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tv   Alex Wagner Tonight  MSNBC  September 1, 2022 1:00am-2:00am PDT

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>> well tonight, chris. -- i learned from the prompter about the -- race. i learned in my head. it is ranked choice voting thing -- it's palin who has represented a democrat in 50 years. >> someone who's from one of the indigenous -- genous - think the republicans woke leftist nightmare. >> incredible. >> have a good night. >> you too. >> thanks and thanks to you at home for joining us this hour. do you remember this issue of time magazine? it is from march of 2009 it got donald trump on and underneath the caption, trump is hitting on all fronts, even tv? there is another caption, the apprentice is a television smash. that magazine cover reportedly hung on the wall in at least five of donald trump's golf clubs at the beginning of his with just one problem. it was not real. as "washington post" reporter david onfairnhold uncovered in june ofnh 2017, donald trump wa
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not on the cover of time magazine in march of 2009 but he had been hanging fake magazine covers in his golf clubs to make it look likeve he was. just to be clear here, trump wanted so badly to be on the cover of time magazine that he invented a fake time cover all about himself and hung it up in public, in multiple places all over the country. that forgotten little detail from trump's presidency became relevant again today after the department of justice issued its latestrt court filing in the ongoing courtil battle over accs to the fbi search at mar-a-lago. the filing included this shocking picture, showing some of theow top secret and classifd documents the fbi found during thatdo search. documents clearly labeled top secret, and sci, or sensitive compartmented information and none bear markings that they are declassified which is a t typic part of the declassification process. those documents are also sitting
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alongside what appears to be drum roll, please, a box with the framed time magazine cover, a real one this time, featuring trump when he was president. now, we don't know for sure why the fbi placed the documents next to that box with the framed "time" cover. maybe trump's filing system is alphabetical, t for "time" magazine and t for top secret who can know. what is clear from the photo is donald trump kept some of our nation's most important secrets alongside hisan embarrassingly vain mementos and that's what republicans decided they were going toth focus on in order to defend donald trump. after the photo waser released, the official twitter account for the republicans on the house judiciary committee tweeted, that "time" magazine cover was a huge national security, eye roll emoji. that "time" magazine cover, never mind the six documents with big bold letters saying
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secret and top secret, the real scandal here isec that the fbi maybe took the former president's framed magazine covers. in their defense, trump'sin alls don't have a lot to worktr with right now. because the latest filing from the department of justice is damning and it reveals a lot about how far donald trump was willing to go in order to keep those sensitive documents from being turned over to the fbi. prior to the search, trump's lawyers had agreed to keep all of the sensitive documents in a locked storage room at mar-a-lago but accordingoc to t justice department's filing, quote, the government developed evidencenm that government recos were likely conceal and removed from the storage room and that efforts were likely taken to obstruct the government's investigation. the justice department also claims that it found classified documents inside trump's desk drawer alongside his passports. the filing describes how trump's lawyers in june claimed he had conducted a diligent search of the premises and turned over 38
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classified documents and assured documents those were all of the classified documents and that none remain. and yet despite those assurances the fbit found over 100 more classified documents that were still being kept at donald l trump's home when they executed search warrant two months later. the justice department write, quote, thatde the fbi, in a matr of hours, recovered twice as many documents with classification markings as the diligent search that the former president's counsel and other representatives had weeks to perform, that that calls into serious question the representations made by trump's lawyers, and casts doubt on the extent of cooperation in this matter. the justice department made it painfully clear in its filing that it suspects the former president of willfully obstructing its investigation withholding these documents. now tonight about, an hour ago, trump's team submitted their owt brief to the court, respond together d.o.j.'s filing late last night. and surprise, there is not much in there that responds to the very comprehensive case the
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justice department lays out regarding potential obstruction of justice. instead, there is a lot of inc. spilled on the need for a special master. an independent third party to revut documents found at mar-a-lago. never mind that they shouldn't have been there to begin. with by way of example, trump's team argues, the government now hasue the temerity to argue tha any involvement with by a special master will interfere with an ongoing intelligence community review of the materials. left unchecked, the d.o.j. will impugn, illeak, and publicize selected aspects of their investigation with no recourse for donald trump but to somehow trust the currently unchecked quote-unquote investigators. it is worth noting that the reason the department of justice has made any aspects of this investigation public is because donald trump urged the d.o.j. to make said aspects public.
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tomorrow, the judge will consider both side's arguments to determine whether to appoint that the special master. joining us now is barbara mcquade former u.s. attorney for the eastern district of michigan. thanks for joining us. i have many questions about this latest filing. and the need for a special master. trump's team is unsurprisingly vociferous in its argument here. it's predominantly on why it deserves a special master here, and very much lays criticism on the shoulders of the department of justice. suggesting that this is a politically motivated, and the wordd, witch hunt isn't in ther butis it is the subtext of this. what did you make of the filing and how likely is it that we are going to see a third party appointed, and trump's wishes granted? >> alex, there wasn't much new in this document other than as you say some insults hurled at the justice department. we saw in that initial brief, the request that they wanted a special master to have an independent review of the materials but some of the things that were in thes government's response, i just don't think that the trump team has an
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answer for. i mean number one, it's already been reviewed. they already went through all of in some ways it would be somewhat futile to have a special master rv this. and at this stage, it is a slowing down of the damage asegment tand it is real harm and some say all things beak equal how about a special master and it would silence the critics but there is a real cost to that and that is not being addressed. what they're saying is the two things are consistent. andin i don't think they reflex the fbi did the initial review to segregate out those documents and i think that is the reason the justice department opposes ofde this. nonetheless, the judge may decide that an abundance of caution is appropriate here. i thinkio if i were looking at this, the law would favor not appointing a special master because as they argue, this is
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property of the united states and the assertions of executive privilege are without merit and theec justice department arguedo the extent he has any, which he doesn't, it would be outweighed by the need to assess the damage. >> there is a question about whatbo the judge does though, right, this is a trump-appointed judge, and there is some information, as one legal mind said to us, crossing your t's and dotting your i's and if trump is making this very vehement case suggesting it is politically motivate and make notes in their filing that trump may be a candidate in the 2024 presidential election, just for optics alone, could you see a specialul master appointment likely even in this instance? >> well, i'm going to give the judge the benefit of the doubt of acting in good faith, the mereof fact that donald trump appointed her, i don't think means that she will have a thumb on the scale in his favor. and also, he is a likely
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presidential candidate in 2024, that's two years from now, and so appointing a special master now really has no impact on the outcome of that election. most of the arguments he raises are really arguments that one would raise if this evidence were to be introduced in a trian against him. and he conflates a request for return of property with a request to suppress itevidence,e talks about how his fourth amendment rights were violated, the time for that argument is if charges are filed, and he receives this in discovery, and the government expresses an intent to use it against him in a trial. that's the moment to make those arguments. not now. so i would think that, you know, if i were a betting person, i would say no special master would be granted here. but i suppose, if the judge wants to, out of an abundance of caution, an err on the side of fairness s for donald trump, an perhaps in an effort to blunt the criticism, and perhaps, you know, in my view, i think donald trump -- criticized anyway, so
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why give them something when there is no legal merit to it. >> the justice department seems to foresee this late in the filing last night. and i am pair fizing wildly here but if the special mast ser appointed their concern ist really thatap it slows this who thing done, and the review, the director of national intelligence review, to make sure that these documents are not actually are threat to national security, but that review continue, without any further slowdowns. sort they've asked for a numberf sort a of pre-conditions if a third party is appointed that both parties mutually agree on this person, that this person has,is you know, special classified information access, and that they only review a limited number of these documents. do you think that, i mean who has the upper hand here, in terms of like the bargaining, in terms of who gets to be the special master and what his or her purview is. >> i think the justice department does something lawyer does all the time which is to argue in the alternative. they cite a number of reasons why they think a special mast ser not appropriate here. not necessary.
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and actually harmful to the interests of the united states. but then they say, but, if in the event judge, you are persuaded that a special master should be appointed here, at the very least,he here are some conditions that you oughtre to consider. and one of those is, as you suggest, making sure this happens quickly. appointing somebody who already has a clearance. at the highestha levels to revi these materials. keep in mind in their own filing they said some of the fbi counter-intelligence agents had to have their own clearances upgraded to review this material because itew includes special access programs, which is the veryce highest level. it is not a huge number of people out there who have these clearances and what they don't want to have is have some lawyer that donald trumpve found on tv who will review it and it takes six months to get the clearance, they want somebody who has a clearance they can mutually agree on and a deadline so they can make sure it is done quickly every day the assessment is not done, is perhaps the life of a
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source loverseas who is reportg information could be at risk. is really important this be done quick limit that's why i think the equities here favor not appointing a special master and the filter has already been done, and to the extent this information gets introduced at trial, that would be the point atd which donald trump could fe a motion to suppress this evidence. >> what about, i mean there are other characters in this that have facing some sort of legal jeopardy and that includes trump's legal team. the trump team is pushing back on the meeting that occurred on june 3rd, between evan corcoran and christina bob and the department of justice and that is the infamous meeting where the d.o.j. goes down to mar-a-lago and is this everything you guys,r- and christina signs a document, an oath saying yes, this is everything. in a filing tonight, trump's team says that meeting has been significantly mischaracterized in the government's
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now, i wonder, and again, a very tight summary of a very long document, what are the implications for trump's legal team, if in fact they were not being forthcoming with the d.o.j. over these documents, and whether or not the feds had everything indeed that was at mar-a-lago? >> you know, what we know, based on the most recent d.o.j. pleading is there was this lengthy back and forth where the justice department was asking for all of these document, in fact the archives was asking for all of these documents back and they got 15 boxes in january, butey when they went through, tt they realized there were still some missing, and so the chief of the counter-intelligence division at the justice department, he personally goes down to mar-a-lago and says we need everything, hand it over, turn out your pockets, let's go, all of it. they hand over one envelope. and then they attest that's it. and he says i want to look in those boxes in the storage room. and they say nope, you can't look at it. this is it. swear to god.
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it's everything. and they turned it over. now,d we don't know what it is but some information that is behind those t redaction bars caused the justice department to believe that there was more. and a judge found probable cause to believe that there was more. and in fact, in august, when they went down there, they retrieved 33 more boxes of documents. and so for the people who attested on that day in june that there were no more, they could be in some very serious trouble for obstruction of justice. now, you have to show that they knew what was happening so it is either the lawyers or it's the person who provided information to the which is donald trump himself. the fact that they found classifiedey documents in his personal office next to his passport, suggests to me that donald trump himself has some very serious legal problems here. >> "the new york times" is saying that trump's lawyers may become witnesses, or targets in this investigation which is not really what you want to hear about when you'rere nut middle an ongoing investigation and you're -- when you're in the middle of an ongoing investigation and you're donald trump. >> and interesting parallelin t this was in the paul manafort
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court, where his lawyer had made representations as registering as a foreign agent saying he wasn't. and it turns outgn that he had lied o to the lawyer, and so th lawyer was able to testify against him, through the crime fraud exception, she was granted immunity, and she testified about what paul manafort had said to her. irt can imagine a similar scenao here, where the lawyers are given immunity, and compelled to testify, andle a judge would ha to makest a finding that the crimes brought exception to the attorney-client privilege applies here, that they're using it as a shield to cover for a criminal t if that's the case, they would have a choice to make. they could testify, or if they said that trump is not involved, they themselves could find themselves as the defendants here. all of them e that tnd are charged in a conspiracy to obstruct justice. >> i mean to be trump's lawyer is b to find yourself crossing lines that you never thought you would. witness michael cohen, ty, pat cipollone and maybe christina bob and evan corcoran.
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>> thank you for your time, barbara mcquade, this evening. we will be joined by one of the reporters breaking all kinds of news in the trump investigation. coming up live on the set, big news out of alaska, where a democrat, a democrat has defeated sarah palin for congress becoming the first native american in congress. live by the chairman of the january 6th committee who represents jackson, mississippi, bennie thompson a lot to get to. stay with us. t to get to. stay with us
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one day after donald trump files his lawsuit last week,
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calling for a special master in the case of the fbi search of his florida home, the "washington post" published this piece entitled fbi's mar-a-lago search followed months of resistance, comma, delay, by trump. a documented year and a half effort to stall and prevent the handover of documents to the national archives and justice department investigators. quote, some material recovered in the search is considered extraordinarily sensitive two people familiar with the search said, because it could reveal carefully guarded secret about u.s. intelligence gathering methods. one of them said the information is among the most sensitive secrets we hold. the piece relied on conversations of multiple people with direct knowledge of the investigation as well as court filings to that date. subsequent legal filings by the justice department have shown a deep legal exposure forced by the former president and stom of his lawyers. that "washington post" previewed previewed why, noting that two trump white house lawyers with direct security clearances that were invited to review the
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material notably declined to look at material. in trump's inner circle, concern has been rising since june that the former president has created legal jeopardy for himself according to multiple people in his orbit. mar-a-lago is a big problem, one of the people said. put that on a t-shirt. since then, the release of the fbi affidavit in last night's d.o.j. filing laying out instances of obstruction and trump's lack of cooperation, that has made things worse. joining us is one of the writers of the "washington post" scoop as well as several others since the start of the investigation, pulzer prize winner national investigative reporter for the "washington post" and co-author of "i alone can fix it" donald trump's catastrophic final year. the catastrophe continues well into the post-presidency, it seems. that piece you that wrote was so pre-saged this document, mar-a-lago is a big problem and i want to get your reaction to the information received about
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an hour ago which seems to be more like a political document than a legal document, it is full of buzz words that i'm sure trump's allies will use, the word witch hunt isn't in there but it basically suggests this is all part of a political ploy on the part of the deep state. how did you read it? >> very similarly. and i'm really glad you note the political rhetoric and the optics of this filing, which as you note yourself, it was part of a pattern of how donald trump deals with federal and other courts. you know, his idea is let me communicate the way i want to communicate to my base, he still thinks of himself as the president, and these filings end up being his way of saying i'm a victim, you're next, and i don't have to deal with all of this legal mumbo jumbo, and i don't have to make a coherent legal finding or claim before the court, all i have to do is convince the people i care about, that this is wrong, and that it's politicized and it's
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all joe biden coming for me. even though he doesn't actually provide evidence of this. you know, what our story said, and we did presage the d.o.j. file filing the other day, what our story said over and over again, even inside mar-a-lago, people who advised donald trump, were worried from june 3 hard it this is exactly where we would end up, that the biggest legal jeopardy for donald trump was no longer potentially insiting a riot, potentially a conspiracy to start up january 6th, misleading the public, the biggest legal issue he had was the one of his own making, refusing to turn over these records, and now, according to the d.o.j., he and/or, and i stress he and/or, aides that he relied upon may have hidden and tried to conceal classified records he had been resisting in turning them over to the government. these are the people's records,
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right? >> yes his famous phrase, they're mine, is just patently untrue. the other thing that this document does, is potentially slow down this investigation. right? i mean that is actually meaningful consequence in all of this and it seems to fit into trump's pattern which is delay, obfuscate, muddy the waters and claim victory. do you think that is possible in this case? not only did he not have the protection of the presidency, and the very compromised legal team, but the reality of the facts is such every time we get another step forward, the facts look worse for donald trump. every stage of, this the more information weave get, the more damning the case is against donald trump. >> well, absolutely. if you constantly have sort of a shifting sands legal strategy, you know, first, it was we turned everything over. >> right. >> my lawyers have reviewed, done a diligent search and here are our 15 boxes. oh, wait.
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that's not the totality. here are some more records we've found. now we turned everything over. and the next argument is. the president before he left declassified everything. standing order that none of the national security officials that i interviewed knew anything about, a standing order in 2020 that anything he took to his home and residence was automatically declassified. >> and none of by the way, none of these documents were marked with declassification, none of the documents they found. >> none of them. the color coded pages actually really sent a chill up my spine, because the color coding, forgive me of leading your good question -- >> go ahead. >> the color coding is exactly what national security officials were warning us reporters who were working on this story, if there is a blue, if there's a red, then i'm worried that if i see an orange cover on any of these documents, which is top secret secure compartmented information, if any of those have orange on them, that's a warning to every law enforcement
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agent, every national security official who has any contact with that record, this has to be in a locked safe right away. >> that's the picture, right? and one wonders, not only why he had those documents down there, but who else saw them. i mean these are documents that, you know, from reporting, were stashed in closets, in the desk, we know other lawyers relating to other investigations, were looking for material in and around mar-a-lago, what was so interesting is in the fbi filing, they said that the people tasked with reviewing these documents, some of them were not even cleared to look at this level of secured document. that's how tight these secrets were kept. >> such an important point. you know, these particular programs, or forgive me, documents, had cover sheets that had a coding, in addition to top secret, in addition to secure compartmented information, the holiest of holy of national security secrets, things that if
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revealed will cause imminent and grave danger to our national security. what american isn't a little bit shook by that? but in addition to all that, these materials were expected to put human intel sources, their lives, their human welfare, in danger, if released. so if this is just sitting on a carpet in mar-a-lago -- >> or in a carton. the former president seems very intent on stipulating that he did not leave these documents on the carpet, he had them in a carton, never mind that carton was in a shoe closet, whatever, nonetheless. >> but remember, in the white house, there is a security official, who when they take these records and show them to the sitting president, not the former president in his club, they have a document that they keep that says this is the purpose for which i withdrew this record, and now there's a record to make sure i returned it to the secure locked box. but your question, you don't want to get away from it, which is the things are getting worse,
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the shifting sands of the arguments that trump and his team have made have now put two people, who said they were lawyers for donald trump, in serious jeopardy. i'm told by sources that christina will automatically be a witness, she will be asked for testimony, and we'll see about evan or koran, he is still a lawyer -- evan corcoran, he is still a lawyer but we already know the team recognizes christina bobb is in trouble because no longer she will be representing donald trump on any motion, she will not be signing anything, and i think evan is going to be in that situation not to too long from now. >> to be a trump lawyer, which is what i said at the end of the last block, but it can't be stated enough, it is amazing anyone wants to represent him at this point and yet the investigation continues. >> carol leonig, national investigative reporter for the "washington post," thank you for your time and wisdom and reporting and everything else. great to see you.
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>> thank you, alex. breaking news out of alaska where sarah palin has lost her bid for congress to a democrat. we will be joined by mark liebowitz for more on that stunning result and the reaction of the d.o.j. situation on donald trump. >> and bennie thompson later, chair of the january 6th committee stay with us.
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the results are in. sarah palin who was once considered the future of the republican party has lost a official election to represent the state of alaska in congress and lost to a democrat named mary petola, a huge upset for the former half tem republican governor of the state who was hand picked by republican presidential candidate john mccain to be his running mate. the first woman to represent alaska in the house of representatives taking the once large seat who was before don young who held it for 50 years. the first to join the alaska delegation since 2014 when the democratic senator mark lost his seat to dan sullivan. how did this happen? how did a democrat win in deep
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red alaska? special election to fill don young's seat, a first time a ranked choice voting system in which voters ranked candidates in order of preference and when candidates are eliminated, the votes that would have gone to them are redistributed to the next ranked candidate that the voters preferred. going into today, the democrat was leading for about 40% of the vote. sarah palin at 41% and then begich 28%. not a single candidate won. and an instant runoff election in which the last place candidate was nix and the votes were redistributed to paltola or palin and in case you were wondering, palin will still use the ranked choice voting process in november's midterm elections. joining me is mark liebowitz, staff writer for "the atlantic" and author of "thank you for your servitude," and this is
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maybe the price of submission has been all for it in this race. what sarah palin, i must read her statement, after her loss this evening, ranked choice voting was sold as a way to make elections better, reflect the will of the people. as alaska, and america, now sees, the exact opposite is true. though we're disappointed in thissous come, alaskans know i'm the last one who will ever retreat. instead, i'm going to reload. because what would be a confession statement be without a gun metaphor? >> mark do y-do -- why do you think sarah palin lost tonight? >> i think there is a lot of baggage and there is a larger conversation whether this speaks to a larger trend line. in the mid texas, since the dobbs decision, democrats have overperformed in a number of races now. obviously, sara pulen, is a sui generis character and not
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necessarily representative of a candidate somewhere else in the country, and having said that, it is a truly troubling trend line for republicans in the last few weeks, partly because it is another several quasi--freak show candidate that comes from the trump tradition, the trump mold that voters seem to be showing time and time again, they're pretty sick of. so that's kind of the problematic situation also. but bottom line, the seat has been red since 1620 or whatever and now flipping blue and a bottom line good night for the democrats. >> and she lost not because of ranked choice voting but because her your favorable rating is so high. it bears mentioning on august 8, the day the d.o.j. searched mar-a-lago, donald trump was doing a tele-rally for none other than sarah palin and one wonders, whether it is possible to extrapolate lessons from donald trump in all of this.
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if is worth noting that we have some reporting that trump himself may be delaying the announcement of a 2024 presidential bid until after labor day. initially he said we do it around labor day, which is in like, you know, 48 hours from now. depending on what time zone you live in. do you think it is wise to like try and find a lesson about trump in all of this? and in all of what could be said. >> i think it speaks to a larger exhaustion with the swirl, right? i was talking to a republican congressman today, and he was saying, do you believe we're still talking about this, and this guy, and like the various legal vicissitudes, and you know, whether, you know, sarah palin will concede and will she back off, and will she do a trump style contesting the election. i mean it is one thing after another. and do you sense a certain weariness with not only this story, but just sort of the ongoing distraction that this is sort of done to the republican party, and sort of the, it's blocking out everything else.
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so yes, i don't know, i think that's a trend line that's worth worrying about, if you're a republican. >> you talked to republicans, there is a sort of behavioral pattern we have noticed in the last few weeks which is a lot of these more and officially term there whack-a-doo candidates pivoted after the pry maers and scrubbing the websites over positions, policy positions like reproductive choice or positions on whether or not the 2020 election was stolen. do you think that this pivot matters to base voters? i think we all accept to some degree that once the primary is over, politicians pivot to a more palatable message for the middle. but the trump base is so incensed and so enraged, dos it matter to them that their candidates are trying to be less trump-y in a general? >> you would think.
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it is one thing to sort of try to finesse an issue and so sort of go around the margins of the nuances of your belief on something, but when you have a cult of personalities, it is pretty hard to move away from the personalities while still maintaining the support of the cult, right? you can't just say now i think the election might have been not stolen, i mean i don't think that really fools anyone, and frankly, it is just one thing to pivot, and sort of elegantly and another thing to scrub your website of your previous, you know, position on abortion rights, and expect no one is going to notice. so i think you know, to most people, it would be viewed as an insult to their intelligence, and to the voters in general. >> there is not a lot of gray area, as far as whether you think the 2020 election were stolen but good luck to those republicans who are trying to find it. mark, staff writer at the atlantic, thanks for being with me tonight. >> thanks for having me, alex. up next, congressman bennie thompson joins us live to talk about the crisis in jackson,
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mississippi, where his constituents still have no drinking water this evening. that is all because of a water system in disrepair. in large part because of decades of racism and racist policies. we will talk to him about that, and the january 6th committee, we'll be right back. be right ba.
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. on monday when the republican governor of mississippi made the
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stark announcement that the water system in the capital city of jackson had failed, there was someone notably absent from the dais. the democratic mayor of jackson. local news outlets later reported that he had not been invited to the governor's news conference, and although the mayor has argued that the city and state are working together, it seems quite apparent that there is a disconnect between state and local leadership and that breakdown could not come at a worse time. the water crisis facing jackson comes at a point in which the city is already grappling with a dire set of circumstances. one in four residents live in poverty, and in some of the hardest hit parts of jackson, the average household makes just $25,000 a year. in some cases, effective households are pulling in just $15,000 annually. since the year 2,000, the annual median income in jackson has dropped $6500 to a whopping 15%. meanwhile these are the residents who are being asked to keep afloat a water
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infrastructure system that is in some areas more than 100 years old. the city is very plainly dealing with an eroding and shrinking tax base and a crumbling water system and here is how the state has responded. the governor famously vetoed a bipartisan bill that would have helped both poor people in jackson pay their water bills while also helping the city collect much needed water revenue. he did so because he was concerned about giving the impression that quote the government has free money floating around to pay for all of these things. in addition, the state legislature killed the bill that would have allowed jackson to raise the city sales tax by 1%, in order to help pay for much-needed sewer repairs. that bill was tanked after the republican house speaker publicly expressed his doubt about the measure, saying that it created a dangerous precedent for other cities in the state. this sort of inaction is indicative of how the state dealt with jackson's decades-long water problem and now the city is grappling with yet another period of acute crisis, one that is affecting
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nearly every part of daily life. without access to drinking water, business owners all across the city are wondering how long they can keep their doors open. jackson state universal football team is forced to move hotels to have access to showers for the football weekend. and one of the jackson hospitals has to operate with water tankers to ensure the patients are cared for. and parents are worried about newborn children with rationing bottled water, from bathing children to mixing formula. this is life in jackson, mississippi, right now. what if anything can be done to help? joining us now is mississippi congressman bennie thompson who represents a large part of jackson, he is also chairman of the january 6th committee and we she shoo note that congressman thompson was the only member of
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the entire house delegation to vote for the federal infrastructure bill that brought badly needed funds to the state. thank you for being here tonight. i am sorry this is happening in jackson, it is a crisis and inexcuse able. can you first enlighten us as to what the republican-led legislature has done vis-a-vis jackson's problems? it just seems at least on the outside looking in that they have not done as much as they could have, to help the people of jackson maintain and upgrade the infrastructure they so badly need. >> well, first of all, thank you for having me, alex. jackson, mississippi, is the capital city of the state of mississippi. government, it is the seat of government for our state. when you come to our capital city, it's very historic. a lot of big cities, the population is predominantly minority, and the mayor and city
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council is predominantly minority. and they have to look for opportunities to keep the city afloat. everything you outlined in your monologue before you introduced me is what most cities in our state do when they need to generate revenue, is that every time the jackson would put forward similar methods, that always will be another issue. and so it is disheartening for a person like me who votes to bring money to my state that desperately need it, and see republican elected officials do just the opposite of what the moneys were intended to do. we need help. our water system is antiquated. there's no doubt about it. in order to do it and get it right, we have to have help. president biden, as you know, signed a disaster declaration
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that will help us tremendously, but he won't fix the entire, but it won't fix the entire problem. the perception that federal, state, and local people are working together, that's not true. everything that you see without me representing jackson, or without the mayor who is elected in jackson is true, our governor decides to do things on their own, which is unfortunate. we helped get the disaster declaration because it is the right thing to do. so we want our governor to say look, congressman thompson, we'll sit down, mayor, we'll sit down and work this out together. i'm optimistic with this declaration, it requires cooperation. so if we're avenue going to to ask for fema's help, fema will be at the table, saying look, the calvary is here, help is
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here, now let's get this done. >> chairman, i got to ask you, this is a problem that we see happening in majority black cities all over the country, whether it's flint, whether it's baltimore, whether it's washington, d.c., whether it's jackson, and we have in your state, in white republican-led state house, many of whom the most powerful members live outside of the city, this isn't their problem. do you feel like this is the legacy of structural racism? how do you look at this and how do you look at the color lines, which so clearly inform these crises? >> well, if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, it's a duck. i don't know of any white-run city that's a capital city that's being treated like jackson, mississippi is. we can fix it, but we need our republican elected officials who have been receiving the largest
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of the federal money coming from washington to grow their cities. their highways are better. their water systems are better. the entire infrastructure of the suburban community being developed at the expense of the inner city. they use the inner city's population to get the money and then they spend the money in the suburbs. and so what's happening here with jackson now is mayors are struggling, the mayor of jackson is struggling, because the resources that he so desperately needs, and 150-plus thousand individuals in the city, who also need it, that money is going to the suburbs. that's not how it should go. and i actually shared that with the president today, that if moneys are being sent to states, and those moneys are not going to the neediest of people, we
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have to clear it up. it's not right. and so we are going to work with the governor. i look forward to meeting with him in person, you know, the conference call is one thing, but you have to meet an individual across the table, eye to eye, and work it out. so we are struggling in jackson. we have been on a boil water alert over a month. now we have some quality issues in our city, where our schools are not open. >> yes. >> so the governor, with the help of the federal government, we can get this done, but you can't use a double standard for jackson. what's good for the suburbs is good for the city. >> is good for the city. >> congressman, we wish you the best of luck in solving a crisis that should not be happening in america in the year 2022.
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mississippi congressman, chairman bennie thompson, thank you so much for your time, and for all of your efforts. we will be right back. >> thank you. >> thank you it's time for the biggest sale of the year, on the sleep number 360® smart bed. snoring? it can gently raise your partner's head to help. our smart sleepers get 28 minutes more restful sleep per night. don't miss our labor day weekend special. save 50% on the sleep number 360® limited edition smart bed. ends labor day.
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that does it for us tonight. we'll see you again tomorrow. "way too early" with jonathan lemire is coming up next. they say it themselves in the papers that they filed that this is under the presidential records act so what they did try to do is criminalize donald trump as they always, do and found three mundane statutes, espionage and a few others, obstruction, and they're trying to claim that there was some sort of criminal activity. >> a trump attorney spins a new defense for the former president, espionage and obstruction, are only minor offenses. we'll have the developments overnight from trump's legal team. plus, the fbi search of mar-a-lago has more lawmakers taking precautions o


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