Skip to main content

tv   Andrea Mitchell Reports  MSNBC  June 3, 2022 9:00am-10:00am PDT

9:00 am
thank you for staying with us for this extended edition of "andrea mitchell reports." the breaking news involving peter navarro. the 72-year-old has been indicted on two counts of
9:01 am
contempt of congress for failing to appear after being subpoenaed in february, failing to appear and failing to turn over documents. joining me now, kristin welker, kimberly adkins and ashley parker. talk to me about the stunning new development. peter navarro as i was saying was more than the trade advisor. he was involved in covid-19. he was involved allegedly in a lot of the events leading up to january 6 and after january 6 to try to overturn the election. >> that's right, andrea. that's at the crux of this indictment. let me read you a little bit of this release, which lays out why the january 6 committee felt as though it was necessary to indict peter navarro. he is charged with one count of involving his refusal to appear
9:02 am
for a deposition and another involving his refusal to produce documents despite a subpoena from the house select committee to investigate the january 6 attack. the committee said the documents, his testimony are critical to understanding the events that led up to that day, andrea. as you noted, he was far beyond former president trump's top trade advisor. he was someone who was deeply engaged in the covid-19 response. in fact, i covered the trump administration, had a number of conversations of briefings with him about the covid response, about the attempts to try to develop a vaccine. of course, he also was one of the top advisers. his refusal to concede the election once the election was over, once it had been declared for president biden. that is why there's so much focus on peter navarro. of course, this does follow a trend that we have seen from former trump officials who
9:03 am
refused to either appear or turn over documents. one of his former top advisors, steve bannon, was indicted for failing to turn over documents and failing to appear. this again is a part of a broader trend. this is certainly a significant development for the january 6 committee. >> significant development partly because navarro was a key advisor. bannon had left the white house a couple of years earlier. so was also involved in january 6, at least as a white house advisor. mark meadows, of course, in december was referred to the justice department for action. the then chief of staff at the end of the administration. of course, the justice department came back and had not acted on that yet, all the way back to december 14th, was that recommendation. this recommendation came after his subpoena in february.
9:04 am
apparently -- but this is all just breaking. according to notes we have from our legal correspondent on msnbc is that he was supposed to appear in person yesterday and failed to show up. >> yes. he has been failing to cooperate both in giving testimony and documents from the beginning. in media appearances, he has been making a claim we have heard from other trump supporters, claiming that the subpoena -- that the committee doesn't have the power to subpoena, that it's going outside of its legislative function. we have had courts say that this committee is empowered to subpoena people and that those subpoenas do carry weight. now we are seeing a criminal indictment based upon that. that comes with a penalty of jail time or heavy fines. this could be done ahead of whatever may happen with mark meadows or maybe it may be a last sign for him that he ought to cooperate or else he could
9:05 am
have the same fate. certainly, he was very close to the president as his former chief of staff. this is what you often see. you see the circles get smaller the closer you get to the end of an investigation. we know it's going public next week. this seems to be right in line with trying to make sure that these people comply with subpoenas when they are issued, that they are not voluntary. >> let's bring in jonathan lemire. we have ashley parker from "the washington post" team for its coverage of january 6. jonathan, this is a seismic event in trump world because of peter navarro's close and continuing role with the former president up to the end of the administration. >> yeah. navarro, a close advisor to the president. they clashed from time to time. but on matters beyond trade, of course, he was one of the first
9:06 am
voices in the building to sound the alarm about the covid-19 pandemic, saying it could be really dangerous and endanger president trump's chances of re-election. after the election, he was one of the point people to keep trump in office, helping craft the plan that would have republicans on capitol hill not go ahead and certify joe biden's victory, to come up with a separate set of electors to say that those states were in contest and be thrown out. he gave it a name. the green bay sweep, which i'm sure green bay packers fans not thrilled with that association as the assault on democracy it was. navarro was a point person here. part of the meetings at the white house, at the willard, which became a command center, the hotel down the street from the white house as well as the trump hotel also a few blocks from the executive mansion.
9:07 am
navarro had an interview talking about this. he has given other interviews where he has flat out admitted to the idea to his role in the scheme. certainly, we know what he is going to say. the question is, will he -- he chose not to say it in front of the committee. what will happen next? >> peter navarro was on with ari yesterday and said he was supposed to appear that day, then later clarified saying he was supposed to only turn over documents yesterday. at that point, ari -- the lawyer in him said to his witness, if you will, the person he was interviewing, peter, you do realize these investigators can hear you when you talk on tv? then tweeted that out. then you get incited. ashley parker, you were one of the reporters, memorably, writing after january 6 that the
9:08 am
president was in the oval office or in one of the adjacent rooms, the small room off the oval, watching tv and enjoying watching the insurrection and ignoring the repeated texts that we know went to mark meadows and others and calls that came in to the chief of staff, even from don junior, to try to get him to say something, make an appeal to stop the insurrection. >> that's right. we reported in the days after the attack just what you laid out and then a more full portrait and a broad project we at "the washington post" did looking at the before, during and after january 6. you have to keep in mind that not many people were still in former president trump's core orbit by january 6. it was a small group of people. it was a frantic scene where you had people running in and out of the oval office, including his
9:09 am
daughter ivanka. you had kellyanne conway. she was calling someone a very close aide she knew would be with the president. people trying to get him to do anything to call off his supporters. as we learned at the time, president trump was watching it on tv and made clear he appreciated the people fighting for him. it turned out to be a deadly insurrection on the u.s. capitol. those were images that he liked, despite what he would go on to later say. >> it's incredible, ashley, your reporting from that day. it's so memorable, so vivid. joining us now joyce vance.
9:10 am
what is the significace of this? there's going to be a lot of litigation. but at first blush, this is a grand jury upholding the authority of the january 6 committee to assert congressional subpoenas. >> this is the first indictment from someone this close to the president. it suggests that the justice department has resolved any lingering concerns it may have had about executive privilege, which is what navarro tried to use to avoid testifying. he said it was up to the committee to resolve those concerns with president trump. doj says, no, that's not the case. that's actually not true. you were obligated to show up and testify. you were obligated to show up and turn over documents. you did neither one of those things. now you face criminal contempt as a result. >> what can we infer from this? regarding mark meadows. they have not acted. that referral for a contempt citation from the congressional
9:11 am
committee was all the way back on december 14, and they haven't done anything. >> that i think is an interesting question. as you point out, the meadows referral has been lingering far longer than the one for navarro. there's also one for dan scavino. whether or not doj is still weighing those is an interesting question. perhaps they are in the negotiating process with those two. it's possible that they would have more to offer as witnesses in what we know is an ongoing doj investigation than they would have as defendants. it's very often the process that prosecutors will try to work out a cooperation agreement. in both of those cases, and particularly with meadows, who has been all over the board, they would have to be certain he was telling the truth, the full truth, holding nothing back and that they could document the information that he was providing before they would even be at the point where they could assess whether his cooperation was valuable enough that it
9:12 am
meant they were willing to forgo the charges. important to note the charges brought today against navarro are a misdemeanor, like the charges against bannon. whether that gives doj enough of a hammer to negotiate with these people is still an open question.teresting issues in play. >> this was navarro last night talking about the issue. the subpoena was for yesterday for documents or for him in person or both. this is what he had to say last night at 6:00 eastern. >> the subpoena i received, which i did distribute to the media, did not compel my testimony. the subpoena did was ask for documents, broadly construed, which the january 6 committee had asked for. that's all we know at this point.
9:13 am
i'm in negotiations, discussions with them about that. having said that, i agree -- >> let's pause there. i will let you continue. but you are making some news. as of today, you are discussing with the justice department turning over those records? >> no. what i did was -- let me say this very carefully. i responded to the justice department. there will be ongoing interactions on that to be determined. let's let that process take its course. >> well, i think we are about to talk to ari about this. get his take. he is in the middle of it. kristin welker, he is there. stand by just a second. he is here. what's your take on what's just happened, these indictments?
9:14 am
you are on the air. let's talk about it. what about the indictments? you talked to him and you cautioned him that the investigators were watching or could be watching. >> yes. andrea, as peter navarro said last night, he was engaging or discussing this issue with the justice department. the news shows that the track has moved from a contempt of congress now to what is the second indictment of a trump official for defying these requests, the first being steve bannon. i think mr. navarro viewed himself as making what he claimed were legal objections to testifying or providing documents. this indictment says that the justice department determined the opposite. they are making the case he is breaking the law. >> ari, does he have further appeals? he could try to block the
9:15 am
subpoena, can't he? give me your legal opinion about what happens next. >> sure. a great question. there have been so many subpoenas. mr. navarro, for example, was facing the house subpoena and a separate grand jury subpoena. this news from the justice department breaking is that the doj prosecutors are indicting him on two counts for defying congress. there's no appeal to this. there's only a fair trial that every american is afforded when indicted. he either faces trial, which is the same process as mr. bannon, or in theory, like anyone, he could explore his options to plea for a reduced sentence. i can tell you the way he sounded last night, he referred, as you played, to discussions with doj. he certainly didn't sound last night on msnbc like he was getting ready to stop this fight. he has filed a separate civil suit against the committee.
9:16 am
mr. navarro said he would, quote, stand tall. he will be tested here in a trial for a felony. >> joyce vance is still with us. as a former prosecutor, how solid is the ground that doj is standing on? >> doj is standing on really firm ground here. the notion being that this is just a failure to show up, a failure to provide testimony, a failure to provide documents, much like the bannon case. we get a sense of just how good doj thinks its case is, because in these further grand jury subpoenas that navarro received from doj, they have only asked for documents. that's important for a number of reasons. including the fact that while navarro could assert a fifth amendment privilege, to avoid incriminating himself to avoid testifying, you don't generally have a fifth amendment right involved in turning over documents that are in existence.
9:17 am
that's a little bit of a tip-off that doj was treating him like a potential target for indictment. navarro is represented by himself. he doesn't have a lawyer. this is another example for those who are watching along why you should have a lawyer when there's a criminal case. >> isn't there an old statement saying among lawyers that someone who represents themself has a fool for a client? something like that. >> that's exactly right. >> let's talk to ali vitali from capitol hill. is there reaction from there? >> not yet. we reached out to the committee. i think the theme here -- your panel made this point. congressional subpoenas are not just polite suggestions. they will be enforced by the department of justice in this case. of course, the claims that
9:18 am
navarro made in the past to executive privilege are going to be different here than the ways that steve bannon, who was indicted for contempt of congress, has made his own executive privilege claims. of course, i will let the legal experts handle what those claims might look like. as i turn now to the january 6 committee and the work they are trying to do, navarro is someone they wanted to talk to in terms of overturning the election results, the threads the committee is follow around the administration and trump's pushing of the big lie. they are going to be putting the findings on public display less than a week from now, thursday night in primetime is when that committee is making its first foray into public hearings. these have been long anticipated. what it shows is that even as they are drawing public conclusions, setting this public narrative and hopefully, they hope, changing the minds of some people who might not think that january 6 was what they think it was, which is an attempt to
9:19 am
overturn the election by a sitting president, while they are setting that narrative, they are also still going to be working to get these people who they want to talk to to talk to them. when things go to the court, they go slower. that's why these people were given extensions and attempts to get before the committee. that's where peter navarro stands. >> to jonathan lemire, what's the likely reaction inside trump world among all the others who have been refusing to cooperate? that does include some members of congress. they would have a different standing. that would be a different litigation because of the precedent that the subpoenas on the congressional members set, but for the others in the world of donald trump? >> i can predict the angry email statement coming from mar-a-lago. the former president won't be pleased with this development. i don't know it will have much of an impact otherwise. you are right, members of congress have a different
9:20 am
standard here. we will have to see. to this point, those who have faced this pressure before, this legal pressure, meadows and bannon as previously mentioned, i don't know it will compel other senior members of trump's orbit to change their mind and cooperate. we have seen it. the committee has spoken to dozens of upon dozens of people in donald trump's orbit, former administration officials and more. mostly lower and middle range folks who have cooperated. of course, we know that the committee has gotten their hands on text messages from mark meadows and others, those who didn't want to play ball. i don't know this will change much. beyond, of course, putting mr. navarro into legal jeopardy. ali is right, the timing is striking. coming days before the beginning of the hearings so anticipated for more than a year since this committee was formed. a chance to tell a really compelling narrative of what happened that day. not just to get to the truth of
9:21 am
the matter but also prevent it from happening again. they believe -- aides tell me, for so many americans their opinions are hardened. there are some voters out there, independents could be swayed by this new presentation of the evidence. they would be reacting -- react with horror to what happened and potentially turn against trump and his allies going forward. >> thanks, jonathan lemire and ari melber. i know you have a show to prepare for tonight. we will be watching. let's talk about the next steps now. the hearings are next week. this is going to increase attention on the hearings. they could not have anticipated this action from doj. the committee had been broadly criticizing garland for not acting on mark meadows. >> that's exactly right.
9:22 am
you make the important point that the grand jury process is always secret. this justice department has had a very tight-lipped approach from the top. so we have no reason to believe anyone would have known about this outside of the people involved at doj. unsealed today and filed yesterday, the indictment of mr. navarro. there are four people who have been held in contempt for defying congress here. now two of them or half of them are indicted. that definitely is going to weigh on the minds of anyone else looking at the congressional committee. 1,000 people have cooperated. many trump allies, many people who say that they have testimony to defend donald trump's actions that day have cooperated. now today's news of mr. navarro being indicted shows it's a tougher road in this justice department for people who want to play their odds or their
9:23 am
hands to defy. the next steps are the doj process moves on. as bannon awaits trial, now navarro will face a trial on these two counts unless he reaches a deal. these committee hearings coming down the pike work on the separate track. we would expect there to be some interplay. the question, as viewers think about it the question is anyone willing to go this far to risk jail, to avoid providing documents or their own words, especially if they have discussed some of this, becomes, what are you hiding? that may be a theme we see in the congressional hearings. they say they have a lot of information. as for those holding back, why are they holding back? >> before i really let you go, ari, we just heard from nbc's ryan reilly that the government's motion to seal this indictment, to be kept under wraps until, quote, the arrest operation is executed, the court
9:24 am
docket notes the unsealing event has occurred and the u.s. attorney's office now confirms that peter navarro is in custody pending the court appearance. they are not wasting time. >> they are moving forward with all haste. that's part of why secretive rules are applied in the typical grand jury process. a grand jury meets and can go forward on indictments, then the rest of the law enforcement system kicks into gear. they go serve a lawful in this case a lawful arrest. mr. navarro, like mr. bannon, the other person indicted in this way, can go to the arrangement and make his arguments over being free on bond or fighting the trial. last night he sounded like someone who suggested that he was ready for the doj process. you played his words for
9:25 am
viewers. he said they are in discussion. whether that meant that he was expecting this or not, we will have to find out. >> we will be watching on "the beat." ari melber making news, 6:00 p.m., right here on msnbc. kristin welker and kim, joyce, ashley, jonathan before that. it's been quite a start for today's program. coming up, help wanted. the sky high cost of everyday living. it's making life tough for everyone, even amid a new strong jobs report today. this is "andrea mitchell reports" on msnbc. nbc. 've got moe plaque psoriasis. now, there's skyrizi. 3 out of 4 people achieved 90% clearer skin at 4 months, after just 2 doses. skyrizi may increase your risk of infections and lower your ability to fight them. before treatment, your doctor should check you for infections and tuberculosis. tell your doctor if you have an infection or symptoms such as fever, sweats, chills, muscle aches, or coughs, or if you plan to,
9:26 am
or recently received a vaccine. ♪ nothing is everything ♪ talk to your dermatologist about skyrizi. learn how abbvie could help you save. right now, we're all feelin' a little strapped. but weekends are still all about grilling. and walmart always keeps prices low on our fresh ingredients. so you can save money and live better. ♪ think he's posting about all that ancient roman coinage? no, he's seizing the moment with merrill. moving his money into his investment account in real time and that's... how you collect coins. your money never stops working for you with merrill, a bank of america company. ♪ ♪ i came, i saw, i conquered. (all): hail, caesar! pssst caesar! julius! dude, you should really check in with your team on ringcentral. i was thinking like... oh hi, caesar. we were just talking about you. ha ha ha. yeah, you should probably get out of here.
9:27 am
not good. ♪ ♪ ♪ ringcentral ♪ mission control, we are go for launch. um, she's eating the rocket. ♪♪ lunchables! built to be eaten. miss allen over there isn't checking lesson plans. she's getting graded on her green investments with merrill.
9:28 am
a-plus. still got it. (whistle blows) your money never stops working for you with merrill, a bank of america company.
9:29 am
white house is striking an upbeat tone after the may jobs report shows the u.s. added 390,000 jobs last month. speaking last hour, president biden acknowledging the challenges facing families because of inflation.
9:30 am
>> high prices, particularly around gasoline and food, are a real problem for people. there's every reason for the american people to feel confident we will meet these challenges. >> joining me now is gene spurling, senior advisor to the president, coming to us from the white house. what do the numbers mean? what does it mean in terms of what the fed will do? will they continue with the half point increases, two to come? >> i think this is -- this was a good report for the country. here is why. of course, it's showing some slight easing as we go from a transition of record job growth every month to a more stable economic growth with lower prices, we still saw this great strength, 390,000 jobs, 333,000 in the private sector. i think the thing that should be
9:31 am
in some ways the most reassuring about this -- about this number today in terms of showing a strong labor market that's not necessarily overheating, was the fact that there was -- there continues to be an increase in people coming back to the workforce. so-called labor force participation. we saw 340,000 women workers come back into the workforce. that's 4.2 million americans who have now decided to come back, start looking for a job, getting a job. we are seeing that the labor force participation of prime age workers, 25 to 54, is now higher than it was for the average of 2019. i think this is very good news. strong labor -- strong job growth, unemployment at still 3.6%. also, buffered by a growing labor force participation. >> i think adult women did
9:32 am
benefit less than other sectors in the economy. right? >> i'm sorry. could you repeat it? >> i thought the data on the jobs growth for adult women was weaker than for other groups. >> what i was referring to is labor force participation. one of the questions was, does it get too tight because people are dropping out of the labor force? what you want to see is americans coming back. we are almost seeing a skid back to where we were before the pandemic. that means there's more people looking for jobs. that was one of the concerns people had earlier was, were we getting the labor force back to the size it was before the pandemic hit? what this is showing is for people in their prime age, we are actually better than we were or getting back to where we were in 2019.
9:33 am
now we have seen 4.2 million workers return. what was distinct about this month was that of the workers who came back, it was predominantly an increase in women looking for jobs. >> let me ask you about janet yellen's apology, acknowleding she and others were wrong saying inflation would be transitory last spring. was the white house surprised by that? >> if you look at her comment and if you look at what her statement was after that, what she was saying was that virtually no one in the economic profession worldwide anticipated three events, which was delta and then omicron and the degree that those had affects on lockdowns and other things that somewhat stunted or slowed down the supply correction, and
9:34 am
certainly nobody in may was expecting that we were going to have this unthinkable aggression by russia in ukraine. just to remind people what the numbers were at that time, on january 17, when putin moved troops to the borders of belarus, gas prices are averaging $3.17 in the united states. they are now about $1.50 higher. that's $1.50 tax on american workers because of this unthinkable aggression by russia. i think what the secretary was saying was that nobody really foresaw these unforeseen events. i want to say, one of the reasons the american rescue plan was both strong but also allowed for the support to go -- to be over two to three years was to make sure that when we hit bumps
9:35 am
in the road, we had a cushion, an insurance to get by. people should recognize that i had a lot of reporters call me when delta and omicron hit and say, is the recovery going to be derailed? i think people are not fully recognizing that the american rescue plan has provided that longer support and cushion that's kept this recovery going, even as we have had three unanticipated economic obstacles that, again, were not foreseeable in may or june of 2021. >> gene, thanks so much. thank you for being with us today. >> thank you. today does mark 100 days of war in ukraine. there does not appear to be any end in sight. ukraine is determined to take back land from russia after suffering recent defeats in the east. ukraine's defense minister says russia is trying to move the conflict into a protracted phase. molly hunter has more.
9:36 am
>> reporter: good to be with you. we are in one of the suburbs to the northwest of kyiv hit very hard in the first week of the war. russian forces came in and occupied this city, like bucha, very, very quickly. this is one of the apartment buildings hit quickly. another one, it's just sky. an apartment building filled with civilians was destroyed. the last time i was right here, there were first responders still looking for bodies in the rubble. there were relatives of the people who lived in there waiting for answers, hoping there was someone alive in there. i want to show you, the fact that there's traffic on the road is stunning. last time i was on this road, it was trashed with debris, you see the metal over there, you see the destroyed houses. you can tell, these are civilian houses. you have up here -- i'm not sure you can see this. you have laundry hanging off
9:37 am
some of the balconies. you can see tvs, normal life. you see wallpaper inside some of the apartments. it's one of the places that russian forces occupied for five weeks. it's no longer occupied. it's not part of the 20% that president zelenskyy is talking about when he talks about 20% of the country is currently occupied. the fiercest fighting, it could not look more different than here, this calm, cleaned up sidewalk, it's the donbas region where the fighting is fierce. we are talking about severodonetsk. it's still fierce urban combat. russian forces, according to the ukrainian regional governor there, says 70% of that city is occupied by russian forces. there's a no man's land. there are ukrainian troops fighting in part of that city. there are civilians. i know i have been reiteraing
9:38 am
this. there are civilians there. thousands of people. no infrastructure. more civilian homes destroyed overnight. no heat, no water, no humanitarian aid getting into severodonetsk. there's no way out. severodonetsk really the last major city that's being fought over in the luhansk before russian forces are able to close in and possibly close that pocket in the donbas when you look at that map that's seeing the fiercest fighting right now. back to you. >> molly, thanks so much for that. that sets the stage to bring in leon pennetta, former cia director, former secretary of defense. thank you. it's good to see you. a few weeks ago, it seemed like ukraine could pull off this incredible upset victory over russia. that narrative not realistic at the time, but because of the stronger than expected military gains, that's shifted now, russia is making gains in the east. ukraine seems to be fighting for its survival. is this a tipping point 100 days since the invasion?
9:39 am
leon i think is muted. we will just fix that. >> i apologize. >> you are better when we can hear you. thank you so much. i assume you heard the question. >> yes, i did. we are at 100 days of war in the ukraine. we have been through three phases. the first was the failed invasion. russia thought it could capture the capital within a few days. that obviously failed. we went into a phase of destruction and killing that i think russia was aiming at trying to break the will of the ukrainian people. that didn't work. now we are in this third phase which is essentially a prolonged war of attrition in which russia is trying to make gains in the donbas area.
9:40 am
ukraine is trying to hold territory there as well. bottom line is, we are in a prolonged war of attrition. i think putin is basically playing for time. he thinks that as he prolongs that war, that ultimately the west will blink. i think that's his strategy. it's very important, therefore, for ukraine, the united states and our allies to remain unified and remain tough and continue the effort to try to push back on the russians. >> the message from ukraine is that they will not accept concessions of territory in order to reach a peace agreement with russia. russia is showing no sign of being honorable negotiators. former secretary of state kissinger came out advocating for ukraine to begin talking about something that would permit russia to get maybe the donbas and hold on to what they have now and ukraine to at least be able to stop them being
9:41 am
pulverized by the russian artillery barrage. where do you come down? >> i think as president biden has said, this is a decision that president zelenskyy and ukraine have to make as to what they are willing to negotiate on with the russians. they are the ones that are putting their lives on the line. they are the ones fighting every day courageously to try to protect their country. i think it really is up to them to make the decision whether or not they're going to negotiate based on where these territorial gains are. territory is leverage right now in terms of negotiation. that's why putin is trying to gain as much territory as possible. because he thinks it increases his leverage if ultimately negotiations are held. ukraine has to make sure that they hold on to territory as well. it's leverage for them.
9:42 am
i think we're going to see a prolonged war here of attrition until one side or the other makes a dramatic move that either forces negotiations or forces a greater escalation of the war. that's the place we are at right now with regard to the war in ukraine. >> will the addition of the longer range artillery, assuming the training can be done in time before that window shuts down on the ukrainians, will that help make a difference? or could it risk escalating the war and putting the u.s. into direct confrontation with russia? >> we are involved in a war. there are risks involved in war. but it's critical for the united states and our allies to provide these weapons to the ukrainians. they are the ones who have to
9:43 am
defend their country. right now, it's pretty clear that russia's basic tactic here is to turn these ukrainian cities into rubble. that forces civilians out and eventually they take what is left of these cities. that's kind of their strategy. which is to just blow the hell out of ukraine. i think ukrainians need to have the kind of weaponry that can deal with russian artillery and missile shots that are destroying cities. they absolutely need the capability of being able to bring those missiles down and to be able to go after those artillery sites. that's exactly the kind of weapons that are now being provided. it's taking time. we have to train the ukrainians. but i think ultimately, the addition of those weapons can really help the ukrainians stand up to the russians.
9:44 am
>> i want to ask you about saudi arabia. we are reporting that there's a plan for the president to go and try to repair relations. the breach, of course, over the brutal murder of khashoggi. this plan obviously involves going against iran. there are a lot of relations important there but also oil, and ignoring the human rights abuses that led candidate joe biden to call him a pariah in one of our debates. that was back in 2019. is this a concession that the president shouldn't be making? let me show you what he had to say today. >> look, i'm not going to change my view on human rights. as president, my job is to bring peace, if i can. that's what i'm going to try to do. >> what do you make of the decision to go, if he ends up going, as we are reporting? >> this is the friction that
9:45 am
presidents have to often face between real politic and the problems that they are confronting as president. and moral outrage. the moral outrage of having seen saudi arabia kill khashoggi, an american citizen, and it was clear that president biden made clear when he came into office that he was going to make them pay a price and be considered a pariah. the president is facing some big challenges right now. particularly with regard to inflation, with regard to the production of energy. saudi arabia controls a lot of that. in addition to that, saudi arabia can be critical to dealings with israel, if they could join the abraham accords. they have yet to do that. if they could, that would be a significant change there. lastly, of course, dealing with iran. the ability to pull these
9:46 am
moderate arab states together is important to that effort as well. i think the president is making a decision based on the needs of the united states at the moment. i hope that he doesn't forget the human rights aspect. and that if he does meet with the prince that he will make clear that human rights are still important to the united states and to the world. >> leon pennetta, thank you very much. thanks today for this as always. queen elizabeth taking a step back from celebrations marking 70 years on the british thrown. buckingham palace announcing the queen was not going to attend, now announcing the queen will not attend the sports race tomorrow following her decision not to attend today's ceremonies at st. paul's cathedral. the queen experienced some discomfort at thursday's
9:47 am
festivities. earlier today, prince charles and his wife and the duke and duchess of cambridge turned out for a service of thanksgiving. the celebration marked the return of prince harry and megle -- meghan markle. a group which helped to get women safe abortions in the years before roe v. wade made abortions legal in 1972. this is "andrea mitchell reports" only on msnbc.
9:48 am
9:49 am
you're pretty particular about keeping a healthy body. what goes on it. usually. and in it. mostly. here to meet those high standards is the walgreens health and wellness brand. over 2000 high quality products. rigorously tested by us. real world tested by you. and delivered to your door in as little as one hour. the supreme court is poised to overturn roe v. wade before the end of the term. after nearly 50 years of legal abortions for those who want or need them. what will life be like for millions of women without that option? one of our next guests knows exactly what life was like when abortion was illegal across the
9:50 am
nation. she was a member of the jane collective, chicago women who created an underground network for thousands of women providing them access to safe abortions prior to the roe v. wade ruling. now hbo is timely documentary entitled "the janes," sharing a bit of their story. >> we were very aware of the fact that women were suffering in a variety of ways because of abortion being against the law. women did awful things out of fear and desperation. we knew that some would die. many people around them, including children they already had, would suffer. so, we thought, we can be of use. you need an abortion? we'll help you. call this number and ask for jane. >> the hbo documentary film "the
9:51 am
janes" debuts june 8th on hbo and hbo max. and joining us now is "the janes" director and producer, and also a member of the jane collective, laura kaplan. welcome all. laura, talk to me about how you got involved with the janes. >> well, i had in the fall of 1971, moved back to chicago from new york. and my dear friend, alice, needed an abortion. and she saw an ad in an underground paperer in chicago. pregnant, don't want to be? call jane, with the phone number. and so she did. and after her abortion, she came to my apartment, and she was just ecstatic about the experience, that it was just a wonderful experience. and that piqued my interest.
9:52 am
she took me to meet a new counselor. they were starting a new training session. and that's how i joined. >> so, abortion, from people i know, is always challenging and a difficult decision for people. but what you're talking about is that providing a safe alternative, rather than some of the underground ways that led to people being, you know, physically harmed was what made it beneficial to her, laura. is that correct? >> right. and it was not only a safe alternative, but it was an alternative that was very much centered on her and included enormous amount of education about her body, about abortion, about birth control. just -- it was a revelation to her and her enthusiasm was what really moved me to want to get
9:53 am
involved. >> emma, tell me about what drew you to wanting to tell the story of the janes. little known -- it was not a widely known part of american legal history and medical history. >> yeah. i have a family connection to the story. so, i always sort of knew about it. but, you know, it's just -- we so often don't hear about the female heroes of history. those stories don't get told. so, it was just such a compelling opportunity for us to give these women a platform, especially at this time, you know? we're filmmakers. this is what we have to contribute to the fight. you know, we believe in this medium to create empathy around the issue, to put people in other people's shoes. and we believe in these women. these are deeply moral women that wanted to save lives and could testify to what this
9:54 am
country looked like last time women bodily autonomy -- they didn't have their own bodily autonomy, and they didn't have the right to choose. >> and tia, nearly 50 years later, roe v. wade likely to be overturned. so, what do you hope that people took away from the film? >> we hope that people, as emma said, get a sense of what it was like before we had federal protection for abortion and understand that this is -- this is our future. and, you know, it may mean death sentences for many people who won't be able to access, you know, affordable or safe, legal abortion care. you know, what we know and what we found in this film is when abortion is criminalized, it doesn't mean that women don't have abortions. it just means that they don't have access to safe abortions. so, we hope that this film is a cautionary tale and also an inspiration, you know, to help
9:55 am
people understand the stakes and to mobilize, you know, for change. >> so, laura, one of the stories in the film that really stuck out to us was that a police raid in 1972. when your friends in the back of a police car ripped up sections of index cards with your patients' names and addresses and swallowed those index card pieces hole. what was at stake for those women? it sounds like a very desperate act, as well as your fellow janes, who at the time committing regular felonies. >> right. all of us knew that we were committing felonies on a daily basis. i think the motivation of the women in the back of that police van was to protect the women who had contacted us in desperation. and i think that was really a motivating factor for all of us was to protect the women who were putting their lives really in our hands.
9:56 am
>> and talk to me, laura, about some of the alternative methods that were used then, if you can. what happened to people who didn't have this option? >> just horrible, horrible things because, you know, there weren't shelves and shelves of books on women's health back in that day, in those days. and so women had very -- and people in general had just very little knowledge about their bodies and how they worked. and so you got information from somebody in your neighborhood or a friend or a relative. and that information could be extremely dangerous. so, of course, we know all the pictures of coat hangers. but women tried all kinds of things. douching with lysol, things that caused such damage. there were wards in major city
9:57 am
hospital, including in chicago, cook county hospital, that were just for women suffering from septic abortions. and a lot of those women died. i talked to an old childhood friend who was an intern in a hospital in new york city before new york legalized abortion in 1970. and he told me heartbreakingly the women who came in and there was really nothing could be done for them. and they died. young women, not even -- just beginning their lives. you mean, it's just devastating to think about. and that -- we should go back to that cruelty and inhumanity is beyond my even comprehension. >> well, it is certainly about to become upon us. at least we expect the decision, as i say, before the end of this
9:58 am
term. emma potus, tia, laura, thank you all so much. the hbo documentary film "the janes" debuts june 8th on hbo and hbo max. and that does it for this edition of "andrea mitchell reports." have a safe weekend. follow the show online at mitchell reports. chris jansing reports starting right after this. chris jansing reports starting right after this riders! let your queries be known. uh, how come we don't call ourselves bikers anymore? i mean, "riders" is cool, but "bikers" really cool. -seriously? -denied. can we go back to meeting at the rec center? the commute here is brutal. denied. how do we feel about getting a quote to see if we can save with america's number one motorcycle insurer? should flo stop asking the same question every time? -approved! -[ altered voice ] denied! [ normal voice ] whoa. this summer, dinosaurs are in our world. -approved! -[ altered voice ] denied! pet dinosaur? i'll take care of you.
9:59 am
nice and quiet. hey, look! it's your mom! hot dog? think he's posting about all that ancient roman coinage? no, he's seizing the moment with merrill.
10:00 am
moving his money into his investment account in real time and that's... how you collect coins. your money never stops working for you with merrill, a bank of america company. choosing t-mobile is like paying for this... but getting that! and with our new price lock guarantee, you won't need to worry about price hikes. because unlike at&t, we won't raise the price of your rate plan. another way customers get more at t-mobile. hello. we're coming on the air with breaking news. i'm chris jansing. a man who played a critical role in the trump administration, former adviser, peter navarro, is at this hour in federal custody and about to make a court appearance. he was indicted by a grand jury on two counts of contempt after snubbing a subpoena from the house january 6 committee. we are keeping a very close eye on this picture. that's outside a washington,