tv Velshi MSNBC August 21, 2022 5:00am-6:00am PDT
thanks for watching the katie phang show. i'll be back next saturday and sunday at 7 am eastern live on msnbc. you can also catch original episodes on the msnbc hub on peacock every thursday and friday. don't forget to follow the show on twitter, instagram, facebook and tiktok. ali velshi is up next. >> good morning. it's sunday, august 21st. i'm ali velshi. probable as it may seem, donald trump is actually receive a huge boost and support in the days since the fbi searched his mar-a-lago estate. and recovered boxes of classified information that properly belong to eunice's government. his political action committee has seen a spike in donations. raising millions just days after the fbi served him a search warrant for the washington post. recent polls have been shown trump widening his lead over
florida governor ron desantis and other possible republican presidential contenders should he choose to jump in the 2024 presidential race. as one gop strategist put it nbc news recently quote, the rally around trump effect israel. if you couldn't tell already, donald trump is a competitive man who seems to enjoy and even seems to thrive on chaos and he's not ready to walk away from this manner with the fbi play it. on friday, he posted on social media platform of truth social that quote a major motion pertaining to the fourth amendment will soon be filed concerning the illegal break in of my home, mar-a-lago, right before the midterm elections. i've got my constitution here. i just want to read to the fourth amendment in the constitution is what protects americans from unreasonable searches and seizures by the u.s. government. reads in part, no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or
affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched and the persons or things to be seized. ironic, because those requirements seem to have been met with the search of mar-a-lago. as of this morning, trump and his team have filed anything since that post that he put out. according to a radio interview with donald trump's attorneys over the weekend, it appears that they're going to request a special master which is a court official he'll be assigned to review the materials that were taken from mar-a-lago and help determine would evidence is in fact relevant to the fbi's case. a lot of what's happened with this investigation right now is new territory for america as a whole because never before has the whole -- home of a former presidential by the fbi for caused by documents. as the unsealed search warrant suggest, the fbi in the department of justice artificially getting possible violations of the presidential records act and the espionage
act. on top of that, the material they recovered include boxes that contain top secret documents. this is in addition to the other sets the boxes at the national archives took back earlier this year. that also included classified documents. we do not know for sure what kinds of things are in those boxes of government material. if they really are top secret documents dealing with national security including nuclear matters. we may never find out. but it raises concerns about the counter intelligence and national security risks that this country has been exposed to in the last 18 months. that those documents have been stored at the former presidents home. this is an unprecedented situation in american history. yet, donald trump only seems to care about one thing. donald trump. he's been quick to play the victim of this one. he's repeatedly called the investigation political persecution. which is actually completely characteristic of him. but his angry rhetoric has been echoed throughout the right-wing media sphere with calls for violence on the rise
in the days after the fbi completed its search the associated press reports quote, mentions of civil war on platforms including facebook and twitter increased tenfold in the hours immediately after the last week star to mar-a-lago. according to an analysis by zignal labs which is affirmed that analyzes social media content. since the search mar-a-lago, a man wearing body armor who was armed with an assault rifle tried to breach the fbi's field office in cincinnati. he was subsequently killed by a police officer after a shoot out. and an extended standoff. just this past monday, a pennsylvania man was arrested for making threatening posts on the social media platform gab including one in which she declared it quote open season on fbi agents. joining me now is ryan riley. justice reporter for nbc news digital. ryan, thank you for being with us. what's the latest in the developments around both this
raid and the investigation. >> it's only been a less than two weeks now since the search in mar-a-lago. it's amazing how many things we've seen spring up on social media and direct threats to the fbi in that -- there is that attack on the cincinnati field office of the fbi. we saw that threat to be arrested a man from pennsylvania. just last week. i point out the broader context here is that there is just been a lot of threats from a lot of january 6th offense in general. i was in court this week covering a trial. some of the officers who were testifying were actually followed out of the courtroom by someone as it turned out we learned was a participant on january 6th. he was harassing a couple of these officers, he try to confront one in the elevator. we followed another officer from the metropolitan police department down the street and it was asking him sort of evocative questions as he was basically trying to get back to as the officer was trying to
get back to the metropolitan police department. eventually, he was banned from the courtroom by the u.s. marshals after a request from the u.s. attorney's office. it's just in this broader environment of a lot of threats that are all sort of brought up by trump's rhetoric. there's a case this week i wanted to mention, there is a quote from a capitol police sergeant who was offering a witness statement or a victim impact statement in this upcoming sentencing that we're going to see this upcoming week for joshua pruitt. who is a member of the proud boys. he said quote, this officer said, i live with fear of in the attack happening to the rhetoric that it's currently discussed ad nauseam on social media radio and the news. he's identified by the individual -- it is exhausting to the point where i don't watch slash follow any form of media anymore since they lived with the news daily. it's really impacting i think officers at the capitol. special agents of the fbi to
have these ongoing threats that are all sort of revved up by a lot of donald trump's rhetoric against the fbi. >> what's the difference here? in history, police, prosecutor, 's and judges are always targeted by the bad guys, right? they're always, anybody who had anybody in jail or caused anyone to be convicted knows that someone's going to be after them and they live with that. what's the distinction here between law enforcement, to prosecutors, judges, doing their jobs normally and this rhetoric that's been amped up by donald trump, causing new sets of alarm and fears amongst law enforcement? >> it's sort of an unequal battlefield. the difference here is essentially the donald trump just has this massive platform and a lot of followers. just the basic megaphone that he has is really brings up a lot of these threats. i was talking to former attorney general eric holder last week and he was saying that there is essentially this mismatch between what donald
trump can do and what doj can do because doj lives by a certain set of principles and rules. they have to follow certain procedures. there is a tradition within the justice department of not speaking sort of outside of the so-called four corners of an indictment so to speak. they typically like to speak through the court process. donald trump is posting these things on true social and make making all these claims. it is just sort of a mismatch because you don't want to sort of get down into the dirt with someone who is making these unsubstantiated claims against the fbi but they are having a real world impact as we saw with that fbi field office in cincinnati as we've seen with all these threats that are coming up on social media. it's a really pickle that the justice department is in here we saw merrick garland deviate a little bit from typical doj policy while still going by the belt. only reason that merrick garland spoke publicly on this was because it was the former
president himself who decided to make this public. they're trying to make this more of an equal playing field but really, it's sort of a mismatch between doj and trump in this instance, ali. >> ryan, thanks very great reporting as always. ryan riley, justice reporter for nbc news digital. joined now by the democratic congressman roger -- illinois, serves on the house intelligence and oversight committee. congressman, good to see you, good morning. thanks for being with us this morning. >> good morning, ali. >> what do you make of all this? all the stuff that's going on? they're sort of two things happening. there's a bunch of different investigations and cases that are getting closer and closer to donald trump and his cronies. and there is this wild to the defense is coming up from donald trump. one includes targeting law enforcement and federal law enforcement the fbi. there's this other strange one with someone to drop witches motion about the fourth amendment which doesn't imperative in violated in the execution of that warrant in
that search in mar-a-lago. >> that's right, ali. i think that the closer that the fbi in the doj get to donald trump, i think the louder social media protests are. in the more vitriol there is in his rhetoric. as someone mentioned before, he does have this megaphone where while the ordinary person spewing that rhetoric may not have an impact, donald trump certainly does. i was just -- i was just looking at that graphic there, that picture that you showed of the fbi field office in cincinnati. underneath the address itself, it said ronald reagan drive. and i think that unfortunately, the republican party is not the one of ronald reagan but donald trump. and at this point, that rhetoric is so hot, it's going to lead to violence. just like it did with the fbi office in cincinnati. >> you are on the intel
committee and there have been discussions for years about what's classified and why it should be classified and the process for classifying things. difficulty in declassifying things when people don't think they should be classified. does that play into the process? donald trump so there was a standing order in which everything to let the white house went to mar-a-lago was declassified. there's reporting from lots of lots of people around him who say they knew nothing of such standing order. and even if it were true, declassification does have to have a process involved. because there are agencies across of documents. they would actually need to know that the president decided this was declassified while he would've had a right to do so, there is a process involved. so give me a sense of this whole issue about classification and declassification and weather how religion that is this conversation? >> first of all, i want to point out that with regard to the three laws that were actually invoked in the warrant. none of them depend on whether the documents issued were
classified or not. the classification of those documents that does go however to the importance of those documents. and the fact that you had like a top secret specialized compartmental -- compartmentalize information. -- shows you that this was probably the most grave of intelligence that needed -- and i think this, with regard to the standing order. it never existed. a thing 18 former trump administration officials said that there was no such standing order. in fact there, wasn't even a process for declassification use by the trump administration. at least one instance, when president trump wanted to declassify a binder of materials related to crossfire hurricane, the initial investigation of potential trump campaign conspiracy with the russians. it actually went through a process, ali, where the justice
department in the trump administration and others went back and forth until they were able to arrive at a -- wood types of information should be declassified and shared with the public and what should not be. >> i don't know what do you know about the stuff that's been seized with the stuff that was being looked at. we don't know in the media. it's possible by virtue of the nature of the documents, we may not know if their national security documents or nuclear documents or things like that. you and your colleagues on both committees that you're on, intel and oversight, sent a letter to avril haines, the director of national intelligence. asking for clarity on what? what is it that you're looking for from the director of national intelligence as it pertains to the documents seized in mar-a-lago? >> basically, when we're trying to figure out is regardless of how those documents got to mar-a-lago, regardless of all the trauma and any other
shenanigans at play here. what was in those documents? what could've been exposed to adversaries? what damage could've been done to our national security? that's what we're trying to get to. we're trying to figure out how do we guard our national security in light of what we have discovered? i think it's fair to say there are a lot of people concerned about the nature of those documents at mar-a-lago. given the counter intelligence risk that have always been surrounding donald trump and the trump administration. we are concerned that perhaps this information could've been exposed to people -- our adversaries who never should've had that information in the first place. >> congressman, good to see this morning. thank you for joining us. democratic representative -- we're gonna have much more of the multitude investigations involving the former president and his allies and how all of it will affect the upcoming midterm elections later in the show. plus, cracking down with the conspiracy theories in response to a recent slew of violent threats. lawmakers are demanding that
social media companies do more to tone down the violent rhetoric online. it's been six months since russia launched its brutal invasion of ukraine. i spent some time in eastern europe earlier this year. including in ukraine. there was a life-changing emotional experience. i met a lot of people as you know and i heard their stories. coming up next, i'll be joined by someone whose story touch me deeply. we'll get an update on what's changed in her life in the last few months. that's. next that's next ♪ ♪ this is the moment. for a treatment for moderate-to-severe eczema. cibinqo — fda approved. 100% steroid free. not an injection, cibinqo is a once-daily pill for adults who didn't respond to previous treatments. and cibinqo helps provide clearer skin and less itch. cibinqo can lower your ability to fight infections, including tb. before and during treatment, your doctor should check for infections and do blood tests.
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since the start of russia's unprovoked war in ukraine. and since that invasion, the united nations refugee agency has recorded more than 6.6 million ukrainian refugees across europe. more than 3.8 million registering for some sort of temporary protection status to remain in the countries that they've moved to. at the beginning of the war, i spent a little over a month in ukraine and in the neighboring countries to poland and hungary which were taking in countless refugees at the time. while in poland's capital, warsaw, i met an amazing it woman name -- a 15-year-old refugee who fled her home in eastern ukraine. she was in warsaw working as a volunteer to help other ukrainians fleeing russian attacks. she shared a glimpse into what life was like for her and her friends in the eastern at donbas region before the madness began. she was hopeful at the time that one day should be able to
return home. >> i'm only 15. and i tried to help people because there are people like me. i was -- family, i've got were teenagers so this is something. crazy when i was everything and now in my town, i lose everything and i come here. so i'm trying to help people. >> so these people from mariupol and from kharkiv in from your town, are you getting messages from back there about what's happening? >> yeah. there is people who hear. they lose everything in every person who i ask what do you do here they say i come here because my home was destroyed. russians destroyed it. it's very sad. it's important for me because i'm here and i lose everything. i am grateful because -- support ukraine.
many are teenagers. i'm here representing ukrainians teenagers from different parts of ukraine. and every teenager, every person in ukraine cried because they lose everything. in only one night. we don't deserve it. >> do not deserve. and your father's not with you. >> he's in kyiv. frontlines. he's in army. >> those that were? you >>. yeah he called but in kyiv, very bad connection. i very messam and my friends who stay in ukraine. >> you are looking to go to the united states. tell me why. >> i want to study their. and then i want to go back to ukraine because ukraine is my native country. back in ukraine, i want to build my future in ukraine. >> do you have a friend and seattle? >> yeah. >> that's where you want to go?
>> yeah, in seattle or new york because my friends went to study new york. >> very good. thank you for coming here. and talking to us and we will pray for your father i'm sure he's going to be fine. >> thank you for supporting us. it's very important not for me but it's important for a family and my friends. we're very grateful about -- we have not these people are live in street or train station so thank you. >> you're going to one of those train stations. even going there and helping people get food. i guess i must make you feel a little better. >> it makes me feel better. because -- >> you're not alone for sure. thank you for being with us. >> can i hug you? >> you will get through this. we'll see you at school in the united states and then we'll see you back in ukraine. >> i'm a man of my word. i promised i would see nasty
again. and today is that day. might be over escape for now but i'll take it. nastya joins me after a commercial break. we'll get an update on her family and her father who she hadn't seen since the beginning of the war. war ahead of schedule with my trusty team ♪ ♪ there's heather on the hedges ♪ ♪ and kenny on the koi ♪ ♪ and your truck's been demolished by the peterson boy ♪ ♪ yes -- ♪ wait, what was that? timber... [ sighs heavily ] when owning a small business gets real, progressive helps protect what you've built with affordable coverage. trelegy for copd. [coughing] ♪ birds flyin' high, you know how i feel. ♪ ♪ breeze driftin' on by... ♪ if you've been playing down your copd,... ♪ it's a new dawn, it's a new day,... ♪ ...it's time to make a stand. start a new day with trelegy. ♪...and i'm feelin' good. ♪
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are worth i think is several thousand words. this is 15-year-old nastya shpot and her two sisters we noted with her father after about five months due to the war in ukraine. nastya in her family are now back in their hometown in the donbas region in eastern ukraine. and as promised, nastya shpot joins me now. nastya, good to see you. thank you for being with us. it is great to see you. you look terrific. your hair has grown, in my hair is exactly the same as when you last saw me. what on earth are you doing
back home? >> i'm here to help my grandparents. they need to go and hide and they have the ability to do this. i'm here to help my grandparents. >> you are in a very dangerous place but your reneged with your grandparents and your father who told me you are missing so desperately. tell me about the good and bad of being back home. >> actually, when i -- one minute ago, there was two planes. i thought it will be that -- we didn't have. it my grandparents with me right now. i'm in my grandparents home. my dad is on the front lines. he now in donetsk region. i don't know. you hear about city -- it's a very big city. right now, there is some
dangerous -- my dad right now there. he call me sometimes but there is very bad connection when i meet him. my dad told me so terrified, tough, what's going on in frontline. i just started crying when -- first time with my dad. first time in six months. i'm just cry. dad started to tell me stories how they hide in his car was destroyed. i'm thinking god because he said my dad. >> how long did you start with him? how long did you get to see him? >> i spent with him five days, six. he -- dad takes a day off five 60 and he spends his time with us. so i'm very grateful for this time. >> when i was introducing you, you are looking up in the
corner. i did know what you are looking. it looks like you are looking at something on the ceiling or something. you said you see planes. where you are, i couldn't believe it when i found out where you were. i was looking at on the map. you are between all the dangerous places. your between dnipro, zaporizhzhia, mariupol. what is the like where you are? >> i'm in the middle. 100 kilometer sudden ask, 100 kilometers to dnipro, 200 kilometers to zaporizhzhia. i'm in the middle. when they want to shoot in the cross side and they -- i see all rockets. and when they're shooting, yesterday, my mom go to her friends home and she -- they drink tea and speak about what's going on and my mom calling me to say shooting. i said mom, i don't hear that.
she say shooting. but there was like in another side of our town. it's in -- depends i'm in the middle. >> do you feel scared? >> no actually. because. it's really band but it's starting to be routine. today, whole night was -- my mom doesn't sleep and i just sleep and i just don't hear this. we need to go to hide i say mom i just want to sleep. i hope they don't will be shooting because they right now are not shooting in my town quiet but many planes go in dnipro and -- ukrainians army goes through our town. now town a peaceful but -- ten kilometers shooting. it depends what's the situation.
>> nastya shpot, tell me about your education. that was a thing you are most worried about when i met you in warsaw. you are able to get some school in there, the polish people have been good about bringing ukrainian teachers in, but you need to think about your education for the future. >> yes. i thought about this. i would have one year that is just school in ukraine. and we make the decision with my mom, so i finish my one year of school in ukraine, and after this i'm going to try to go to university. i don't know what the country that will, be if that will be in ukraine. because it is very bad, the situation. and you can go to university, you can study there. but we tried online. so i hope that will be okay. >> do you still plan to come to the united states? >> actually, yeah, it is the biggest dream.
but now i think it is so far away. this country needs a visa. so i'm very worried about this. but it is the biggest, dream of course. >> let's, you and i stay in touch. you will realize your dreams. thank, you i am so happy to see that smile on your face. i know when i met you that you wanted to see your father and you wanted to be around your family and you love your country. and now you are in your country and you get to see your father and you are with your family. let's stay safe, my friend. you and i will stay in close touch. >> thank you so much. i am really grateful. bye-bye. >> nastya shpot. well, children across this country will soon be heading back to school. but not all in florida will be treated equally. as a new law allowing discrimination against lgbtq students is in effect. pliers, and a phone open to libertymutual.com they customize your car insurance, so you only pay for what you need... and a blowtorch.
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school this month, florida's so-called don't say gay law is causing major confusion for the states teachers, students, and parents. the official name of it is the parental rights in education law. it bans instruction about sexual orientation and gender identity, in kindergarten through third grade, or quote, in a manner that is not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards. huge fallout from the law, in addition to affecting the psyche of the lgbtq community and education has likely schools to full poll resources for lgbtq students for fear that they may be sued by parents or the state. stephanie stanton is in st. petersburg, florida, following the effects of the don't say gay they'll, and we're just having on the community. stephanie. >> it's a new school year begins here in florida, teachers are frustrated and concerned on how to implement some of the new state standards
with regards to the parental rights in education law, also called the don't say gay law. they spans instruction on a gender diversity and sexual orientation. integrates kindergarten through third. but it also gives parents the opportunity to sue teachers that they believe are instructing using materials that they deem inappropriate. so again, those teachers are concerned that they are now opening themselves up to potential lawsuits. districts across the state are working to implement new standards. meanwhile, later today rhonda sanchez will be making several stops here in florida to promote his education agenda. last week a major broke blow struck down the stock woke law that was recently signed into legislation, that will restore certain race based instruction. in a -- ruling the judge called the law unconstitutional, and said that violates the first amendment. on top of all, this florida is
facing a massive teacher shortage. and in an attempt to deal with, that governor ron desantis has loosened restrictions for some first responders and veterans to help fulfill some of those teaching vacancies. but opponents say that they are upset they say that it has devalued current formerly trains. teachers. a lot de sapin in here in the state of florida. we will look ahead to governor ron desantis, who will be who are in parts of the state today. back to you. >> nbc's stephanie stanton is in st. petersburg, florida. coming up, next working in the abortion clinic in a hostile state, i will talk to one caregiver risking her life to provide for people in need. r people in need ♪ ♪
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boost® high protein also has key nutrients for immune support. boost® high protein. being an abortion provider of the clinic employees when those difficult jobs in america right now. especially in that state that is hostile towards reproductive rights. providers face threats, harassment even legal risks.
and yet many still find their jobs rewarding and press on in spite of it all. the late doctor george pillar of kansas perhaps perfectly encapsulated this duality in an interview in 2004. >> to be an abortion provider in this community and this is the day and age. you have to make a trade-off. abortion providers occupy the lowest run on the totem pole of medical and political respect. on the other hand, on the other hand, we occupy the highest run, the top position in the hearts and lives of our patients because it's a matter of survival. they don't tell everybody this a matter of survival. but they -- tell their abortion fighter. >> that was dr. taylor speaking five years before he was assassinated. a shot in the head on a sunday in church by an antiabortion extremists in 2009.
following his assassination, our next guest, julie burr, carter cup his mental. continuing his life's work and great risk to her own. reopening dr. taylor's old clinic and opening new clinics and other underserved areas. one of her newest projects was a clinic plan for casper wyoming. but it's opening has been delayed after suspected arson attack on the building in may. she also recently bought a clinic in illinois, a state where abortion is still illegal in is taking an influx of patients from surrounding states where abortion is now illegal. joining me now is julie burr cards. he's the president and founder of wellspring health access. the phone founder and ceo of the trust women foundation. julie, thank you for being with us. this conversations a few weeks overdue. we had some technical difficulties the last time we want to talk to you. i so desperately want to talk to you because a couple of weeks ago, as you know i wasn't alabama speaking to abortion providers in the state that is about as hostile toward abortion as one can get. and so i want to start by
asking you about that clip that i played at the top of this segment of your former mentor and boss, george pillar. describing what it's like to be an abortion provider. that you often feel like you occupy the lowest run of medicine in terms of the way are treated by the outside world. but the highest wrong when it comes to your patients who need reproductive health care. is that true? >> good morning. i would say that that is absolutely true. thank you for playing that clip. within this realm of abortion provision. within reproductive rights. oftentimes, physicians are ostracized from their own medical profession. they are ostracize politically. but dr. taylor in that clip was absolutely correct that the women who are coming in for
procedures, the people who need procedures. they will tell you what is really in their hearts and what's on their minds. >> i spoken to providers who are saying that in places like places like alabama with their itching to make a case of somebody. they're itching doing example whether it's of a provider, a doctor, someone who runs a clinic or even a woman who gets an abortion. there are women who will experience either miscarriages or complications to the pregnancy who are now fearful of seeking medical care because they're worried that they will become that example. >> yes, that is absolutely true. that is something that we have considered very carefully and will consider to -- continue to consider as we move forward in this new post roe world. what are our physicians going
to be facing from other hostile states? as you mentioned, i am a co-owner of hope clinic in illinois. where abortion is legal and protected by the state of illinois. but what might our physicians be facing from these other hostile states that he referenced? what are those attorneys general and da's going to be looking at? we want to make sure that our physicians are providers and also our patients are protected in this new landscape. >> julia, like your mentor the lake george to lure you two were dragged into a messy court case by an anti-abortion activist. tell me a bit about that experience and sort of how it affects both your motivation, your feeling of safety, your family. >> yes it ended up being a seven year battle. it started with a pastor, pastor mark pollack bringing
his flock into my neighborhood into my house holding signs that i consider to be death threats towards myself and my family. and passing out fliers at least within a five block radius to my neighbors. which also had death threats, i believed. ultimately, i was taken to court by this person. i was exonerated. which i was very happy about. but it just shows you how these anti-choice extremists have the ability, they can and they will abuse the law. that was very disheartening but we decided that we had to move forward through that process. >> julia, in the years since doctor tillis murder and now the elimination of roe v. wade as a national protection. what makes you keep doing the
work that you're doing? >> well, i think at the end of the day we owe it to you each other, we owe it 12 people across this country. no matter what your, race your class, your social economic background. we owe it to each other to fight for human rights. and abortion care, abortion access, is absolutely a human right. there are other things that are not accessible to you if you don't at least have that ability to make the decision about your own fertility, and you're on reproduction. >> julie, good to talk to you, thank you for joining us. the conversation is delayed a bit, but no less important than it would have been a couple of weeks ago. julie burkhart is the president of the -- access and founder of the -- former ceo of trust women foundation. the gop for decades promoted itself as the party of law and order, but that appears to be
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is how republicans including donald trump have described themselves for years. as, of late it seems that some of the party it's of others have thrown those principles out the window. to situate the republican candidate for the foreign house representatives was permanently banned from twitter after calling on his supporters to commit violent acts against federal officials. it has a sensor moved tweets and miguel said he would give floridians permission to, quote, shoot fbi irs atf and all other feds on sites. that is a candidates, by the, way from the florida house. miguel conformed to nbc news that he did in fact hit send on that tweet. since the fbi searched the
former presidents home, there is been an uptick in violent rhetoric on the line. according to affirmed analyze a social media content, mentions of a, quote, civil war have increased ten fold on platforms immediately after the fbi search. the house oversight committee is now admitting that social media companies taken median action to address these threats. law enforcement agencies like the fbi in the atf ward off threats to their safety on a daily basis. that is just routine for them. that's the irs, the people who collect your taxes every year, here is why there is a target on their backs. now the inflation reduction act that president biden signed into law this past week sets aside 80 billion dollars for the chronically underfunded irs, over a decade. that would allow the agency to hire thousands of new employees. the irs has historically been underfunded, so this funding will allow the agency to directly help average americans get back the money they are owed by the government, while also cracking down on
billionaires who treat on their taxes. all around, this is good news. it somehow this news has been used to generate hysteria and has become the basis for a new far-right conspiracy theory that is circulating online. some folks on the far-right are convinced that biden is using the funding to put together a so-called, i hope you are sitting down for, this shadow army of irs agents to take away the guns of trump supporters. not making this up. even top republican lawmakers are spreading misinformation about the new irs funding. on august 8th, former senator marco rubio tweeted, after today's radar mar-a-lago, what do you think the love plans to use those 87,000 new irs agents for? i do not want to get that question, and i don't know what he means by. but the next day, house leader, minority leader kevin mccarthy, tweeted to make $75,000 or less? democrats knew army of 87,000 irs agents will be coming for
you, with a 710,000 new audits for americans who earn less than $75,000. none of this is trump. it really doesn't pay, actually, to audit somebody who make $75,000 a year. this new funding for the irs is not going toward the armed shadow militia that wants to confiscate guns, because that is not actually the iris job. but there is actually no mechanism for the irs to come and get your gun. normally would be used to target anybody who is not a wealthy tax chief. that does not matter because the lies are already out. there it is this type of disinformation that leads to real world consequences. words matter, whether conspiracy or otherwise. joining me to discuss is nbc's resident experts on conspiracy theories in the dark web, senior reporter ben collins. then, this is wild because there has got to be a few less popular jobs in america and being an irs agent. nobody shows up at a party and says, i am an irs agents. it is already hard for them. but this is bs.
they don't collect guns. and an audit is a relatively expensive process, and they don't -- if they don't think they are getting anything out of, you in which they don't really get anything out of people who generates -- or less because they generally salary earners, it's kind of hard to be -- when it is just a w to the you are claiming, where is this nonsense come from? >> a couple of years ago now, do you remember when there was a george floyd protest and there was that -- who went and killed a bunch of people? and he killed some cops and he said we have to get rid of the alphabet boys? the alphabet boys wears short for atf, through the agencies. i guess where they are targeting now, it shows you how these extremist movements have seeped in traditional political circles from the gop. when that guy mentions the thriller agencies when he is running for state office in florida, he knows who he is
jogging to. he's dogging to militias. now that is where he's at with the gop. he is dog whistling by losing the strait of lies, by the. way trying to get back to the funding they were at a decade ago. the irs,, this is not -- >> it's a backlog agency, for those waiting for a refund because the government owes you money. that is because the irs is backlog. >> they're going off to the cayman island. people who they are not going after random people out there. they use that rhetoric to try to draw people in who do not want to pay their taxes. they are like, hey, taxes is a concept, and that's fine that's really understandable. but now they are giving them real life targets, fbi agents and -- agents. they're trying to shoot people on site. >> somebody tried to do that. so an fbi, agent atf, or whatever, you are used to this. i was talking to roger amorphy.
cops, prosecutors, judges, they all know they are. targets every now and again that they hear the unfortunate case for somebody targeting them successfully. is there a law against this? is there somebody who can say that you can't actually do, this you can show use unfounded conspiracy theories to cause people -- this for the house candidates, can he do? that twitter can take him off, but how can you tell people they have a right to kill federal agents on site? >> you cannot target specific people. that is what you are starting to see now, is that if you can dog whistling a national level they can target specific people at the local level. that is, why for example, of the fbi agents that were targeted search mar-a-lago, for example, and targeted places like fortune and far-right bases, because they know that they do not have to do the legwork. gop itself does not have to do the legwork to get people to focus on -- i want to make this very clear. they are doing this with every little bungalow they have across the spectrum. right now in canada, they are
targeting a specific police chief in london, ontario. because he is going after somebody who spotted a trans person on -- this is not -- this is a strategy. this is an infrastructure that is based entirely on harassment, because they've given up on democracy. i want to -- thank you for coming in this morning to talk to us about this. particularly worrisome organist allen. ben collins, nbc news senior reporter. straight ahead, the latest on the war in ukraine as russia's invasion enters month number six this week. plus the latest on the investigation involving the former president and their effect on the upcoming midterm elections. another hour of velshi begins right now. >> good morning. i'm ali velshi. it's sunday, august 21st. it's day one 79 of russia's war in ukraine. a war that none of us