act that lays out a three-part testify anything of what constitutes an act of domestic terrorism. so the activity on january 6 or a lot of that activity fits within that definition.
and a whole host of senior officials have labeled it an act of domestic terrorism. so it definitely fits the definition >> take me through the process of how or why prosecutors choose to call the act itself an act of domestic terrorism but then charge individuals with things that don't reflect the seriousness of what we witnessed that day? and i know they're still building up their cases, but we're seeing things like trespassing, entering congressional property or trying to disrupt congressional proceedings, but we're not seeing the term "terrorism" applied in the charges leveled against these individuals. why do you think that is? >> this is one of the really difficult aspects of the domestic terrorism issue in the united states versus international terrorism. it's a complex of legal
framework to get through. there is a definition of domestic terrorism. we just talked about that. but there is no crime of domestic terrorism, likewise, there is no list of domestic terrorist organizations like there is on the foreign side. that's why prosecutors can't bring material support charges against individuals aligned with different domestic extremist ideologies, because there's no list of these groups here in the u.s. so prosecutors have to use different federal laws to then bring charges forward. if you look at the pool of people who have been charged and arrested, the number only seems to get bigger every week. none of the charges have the words terrorism in it. there are other serious federal crimes, that is something prosecutors, i'm sure, have had to look at. what charges can they bring forward, which charges will stick in court and what is the potential as they gather additional information or
evidence? there's a different clause known as terrorism enhancements. there's 57 different crimes under that terrorism enhancement statute. but so far, maybe outside of the crimes of destroying property at the capitol, there doesn't seem an inclination right now to bring any of these terrorism enhancement charges. >> there are some in the muslim community, i am one of them, who are looking at how some of those people are being treated and are rightly thinking that if the people who stormed the capitol on january 6 were black or brown or muslim, instead of being overwhelmingly white, the investigation, the prosecutions, the sentences, or the sentencing, excuse me, would look a lot different than what we're seeing right now. is that a fair point? >> yeah, i personally don't think so. if anyone's sensitive to that, it's me.
i'm also muslim-american. it made me very unique with my own identity, but with all that said, part of the challenge is that because the individuals being charged with the crimes for january 6th, because they're not part of formal terrorist organizations that the u.s. has identified overseas, that's why these more, the heavier sentences that you see on, or we used to see on home-grown extremism cases in the u.s. haven't been brought forward. because the proud boys are not listed as a domestic terrorism list, or qanon. so until the law changes, if at all with respect to capturing extremist groups here, prosecutors don't have the same tools that they would have used in the past. i don't think there's a racial bias here. >> should they? >> well, again, this is one of the really interesting debates in this conversation, about what more does the country need to do
with respect to dealing with domestic terrorism environment as it is right now. i, i have argued for a while now that we at least need to have a conversation about what would a domestic terrorism organization list look like, and who would be in control of it, and how would it be managed to make sure it's not abused. but right now, the political will for that in congress doesn't seem to be there. so if it's not going to come through the law, where else would it come through? that's a really tough nut to crack, to get to this issue of is there racial bias in the way these cases are being handled right now. >> yeah, and of course when you're dealing with domestic concerns, you rub up against the first amendment and free freedom of speech. greatly respect your insights tonight. and thank you for making time for us at home.
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