tv Deadline White House MSNBC May 4, 2022 1:00pm-3:00pm PDT
picks up as we speak. ♪♪ ♪ hi there, everyone. 12:00 in new york, last night we witnessed the rise of one political candidate who encapsulates the republican party's current incarnation, namely in its total capitulation and met morph onsis for donald trump sycophants and impulses. a man named j.d. vance won the ohio senate republican primary. j.d. vance beat out a field that included another pro-trump politicians well as a candidate who earned the wrath of the disgraced ex-president by refusing to parrot his lies about the 2020 election result. now this is really important. back in 2016, j.d. vance, he rose to fame in some corners
after writing a best-selling memoir called "hillbilly ellergy," he feared donald trump, and j.d. vance told a slate reporter that donald trump was, quote, leading the white working class to a very dark place. again, those are direct quotes from a man named jd vance. now jd vance is now after last night the republican candidate for senate in ohio thanks almost entirely to an endorsement from the ex-president that propelled him from also-ran third place in some polls to the top of of a very crowded field as the bull work told me in the ohio times, at this time, there's no moving past trump. he's re-made the republican party in his image and many republican voters now crave his particular brand of combative
politics described again by j.d. vance, as, quote, cultural heroin by, quote, america's hitler. that particular brand of combative politics fueled by disinformation and paranoia and now best embodied by one jd vance has nothing but contempt for our democracy. vance has peddled the big lie. vance has referred to the january 6th select committee as, quote, the real assault on democracy and in a recent profile of "vanity fair" he advocated for a total purge of the u.s. government saying, quote, i think trump's going to run in '24. if trump should do if i was giving him one piece of advice, fire every single mid-level bureaucrat, every civil servant in the administrative state and replace them with our people. jd vance went on steve bannon's podcast just before russia invaded ukraine, sparking one of
the -- russia's invasion of ukraine sparked one of the biggest challenges to the post-cold war order and jd vance said this about it. quote, i don't really care what happens to ukraine one way or another. the only thing stopping jd vance and the candidates like him across this country who were hoping to rise to power and potentially help pave the way for donald trump to return to the white house one way or another, right? the democratic party and its voters, many of whom are now energized, traumatized and enraged by the possibility of the conservative majority on the u.s. supreme court ending the constitutional right to abortion access in america. once again, from sarah longwell and the times, whether trump's handpicked candidates win or want, the republicans that emerge from the primary battles will be overwhelmingly trumpy. if brian kemp and a handful of the elected officials who voted to impeach trump survive their
primaries it will be good for democracy, but it will not be sufficient to blunt trump's wholesale take of the party. for that to happen, scores of candidates endorsed by trump who win the primaries will need to lose in the general election. only sustained defeat delivered by high-democratic turnout and right-leaning college-educated suburban voters refusing to support the trumpy candidates will change the current trajectory of the republican party. the clash in our country between democracy and autocratic impulses in the 2020 mid-term elections is where we start today. yamiche alcindor is here, moderator of washington this week on pbs about the supreme court decision to overturn roe. also myles taylor is here, former chief of staff at the department of homeland security and now the executive director of the renew america movement.
cecile richards is here, former president of planned parenthood and now co-chair of american bridge and with us on set for the hour jeremy bash is here, former chief of staff for the cia and department of defense, now and msnbc and national security analyst. let me start with the reporting, yamiche. we spoke 24 hours ago almost exactly. tell me you're in a new spot and you're in shreveport now. tell me your reaction and what you're hearing from voters today. >> i'm in shreveport, louisiana, at hope medical group for women and this is one of three abortion clinics in louisiana. i spoke to the administrator who echoed what i heard from the director of the only abortion clinic in mississippi yesterday and they're both essentially saying this is devastating for women. this idea that roe v. wade will be overturned. the administrator told me that at this clinic where they would be shut down, by the way, if roe v. wade was overturned because they're one of 13 states in
louisiana that are trigger locked. they're inundated with women who are trying to get abortions and especially women coming from texas because that state last year passed an abortion banned after six weeks of pregnancy. the administrator told me they have up to 300 women on the waiting list, and i should tell you while we're talking about politics and that's an incredibly important list. they're not looking to washington for solution, frankly. the director yesterday in mississippi told me she has zero faith, no hope that congress will at all pass any legislation that will help bring back abortion rights in this country once they are gone and here, the woman here, the administrator kathleen pittman told me she has little faith that congress will be able to do something, and i should also note here in louisiana, because politics, of course, is local. it's the democrats, nicole in this state that passed the abortion ban here that will make it hard and impossible for a woman to get an abortion after roe is overturned if it is overturned and the politics are
very much an issue here, and there are so many women that are frankly, exhausted and if row is overturned and the abortion clinics go away, the one in mississippi and louisiana, some women will have to drive up to 12 hours to go to an abortion clinic. think about the fact that if you're in houston you'll have to go to colorado. if you're in shreveport you'll str to go to illinois, those are 10, 11, nine-hour drives and they're overwhelmingly women of color and they're also trying to figure out how to survive in the midst of the sea change of legislation. >> i mean, cecile, this reality is something that we've tried to always come back to in our conversation since the texas near-total ban was not only passed, but held up, and i think yamiche's reporting yesterday and today that the two women she's interviewed her who run abortion clinics are not looking to washington, is an interesting backdrop when you look at
democratic candidates like tim ryan. i want to show you what he said on "morning joe" this morning about his commitment about turning that around, to speaking to voters at least in ohio about what he will do to protect reproductive rights. >> so basically, jd vance and these other folks are telling a mom or a young woman that if she gets raped or if there's incest that the state, the government is going to make you have -- bring that pregnancy to term. that's insane in a free society, in a country that's been built on the value of freedom. so when you look back at the mandolan candidacy, i think that affected his numbers and he won in suburban areas because those
voters find that position repugnant and those are going to be tim ryan voters. >> cecile, tim ryan is the democratic nominee in the race and he now faces jd vance. what he seems to be seizing on is the most extreme element of many of these state bans that most of us fear will go into effect once roe is overturned and they will exclude any exceptions in the case of rape and incest. where is your head today on tim ryan's message in terms of its ability to turn around what yamiche is reporting that on the ground people are no longer looking to washington. >> i think actually what tim said is right spot on and in some way s it does complement what yamiche is saying.
a lot of us are thinking about this ever since the texas abortion ban and we've been talking about it and you've been covering it in your stories. a lot of people thought this is never going to happen. they're never going to overturn roe versus wade and it's too far out and honestly, i have to say, nicole, even someone who thought it was possible, i was shocked that it was the leaked opinion and for the women that tim is talking about and i think that's why you were seeing now this outpouring of concern because people are finally realizing this sort of republican party agenda which has been going on for many, many years. they now are in position to actually make it reality and as you said, we're not talking about you know, restrictions on abortion. we are talking about ending safe and legal abortion completely like they just did in texas,
oklahoma. just today. you can imagine, chaos, the fear, the anxiety of the kinds of patients that yamiche is talking about. so many women were driving from texas to oklahoma for abortion care and now they're not going to be able to go there and go to mississippi and louisiana and it is going to cause a public health care catastrophe in this country and i do believe it is finally sinking in with people who perhaps have not been paying attention that this threat to a right that we've had for nearly 50 years in this country is very, very real and it's strictly due to politics. >> you know, cecile, there is a piece that brett stephens a conservative author that describes the supreme court's draft opinion as the radical choice, that abandoning precedent is not conservative, that as you're describing, these drastic and dramatic overnight shifts in policy and the status quo is not conservative at all, and i wonder, cecile, as you
look at sort of the reaction almost 48 hours later? you've sort of seized on what the rallying cry should be heading into the midterms? >> first of all, what i think is going to happen to help people understand this issue is that women will start being harmed and those stories will come out and dollars doctors are going to be put in jail. doctors can be criminally charged and they can be put into jail for life. that is how extreme these bills are. i don't think the american people have imagined what could happen and this comes down to politics and you and i talked about many times and the people that are passing these bills and saying all these wild,
outlandish things, they don't really care about women or babies or children. they're simply doing it for political purposes just as your example in ohio has illustrated and i don't even think they realize the impact this is going to have on particularly voters who have not been paying attention and who are now looking up and saying the republican party has made abortion completely illegal? again, ohio is a good example. texas, if roe is overturned, the most extreme ban will go into effect it means you can't get an abortion if you've been raped, if you've been the victim of incest, if you have a fetus with abnormalities or incompatible with life. nothing. that is going to affect millions and millions of people in this country. i think it is an issue we have seen with swing voters, with independent voters, women and men and this is where the republican have completely lost
the plot. their obsession with ending abortion and that's not going to be the end and they will soon go after birth control, emergency contraception and they're completely out of step with the american people. >> i mean, myles, this is where the extremism of the current incar nation of the gop syncs up with the extremism in so many other areas and i just want -- cecile said it all comes down to politics. when tim ryan cites the counties where the less trumpy candidate struggled, it's the counties cecile is talking about. voters in columbus, and i wonder where you put sort of the -- the sort of wrapping their arms around all things extreme whether it's on overturning roe, i think 63% of americans don't think it should be illegal. whether it's eliminating these exceptions for rape and incest and life of the mother, i think you get upward from 63 to 75 to
85% of americans think that those exceptions should remain a law. the republicans are moving far away from those mainstream positions. >> they are, nicole. despite that, despite the republican party being a small tent party, the bad guys are winning. the anti-democratic forces in the republican party appear to be ascendant. they're winning these primaries and that's the one place where i disagree with sarah longwell, but the notion that if these people lose in the general election and it's over and the gop will reform, i think is wrong because they didn't learn the lesson the first time. donald trump lost them the white house, lost them the house of representatives, lost them the senate and guess what? republicans didn't get the message. instead they doubled down and tripled down on the pro-trumpy intimidation message that the
gop is carrying. that's worrying to me. even if these candidates like jd vance lose in the general, i still think they'll be going to the well of trumpism. that's the bad news is the people who cheered on the insurrection are the types of folks who are now trying to go get elected to congress. the good news, as you know, is that the tide has really turned for the pro-democracy side, and we've seen and i think we're likely to see the enthusiasm gap in the midterms shrink and that was one of the things that our organization, renew america movement was worried about going into the midterms is that democrats weren't excited to go vote and republicans were fired up and a lot of pro-trump figures were going to win because of that. now as you note, that enthusiasm gap is closing and it will be a much closer midterm election period and one other thing people aren't talking about, nicole is there are a lot of republicans who don't associate with the pro-trump side that are winnable in these elections. i'll give you an example, in arizona, 20% of republicans say
they are open for voting for mark kelly. that's one in five. that's a huge pickup opportunity and we see that in other states, as well. >> public opinion on ukraine is so lopsided. 96% of all respondents and even in some fox news polls think putin is -- sorry, not sorry, think putin is a bad actor, yet this is jd vance, jeremy on ukraine with his media bestie tucker carlson. >> the same people who have obsessed over ukraine and russia over the last two weeks are the same people who try to take down a democratically elected president donald trump with their obsession over russia. when you see our country obsessing, every cable news channel, every single democratic politician and frankly a lot of garbage republicans obsessed with ukraine all the time, but completely ignoring the conditions of their own country,
a lot of us are looking around saying what about our sovereignty, the country they should love and they don't. . who is benefitting and getting rich from it? chamber of commerce style republicans and also democrat politicians who decided they can't win election in 2022 unless they bring in a large number of new voters to replace the voters that are already here. >> that has its roots in the white supremacist handbook of the replacement theory is it's coming out of of the mouth of jd vance to a rr receptive audience of one tucker carlson. >> nicole, here i have a major candidate for offers in the united states of america, parroting kremlin talking points. these are exactly the points that putin is trying to advance on the world stage. he's trying to zap the will of the west and trying to undermine
the will of the united states when, in fact, there is a broad bipartisan, non-partisan consensus that what we should be doing is supporting our allies in europe and strengthening our transatlantic security architecture and standing up for a free and independent ukraine and that's not terribly controversial in washington and here we have a major candidate for office on the issue. >> calling mitch mcconnell is in that group. for them, they are garbage republicans obsessed in ukraine. the polls are lopsided and where is the incentive structure outside of moscow? >> it's hard to find and this candidate who won the primary last night just a few months ago was decrying what donald trump stood for and the republican party. he himself was a never trumper and of course, he had to answer for it. so consistency plays no role. there's no value proposition in that. so i think this is a very dangerous signal because what it says is that a major party is going to begin to veer off in a
pro-russia, pro-kremlin direction. that's not only bad for that party. i actually think it's bad for the united states. >> yeah. yamiche, you've done the tip of the spear journalism on the trump presidency and on this moment, and i think together, we've covered january 6th and it's liz cheney who first started talking about their work mattering not so much as a look over their shoulder to january 6, 2020, but a look to 2024, and i wonder your thoughts as you see it's not a story about trump's muscle in the republican party. i don't know any corner in which that's in dispute. it's a story about anti-democratic candidates of any party being ascendant and ending up with general election candidates with people who don't believe in democracy either. >> absolutely. when i talk to officials, white house official, democratic
officials, they really point to the fact that january 6th, it wasn't the end of the trump presidency. it was the beginning of this new phase of american democracy, and it is the most at risk and when you talk to immigrants and people who studied collapse. they collapse by a little idea that maybe the elections were rigged and a bigger and bigger idea with more and more people backing the idea that only the people who they support can be the ones that are in power. so you think about january 6th and what president trump was saying and about the fact that he thought he won the election and of course, we know that wasn't true and you fast forward and you have a whole slate of gop candidates who are now uncomfortable saying that joe biden was elected president fairly. that is sort of something that gets to the heart of sort of the danger here when you talk to democrats. i will also say i'm really struck about the idea that even as people kind of debate what
the power is of trump in the republican party, that as you said, everyone is worshipping and everyone who wants to get elected at least are worshipping at the altar of donald trump and worshipping there means you have to question the entirety of the electoral system, questioning the very foundations of the american democracy and the very reason why people come to this country and all of the while you're seeing women and i go back to the story that i'm covering today. you see women and americans saying once you start chipping away at american democracy, you also start chipping away at rights. i'm thinking about one woman who i talked to who told me it's really, really hard to get a right back when it's gone and it's really hard to get respect back for the elections and institutions if they're taken away. >> that's exactly right. i guess, jeremy, the j.d. vance story is not a story about j.d. vance. it's a story about the access of donald trump, tucker carlson and
vladimir putin and it represents the mainstream of the republican party today. >> i'm not sure it represents the mainstream. >> of the elected officials? >> i like the way myles put it, an ascendant view inside the party and i think the concern is there is a stranglehold by that faction on the party. >> if they're faction tell me who are the rest of them? >> i actually think that if you went to senate republicans and went to the majority of house republicans, they would stand with nato. they would stand with -- >> all 63. >> with our position with ukraine. at this hour, nicole, we have a bipartisan consensus to support ukraine, but i do think it's fragile and it's curious and very disturbing that someone can win a primary for a major office on the express proposition that january 6th was a big lie and
that vladimir putin should be advanced. and it's incompatible with what the party has stood for for generations, but what the united states should do for autocracy. >> that's the struggle, right? you joined the fight after serving donald trump over the questions of protecting democracy. how is it going inside the republican party? you don't see a lot of the good guys winning. >> it's not going well. jeremy knows i'm a huge fan of his, but i take a dimmer view of what's happening inside the republican party. i think it's been a full trump takeover and the people that jeremy references will tell both him and i in private that they stand on the side of the good guys, but when they're called to account publicly or when they have to go take a vote or when they're running an election they've been making the wrong decision. they've been making the anti-democratic position and they don't believe anyone who is on the screen right now. i'm a garbage republican apparently and jeremy is a long,
lost democrat, but do they believe the numbers? i want to leave you with one number. we talked about this before, but a new poll came out a few weeks ago that said one in ten americans believe political violence is justified now against the u.s. government. it backed up another poll from last year from the university of chicago that showed that 40 million americans would be justified to restore trump to the white house. these are big numbers and jeremy and i can attest to the standpoint, we've never seen numbers like that. this is a massive increase in public attitudes toward political violence. it's clear where they're coming from. it's coming from the populist intimidation, and it's not just a political issue and it is a public safety issue and that's why people should care. >> this remarkable group of guests is stay with us. when we all come being bah, more reaction to what this new republican threat looks like
today from president joe biden. we'll play his remarks for you. plus the state of pennsylvania can change dramatically in november. nine republicans are running there. all support limiting or banning abortion in pennsylvania. up next, we'll speak to the lone democrat trying to protect women's health there. breaking news from the january 6th committee. don junior sitting for two hours. that and more. we'll be right back. don't go anywhere. be right back. don't go anywhere.
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this maga crowd are the most extreme political organization that's existed in american history in recent american history. the most extreme political organization in recent american history. that was president biden's rebuke earlier today of this current incarnation that we're discussing of the gop and the ex-president's ongoing grip on it. we are back with our panel. cecile, it's double edged to gloss past this monumental decision and talk about what comes next, but they're connected and i feel like that's where the conversation is heading so quickly. i worry that the panic is going to shift off the real world implications for women before it gets its due, and i wonder your thought on this characterization of the republican party in its current incarnation as the most extreme political organization in history. >> well, i certainly agree with
that -- that characterization, and i agree, nicole that this is a seismic shift. i don't think any of us have ever experienced the loss of a constitutional right, and many, many people in this country have never known a world where people couldn't make decisions about their pregnancy and the role of the government to tell you what to do when you're pregnant and i don't think you can gloss over it, and i don't think though -- actually, i should say one of the problems we have seen and this is certainly true in the state of texas is that when you empower the fringe of your party, you can't just stop. you can't just say, okay. job done. we have to keep feeding and that's why we see the texas book banning and we see attacks on transgender children and their families. the republican party in texas has no agenda for the future. they are just obsessing on futures that can kind of feed
their base. so i think that's going to continue. they're going to go after birth control. they'll go after emergency contraception and on and on and on. what i do think that people aren't anticipating is that assuming that this decision or this opinion in fact, is issued, that will simply be the beginning of what is going to be a cascading series of states that are going to then implement abortion bans and so it's not going to be a one-day story as i think the republican has hoped or that somehow this leak would be the only story because women are going to begin to go into panic all across the country. doctors are going to now be arrested. people are going to be turned in and so, and you know, because we know the trigger bans, this is a story that will continue. so even if you talk about all of the other potential issues about the supreme court and i think there are or usually women or abortion rights are sort of the
tip of the spear, this is a story that will continue through november and on because there are too many states that have too many laws on the books that again, will begin to roll into effect and the stories will begin to come out. that's what i anticipate. >> yamiche, in what i have seen so far, there are a lot of men standing alongside women. there are people young and old. i think if you're 50 or younger which a majority of americans now are, you have never lived in america when abortion has been illegal and if you are looking at these questions about what is on people's minds and not just when they get to the polls, but whether they decide whether or not they participate in the midterm this is altered by the makeup of the midterm electorate. >> this is absolutely catapulted
the idea and issue of abortions as a top issue in the midterms. speaking to the director of the only abortion clinic in mississippi, she said it was a wake-up call for people to think about who they were voting for where so many people will be impacted by how those officials view abortion. i should also note that i have been talking to women who remember that time before 1973, and they say it was a scary time where women were getting sick. women were going to emergency rooms and women were, frankly, dying and women were forced to have children that they could not afford because they did not have access to abortion. there are so many women that i talked to who say that america is regressing and going back to a time when women will have to put their lives in danger and we can't underscore enough the people impacted the most on this based on my reporting on the ground in louisiana and mississippi is poor women, women of color and women who are
looking at another child and saying i cannot afford this, or have other children or i simply do not want this to be happening to my body. there are people here who do not have a social safety net for the things they would need to have to carry a child that they did not want to go forward with and a child that they could not afford. they point out the resources not only to feed that child, to house that child or to continue to support that child throughout their life. it is a burden that so plane women here say they cannot handle and think, i have to point out that there is a flipside of this, and not only is that a what's next for women and with the conservative movement and i talked to you yesterday and this protester that continues to be on my mind, they've been protesting for decades outside of that abortion clinic in mississippi. where will it go if this clinic is closed? where will you go if it happens?
he'll be turning to same-sex marriage and he'll push the supreme court to abolish same-sex marriage. not only is this not over for women who are looking at abortion, but for the conservative movement overall. they are also going to go and check off other victories that they've long looked at when they look at the supreme court and the laws of this country. >> and -- that's just -- i mean, that is what's happening in this country. it's also a product of the zealousness, myles taylor, with which republicans have pursued the culture war even when there were periods outside of the mainstream and they've always fought these wars on emotion. some parts, disinformation and i wonder how you match all of that passion and anger and as yamiche's reporting, protesters are now going to go to the next front with a -- a counter operation on the democratic side to keep that issue front and
center for the democratic coalition of voters. >>. >> yeah. i have to say i'm just as shocked by it, nicole. i thought i would be among the last generation of republicans that were fighting amidst the culture wars. i think a few years ago before donald trump a lot of us would have said the cult are wars were on the path to being over and that by and large, young republicans were becoming increasingly socially liberal and fiscally conservative. we all pairs on theed that line at cocktail parties and elsewhere. we thought that's where it was going. we're completely wrong. donald trump, the influence of trump on the party and the populist direction of the politics are reigniting the culture wars in a very, very real way. how do you combat it? i have a lot of concerns about that because i think at the risk of sounding redundant it's gotten worse than just vitriolic. it's gotten very silent, and i use my own example not so that people have sympathy for me, but
what would have happened. if i would have quit my office and and if i'd said bush and cheney were bad which i don't believe, they would have quarrelled with me instead defecting from the republican party, they dope just want to quarrel with me. they want to kill me. because i'm saying my republican party has been corrupted they want to kill me and that's not hyperbole. we receive death threats and it's not just the mes out there that remain clear-eyed and it's school workers, school board chairmen and they're the numbers suffering under the politician of physical intimidation by merely trying to stand up on these issues. that is so alarming. the physicality behind these opinions around cultural issues is what's very scary and has become a public safety threat. >> frankly the reason i do agree
is even if it's a thin hope and oat voting and getting these people out it will be a fras roots to have this from our politics. there is no quick fix. >> it makes you cringe listening to anybody who is receiving threats to be honest to share what everyone is receiving. we've received threats online. what is the appropriate articulation of that dark side of the republican party, if you're having an honest conversation with the voters as president biden seems to be trying to have? >> some people who claim to care about life actually don't and i think that's then capsulation and i want to reflect one thing that's personal, nicole. my mother was a midwife. she took care of women coming into the hospitals in the district of columbia who were close to death and were badly affected because they attempted
back alley abortion and it was because of her and her colleagues that they were able to save lives. for us in the household, i'm also the son of the rabbi. reukt frommive health was not only a medical imperative, and a moral, religious imperative to protect the life, to protect the life of the woman before roe versus wade. i shudder to think that our three daughters and women across the country would have the constitutional right stripped away from them and that their lives are devalued and that's ultimately the agenda, nicole of what's going on here. >> to answer my question, president biden is going have to have you come out and start telling these stories. to cecile's point exactly. we're moving backward. that's the reality of what's happening and it's just remarkable. yamiche alcindor and cecile richards and i'll tell you what
i said in the break, these are the only people who can make it from tucker carlson and back so seamlessly. thank you very much for being a parts of the conversation. jeremy sticks around for the rest of this hour. up next for us, no better state that better represents the stakes this november than pennsylvania. voting rights and now abortion access to the line. if democrats lose the governor's race there, there would be no way to block any upcoming draconian legislation in the works in both those areas and we'll speak to the democratic candidate for governor and our friend josh shapiro next.
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>> singers: ♪ safelite repair, safelite replace. ♪ >> this is a national catastrophe and we'll move with speed on the bill. >> i believe in the sanctity of life and i would be the governor i would protect life. >> no exceptions if. >> i would not have exceptions. >> i agree with mr. white that we should be working to protect life and moving the laws in the right direction. >> this is a small sample of what pennsylvania voters heard last week from the republican crop of candidates for governor and who and what lone democrat shapiro is running against. perhaps one of the most unexpected states where abortion rights will appear up and down the ballot this year. the governor's role is vital as democratic -- as tom wolf has proved three times already by the republican-controlled legislature to outlaw abortions in pennsylvania.
the political dynamics and the fate of their continued attempts could all change dramatically this year in the wrong hands. joining us now, pennsylvania's attorney general and candidate for governor, josh shapiro. hi there. we're happy to have you. it is a very heavy conversation, but tell us how you see the will of voters in pennsylvania and your views on this. >> well, it's clear that the battle to protect abortion rights is going to now happen in the states. it won't be settled in washington, d.c., sadly, and here in pennsylvania the stakes could not be higher and the choices could not be more stark and clear. look, we know that the republican-led legislature will put a bill on the next governor's desk to ban abortion and we know that the leading candidates would sign it into
law and i would veto that bill and i would protect abortion rights for millions of women here in pennsylvania. >> you know, what president obama articulated gets at how extreme these bans in the states really are to not support exceptions in cases of rape and incest and life of the mother is to put into question what kind ever health care a pregnant woman who heaven forbid gets in a car accident or ultimately gets in any hospital or as president obama cited a couple that is dealing with infertility that has an unviable pregnancy, and it would be severely limit period upon it is the nature and the tightwide bans is to talk about it and do you have any other advice for democrats as this issue becomes front and center? >> i travel all across pennsylvania, and in count is that would be considered blue and counties that are red,
rural, urban, suburban, and i speak about this issue everywhere, even before, of course, this document leaked out of the supreme court, and i will tell you that the republicans running against me on this outrageous position of banning abortion in pennsylvania, they are wildly out of touch with the electorate here in the commonwealth of pennsylvania. absolutely out of touch and that's what i said before, the stakes couldn't be higher and the contrast could not be clearer. i think democrats need to lean in on these issues, and i think it is clear that the battle will be in the states and yoesht shy away from having this conversation from any community anywhere in pennsylvania. >> anyone we've spoken to in the last two days feels that republicans won't stop with overturning access to reproductive health care, that
gay marriage could be on the line and others and this is a conversation that we have to have in very blunt terms. >> nicole, i think this is a very broad issue. obviously, we need to focus on abortion rights and protecting it here in pennsylvania, but i think this is really about fundamental freedoms, right? the freedom to raise your family as you want, and i think this is a slippery slope. if this draft opinion ultimately becomes reality, as it's drafted, it puts so many other rights that we have come to appreciate and rely on at risk. the right to marry who you want. the right to travel freely across the country. the right to homeschool your child, if you want. so many of these rights are hung on the 14th amendment as abortion rights are and so the reality is this is a very dangerous step that the supreme court seems likely to take, and a step that will thrust the issue of abortion.
i think abortion is healthcare. those healthcare decisions back to the states and also it puts so many other rights at risk and it makes electing governors in these states where legislatures like the one we have here in pennsylvania are going to try to continue to erode those right, it makes those governors so critically important. >> california's governor has said that he'll propose an amendment to enshrine abortion rights in the state constitution so there's no doubt. i know that republicans in the commonwealth of pennsylvania are trying to -- trying the opposite in your state constitution. do you share governor newsom's views or what are your views on a constitutional amendment? >> look, ideally i'd like to see the federal government right now, the congress of the united states codify roe, get that bill to president biden's desk and have him sign it into law. i worry that if we continue to
battle this out, state by state, that if at some point in time the democrats are not in charge in washington, republicans could pass extreme bans, roll back other rights and make it nearly impossible for states to do the kinds of things like governor newsom is proposing in california. so the reality is, we need a federal standard that protects roe and protects these other rights. in the absence of that, though, we will be playing defense here in pennsylvania to protect the rights, listen, i will veto any bill that reaches my desk that does away with a women's right to choose, that bans abortion here in pennsylvania and we'll have to play that game, if you will, that game of defense and protection here in pennsylvania if the court continues to do what it appears poised to do and that is erode the rights that americans have come to expect and rely upon.
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and, don't mind if i do. but thanks to wayfair, i do love my kitchen. yes! ♪ wayfair you got just what i need. ♪ jeremy, we've talked for almost an hour about this leaked opinion. tell me your read on what it will actually do. >> well, if you look at it, nicolle, what it says in very stark terms is that unless a right is specifically enumerated in the constitution, it's not a
right. and so as strange as this sounds, this strict construction of the constitution by justice alito in this draft opinion would eviscerate commonly held views about rights and liberties, the right to marry who you want, associate with who you want, the right to obviously engage in any personal conduct like contraception which is a right that the supreme court noted in one of its seminal opinion. >> do you think they're all threatened by this? >> i do. i really do. the way this opinion is written, it leaves no ambiguity. it essentially says that unless a right is specifically enumerated in the constitution, it's no longer a right. >> terrifying prospect, jeremy, bash, so nice to have you on set. when we come back, lordy, there are more tapes. brand-new audio from gop leader kevin mccarthy on ex-president trump's conduct around january 6th. we will a play them for you
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hi again, everyone. it's 5:00 in new york. we begin with a flood of breaking news in the january 6th select committee investigation. just in the last hour nbc news has confirmed donald trump jr. has faced questions from the committee. he testified for several hours yesterday voluntarily via zoom. donald trump jr., the latest of several members of the trump family, to testify. including jared and ivanka. junior's fiancee kimberly
guilfoyle has also testified and all had noted a behind-the-scenes presence on the morning of the january 6th insurrection as trump and his alies riled up a crowd of supporters, many of whom would breach the capitol. politico elaborates in reporting today on what he may know about his father's push to subvert the results of the 2020 election. quote, the committee has highlighted a text message trump jr. sent to then white house chief of staff mark meadows as a mob overtook the capitol on january 6th, 2021. in that message, he urged his father to make a more forceful statement to condemn the violence. quote, he's got to condemn this bleep, asap. the capitol police tweet is not enough, trump jr. texted meadows and comes on the heels of previous reporting from cnn that donald trump jr. texted white house chief of staff mark meadows ideas for overturning
the 2020 election before it was called. politico adds this reporting, quote, trump jr. is also the latest select panel witness believed to have been in the oval office the morning of january 6th with trump, his top aides and family members. shortly after they arrived, per a private white house schedule obtained by the committee, trump called pence to make final effort to pressure him to overturn the election. and just as we're learning about this critical update on the january 6th select committee investigation, we're also getting our hands on more tapes. there is more new audio from house minority leader kevin mccarthy. it's from two days after the january 6th attack. it was obtained by "the new york times" reporters, jonathan martin and alex burns for their new book, "this will not pass," the strong words on donald trump's conduct and even a discussion of the 25th amendment. we'll play a long clip of these new audiotapes for you.
listen to this. >> yeah, what the president did aprecious and totally wrong. 12 days away, i mean at one point i think that biden, if you have an impeachment and stuck sitting in the senate, then you've got to have movement. and did he think from the perspective you put everything else right, this country's -- i have people that never stop being in the condition, very sophisticated and think this is going to be different. they're angry. they want to continue the fight. i mean i've never seen anything like this. the best thing is focus on the future, not the past, try to bring us together and i do think the impeachment divides the nation further and continues to. that's why i want to reach out to biden. i wanted the president to meet
with biden but that's not going to happen. i want to see about us meeting with biden, sitting down, transition, show that we continue to keep those statements going, so hopefully i may again talk to pelosi. hopefully calls me today and see if we can start that process. i think i'd be interested in -- i think he personally would be stronger, above it to actually say something to that extent. i want to move the country forward. why have this -- if they have impeachment that means they call us back next week. their members have a little easier with proxy but that puts everybody else just -- continue -- at one point, everybody. and i'm just worried about --
>> kevin, getting them not to move on impeachment -- >> i'm trying to do it not from the base of a republican but basis of, hey, it's not healthy for the nation. you know, that's the conversation i want to have with biden himself. biden when he was vp, house dem, i think he would do that. i think he would get all that. i don't know what the stats -- we'll see. and what were you worried about the call? i had a couple on this call say i didn't get feedback yet. >> yeah, just that they're discussing it. it seems like there's definitely anger on their side but also division or strategically on what to do and i think what has been cited by the democrats, this 25th amendment which is not exactly helping --
>> that takes too long too. go back to the house, right? >> correct. if the president were to submit a letter overruling the cabinet and the vice president, to overrule the president it's kind of -- obviously impeachment has been discussed and i think they want him to resign which i don't see happening either. talking about it -- we'll keep you posted on what we're hearing but certainly that was it. it's possible next week. >> kevin mccarthy describing donald j. trump as atrocious and wrong as we begin with some of our favorite reporters, daniel goldman is here from the southern district of new york as well as former majority counsel during donald trump's first impeachment trial, miles taylor is back, former chief of staff of the department of homeland security and joining us by phone one of the reporters that broke the donald trump jr. news, betsy woodruff swan, politico national
correspondent, also an msnbc contributor joins us. dan, i want to start with you on kevin mccarthy's voice on this tape talking about the 25th amendment, not as the least viable tool for getting rid of donald trump because donald trump didn't deserve it or was fit, not unfit but because, quote, it takes too long. you have an entire cabal of republicans who knew in these conversations about what to do with him predicated on this belief he had to go and that he was unfit for office. it makes kevin mccarthy reviving trump all the more galling. >> yeah, i mean, both in terms of the 25th amendment and in terms of impeachment he was basically making sort of a logistical and scheduling calculation, not an actual normative view that he should not be removed or he should not be impeached.
he was saying it's a very polarized nation, not that i don't think he should be impeached. and, you know, they were assessing the pros and cons and the realistic nature of the 25th amendment and impeachment itself with so few days. it's striking as all this audio is coming out, not just that kevin mccarthy is just a bald-faced liar, but the degree to which he swallowed what are clearly his true feelings to bow down, you know, to the altar at mar-a-lago very soon after and, you know, you get the question and i think john boehner would be a very good person to speak on this, because he was held hostage in many respects by the house freedom caucus and i'd be very curious what his conversations were that led him from saying that the president should be removed by the 25th
amendment but for the schedule or the sort of structural and proceed surely issues to going down to mar-a-lago a couple weeks later to, you know, kiss the ring of donald trump. that's what's interesting to me and, you know, that, of course, would be something that the january 6th committee could get into if kevin mccarthy would agree to speak with them which he has indicated that he will not. >> so let's put that aside for a second, dan. what else does doj need other than kevin mccarthy, the house republican leader, saying what donald trump did was atrocious and wrong, saying that he and scalise both thought criminal conduct had gone on among their own caucus, this knowledge that donald trump had to go, either by impeachment for the 25th amendment but no contemplation that he had to stay, what is doj doing if they are not asking at least kevin mccarthy what he knows, what he saw and what he talked to donald trump about.
>> well, there's a lot of steps that i would take before i would approach kevin mccarthy. >> are they of them happening? >> we don't know. we don't know, and i hesitate to say no because, you know, there are a number of things that they could be doing right now that we would not know about. we would, of course, know if they decide to meet with, you know, brad raffensperger or anyone in mark meadows' circuit or anyone in mike pence's circuit, you know, those are the natural places where you would expect, a, for doj to go as they investigate and drill down on this widespread massive sprawling conspiracy helmed by donald trump. i think what is -- this is more political to me than, you know, prosecutorial investigation of
relevance. you know, it's kevin mccarthy making his, you know, nonlegal assessment that something is wrong and atrocious. >> let me just weigh in as a politico -- i mean the political perils of kevin mccarthy saying trump should go, i mean, i don't think that's right. on the politics, there was nothing for kevin mccarthy to gain by saying trump must go. evidence by the fact that 14 days later he says trump must stay. i listened to kevin mccarthy's assessment, three thing, knowledge of trump's criminality and misconduct, two, fear for the security of the country and, three, i mean, there was no third option. it was he has to go either by the 25th amendment, impeachment or resignation which he says on multiple recordings he won't do. >> yeah, i mean, that to me is really the takeaway from this is that kevin mccarthy, the leader of the house republican party made the assessment that donald trump needs to go and this is not just the day after, this is
not the night of january 6th or the day after, this is two days after and some of these recordings i think are even further -- one was january 10th. these are several days after where, you know, cooler heads could prevail and they could get their ducks in a row and figure out what their political process is going to be and what their talking points are but he is out there championing that donald trump has to go. i would just caution, nicolle, from a legal perspective, you know, kevin mccarthy's assessment is what is a crime and not is pretty irrelevant to the department of justice so the fact that he thought or steve scalise thought it may be illegal is good fodder for us to discuss, but i don't think it's anything that the department of justice would care very much about. >> how about this, what do you think -- i mean, should doj want to know what trump and mccarthy talked about because maybe what trump told him or showed him were the white house visitor logs that had his caucus plotting a coup. >> i think that would be very
relevant and i think any conversations he had in the lead-up to january 6th with meadows, with don junior, with anyone in the trump orbit pushing for this big wild rally on january 6th, all of that would be relevant and it just goes to how massive this investigation really is, nicolle. >> i mean, miles taylor, i guess what's amazing to me and i'm not a lawyer and i'm not a prosecutor and i don't even try to play one on tv but i've now covered several failed investigations to hold donald trump accountable for what prosecutors call crimes. robert mueller described ten in volume two of the mueller report. all sorts of people have examined him. no one has held him accountable. you have kevin mccarthy who clearly describes his conduct as atrocious and wrong, and then makes this complete pivot to not just donald trump is going to go by one of the three means, resignation, impeachment or 25th amendment, to a complete
reversal, something changes his mind more than the politics because donald trump isn't any more popular on the day that mccarthy goes to mar-a-lago than he is on election day. it's static and it's so static that you and i spent the last hour talking about his handpicked politicians in republican primaries are ascendant in the gop. his grip is a steady line at the highest rate of any republican out there in the land. so why doesn't anyone want to know what kevin mccarthy learned at mar-a-lago when he decided that trump must stay? >> well, i have to add, nicolle, i'm neither a lawyer or a prosecutor but the operative questions here are what did they know and when did they know it, because a crime happened here. this was a crime scene. this is a scheme screen against democracy, kevin mccarthy is a witness to one of the biggest political crimes perpetrated against this country, genuinely,
i don't mean that hyperbolically. those questions need to be asked. that's why this test is a bombshell. there is no question and i've been saying for years if you had strapped a body cam to people like me when i was working in the house and then went into the trump administration and left, the things you would have seen on that body cam footage would have made your skin crawl. but not for the reasons you would think, you would think it would make your skin crawl because what you would witness is the horrifying reflexive attitude toward criminality that donald trump had. the impulse towards doing illegal, unethical things and what's more chilling all the people around him, the cabinet secretaries, the people like kevin mccarthy and others as we've been saying for years talked about that in private, how terrifying it was. they considered things like the 25th amendment to remove the president. these things are real and we're now seeing the tape. that's not what is skin crawling. what is skin crawling to me is what happened next.
these conversation was happen in private and these people did not have the courage to come out and talk about it publicly. i cannot believe that a kevin mccarthy would get elected by the american people to represent them even consider that the president was doing something so egregious he had to be removed by the 25th amendment but sing another tune. it's duplicitous and not what we expect from our public serveants. that's what we see until he is well gone from office the fear of him keeps these people silent and it is corroding our democracy in realtime. >> i guess it's amazing, though, miles, that what's up is down and what's down is up. on the right and you know better than anybody, what's rewarded in -- i won't call them public servants but in trump's servants is the opposite of all that. is not siding with democracy over trump, not telling the truth about the results of an
election donald trump clearly lost, and what's curious to me and you -- i mean, you've taken stands, you've done more than just about anybody but nobody saw a different version of donald trump. so a whole lot of people kept the horrors of trump's presidency secret for a lot longer than you did. you came out, you told your story, you wrote an op-ed. you wrote in the book, but it has now -- these tapes are landing at a moment -- i mean the other ones resulted in a standing ovation for kevin mccarthy at the republican house caucus meeting. there's no view of public service that resembles anything you just said on our air inside the republican party and i guess my question is now what? >> it's the question of our time. you just asked the question of our time that will determine whether america reaches its 300th birthday or whether it does not. one-half of the country or close to half sees the trump family
like a political dynasty. the other half appropriately sees them for what they are which is a crime family. they look much more like a mob crime family and what the january 6th select committee is appropriately doing, a bipartisan committee is asking what these people knew when they knew it, trying to get to the core of it and these are people -- trump doesn't treat his family members as people he sees when he gets home from his day of work. he enlists them in his efforts and what's disturbing to me, again, nicolle, back to the point you just made is that everyone knows it. everyone up to and including his family would acknowledge in private how irascible and unstable this man is, but won't talk about it in public. and that refusal to do so when it comes to an individual person around someone like a donald trump is maybe a decision of cowardice, but when everyone does it, it creates exactly the scenario you just painted, the public ends up creating a whole
new narrative. they end up believing the things that are said. they believe the lies that are told and it warps society and any student of history that looks back, whether it's to nazi germany or back to greco-roman times will see this can have very, very deleterious effects. when you have mass adoption of conspiracy theory, mainstreaming of lies it last political implications. we are no doubt at the beginning of this. there is no way to get in out of our political system in a week or a month or a year or two years. this is now cemented in the minds of millions of people and it is sgeng going to be the political challenge of our time. it will determine whether the republicic survives in healthy recognizable fashion in a century. >> wow. all right. i want to tell our viewers what we're working on. these stories developed in the last hour while we were on the air. we're trying to get betsy woodruff swan to a camera and want to bring you her blanchett reporting about what donald trump jr. has testified to
before the january 6th select committee during his interview yesterday. give us a second to work on that. we'll be right back. ter were driving when they got a crack in their windshield. [smash] >> dad: it's okay. pull over. >> tech: he wouldn't take his car just anywhere... ♪ pop rock music ♪ >> tech: ...so he brought it to safelite. we replaced the windshield and recalibrated their car's advanced safety system, so features like automatic emergency braking will work properly. >> tech: alright, all finished. >> dad: wow, that's great. thanks. >> tech: stay safe with safelite. schedule now. >> singers: ♪ safelite repair, safelite replace. ♪ living with metastatic breast cancer means being relentless. because every day matters. and having more of them is possible with verzenio. the only one of its kind proven to help you live significantly longer when taken with fulvestrant, regardless of menopause status. verzenio + fulvestrant is for hr+, her2- metastatic breast cancer that has progressed after hormone therapy. diarrhea is common, may be severe, or cause dehydration or infection.
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with a 2-year price guarantee. call today. we're back on this breaking news with dan goldman and pyles taylor and betsy woodruff swan who joins us by phone. take us through your reporting about donald trump jr.'s testimony before the 1/6 committee. >> that's right. this story broke just within the last hour. what we know is that yesterday as most of the country was focused on the news about the supreme court and on the first round of primaries going on particularly in ohio, don junior had a virtual interview that lasted several hours with
investigators on the select committee. we know this interview notely and just like his sister ivanka and brother-in-law jared kushner was not conducted under subpoena. don junior appeared voluntarily for this interview. we also know that the select committee is deeply interested in a number of topics that don junior has direct knowledge of. they're have interested in the techs that he sent to the white house chief of staff saying that trump needed to speak out much more forcefully as the violence was unfolding, they're also deeply interested in the january 6th rally that don junior spoke at before the attack. in that rally junior specifically said that there would be political consequences for republicans who did not support the effort to overturn the election results. he specifically said that he would show up in the backyards of republicans who didn't support the president's effort which has been characterized as
him threatening to support primary challengers, essentially saying that republicans took the careers into their own hands unless they were on board with the president's efforts. very much part of this rhetorical effort to level as much pressure as possible against republican members of congress. these are all things that are core to this select committee's investigation. the fact that don junior cooperated sol tarly just shows the extent to which in the final weeks of the investigative process this committee has had a series of major breakthroughs and have major bursts of momentum that most of us i think couldn't have imagined last year when the committee first started its work. >> i mean, also draws a bright line between ivanka and jared kushner and donald trump jr., does it have any ramifications on those obstructive acts by
steve bannon or mark meadows in your view, betsy. >> you have to wonder if bannon and meadows have a little buyer's remorse about the fact this they were so quick to stiffarm the select committee. at this point cooperating with the select committee has the blessing of trump's -- most of trump's family and if there were going to be, you know, punishment or ramifications to people, if that's what meadows and bannon thought they might face, now in the 11th hour of the probe it's clear that actually people are going to be able to cooperate with this without necessarily facing any significant criticism from trump or his inner circle. they kind of got the worst of both world, bannon and meadows in that they're now -- in bannon's case facing a doj criminal charges, in meadows' case potentially facing criminal charges when they could have handled it much more easily by
cooperating. any other senior trump administration officials or allies who had been on the fence about playing ball with the committee, now there's no question that cooperation by far is the path of least resistance. >> we're airing footage of donald trump jr. and this is a random thought but the 20-pound lighter twin of jd vance. i want to ask you about the campaign politically being waged about the 1/6 committee by the likes of jd vance. i mean, it feels like it's narrative destroying for kimberly guilfoyle, donald trump jr., ivanka trump and jared kushner to go before the committee and not sensibly tell the truth, betsy. i wonder how much of this group of witnesses that includes the family is about the pence leg of the investigation and if you go back to congressman jamie raskin's public comments last
week that some of the most chilling words were i will not get in the car referring to mike pence after the evacuation which was captured on film of the against family being rushed out of the capitol by secret service, down to the basement where he refuses go tote go nice car and leave the building. how much is that act of pence's sort of actions on that morning, his interactions with trump and his conduct with the capitol under scrutiny by the 1/6 committee? >> we know that ivanka trump testified to the 1/6 committee, she spoke about conversations that she had with the president as the attack was unfolding and, of course, as pence himself was in grave danger. the committee has suggested that she didn't necessarily tell them everything that they wanted to know but that she did cooperate and that she did answer questions. specifically in terms of pence, of course, his experience facing, you know, very much the threat and violence of this
trump inspired mob is something that's right at the core of what the select committee is investigating, one of the huge outstanding questions is whether they tried to secure his voluntary cooperation and of course the voluntary cooperation of so many people in the president's very immediate circle including in his family stands in stark contrast to the rhetoric from republican politicians who some of those family members are campaigning with. and the way they're talking about the january 6th select committee. the fact that there is this level of voluntary cooperation not just from the president's family member, not just from the president's inner circle but also perhaps even more importantly from the vice president's very close inner circle, it all just points to the fact that the ultimate report that comes out in the select committee is going to be based on an unprecedented level of access to firsthand witnesses who saw exactly what was going on, of course, the select committee would love more, of
course, they would love meadows and bannon, but they're getting more than i think anyone imagined that they would. >> the most significant breakthrough and momentum, that's such an important analysis of what these interviews taken together represent. miles taylor, i wonder if in your view mike pence is someone who makes anything other than a calculation that has at its center becoming president in the republican party primary process, is mike pence someone who can look at what the president's own children decided to do and say, well, they can talk, i can't or is mike pence too singularly focused on his own political prospects? what does mike pence do in your view? >> what would mike pence do is a question that usually ends in something you said earlier, nicolle, which is the path of least resistance. i think you can count on one thing and one thing only when it comes to pence and i say this having seen him from the floor of the house of representatives alt the way to his time as vice president and the thing you can
always count on pence to do is the least courageous thing so, look, if he thinks it's going to save his skin, he'll voluntarily cooperate. if he thinks it's going to be better red meat on the stump out on a political campaign, he'll obstruct the investigation and refuse to meet with them but i do think what we are seeing is very interesting is that the people who declared executive privilege so righteously are now kind of left twisting in the wind as many people who hang on for too long in donald trump land ultimately are because the folks closest to him have said forget it. we'll just voluntarily cooperate. i think that's very, very telling. it signals where other folks like pence who are going to speak to investigators are likely to go but there's another thing here that i think is sort of overlooked, there are some unsung heroes in the january 6th investigation so far and i've nodded towards them before and it's the folks who have been doing the digital forensics here, there was largely overlooked news one of those investigators who was a former
republican member of congress recently left to go take a job to help ukraine. i believe at a nonprofit. but riggleman was leading this technical operation that, frankly, has led us to a lot of these news stories. we can count on don trump jr. or jared kushner to go in and reveal the receipts and actually point the way towards the answers in this investigation. we need to actually go get the receipts. we need the data and footage and recordings we heard from kevin mccarthy and by all accounts, that digital team has been turning over some really extraordinary stuff. the text messages have led to the interviews with these family members have led to interesting threads in the investigation and, you know, i'd be interested in daniel's take on this but it sort of seems to go back to police work 101 is go find the actual evidence and go confront people with it and i do think so far, from what we've seen, this select committee is doing real work here. they're doing real investigative
work turning up real evidence and hopefully that's taken by the u.s. department of justice and taken the step further this committee can't take it into criminal prosecutions if that is indeed what is determined to be warranted. >> dan, i'll let you respond to that. i just want to add a second part to the question, liz cheney, everything liz cheney does whether you love it or hate it is deliberate and she deliberately read from the criminal code about obstructing an official proceeding as the crime that was under investigation by her committee. there's been some different reaction from the select committee but no disputing that they have surpassed an evidentiary sort of standard of making a criminal referral to doj. that said, how does the testimony, the family members in the oval office figure into that? >> well, i want to make two points about the testimony, the first is i do think you need to give some credit to the house
for making the referral for criminal contempt to doj and for doj to charging steve bannon. the point of doing that was creating a deterrent effect to force other witnesses to come in and cooperate. so it's not in a vacuum that we're dealing with all of these family members coming in, they know that if they just completely blow off the committee, they will be referred to the department of justice for criminal prosecution. that's a real thing and the deterrent effect is real. second and i saw this a lot when i was down in congress, got to be a little bit careful with voluntary testimony because the committee cannot compel the witness to answer any questions. they're not under subpoena and so they cannot be compelled to answer questions. and that likely is the sort of middle ground that they reach with the family members so that they could protect themselves
from being compelled to answer any questions that they didn't want to answer without having to invoke the fifth amendment. all of that being said, a good questioner and there are many good questioners on staff, former prosecutors, former u.s. attorneys can make some real headway with witnesses like this and so i do think it's a significant development and i think that it helps to fill out the entire story but the department of justice has more than enough evidence and have for months to go forward with an investigation. they don't need a referral and this shouldn't put them over the edge. >> daniel and betsy and miles, thank you for scrambling and covering this breaking news. we'll turn to the war in ukraine and the growing concerns that vladimir putin could be planning on expanding the war in the coming days. that story after a quick break. don't go anywhere.
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you can't imagine how scary it is when you sit in the shelter in a wet and damp basement which is bouncing, shaking. >> what did your father tell you when you left? what did he say to you? >> translator: he said we'd meet each other soon. >> so just some of the stories coming from evacuees at the mariupol steel plant speaking out on the horrors they've endured in the case of that young man left behind like his father, a ukrainian soldier,
they were part of the 100 civilians evacuated from the plant to safety, a remarkable development as past evacuation efforts have failed over and over. "the washington post" reporting on the civilians now safe telling their stories like this, quote, women and the elderly said that they had lived for more than a month without sunlight as fear pervaded and food dwindled, russian bombardments struck the sprawling complex so hard that dust swirled down from the bunker's ceiling. when several dozen civilians finally stepped above ground friday to meet a u.n.-backed evacuation convoy, that first daylight in weeks felt like it was burning people's eyes as the scene they witnessed sent some into shock. on the one hand seeing the sky for the first time but on the other, seeing the destroyed city, said the u.n. humanitarian coordinator for ukraine, but today the mayor of mariupol confirming to nbc news that he had lost contact with the remaining ukrainian defenders of that steel plant as russia continues to storm the last ukrainian stronghold there.
more than 30 children were among those still trapped, he says. this as we are now just days away from may 9th, the day feared by all that celebrated in russia for marking the surrender of nazi germany and the end of world war ii in europe. in a new piece in "the atlantic" tom nichols warns vladimir putin may use it as an escalation writing no matter what putin says on may 9th, the russians will continue to inflict misery on the people of ukraine. the question next week is whether the russian president intends to extend this war to the rest of the planet. joining our coverage, tom nichols, contributor writer and with us amy mckinnon, national security reporter for foreign policy magazine and joining us live from kyiv, ukraine, is our friend, nbc news correspondent cal perry. cal, i have to start with the evacuation and thread you have pulled for us every single solitary day you've reported, the horrors inflicted on the
ukrainian people at the hands of russians. >> i think we're probably going to be reporting more in the next 24 hours so there's been off and on communications with the people who are left in this azovstal plant. the mayor saying earlier they lost communications. we understand now and been giving tv addresses throughout the day updating the situation and understand communication is back but it's reported that russian forces have now entered that immediate area around that plant where people are and we know there's a high number, hundreds perhaps of ukrainian fighters who are wounded in that site because we've been hearing that from ukrainian commanders able to kind of miraculously we should say get messages and videos out and a daily basis. the mission seems to be capture or kill the people in the plant and seems like we're sort of in the final hours of what has been sort of a last hold-out. the tom nichols piece is well timed obviously because i think people here are talking a lot about may the 9th. we've talked to a number of people whose family members are
outside the country or in the western part of the country who are looking at may 9th as a marker to judge whether or not they should come back and i should say we're seeing video from mariupol of russian forces in places where there's not ground combat cleaning up the city. and trying to tidy up the city for what the rumor is could be a parade on may 9th in mariupol as a sign of victory that putin can then point to. the reality is that mariupol has been wiped off the map in many ways. you can see it in the video. this is video from russia. this is video from belgorod in southern russia of attacks that 15 taken place. this is sort of i think the other factor and i know you'll talk to tom and he gets into it. it's going to be hard to declare victory if parts of russia are still under attack. this is the new phase we talked about especially with offensive drone weapons that are being given here to ukrainian forces. it seems likely that they are expanding this war by attacking sites, again, infrastructure sites in russia that will
undoubtedly complicate whatever message vladimir putin trying to give to the russian people on may the 9th, nicolle. >> cal, stay with us. tom, i want to bring you in on your piece and on what we've been saying about your piece but one more question for you. do the attacks inside russia make may 9th more fraught for ukraine and the west? >> i don't think so, because the russian media obviously isn't going to spend a lot of time on them. i think the bigger issue is that the russian military feels humiliated and that the attacks inside russia, you know, that doesn't help that sense of humiliation but they've been losing battles for two months to the ukrainians and they're going to want some kind of acknowledgement and something to show for the immense and almost staggeringly incompetent losses
they've been taking, so i mean i hope that the warnings that we've been hearing from places like the british defense ministry and some of the, you know, concern among the russia watchers, i hope that's all wrong, but, you know, that's why we're all kind of holding our breath to see what happens on may 9th. i don't think putin is just going to walk away here. i think, you know, no matter what happens, it's -- this isn't going to end and we're not getting to the end of this. >> i want to read more from your piece and then i have another question for you, tom. you write this, if putin doesn't announce ang escalation what else might he say? one option is to declare a limited victory and then go back to grinding away at the ukrainians as he has done in the ukrainian east since 2014. he may simply announce in the spirit of a day devoted to the end of hitlerism he has, indeed, de-nazified ukraine given that precious few nazis were loose in ukraine in the first place. he might say that victory is in
hand but needs to be consolidated with the occupation of what's left of mariupol. this point he could claim victory on de-nazifying is funny but salient. the second thing is to the humiliated russian military, who do they blame and this sort of -- the piece is hauntingly alluding to the potential for putin to expand the war. what does that mean? >> well, first ironically all of the things that you just recounted from the piece, those are good outcomes relative to other things that -- >> right. >> -- putin could do. those are the less awful outcomes. the russian military and the russian president have pretty much decided to blame the russian intelligence services for this debacle but the way it's being framed at home for the public is that the russians are -- that russia is not losing to ukraine. it's losing to nato and that is
a narrative that i think putin is going to push the russian media and the russian government are pushing it because that's less humiliaing that losing to the ukrainians. that is the face-saving argument that says, we are not really losing to, you know, volodymyr zelenskyy and the ukrainian armed force, we are losing to 30 nations led by the united states. the danger there is if the next logical statement is, therefore, we really have to, you know, redouble our efforts to fight nato in this region. again, i hope i'm wrong about that but that's already the public narrative. we're not really losing to the ukrainians, we're losing to nato. nato is the real enemy and, you know, we may have to declare war against all the nazis in the world, no matter where they are, not just the ones that we've eliminated from ukraine. >> and, amy, you write about the
other losers on the russian side, belarus, explain. >> well, belarus which sitting between russia and the european union was launched to re -- reduced in much of the attack in the very early phases of the war. there were 30,000 russian troops move into belarus earlier this year ostensibly for exercises, of course, many were then sent across the border to attack kyiv. now, ukraine's fate is going to be decided by this war, much of russia's fate will be decided but belarus arizona fate is inherently tied to that also. the country's president, aleksandr lukashenko, is deeply dependent on the kremlin, on the russian president, vladimir putin, who propped him up following protests two years ago against elections which were widely regarded to have been falsified so that leaves the fate of belarus' president and by extension its country very tied to how the outcome of this goes, particularly for russia.
and many belarusian opinion polls are opposed to them being used to launch attacks on ukraine, as well. >> we're going to ask tom and amy to stick around. cal perry, i want to ask you in your reporting tomorrow about this date, about may 9th, i'm really curious about what you said at the top of your report, that it's affecting people's calculations who -- i know you've reported previously. people are coming back into kyiv, really curious to know how that is affecting people on the ground, the choices they're making and the timing of when they contemplate that. so put a pin in that or if you could address that now. >> well, for all the reasons tom said, right, a stagnant war is zelenskyy's nightmare because he's worried nato nations might lose attention. there is a real fear people who are sheltered in lviv and poland and romania do we see rocket fire rain down on ukrainian
cities may the 9th because vladimir putin wants to make a statement and does that set everything back here again and set back reconstruction, set back the ability for people to come back to their homes. in the last 48 hours we've had batches of air strikes, we've had over a dozen cruise missile missiles hit as far west as lviv, as far west as a border areas. tonight there was a rocket strike in kyiv. there seems to be targeting the structure. >> i've got this feeling the whole thing has felt this way there is sort of this palpable anxiety as we near that day. a quick break for us. we'll be right back. k break fors we'll be right back.
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president biden made remarks. he basically talked about this battle between autocracies and democracies as the theme of this presidency and i know it applies to our struggles here at home. what are your thoughts when we see a jd vance win in primaries and see that struggle burst into public view in this country. what are your thoughts about your ability to go the distance and standby ukraine? >> you know, 30 years ago democracy was on the march. the authoritarians and dictators were in retreat. now they are pressing forward. they're taking their shot to change the direction of recent history, and the saddest thing is that instead of being, you know, the place that is immune to that, the shining city on the hill, the fortress of democracy against those trends, that the united states is being eaten away from within by
authoritarians who don't believe the rule of law, don't believe in equality, don't believe in the sanctity of the vote. and it's a dark time. i hate to be such a downer at the end of day, but i think it's a really dark time for democracy including in europe where once again dem rockeracy is under attack by force of arms from dictatorships. >> it's a brutal truth but a really important one. and i wonder, amy, how cognizant our allies and adversaries are of that reality here. >> well, going back to your earlier question about how will what's going on here in america affect support for ukraine, at the moment i think, you know, important for ukraine is remaining steady, and that is a bipartisan issue with strong support on both sides of the aisle despite some occasional remarks from some fringes, but there's strong support from both parties continuing to support
ukraine with military aid but also humanitarian efforts. we saw that supplemental package from the biden administration last week which will support not only ukraine but nato allies along the eastern flank. whilst there's a lot to talk about going on here, i think u.s. support for ukraine remains as robust as ever. >> absolutely a perfect point to end on. support for ukraine does not fall or become standard partisan divides in this country. thank you for ending us on a positive note. thank you both so much. i'm sorry our time got shortened. we'll make it up to both of you. and thanks all of you for letting us into your homes. the beat with ari melber live from the supreme court starts right after a quick break. don't go anywhere. k break. don't go anywhere. so that your little update can make a big difference.
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welcome to "the beat." i'm ari melber reporting for you live from washington, d.c. right here in front of the supreme court. and there's a lot of breaking news on more than one topic tonight. donald trump jr. we're just learning testifying, facing congress in the january 6th committee here, which undercuts so many of those privilege claims that are outstanding from maga allies. get into that with a special guest. also there's newly leaked audio of republican leader kevin mccarthy on tape discussing removing trump from office, calling him atrocious. this is after the insurrection and more the reporting on the tape that has complicated -- the speaker issue hangs over him if he continues to be
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