tv Deadline White House MSNBC May 20, 2022 1:00pm-3:00pm PDT
ey told their doctors. and found out they had... atrial fibrillation. a condition which makes it about five times more likely to have a stroke. if you have one or more of these symptoms irregular heartbeat, heart racing, chest pain, shortness of breath, fatigue or lightheadedness, contact your doctor. this is no time to wait. ♪♪ ♪♪ hi there, everyone. happy friday. it's 4:00 in new york. a wave of brand-new reporting on the links between the key figures involved in the deadly insurrection shed light on how january 6th was a quote, marriage between an inside political coup at the highest levels of the administration with street thugs, hooligans and neofascists and that's how raskin describes it. the washington post reveals
ginnie thomas, conservative activist and wife of supreme court justice played a much bigger role than we previously knew in pushing the election results. virginia ginnie thomas pressed arizona lawmakers after the 2020 election to set aside joe biden's popular vote victory and choose, quote, a clean slate of electors, that's according to emails obtained by "the washington post." that email sent by thomas to lawmakers in 2020 argued that legislators needed to intervene because the vote had been marred by fraud. though she did not mention either candidate by name, the context was clear. thomas urged lawmakers to stand strong in the face of political and media pressure. she told lawmakers the chance to have lawmakers was yours and yours alone and had the power to fight back against fraud.
that push by thomas in battle ground states ultimately culminated of alternate slate of trump electors being sent. the states are now under investigation by the justice department and they form a lynchpin by conservative lawyer john eastman to disrupt the certification of joe biden electoral college victory on january 6th. eastman is locked in a battle over the january 6 select committee over access to his emails revealing startling new details this morning about his interactions with the disgraced ex-president as he crafted what committee member adam kinzinger, as a blueprint for a coup. john eastman said he routinely communicated with trump during the chaotic weeks that preceded the january 6th attack on the capitol. the filing describes a direct role of trump himself in
developing strategy detailing two handwritten notes from former president trump about information that he thought might be useful for the anticipated litigation. those notes are among the documents eastman is seeking to shield via attorney-client privilege. eastman said he would speak directly with trump by phone throughout his legal challenges in the election. there is new reporting on the other half of that marriage that congressman jamie raskin describes between the trump administration and the extremists involved in some of the most brutal violence on january 6th and the group chat among confidant and adviser roger stone was named as f.o.s., friends of stone. while its members shifted over time there were a motley cast of characters. at least three members of the group chat are now facing charges in connection with the riot at the capitol in january
2021. they include owen schroyer, the right-hand man of the conspiracy theorist alex jones, enrique tarrio, the one-time chairman of the proud boys and stewart rhodes, the leader of the oath keepers militia. the times notes a significance of the group chat saying as prosecutors deepen their inquiry into the storming of the capitol, the list suggests that stone his means to be in private contact with key players in the events of january 6th. political organizers, far-right extremists and influential media figures who subsequently played down the attack. brand-new revelations on the key figures involved in the deadly insurrection from the wife of a supreme court justice to the leaders of domestic extremist groups is where we start the hour. joining us, congressman adam schiff of california, a chairman of the intelligence committee. congressman, it's been a huge week of public revelations.
i'm not sure how much of this is new information to you or the committee, but if we could start with ginni thomas, and if you can characterize how interested you are in speaking to her and if there are plans to do so? >> there are several things to me about what is publicly known and been revealed about ginni thomas. here, she is weighing in with state legislators in arizona seeking to get them to essentially send a bogus slate of electors who didn't represent who won the popular election in arizona and you know, the judge in california, judge carter and the case involving eastman, this lawyer describes what the former president was involved in as a conspiracy. that was a conspiracy to intervene in the joint session to defraud people and here you have the wife of a supreme court justice engaged in a parallel effort to get arizona to improperly cast aside the votes of millions, and also to add to
it, her husband, on the supreme court, writing a dissent in a case in a case arguing providing records to congress that might have revealed those same emails. that conflict of interest just screams at you. so it's a tangled web here, but it is -- it is a pernicious tangled web, at that. >> congressman, had you seen the emails that ginni thomas sent that the post reports today. have they been swept up in any of the prongs of your probe? >> i can't comment on whether the select committee has them or had them already. we have a mountain of materials and i can also tell you, i haven't seen all of the materials that we've been able to accumulate, but we continue to learn more and more in the eastman case, for example, and this was the request so i can't comment on it, and there are records showing that they were
giving a blueprint to a pennsylvania lawmaker about how to fudge the results and how to defraud the people of pennsylvania and the explicit nature of that corrupt activity is so blatant and now it's revealed that he's in direct conversation with donald trump's strategizing with donald trump so the criminal conspiracy that judge carter mentioned now a courtesy of mr. eastman goes right back to the president. >> well, so you said two things that i want to press you on. one, what has been described as likely felonies committed by donald trump and john eastman seems to track with all of the reporting about where the select committee's work is now focused and there's been some reporting that congresswoman liz cheney and her public and private work is making sure that the ex-president's role in all of this is revealed in part in the public hearings. i wonder if you can comment on
how much of this final phase, and i don't know if you would feel or describe it as final, but the final phase is focused on donald trump's role in that conspiracy? >> well, in my point of view, i won't speak for him, but in my point of rue, he is in the arc tshth you are and on again, shoorz a big promulgator of the big lie and they're tried to get bonus states of electors and he's inall of this ask he's strategizing with eastman and others and he's the instigator and the author of and the architect of this effort to overturn our elections culminating in this violence on january 6th. so you can't ignore the
principal player here and you know, our goal is to expose all involved in the fragility of our democrat see and the main reason it remains so fragile is because of the active participation of the head of today's republican party, donald trump. >> your response seems to render moot the debate about three or four weeks ago about whether or not the committee would refer donald trump. it sounds like whether you make the referral or not the committee is in possession of ample evidence to allege that he's the chief architect of a coup. >> the judge out in california on a limited basis on the material he's reviewing and eastman as the conclusion. we have -- >> have you? >> well, i -- you know, i concur with judge carter's observation. i think he was involved in an effort to overturn the election.
i think there is evidence as the judge pointed out in the president's involvement and multiple potential criminal acts. the judge doesn't even get into what donald trump did in georgia trying to buy the number of votes he would need to oppose opponents and intimating if they didn't and those are criminal acts that ought to be investigated by the justice department. >> congressman, you talk about the states and i want to press on the significance of ginni thomas, wife of the supreme court, and her husband and he is the one supreme court just whois dissented on how much information and the commission would have access to. do you want to understand ginni thomas' role in the fake electors' plot as it is under scrutiny by the doj? >> yes. i want to understand the role of
anyone in overturning our election and it would be up to the committee as a committee, you know, how we go forward in terms of ginni thomas, we have other sources of information about her role and the role of others and they don't necessarily have to come from her, but yes, where you have prominent people involved in essentially an effort to overturn our election to interfere with the peaceful transfer of power, a big part of the reason why people are listening to ginni thomas in the state legislatures and elsewhere is because of not her own work, but because of who her husband is. unless it's a 100-year coincidence as you point out. [ laughter ] and of course, the justice's own role in trying to deprive the commit of information is just scandal. >> and certainly tracks something the chief justice has talked about and that is the perception of the integrity of the court.
i want to ask you about the headlines that were made almost 24 hours ago. this letter for a voluntary interview with the republican congressman that we haven't talked too much about and i want to read an excerpt from the letter. you write to mr. loudermilk, quote, based on our review of evidence in the select committee's possession, we believe we have information regarding a tour you led through parts of the capitol complex on january 5, 2021. republicans on the committee on house administration of which you were a member claimed to have reviewed security footage from the days preceding january 6th and determined, quote, there were no tours. no large groups and no one with maga hats on. however, the select committee contradicts that denial. >> we understand that to mean that you have evidence that says the opposite of, quote, there were no tour, no large groups and no one with maga hats on
january 5 ath. >> we have evidence that contradicts mr. loudermilk and others on the commit, but there were no for share and whether for some reason we are wrong and we have evidence that contradicts that claim and sharing with us what he knows. >> in response he called for the capitol police to release the footage that he relied upon for that denial. is it a fair assumption to say that you're in possession of evidence that goes beyond the footage he's referring to to exonerate him? >> i'm confident if he comes in and testifies we'll give him the opportunity to explain any evidence that seems to contradict the claims that he's
made. so we look forward to what will be his cooperation with our committee and we have had other investigations in the past where i've conducted where democrats and republicans have cooperated voluntarily, but he clearly, in our view, has evidence relevant to our investigation, relevant to that very issue of whether tours were conducted on january 5th or prior to the events of the 6th. >> it's just a stunning question to leave open, and harry lipman, former doj official said on this program, that depending on how this witness and this piece of evidence that contradicts his claim turns out, if this is someone who provided tours to someone who carried out acts of violence on the u.s. capitol on the 6th, he made the parallel to someone sharing calk fit footage with attackser on september
11th. are are your questions as serious, we don't want to state or understate what we have from mr. loudermilk, but we do have evidence that contradicts what he has represented and we'd like to talk with him and we think he has information he can share with us and at this point i'm not at liberty to say how significant it is, but complooerly, all of our members are concerned about the statements coming from him and other committey members don't hold up to the evidence and we want to know why. >> what can you tell us about not necessarily today but what the process might look like in the future with justice department, criminal division, prosecutors wanting access to your transcripts and your work project? >> this is not an uncommon phenomenon, the russian investigation and the ukraine
investigation, and we wanted information that they had obtained and information we wanted that they had obtained and the product of negotiation. we wanted to support the justice department in their work. i don't think anyone has been louder than i have in calling the justice department to pursue all leads to overturn the election, but we received a very blanket request for information. it doesn't just simply say it will open our files. they need to be specific about what they're looking for, that we can help them with and we're -- i think more than willing to do that, eager to help in any way they can, but we do have an institutional interest in simply setting precedent where the justice department can come rummage through the committee's investigatory files. there's also information we want from the justice department and we also don't want the justice department to in any way
discourage witnesses from talking to us and we want to discuss the issues and we want to be helpful and i'm confident we'll work it out. >> what do you think when a republican primary night comes and goes and the energy and the support from republican voters is around, and does not disqualify people who were champions at the stop the steal movement which is your investigation makes clear it is part of this broader conspiracy to overturn the results of a free and fair election? >> you know, it's terrifying. here we are. we're more than a year after this violent attack on the capitol and our democrat see is more weaker and vulnerable than ever. >> you have people who were lying about the last election.
count the ballots income time. the fundamentally incapacitated to do those jobs and they can get on the ballot and they could win and if they should win and there is a contested result next time no one will have confidence in what they say because they've already proven themselves untrustworthy and this is how democracy is going to wither is by using instruments of democracy to tear itself down. it's terrifying and we all have to wake up to the threat, the local technocratic elections officials and some being driven out of town with death threats and this is the paramount danger to our democracy right now along with voter disenfranchisement with people of color. >> the common link is they are
punled and byes and inticker symbol jity and in states where they had no fraud. i want to ask a question, when you hear mitch mcconditionel and kevin mccarthy on tape and these two great reporters from "the new york times" have lots and lots of tapes sounding like you and me, describing donald trump as a son of a bitch and that's mitch mcconnell and kevin mccarthy making it clear that after january 6th, donald trump had to go and detailing on a conference call with members that he wouldn't resign, but other impeachment and the 25th amendment and whose only concern that was it was too slow. when you see the private thoughts of republicans put back in the tube or covered over and consumed by their public conduct of enabling him and strengthening him and as you said strengthening republicans around the country who adhere to this big lie, what do you think the prospects are for success for the public phase of the 1/6
select committee hearings? >> you know, our benchmark for success is to tell the story of what happened on the run-up to the 6th is to give it to tens of millions of americans who have an open mind who want to understand what happened and how close we came to losing our democracy, but you're right. listening to those tapes of mcconnell and mccarthy in private expressing what we all felt about the unfitness of the former president, and to see now how they have completely caved in to the immorality of the former president, it just takes your breath away. what is scandalous about kevin mccarthy, for example, lying to "the new york times" about the conversations about january 6th is not lying. anyone who knows mccarthy isn't particularly surprised by that
. if he continues to lie he can't serve in the republican leadership that's the terrible tragedy. >> right. >> and robert carol, the story once said that power doesn't corrupt as much as it reveals. it says a lot about who we are. power has said a lot about who kevin mccarthy is and who mitch mcconnell is and if we don't elect people of character, then none of it works no matter how brilliant the constitution is and no matter how we reform the electoral count act. if people don't go into the oath of office, none of it works at the end of the day. >> the stakes are very, very high for the public phase. >> very high. >> thank you for spending time to talk to us about the stunning developments. we are grateful for your time. >> thank you 37.
>> when we come back, our panel on the january 6th headlines and reacting to congressman adam schiff. could the fwshgs op's biggest loser could be the twice-purchased ex president? this for fears mounting on the right that he will cost them in pennsylvania and there are signs trump himself sees the writing on the wall in georgia. we'll explain. later in the program, both alexander vindman and his brother will be our guest together reacting to an i.g. report that they were the likely victims of trump administration retaliation. all of those stories and more when "deadline white house" continues after a quick break. don't go anywhere. a quick break. don't go anywhere.
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>> your argument is that essentially we have a failed election that would require the legislature to step in and assign electors, am i correct? >> yes. >> and what do you say in terms of proving that there is a failed election, what do you say to what's been laid out by our secretary of state, governor, attorney general barr and the courts because right now there have not been, as far as i'm aware, proof of the number of ballots that would be required to have been problematic to switch the election and call it a failed election. i don't know what the evidence is. what do you say to that? >> well, there are two issues here. there's one that's extent of the fraud and the casting of ballots and the other which is
undisputed, the failure to comply with the statutory scheme that this legislature sent out. >> nothing. i've got nothing. john eastman in the december 3, 2020 hearing with the legislators and they're probing him for the evidence and there he is in their response peddling this theory that lawmakers can simply overturn the will of the voters and it's a theory that ultimately led to an unprecedented pressure campaign against vice president mike pence ahead of january 6th and culminated in the violence that day. joining our coverage, betry woodruff, national correspondent for politico. ben rhodes, and tim miller, he's a writer at large for the bull work. betsy, i want to ask you about eastman in light of politico's new reporting, john eastman revealed friday that he
routinely communicated with trump either directly or via six conduits during the chaotic weeks that preceded the january 6th attack on the capitol. explain what's new about eastman and trump. >> what we know is just how deep and close the relationship between these two men was. eastman is essentially saying i was 100% trump's lawyer. i was working directly for him. the advocacy that i engaged in was on his behalf and he was my client. eastman has to be able to make that argument persuasively if he wants to win in court here and if he wants to have any sort of a prayer of making the case that attorney-client privilege should shield the materials that the select committee is trying to obtain and that's why he is really kind of revealing himself in terms of the nature of the work that he did for the president. he wasn't freelancing whatsoever in his version of the story.
he wasn't doing anything that wasn't blessed and encouraged by president trump. what is notable about that clip he played and the project that eastman lays out is that there's significant overlap between what they were talking about here which is the alleged ability of state legislators to decide that they disagree with the way election results were tabulated and that ability and the final voter outcome. that's connected, of course, to ginni thomas and "the washington post." in those emails she specifically says to state lawmakers, you have an awesome responsibility under article 2 of the constitution to choose electors in these presidential races. anyone would look at that and think that ginni thomas herself was providing legal analysis on this question of who gets to count the votes? who gets to decide how the state
election decisions get made? it's very explicit in the video you played of john eastman and now we know that it's an argument that trump himself had green lit and it was being made on behalf of trump himself according to what eastman is saying in these court filings. >> i mean, ben rhodes, betsy just laid out what is reportable and evidence based in support of a criminal conspiracy. how much do you think we already know about what the 1/6 committee is going to represent and what everyone at this point sort of surprises and clearly under investigation by doj as far as we know? >> well, i mean, some of this was obviously hiding in plain sight. we experienced the propaganda and misinformation campaigns online. we saw john eastman out there making these wild claims. i think the fact that roger stone has a group text read with
fascist people with the stop the steal movement against something we knew. i think what the committee has done and what the reporting has shown is that underneath all of that there was stitching that held this enterprise together at the behest of donald trump who sat on top of this enterprise. so everything that we are seeing through the committee kind of validates the idea that these weren't just things happening by some form of popular momentum or some natural concerns being raised about voter fraud. this was a carefully planned, calibrated effort to try to overturn the result of a democratic election and break the very last and most profound guardrail in a democracy because these are people who see democratic institutions as obstacles to power and not something to seek power within and the reality staring us in the face is that donald trump is the head of this criminal enterprise and how can you hold a criminal enterprise accountable without going to the
person who is on top of it and if the message is there's impunity for crimes if you're powerful enough when you commit them or powerful enough in our politics after you commit them. if there is a message and there's impunity for that, that's what reenforces this behavior that we're seeing in this country where democracy is no longer the way in which a lot of people, particularly in the republican party, seek power. >> former attorney general eric holder made a similar argument saying that not prosecuting donald trump would also divide the country. let me show that to you, tim miller. >> taking into account what national impact of this case -- or potential case would be is certainly something that i think would be legitimately considered by the prosecutor who has to make that ultimate determination, but having said that, having said that and understanding that this is going to divide the nation, i think a nonprosecution would divide the
nation, as well and if we don't have that deterrent impact coming out of the consideration of what happened on january 6th, we put this republic at risk in the future. >> what do you think, tim miller? >> it's hard to argue with that. look, i don't have a lot of hope, honestly that the courts are going save us in this case, at least when it comes to donald trump, but i do think that it sends a signal, right? that says if you are the president or if you are an adviser to the president that you can get away with literally anything up to and including trying to end our democracy without having any legal review. yeah, of course, that will divide the country and that will only incentivize more in the future and on john eastman, one other thing. i know it is not true for viewers of this show and there is an intentional effort being cultivated by the reasonable conservative at daytime fox that this coup plot is a clownish
effort and the pillow guy and the cracken lady and none of this will happen and how close eastman and ginni thomas were undermine that case. john eastman is at the top, top of the conservative legal infrastructure. he speaks at the federalist society at the clairemont institute, and these are the very old guard conservative legal institutions that he is a member in good standing of and one of the leaders of, frankly. ginni thomas, obviously, is the wife of a supreme court justice. these are people at the very top of the conservative legal, you know, advocacy system that we were trying to put around this coup attempt and legal justification formed. that could be defended in courts and that could justify trump staying in power. that is obviously very, very
serious. i don't mean to say and that puts quite a different picture on it for voters who are trying to understand all of this than oh, trump was calling the guy from overstock and the pillow guy and it was never really going to happen. >> i think, and i don't want to gloss over this ginni thomas bombshell. >> right. >> believing that our elections are faulty, believing that there was fraud in 2020 and that's why donald trump lost was not a grassroots movement. it was a top down movement. donald trump spoon fed that garbage to his voters. fox news promulgated it, mitch mcconnell and kevin mccarthy looked the other way and now you have an adjacent domestic violent extremism movement that believes that the 2020 election results were fraudulent and a mainstream of the republican party who doesn't think president joe biden is the legitimate winner even though
attorney general bill barr saw no election fraud that would have changed the outcome and lifelong republican chris kreb says said we did our job, was there no fraud. and the bozos that were in the stop the steal movement couldn't manufacture voter fraud anywhere. those are the facts. what ginni thomas does and she's right next to donald trump in the ice of the grassroots and a co-equal branch of government and sends this in an email. she writes, i am writing you today to urge you to do your constitutional duty. please stand strong in the face of political and media pressure. please reflect on the awesome authority granted to you by our constitution and then please take action to ensure that a clean slate of electors is chosen for our state. i also wish to request a meeting with you so i can learn more about what you are doing to ensure our state's vote count is audited and our certification is clean. this is november 9th. there's no evidence of fraud on
november 9th and she's calling for an audit and that is before members of the white house know what to do about ginni thomas, tim? >> ginni thomas is roaming the halls of the white house and she has to be held accountable. i don't understand why they wouldn't at least review clarence thomas' role in this. i'm not saying or stating or implying that clarence thomas was certainly involved, but certainly worth looking into and what are they talking about at the dinner table and his wife is literally plotting a coup. this is not something that he could not have been aware of in any way, and i think going back to the top-down, fort and why this calls for a legal and congressional oversight that we're obviously getting already is these tens and tens of millions of people that believe this election was stolen, this wouldn't have happened if it
wasn't for ginni thomas and donald trump and their co-con spir stores. there are small anti-democratic things to complain about with the republicans, but if mike pence had lost we all would have moved on. there wouldn't have been a lot of people storming the capitol. there wouldn't be legislators in michigan talking about whether or not we could overturn the election. there is plenty to criticize mike pence about and there are other stuff and it needs to be treated as such. >> ben, i asked congressman adam schiff about the state of the hearings and he made a point i haven't heard made publicly by many members of the committee, but he thinks democracy is in worst shape today than it was on january 6th. do you concur? >> yeah, i definitely think so because i think the hope that a lot of people had was that january 6th itself would be this
wake-up call. being look, the fact that we all went through that and there was pretty much a collective decision made in the right-wing of this country and the republican party of this country to just kind of plow forward with their anti-democratic authoritarian strategy, that's chilling and we're in worse shape because that didn't wake us up. nicole, i've written a book about in the sense that there's a playbook that uses democratic institutions that sets up an autocracy. >> the cpac conference is taking place in hungary. this isn't subtle. the veil has dropped, nicole. i think we're worse off because a lot of people think when the veil drops and these guys are caught burning this whole thing down, what happened is you see people doubling and tripling down on this brand of politics.
you see even more of this propagandizing, and you see people like kevin mccarthy endlessly debasing themselves because they see this as a pathway to power and nothing is proving it otherwise, and look, you can say, well there is only so much these hearings can do, but telling that story as powerfully and persuasively and as evidentiary as possible, i think, is an important part of a much broader effort. look, we'll have to fight our way through the ballot box and the courts aren't going to save us, and i agree that if the courts don't slow this down, making it more difficult and putting it in people's heads that you might be hauled and called to account for what you did, if that doesn't happen, well, then we don't have a fighting chance. >> it's -- it's a really stark point in this story. ben rhodes, tim miller, betsy, thank you very much for spending some time with us today.
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up to be donald trump. republican fears are mounting, but the ex-president is poised to cost some big general election as well as key midterm in the country, in pennsylvania, trump is already advising his endorsed candidate, that's dr. oz to prematurely to claim victory and hinting about baseless allegations of fraud. full-on big lie style. nbc news goes so far as to report today that the pennsylvania's gop is fuming. they're mad at trump, quote, exasperated republicans in the state say the end result could boomerang and damage the party should he run in 2024. erin haines and also an msnbc contributor and bassill smiekel.
>> it matters if the non-or the less big lie republican is more or less successful because it signifies where the permission structure is around the small democratic issues and ideals and i wonder, basel, how much attention you're paying and what strikes you? >> a lot of attention, actually. you know, one of the things i would say about state-wide offices is when you run for statewide office there are more people and there's a bigger spectrum of ideology. so i -- i pay very close attention to it because of course, i don't want trumpism in the senate and i don't want trumpism running the statehouses and if i am a republican i'm thinking trump is the means to an end. we got the supreme court we wanted. we got the judges that we wanted
on the federal bench and they have to find a way to move on from that. in some ways youngkin was a bit of an example, right? there was a way you can align yourself with trumpism without full-on embracing it and it seems like they're finding a way to learn from that. as a democrat, i have to say i can't say that's a good thing because i can't say this. >> right. >> but what i can say is it's actually better than having a house or the senate and you would be able to control that or rein that back in, but i think there's some learning going on from some sectors of the republican party to try to find a way to keep trumpism from metastasizing at least in the big seats.
i don't know how much they can hold on to that. >> yeah. >> it seems like they're trying to figure out a way. >> erin, we cover the republican party as things that people say privately track with the concerns that all of us have and the significance of mitch mcconnell on tape, viewing 1/6 the same way the three of us do as a stain and a warning sign that trump must go either by impeachment, resignation and the 25th amendment and the primaries matter because to the degree that the base can purge trump from its soul, maybe those people say those things out loud. i don't know, i'm not particularly hopeful and i keep wondering why we're not having a -- primary and even trump was wringing his hands that the, you know, the woman who was too maga to receive trump's endorsement might actually topple dr. oz and mr. mccormick.
>> yeah. so i mean, a few things on that, nicole. yes, primaries matter because the question in this primary season is will voters reject maga and the big lie this cycle? that is still very much an open question. you've had mixed results so far on that question and you brought up kathy barnette who certainly appears at this point to be a spoiler and within striking distance to be in a position of where oz and mccormick find themselves and she was almost in second place and what she said headed into the primary contest was what maga does not just belong to trump, and again, she's right. this is an environment where even without trump's endorsement, maga was very much looming over the gop primary in pennsylvania, the big lie playing a role in georgia where it certainly looks like governor kemp is going to be among the
incumbent governors that will again get his party's nomination for that seat, but you have a very close secretary of state race because of raffensperger who rejected the big lie and did not get onboard in 2020 when tre specter of a rigged election there and depressed some republican turnout as a result in that senate runoff, if you remember that, right, so like the shades of trump raising re-election kind of blowing back on republican voters is really interesting to think about here in this pennsylvania race, but you know, raffensperger is in a tight race with jody hice because of the big lie, and so it really is going to be important to watch the, most of all, what voters do going forward in these primaries, and even headed into the general election. around the big lie and around whether or not they're still willing -- with or without trump's endorsement. >> i do want to press both of you on georgia and what it will
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raffensperger and kemp refused to throw out the results of the georgia elections, and that's despite the fact that they backed and pushed voter suppression laws that were so offensive, baseball took the all-star game somewhere else. he's furious with them, but his guy, i think, purdue is down almost 18, 20 points to kemp. what does that say to you about republican primary voters in georgia? >> well, you know, actually, i'm going to use the example of madison cawthorn. there is clearly evidence that republicans can police themselves. the question is, will they? and in what instances? and the question to me, you know, when you think about georgia, you know, this is a state that, which is great for us, is on the verge of being blue for a long time, i think. if we can keep this momentum and, you know, god bless stacey abrams, if she can pull this out, then we have some fundamental change in the political landscape in georgia
that can hopefully last us a significant period of time. the republicans know that. donald trump knows that. so, they should be thinking about how do we stem the tide? how do we keep this from happening? but i'll tell you, owing to your earlier segment, and i've been beating this drum for a long time, we have to talk more about the big criminal conspiracy that anyone aligned with trump, even a little bit, is -- you're going to elect another player in that conspiracy, plain and simple, and if we care about accountability, if we care about our institutions and the sanctity of those institutions, we have to start, a, electing democrats, but b, if republicans actually really care about the future and growth of their party, they've got to figure out how to keep trumpism out of these elections. >> errin haines and basil smikle, two of the best of the best, thank you so much for spending time with us today.
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course who her husband is, and of course the justices' own role in trying to deprive the committee of information is just scandalous. >> hi again, it's 5:00 in new york. that scandal, congressman adam schiff talked about at the top of the last hour, has officially reached its tentacles all the way into the highest court of the land. congressman schiff, a member of the january 6th select committee, raising pretty big questions today on the latest breaking news on the coup plot that ensued after the 2020 election. a new exclusive piece of reporting from the "washington post" on ginni thomas, the wife of supreme court justice clarence thomas, who pressed arizona lawmakers to help reverse donald trump's election loss in that state. that's according to emails that have been obtained by "the washington post". it's a scoop "the post" puts in context like this. quote, the messages show that thomas, a staunch supporter of donald trump, was more deeply involved in the effort to overturn biden's win than has been previously reported. in sending the emails, thomas played a role in the
extraordinary scheme to keep trump in office by substituting the will of legislatures for the will of voters. the report is already ramping up. the questions being asked about potential conflicts of interest that justice thomas has been facing since march. that was when the "post" and others obtained text messages that his wife, ginni thomas, sent in late 2020 to donald trump's chief of staff, mark meadows, pressing him to overturn the election result. questions that are no doubt being unpacked in realtime by the january 6th select committee today, which nbc news reported obtained those text messages a little less than two months ago. a few days before the "new york times" reported that the committee was likely to seek an interview with thomas. today's important update in the connection of a wife of a supreme court justice to the plot to overturn the results of a 2020 election is where we start this hour with some of our most favorite reporters and friends. luke broadwater is back, "new york times" congressional reporter. also back, harry litman, former
u.s. attorney, former deputy assistant attorney general and the host of the talking feds podcast, and the reverend al sharpton, also back, host of msnbc's "politics nation" and the president of the national action network. luke, i want to start with you. and just this whole body of questions and it seems to exist on multiple levels. you've got chief justice john roberts acknowledged despair may be too strong but concerns about the integrity of the united states supreme court, and you've got this evolving and emerging public evidence of ginni thomas's effort, at least in this new reporting with the arizona state legislature to overturn president biden's win there. where do you think the committee is in terms of how to engage ginni thomas? >> yeah, the committee's been going through some contortions here with ginni thomas, as best i can tell. for a long time, they did not want to bring her in, and they
showed no indication of doing it. then, when the sort of the bombshell text messages came out with her imploring mark meadows to release the kraken and fight the election results, including to enlist sidney powell as trump's lead attorney to fight the results, there was public pressure on the committee to seek answers from her. they did say at the time or people close to the committee said at the time that they would likely call her in for an interview and we reported that. other outlets did as well. but then nothing happened, and it's been several weeks now and the last thing we heard from the chairman of the committee was that they hadn't talked about her in some time, so i checked in again today to see whether there would be now a letter to her or a subpoena and i was told it was still under consideration. so, i'm not sure what the committee will do with ginni thomas now, but we do see from this "washington post" story
that ginni thomas was doing herself what her own action networks were encouraging people to do, and she sits on the board of an organization that had encouraged citizens to pressure their state lawmakers to try to overturn the election. now, here's evidence that she was doing that herself, so you know, i do think it raises new questions for the committee. i don't know how they're going to respond, but as of yet, we have not seen them formally ask ginni thomas to come in. >> let me show you something that congressman schiff said when i put some of these questions to him about how they might investigate her role. >> it will be up to the committee as a committee. you know, how we go forward in terms of ginni thomas. we have other sources of information about her role and the role of others that don't necessarily have to come from her. >> you know, luke, it sounds like the mark meadows texts, and
we've seen a lot of them, there are obviously some that we haven't seen, and as they put this state electors investigation together and perhaps prepare to reveal it to the public, it sounds like there may be people on the receiving end of some of her communications. do you know what he's talking about there? >> you know, i mean, they could be talking about all the texts they have from mark meadows. they could have other evidence of what ginni thomas did or didn't do. one thing i've been told by people who don't think that they should call her in is that they don't see her as a key player in the plot or scheme or plan, whatever word you want to use, to overthrow the election, as she was somebody railing against president biden, railing against the election results, but not really a key figure who was at the crux of decision making, and so maybe she's somebody on the outskirts who it's nice to interview but not essential to the investigation. so, that's one thing that i have heard for why it isn't paramount on the committee to bring her
in. i'm not sure, though, a lot of the base wants to hear that, though. i think they want to put -- i think a lot of people want to put ginni thomas under oath and get questions about who exactly she was talking to, who she was influencing, whether she discussed these things with clarence thomas, whether he had any influence on her thinking. so, i think there are a lot of questions for ginni thomas that are still unanswered. >> well, and i guess, harry litman, a two-bit player in a coup to overturn the results of a free and fair election in the united states of america, who happens to be married to the one united states supreme court justice who dissented in an otherwise unanimous decision to help the bipartisan january 6th committee understand said coup against the united states government, still seems like a pretty important witness. >> yeah, i mean, it's all bolstering this notion of the two of them as kind of warriors, you know, in a grand battle and culture war in the country and
it really takes away from his posture as a justice. remember, he's the guy who said, when he was confirmed, the liberals made me miserable for 43 years and i'm going to make them miserable for 43 years. each time these things come out, it's almost bigger than the question, should he be recused from any individual case, and it's just the great unseemliness of the couple as being so much on a particular side. there are other things. i agree that she doesn't come out in a big way in the investigation, but one of the two people she writes is now an arizona secretary of state candidate, so it plays into that whole dynamic, and one other point is these are just the documents this cache as well as a couple others that came out by chance in a foia request that the "post" managed to do. there's so much more, maybe meadows has them. if the doj comes in eventually,
we'll see them all. but for now, what we're seeing are just the sort of rocks that are almost by chance being overturned, and they do show her in a very unseemly, if not criminal light. >> so, rev, it's not just the emails she sent on november 9th. "the washington post" also reports that thomas's name appears on an email to the two representatives on december 13th, a day before members of the electoral college met to cast their votes and seal biden's victory. "before you choose your state's electors, consider what will happen to the nation we all love if you don't stand up and lead," the email said. it included a link to a video of a man delivering a message meant for swing state lawmakers urging them to, quote, put things right and, quote, not give into cowardice. "you have only hours to act," said the speaker, who's not identified. in the video. what are your thoughts about how
important it is to understand ginni thomas's role in the coup plot? >> i think it is paramount important. i think that when you look at the fact that we are in a climate where there's been decreasing trust in the supreme court and now you have a sitting supreme court judge, as you have said accurately, was the only dissenter on a key vote, that his wife is actively using the clout of being his wife to write officials in arizona and to encourage others who has decision making power to go a certain way. let's remember, she may not be a a-list player in what the committee's investigating, but the only reason that she's being considered at all by the people that she's sending emails to or trying to reach out to is
because she's a supreme court justice's wife. otherwise, she'd be another maga person outside screaming through a bull horn. so for her to be able to use that leverage and not to inquire how far she used it and did she have any discussions with her husband, i think would only further make many of us lose any kind of trust in what the supreme court is about. i think it's mandated they call her forward. we need to know what she discussed and when she discussed it, and are you to tell me, ms. ginni thomas, that you had such place that you would write people about electors, write people that were holding elected office in arizona, but you never discuss it over coffee with your husband? is that what you're asking me to believe? we need to make her answer that under oath. we need to know what a supreme court justice is being influenced at home, particularly
when he takes the only dissenting vote. recusing him may be the least that would come out of that because i think that we're talking about the whole tenets of our democracy here. >> you know, i mean, luke, the questions that it would seem both institutions would want answered, both the court and the committee, would be, you know, first of all, it's hard if you're not a republican to explain how fringy ginni thomas's orientation is, even vis-a-vis the current republican party. she gave an award to mark meadows when he was in congress because he was in charge of the freedom caucus, which was to the right of republican party leadership at the time, a thorn in the side of the current leaders. i think she gave an award to james o'keefe, sort of this right-wing media agitator. i mean, she's sort of to the fringe of the fringe on the right, and in terms of bannon and meadows, the two individuals who are obstructing subpoenas, and her husband, obstructing the release of information, i mean,
does anyone either on the committee or, you know, do people feel like they just have to answer and show they sought to disclose and be transparent about her role in it, or the perceived role that she would play? >> well, one thing i have heard is that if the january 6th committee won't take up this ginni thomas avenue of the investigation, that maybe one of the other committees on the hill will. perhaps the judiciary committee, because these -- a lot of these questions do actually get to the courts and the supreme court and its institutional gravitas or legitimacy, and if the january 6th committee says ginni thomas is too much of a fringe player, she's just someone yelling into the void, yes, she has powerful connections, but she's, you know -- she wasn't mark meadows. she wasn't at the right hand of donald trump while he was doing the things he was doing. perhaps it is a question for one
of the other committees to pick up, because that -- and that is something i've heard talked about on the hill, that if january 6th doesn't want this investigation, maybe they'll take it. so, i do think there will be some avenue for investigation, but the democrats are running out of time if they -- if, you know, they only have a few months left and if they want to get answers to some of these questions with ginni thomas's role in january 6th, you know, the clock is ticking. >> harry, i want to show you something that jocelyn benson had to say about this idea of there being a bottom for donald trump. >> the president himself had called on me to be arrested and tried for treason, potentially executed. >> to hear that the president of the united states, when he loses the election in michigan, decides that the way to deal with that is to accuse you of
treason, to ask -- isn't there some way to arrest her? >> we should stop expecting that there is a bottom. so the lengths that people will go to overturn legitimate election results and seize power in our country. >> so, harry, it's haunting and ominous. it's a great interview from my colleague, cynthia mcfadden, but it's also a move that donald trump made many times. he accused andy mccabe of treason, he accused jim comey of treason. if i had more than a minute, i think i could find others. what does that signal about what the republican party, again, is walking in lockstep with? people who call people on the other side, not even political adversaries, the secretary of state administering that state's elections, it seems like a very ominous warning about what the republican party has turned into around questions of the rule of law. >> it really does, and it's felt this way to me, anyway, since like the "access hollywood" tape. you know, there's just -- you can't go lower than that, can
you? oh my god, lower than -- we're going toward absolute zero and below, and as you say, with each -- with each new low comes the lockstep loyalty of the republican party, and so much of this is after january 6th. what's really stunning is the juncture we find ourselves in now where there's a doubling down from, you know, look at what happened in the tuesday elections, and people who were nominated out of complete sort of service to the big lie and basically a promise that they will go forward with the things that seemed completely to have bottomed out back then. so, it's not just him, but what seems to be a whole party and a movement that really knows no bottom, and it's, you know, it's no joke. it's really -- goes to the, you
know, existence and continued vigor of the democratic system itself. it's really harrowing. >> yeah, i mean, rev, adam schiff said the democracy -- i was asking about the stakes. he said democracy's in worse shape now than it was in when january 6th happened. what, in your mind, are the stakes for the public phase and the final product of the january 6th select committee? >> i think that what is at stake is our whole democracy, our whole democratic principles. the question is, and it has to be answered by this committee, is, are we going to let people actively plan and execute a plan to stop a democratically held election from being certified? that is the reason that date was january 6th. that is what was happening january 6th. these are not just some angry,
shrill, fringe people. they may have been that in terms of some of the players, but the plot was around the certification of an election, so the whole idea of a democratic election is what is at stake here, and that's what this committee has to deal with. and whoever were bit players, major players, whatever, needs to come out clear in this because the only reason we keep talking about january 6th like it's some of us call it a rally for civil rights, it was january 6th because it was the day to certify an election that the american people had voted for, and it was to be certified on that day. in fact, more american people had voted in that election than in the history of this country, and we need answers on why they chose to come and try to stop that certification of that election on that day. that was just not some angry,
fringe people. those were people that are assigned or part of a plot to overthrow an election. >> luke, i want to give you the last word on this new reporting today about john eastman, who from the outside, it looks like he's trying to strengthen attorney-client privilege claims, but in doing so, he seems to either wittingly or unwittingly be throwing donald trump under the bus as the architect of the coup. he's alleging that, i guess, everything he did was in direct consultation with and after conversations and handwritten notes from donald trump. how does the 1/6 committee view those revelations? >> yeah, it's really a fascinating court filing from john eastman where he says that he spoke directly to president trump as they were coming up with some of these legal theories to try to overturn the election. and he, in fact, has two handwritten notes from donald trump. now, we know donald trump called john eastman into the oval office and the two of them together attempted to pressure
mike pence and then later mike pence's attorney, lead attorney, to go along with the plan to overturn the election throughout legitimate votes or delay the certification of the votes to give state legislatures the chance to install pro-trump electors and put donald trump in office for a second term. but yeah, i mean, he directly names donald trump here as being one of the people who directed this plan and came up with it, and you know, i do think this is a fascinating revelation. one thing i will note, there is a throughline between sidney powell and john eastman today, and that's in this filing, he says that the trump ally, mitchell, recruited him to start fighting the election two months before election day, and ginni thomas's organization also circulated an email from mitchell calling on people to get in action and pressure their
legislatures to throw out the votes. so, you know, you do see connections here from all different aspects of the trump allies as they fought the election. >> it's a really important point and when we hear about bill barr talking to the committee and people, oh, he wasn't there for the coup, all of this was in motion, as you just said, luke, well before january 6th. luke broadwater, harry litman, the reverend al sharpton, thank you so much for starting us off today. when we come back, the pentagon inspector general report that calls out the trump administration for retaliation and reprisal, not against impeachment whistle-blower alexander vindman, but against his twin brother. both vindman brothers will be our guests as we learn new details of the vindictiveness. and later with cases of covid on the rise, medical experts are warning we're on the verge of a significant wave in action on capitol hill is leaving us unprepared for what
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dad, i'm sitting here today in the u.s. capitol talking to our elected professionals, talking to our elected professionals is proof that you made the right decision 40 years ago to leave the soviet union and come here to the united states of america in search of a better life for our family. do not worry. i will be fine for telling the truth. >> at the end of his opening remarks, while testifying in the
first impeachment trial of ex-president donald trump, lieutenant colonel alexander vindman made that moving comment to his father. i'll be fine for telling the truth. whenever he said that, lieutenant colonel vindman discovered that wasn't exactly the case in donald trump's administration. instead of being sought after and respected and rewarded, the truth was something to be twisted, denied, locked up, hidden away. lieutenant colonel vindman was removed from his post at the national security council and later felt no other choice but to retire from the u.s. army, citing intimidation following his public impeachment testimony. he joined a long and distinguished list of others who, during the trump administration, were fired in retaliation for going against the ex-president. jim comey, andy mccabe, jeff sessions, marie yovanovitch, and john bolton, just to name a few.
a recently released report from the defense department's inspector general finds that lieutenant colonel alexander vindman's twin brother, yevgeny, was another individual who held a position during the trump administration and another individual who paid the price for telling the truth. the first person alex vindman told about what he had heard during trump's so-called perfect call with ukrainian president zelenskyy was his brother. yevgeny worked as the senior ethics official at the national security council. the two then reported their concerns about the content of the call to their direct superiors. yevgeny, like his brother, was subsequently reassigned from the nsc right after trump was acquitted in the first impeachment trial. and yevgeny received a negative performance review, actions he says were made in retaliation for raising the alarm. that is exactly what the new report from the d.o.d. inspector general's office concludes. quote, it is more likely than
not that the complainant was the subject of unfavorable personnel actions and these were in reprisal for his protected communications. joining us now, both vindman brothers, u.s. army colonel yevgeny vindman, former deputy legal advisor to the national security council, and a familiar face to all of you, retired army lieutenant colonel alexander vindman, former director for european affairs for the national security council, now a board member with the renew democracy initiative. so, yevgeny, we talked -- we get to talk to alex a lot and we benefit from his expertise about ukraine. we don't have as many opportunities to talk to you, and we're sorry about that. but if you could just tell us how you feel in seeing what you experienced as the truth at the time in this d.o.d. ig report. >> well, first of all, thanks, nicole, for having me. we're going to be talking about some very serious topics today, but it's a real treat for me to do this.
this is really the only time i've done this as i've been on active duty the last two years, and i'm certainly appearing in my personal capacity. i'm retiring this summer. so, anything i say is my own views, not the views of the government. and it's a real treat for me to do this with my twin brother, who went through the events at the white house with me. the report itself was a vindication, and i'd known all along what i experienced, the truth of the matter, and the army had previously evaluated the negative performance report and determined that it was inappropriate, and so i'd lived it, and i had complete confidence that i would be vindicated. it took 21 months to get to this point, but i do feel vindicated and happy with the result. >> something that i don't think people appreciate from outside government is that these jobs,
any job in the government is such a privilege and an honor, and certainly to walk on the 18-acre complex on which the white house national security council sits is a privilege. and i had mark esper here, i guess this week, long week, dog years. there's this sense that, well, it was reassigned. got him out of the line of fire. can you tell us what harm was done to you because of what has now been reported out and confirmed as retaliation? >> sure. well -- >> which one of us? >> yevgeny. that's a fair, fair question. let me start with yevgeny. >> i'm sorry, nicole. >> then i'll come to you, alex. >> okay. great. so, that's a great question, because the report that alex and i had made and alex testified about in public in front of the world was simply an active duty on our part. we took an oath to support and
defend the constitution. we took that oath seriously. and we knew that we had an obligation to report it, and we reported it through the chain of command and really never anticipated that it would go any further. had a few follow-up conversations with my supervisor about who we owed an obligation to as an attorney, as attorneys, whether it was to the president as a man or whether our loyalty was to the man or to the office. and i mean, i knew my loyalty was to the constitution. it was to the office. and i did my duty. alex and i both did our duty. and there were others, and i think the secretary being one of them, and the previous segment, you talked about bill barr, that took the same exact oath that we did, but they did not take their obligations seriously, and frankly, they were derelict in their duty, and that ended up being a race to the bottom as
the president, former president, crossed red line after red line and acts like the january 6th insurrection were a direct line from the clearing of the peaceful protesters, generally peaceful protesters in lafayette park and nonrecollection or nonrecognition of the election itself. >> yevgeny, the ig report names names. so, i want to name them here. this is "the washington post" reporting on the ig report. it says this. "the inspector general's findings are remarkable declaration that the trump administration's treatment of whistle-blowers was inappropriate. a separate army investigation cited in the watchdog's report found that nsc attorneys johnizenberg and michael ellis, who issued yevgeny vindman a harsh appraisal lacked objectivity and that it would be, quote, difficult to justify their negative assessment."
what do you think should happen to people who participate in the efforts to retaliate against truth tellers, yevgeny? >> sure. well, the report was successful in one of the main aims, which was making a determination on the facts and vindicated me. but if we think about what the purposes of the inspector general are and it's truth telling, it's determining the facts, and making findings, and it's also an accountability function, and frankly, that function was not executed. both gentlemen had departed service quite some time ago, and they're escaping accountability, which i think is a shame, at least in the sense that they were -- that the d.o.d. ig cannot hold them accountable but there are other forms of accountability, and perhaps
jeopardy to their bar licenses since they violated a federal statute when they retaliated against me in the finding from the d.o.d. ig was that they violated the federal statute. and both gentlemen may hold security clearance and the issuing organization ought to review their security clearance, whether there should be eligible to hold that. >> so, yevgeny, i just want to be sure i understand, you're calling for both mr. john izenberg and michael ellis to be examined by the d.c. bar and have their security clearances revoked if they still have them? >> i think that would be an appropriate consequence for their actions and that would be accountability, which is very important in retaliation case like this. >> alex, i want to come to you on this. we've talked a lot about what it's like for you to not be serving your country at this extraordinary moment, not just for us but in a part of the world where you are expert.
i wonder what it was like, though, to watch your brother suffer retaliation and consequences for simply telling the truth. >> i mean, it's his fault for having my face, frankly. but no, seriously, thanks for having me on, and it's -- it takes a lot of strength to not giggle at each other being on screen opposed to each other. >> that's allowed. we'll get to less serious topics in the next block. >> perfect. sure. so, i mean, it's difficult. he didn't do anything wrong, and yet he was, as you would imagine in some sort of third world country run by petty tyrants, he was brought in for communal punishment. it wasn't just me that was punished for reporting president's wrongdoings, but my family was also punished. i mean, we talked about my twin
brother, who was dismissed from the white house and had to suffer the stigma within the department of defense and the department of the army he's still in so he's not necessarily interested in airing all the dirty laundry, but he's frankly put out to pasture, also, because he was radioactive and the department of the army and the department of defense didn't want him being anywhere near washington and frankly he's getting out of the military on this basis. so there is a long-term harm. my family was uprooted in terms of our -- my career trajectory and our expectations for ourselves. we had to live under the, you know, the fear of somebody acting on the president's and his henchmen's wishes attacking us, so it's not the way things should be, and he's absolutely right to call for accountability for these individuals that were complicit in retaliation and that's the same reason why i'm
pursuing litigation against members of the trump administration. you had mark esper on earlier this week, and he flatout said that mark meadows, trump's chief of staff, said there's no way that vindman is going to get promoted. and i sensed that, and that's why i left. >> i want to -- >> or i knew it, frankly. >> look, i -- i think that because it's in your wiring, obviously, to hold your head up high and have this sort of peace of doing right by the constitution and the country, i just want to press both of you on what it's been like, because i think we don't always get a chance to come back to victims of retaliation and smears, and also, on sort of at least for you, alex, watching world events unfold while you're not serving your country. i have to sneak in a quick break but we will be back for a very special conversation with the twins, yevgeny and alexander vindman. don't go anywhere. yevgeny and r vindman. don't go anywhere.
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it's a real privilege to be back with army colonel yevgeny vindman, who's made clear he's speaking today in a personal capacity and retired lieutenant colonel alexander vindman. yevgeny, i want to ask you what it was like as the two of you only stuck out because you were in the minority in terms of being loyal to the constitution and the country. that's what made you different. that's what made you the subjects of retaliation. what was it like to see your brother's loyalties to the country that made him stick out for being loyal to it, what was it like to see that called into question and attacked by the
likes of laura ingraham and others? >> it was really jarring, first of all, and i'm not sure that we were in the minority. there are plenty of detailees, career government employees inside the nsc and the white house and others that did their jobs silently and professionally. i think we were publicly outed and that's why we became public figures and politicized, despite our desires and best efforts. but it was hard to watch, and it was frankly ridiculous. i sat in the hearing, the public hearing, and i recall one member of the house claimed that alex had some affinity for ukraine because he spoke the language, and you know, interestingly enough, we grew up speaking russian. we didn't speak ukrainian.
he learned ukrainian courtesy of the u.s. army, and that's why he speaks ukrainian today. so, these were just ridiculous attacks and smears, and it was just intended to destroy credibility and bolster the president. >> alex, first time i had a chance to talk to you, i think it was during the first year of the pandemic. it may be almost a year ago now, last summer. i asked you which side you thought was winning, if the sides -- side of truth was prevailing or if the other side had the advantage, and if you watch what happened in last week's primaries, i wonder what your assessment is now in terms of which side is winning, the truth or the forces aligned with trump and trumpism? >> in a lot of ways, it's, frankly, too close to call. there's a great deal of complacency that things will work out okay. we tend to do a bit of naval gazing about things that
seemingly -- there are some legitimate concerns from people that don't have the means, that have to pay higher bills with regards to inflation, but we don't have to fight for liberty. we don't have to fight for our freedoms the way the ukrainians are. we can very well end in a situation where our population is subject to authoritarianism, and that's what we -- sometimes we do a little bit of naval gazing about what's immediately in front of us instead of seeing the risks around the corner, and for me, and for eugene, especially now that he's getting out, we are not going to sit and watch our country fall apart. i might not be in government now but i'm as active as possible, advocating for values-based leadership. i do the best i can, talking about important issues like this war between russia and ukraine and what that means to the american public, and we're going to be in this fight to win it. we know it's winnable. we have a good sense of who the
american people are. they're, you know -- we grew up as americans. these are good people that have a deep sense of affinity for ukraine and for values. we sometimes stray away from those things based on being a kind of rabble roused by the far-right media or things that matter less, but we pull together when it matters, and we're going to -- eugene and i are going to continue to play a role in trying to help this country navigate the difficulties within our means to the best of our ability. >> yevgeny, do you ever sort of look back -- >> nicole, if i -- >> go ahead. >> i was just going to say, frankly, i'm very hopeful about our trajectory. the level of support for the ukrainian people is not only support for the terrible humanitarian tragedy, but i think it's a support for free people fighting to maintain their freedom, and so if there is one unifying issue in our
country, it's support for ukraine, overwhelming support, and i think that's extremely positive. i would like to see how we can build on that, because clearly, there's a shared belief in democracy and freedom but how do you bring both sides together on that point? i don't know. >> it's such a good point, that at a time when we're so divided, there is not a lot of division about standing with ukraine. it's a perfect place to hit pause. i wonder if i can put you guys on the spot and that's to do this more often. it's a treat to get to speak to both of you. what do you think? >> i think that sounds good. >> i would love to do it. you can tell alex and i apart. >> i think i can. >> i was just going to say, you can tell alex and i apart. i'm the colonel, he's the lieutenant colonel and i'm the more handsome twin. >> i'm going to let that be the last word. you guys can work that out off the air. army colonel yevgeny vindman, retired lieutenant colonel
alexander vindman. when we come back, another familiar face to all of you, white house pandemic response coordinator dr. ashish shah will be our guest. coordinator dr. ashish shah llwi be our guest wayfair has everything i need to make my home totally me. sometimes, i'm a homebody. can never have too many pillows! sometimes, i'm all business. a serious chair for a serious business woman! i'm always a mom- that is why you are smart and chose the durable fabric. perfect. i'm not a chef- and, don't mind if i do.
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♪ ♪ introducing the all-new infiniti qx60. take on your wild world in style. ♪ nicorette knows, quitting smoking is freaking hard. t you get advice like:d in style. just stop. go for a run. go for 10 runs! run a marathon. instead, start small. with nicorette. which can lead to something big. start stopping with nicorette. the biden administration is calling attention to the recent rise in covid cases that may not be in a lot of people's radars anymore. they brought back those briefings on wednesday that we haven't seen for six weeks. they have signed off on the first booster shot for 5 to
11-year-olds. and they are telling everyone 15 and older it's time to get a second booster shot. they are recommending a third of the country consider masking up again. the numbers are expected to be underreported. we are back at 100,000 daily cases since february. joining us now is dr. ashish zsa. i feel like we have turned to you, before you were in your official job at the white house as the cases have ebbed and flowed. and maybe people erroneously thought on the other side of the omicron spike we would have some others. >> nicole, thanks for having me back. we are seeing another rise. we are seeing a lot of infections out there. 100,000 cases a day. a lot of under reporting because we know there is a lot of home testing going on. we should take a step back and see about the moment we are in, right. while we have 100,000 cases a
day, hospitalizations are rising but still pretty low. deaths are stillo. and that's because we have done an extraordinary job getting 200 million americans vaccinated, 100 million americans boosted. we know how to keep people from getting particularly sick. let me be clear, our job is not done. we have to get more americans vaccinated, particularly focused on getting more americans boosted. that is going to be helpful. the pandemic is over, and we still have a lot of work to do. >> people are just as concerned of the consequences of isolation, the consequences of you and i both have navigated the authorization and research around kids's vaccines, which came after ours did. what is it you would like people to do? is it to stay boosted, to be safe, to not be reckless? what is your ask for the country? >> yeah. number one ask, if you have not gotten a booster, you have to go
out and get one. let's be clear, that is going to make the biggest difference in terms of preventing people from getting really sick. if you're in a place with high transmission, wearing a mask can make a difference. if you get infected, see if you're available for one of the treatments. it's a great way to stay out of the hospital. the good news is there's a lot we can do now in a way we couldn't six months or a year or certainly a year and a half ago when this president first came into office. we're in a very different place, nicole. but people have to stay vigilant, avoid getting infected. if they do, making sure they take care of themselves. >> what is it you need, you know, so much of the early phase of the pandemic, because of president biden's predecessor was so charged and politicized. what is it you would like to see to stop being partisan in terms of testing and access to the treatments we are talking about? >> yeah. it's really unfortunate we ended
up having all of this politicization in the first year of the pandemic. i think it's really important at this point to remember that we have a set of public health tools, that are not democratic or republican health tools. they are just tools that help in preventing infection and its severity. they were administered to 100 million were americans under the biden administration. if we could go back at looking at them as safe public health tools, america will be much better off for it. >> my viewers, i think i have a good sense, they were eager -- vaccine purr sewers. they followed the mask guidance. can you just tell people what the guidance is on the booster. if you had your two-shot regimen, you got your first booster, who should be getting the second booster? >> yeah. so great question, nicole. first of all, what i would say is basically anybody 5 and above, if you have not gotten a booster and it's been more than five months, you have to go get one. the first booster is really,
really critical. now, the other thing cdc said yesterday, which i very much agree with, if you're 50 and above and it's been more than four months since you have gotten the booster, you are eligible for a second. i look at this in terms of my own parents. i have elderly parents. i recommended to them to go out and get the second booster. anyone over 50 should get it. i'm focused on everyone getting the first booster. >> i wonder when you look at sort of dealing with the problems that you helped us understand when you were still in medicine and speaking to our viewers, what is is the thing on the outside that is most confounding in terms of your perspectives from being on both sides? >> yeah. so, on the inside, right, it's a different set of challenges. i think the biggest issue is that you have a very specific obligation to the american people. it's an incredible privilege and honor to be in this role. whereas before i was very much speaking just as an independent
expert. now i have to think through what are the impacts of these policies, how are they going to be implemented and how are we going to bring everybody along. it's a different role, one i feel feel hugely honored to play. i hope it does protect americans and get us through this pandemic. . >> well, in terms of having maximum credibility with every one of our viewers, we were lucky to speak to so many folks like yourself. when you have something you want to get out, you always are welcome to come and chat with us. it's a pleasure to get to talk to you today. dr. ashish jha, thank you for spending time with us. >> thank you, nicole. . >> a quick break for us. we'll be right back. uick break . we'll be right back.
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thank you so much for letting us in your homes for another week of shows. we are grateful. "the beat" with ari melber starts right now. hi, ari. >> hi, nicole. thank you to "the beat". i'm ari melber. we are uncovering new refuse revelations about justice thomas. there are receipts tonight. thomas pushing republican lawmakers in arizona to cancel their own state's votes for biden, arguing officials should just override all of those votes for biden and replace them with a, quote, clean slate of electors, as she saw it, according to emails obtained by the "washington post". thomas was pushing this november 9th. she cast in a subject as a constitutional duty. thomas was caught pushing massive voter fraud. arizona was a state trump needed