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tv   PBS News Hour  PBS  October 22, 2020 3:00pm-4:01pm PDT

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captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc >> woodruff: good evening. i'm judy woodruf on the newshour tonight: taking the stage. president trump and joe biden prepare for the final debate of the campaign as election day draws ever closer. then, securing the vote. questions are raised as the director of national intelligence claims iran interfered with the election to harm the president. plus, "america addicted." a massive lawsuit settlement with pharmaceutical giant purdue in relation to t opioid crisis-- but who will benefit? and, taking to the streets. government troops open fire on
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demonstrators protesting against police brutality in nigeria. all that and more, on tonight's pbs newshour. >> major funding for e pbs newshour has been provided by: ♪ ♪ >> when the world gets complicated, a lot goes through your mind. with fidelity wealth management, a dedicated advisor can tailor advice and recommendations to your life. that's fidelity wealth management. >> consumer cellular.
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>> this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. >> woodruff: the presidential campaign spotlight fixes tight on a stage at belmont university in nashville, tennessee. the two major party candidates will confront each other for 90 minutes in a climactic debate. lisa desjardins has our report. >> desjardins: for president trump, a pivotal day. a chance to reverse his poll numbers in front of what is likely the largest audience either candidate gets before the election-- the tens of millions expected to watch the final presidential debate tonight in nashville. mr. trump will meet former vice president joe biden, who is leading in national surveys. both men tested negative for the coronavirus today, accordi to their campaigns.
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>> hopefully it's all worked out, the way the rules are. i'm looking forward to this. >> desjardins: the new rule tonight? a mute button. for the first two-minute answer after each question, candidates cannot interrupt one another, and their microphone will be off if they do. that's a direct response by debate organizers to the much- criticized first debate. >> why won't you answer that question? the new supreme court justice-- >> will you shut up, man? >> desjardins: plenty of issues remain in contention from that debate. for biden, that includes whether to expand the supreme court. he has yet to rule it out, amid a battle with republicans over the confirmation of judge amy coney barrett to the bench. in an interview with cbs's "60 minute" biden said he would appoint a bipartisan commission to study the court system. >> and i will ask them to, over 180 days, come back to me with recommendations as to how to reform the court system, because it's getng out of whack. >> desjardins: out on the
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campaign trail, vice president mike pence was critical. he held a rally in waterford township, michigan. >> he's going to tell us, after the election, after millions of americans have cast their votes, whether he's going to pack the court, in what will be the biggest power grab in american history? >> desjardins: "60 minutes" also made news-- though not by its choosing-- for a separate trump interview. the president released video of it shot by his staff, which cbs said broke their agreement. it contained nearly 40 minutes of sometimes combative back and forth with the president insisting the media is tougher on him than on biden. >> you know this is "60 minutes," and we can't put on things we can't verify. >> no, you won't put it on because it's bad for biden. >> we can't put things we can't verify. >> lesley-- they spied on my campaign. >> desjardins: the foota shows he ended the interview a few minutes early. 12 days to go. time is slipping, and intensity rising.
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for the pbs newshour, i'm lisa desjardins. >> woodruff: in the day's other news, the u.s. senate judiciary committee approved judge amy coney barrett's nomination to the supreme court, and sent it to the full senate. all 12 republicans voted in favor, while all ten democrats boycotted the vote. instead, they displayed pictures in their seats of people said to have benefited from the affordable care act. they say barrett would vote to overturn the act. republican john cornyn denounced the boycott. >> but i just want to comment on the pictures that are in their chairs, like this is some sort of sporting event during covid-19. and rather than show up and do their jo they choose to continue the theater that was part of the-- of the hearing. >> woodruff: democrats defended their actions, and condemned republicans for rushing through the nomination so close to the
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election. senate minority leader chuck schumer spoke outside the capitol, as demonstrators shouted in the background. >> chairman graham just steamrolled over them-- just like the republican majority has steamrolled over principle, fairness, honesty, truth, and dency in their rush to confirm a justice. >> woodruff: the senate's republican majority now plans a rare weekend session, allowing for a final confirmation vote on barrett on monday. the supreme court has stepped in again on election rules. the justices on wednesday blocked a lower court order that permitted curbside voting in alabama as a way of fighting the pandemic and assisting those with disabilities. the vote was five to three. and today, republicans in north carolina asked the high court to disallow an extended deadline for accepting absentee ballots. on the pandemic, the food and drug administration today
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approved the first drug to treat covid-19. the anti-viral medication remdesivir can cut recovery time by five days. it had been authorized for emergency use since last spring. another 787,000 u.s. workers applied for unemployment benefits last week. that was down from the previous week, but still historically high. meanwhile, talks continued in washington on new economic relief. u.s. house speaker nancy pelosi said they are close. >> we continue to be engaged in negotiations. and i am hopeful that we will be able to reach agreement. help is on the way. it will be bigger, it will be better, it will be safer, and it will be retroactive. >> woodruff: president trump's spokeswoman also voiced optimism, but economic adviser larry kudlow was more cautious. >> the other team is holding
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out, frankly, for some political wishlist that they know that the senators in the g.o.p. are not going to buy into it. they know that. so, therefore, the clock is ticking. >> woodruff: thewo sides are talking about a package that could total $2 trillion or more. in nigeria, gunfire rang out in lagos again, amid protests against police brutality. the shootingame as smoke billowed over a prison and crowds ran through stree. unrest has escalated since troops fired on protesters tuesday night. we'll have a detailed report, later in the program. the government of thailand today canceled a state of emergency in bangkok. but, students leading protests against the monarchy and the prime minister said the move is not enough. >> ( translated ): actually, what the people want from the prime minister is his resignation.
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what he's announced is the government taking one step backward. it is not a retreat at all. it is rather because his act has no legitimacy in the first place. >> woodruff: there could be more mass demonstrations tomorrow, when thailand marks a public holiday honoring a revered ruler from the past. on wall street today, the dow jones industrial average gained 152 points to close at 28,363. the nasdaq rose 21 points, and the s&p 500 added 18. and, for the first time in nearly 160 years, santa claus won't be greeting children at macy's flagship store in new york this christmas. today's company announcement cited concerns about covid-19. macy's will offer a free online experience with santa, at the end of november. that will have to do. still to come on the newshour: questions are raised as intelligence officials claim iran interfered with the
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election. both of georgia's senate seats are up for grabs in surprisingly competitive races. president trump and joe biden prepare for the final debate of the campaign. plus, much more. >> woodruff: this afternoon, the treasury department sanctioned five iranian entities for what the intelligence community calls a direct attempt to interfere in the u.s. election. that attempt was unveiled last night at a hastily arranged press conference. intelligence officials accuse iran and russia of stealing voter data, and iran of sending emails and a video to democratic voters. nick schifrin reports. >> i think that mail-in voting is a terrible thing.
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>> schifrin: the video combines president trump with metallica. it falsely claims to be from the right-wing extremist group the proud boys. pbs newshour isn't playing the whole video. it's desigd to amplify doubts about mail-in voting. experts say the video's claim is false, and mail-in voting is reliable. the video was linked in emails that claim, "we are in possession of all your information. you are currently registered as a democrat, and we know this because we have gained access into the entire voting infrastructure. you will vote for trump on election day, or we will come after you." it concludes, falsely, "we will know which candidate you voted for." last night, director of national intelligence john ratcliffe blamed iran and labeled the claims false. >> this video and any claims about such allegedly fraudulent ballots are not true. these actions are desperate attempts by desperate adversaries. >> these actors made a lot of claims and threats, but a lot of
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it is dubious. >> schifrin: john hulquist tracks cyber threats for mandiant threat intelligence. >> their claims of knowing who people are voting for are entirely fabricated. the video includes a few demonstrations, all of which appear to be dubious. >> schifrin: u.s. officials tell pbs newshour they believe iranian emails were routed through servers in the middle east and europe, and arrived in at least four states. the intelligence community determined their origin quickly. iranian and russian actors also infiltrated voter data that u.s. officials tell pbs newshour were not publicly available. >> this data can be used by foreign actors to attempt to communicate false information to register voters that they hope will cause confusion, sow chaos, and undermine your confidence in american democracy. >> schifrin: in a statement, an iranian spokesman called the accusation "absurd," and said" iran has no interest in interfering in the u.s. election
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and no preference for the outcome." but the trump administration has targeted iran with what it cal"" maximum pressure." iran has lost $70 billion in oil revenue. the u.s. has sanctioned more than 1,200 iranian individuals and entities, and in january, killed the powerful quds force leader, general qasem soleimani. iran is motivated to target the u.s., says the carnegie endowment's karim sadjapour. >> iranian hardliners have long fantasized about the idea of the united states succumbing to another civil war. and so the fact that they're able to sow discord in the united states from so far away, using very easy technology, is-- is a huge asset for iran, which >> schifrin: that motivation to sow discord is an iranian export. >> iran has had practice on their own population, sowing discord, going after people, impersonating others. >> schifrin: last night, ratcliffe added another
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motivation. >> we have already seen iran sending spoof emails designed to intimidate voters, incite social unrest, and damage president trump. >> schifrin: administration officials told pbs newshour the use of proud boys was designed to embarrass president trump after he refused to denounce them. >> proud boys: stand back and stand by. >> schifrin: but some democrats called the assessment politicized. speaker of the house nancy pelosi, underneath the capitol. >> i think we have to be very careful abt any statements coming out about the election from the intelligence community at this time. >> schifrin: multiple senior former intelligence officials have told pbs newshour they're concerned ratcliffe could politicize intelligence. but, the intelligence community has previously released a statement accusing iran of trying to undermine president trump, and the intelligence community remains most concerned about russia. this afternoon, d.h.s. released a statement acknowledging russian actors compromised aviation networks, and could
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disrupt computer networks in the future. experts say foreign actors are hoping to create fear among american voters, of chaos on election day, and beyond. >> the unfortunate result is, this attack, this type of attack, does not end the day we vote. it goes on in perpetuity. >> schifrin: and intelligence officials caution there could be more of these warnings to come. for the pbs newshour, i'm nick schifrin. >> woodruff: nearly two million people-- more than a quarter of registered voters-- have already cast ballots in georgia. some of them waited in line for hours. the state has become a new battleground for deciding control of the u.s. senate. rickey bevington of georgia public broadcasting reports on what voters are deciding on. >> reporter: it's the only
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state with two senate races on the ballot this year, with two incumbent republicans on defense. in one, first-term senator david perdue faces democratic challenger jon ossoff, who gained national attention after a failed bid for congress in 2017. in the other race, appointed senator kelly loeffler, in her first year in office, faces 21 challengers, and is hoping to reach 50% support to avoid a runoff. but she's got to fend off g.o.p. congressman doug collins. the two republicans are fighting to be seen as the conservative in the race. but, they're facing a tough challenge from democrat raphael warnock, reverend at the historic ebenezer baptist church in atlanta where martin luther king jr. once preached. according to recent polling, both races are closer than georgia senate elections have been in years. in dalton, georgia, a small carpet mill town an hour and
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half north of atlanta, the lunch crowd was quickly filling the oakwood cafe. even though the area is the home district of collins, many of those that we spoke to said that they werstill undecided on which republican they would be supporting. but, all said the economy and other traditional republican issues were important to them. >> just bringing law and order back to a country that was really established on law and order. >> i think people need a choice in health care. i don't think they shod be mandated from washington, d.c. >> reporter: in atlanta's fulton county, where hillary clinton netted 70% of votes four years ago, helping people through the pandemic and racial justice were pressing issues with those we spoke to on the popular transportation greenway, the atlanta beltline. >> most immediate would be the
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response to the pandemic with balancing out an economic spike, relief, as well as preventing more deaths. >> we've kind of seen an uptick in police brutality and just, you know, the uprising of these hate groups. >> whether it's the liberalization of covid-19 rerictions or just a more aggressive reopening of major, just, sectors of business, that will be the best for me. >> reporter: 2018 voting data shows georgia still has more republican voters than democrats. president trump won here in 2016 by five points. with trump's name on the ballot again, it could give a boost to the republican candidates. it's also been more than a decade since a democrat has won a statewide election. but in 2018, democratic gubernatorial candidate stacey abrams came 55,000 votes shy of beating republican brian kemp. emory university political scientist andra gillespie has been tracking the state's
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political changes. >> and most people looked at that as a harbinger for the fact that democrats were going to be increasingly competitive in the state, and that sooner or later they were going to eventually win some statewide election. >> reporter: with republicans scrambling to keep their slim majority in the senate, even one georgia runoff could determine which party controls the chamber in washington. >> if it turns out that the balance of power in the senate rests on who gets elected to johnny isakson's seat or even david perdue's seat in georgia, what we can expect is that all eyes will be on georgia. >> reporter: which means georgians, as well as the rest of the nation, cld be waiting until january to see if there is any shift in power in the halls of the capital. for pbs newshour, i'm rickey bevington in atlanta. >> woodruff: we are just hours
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away from president trump and former vice president joe biden taking the stage in tonight's final presidential debate of this election season. we speak with both campaigns about their strategy in these final days of the race. first up, tim murtaugh. he is the communications director for president trump's campaign and he joins now from nashville. tim murtaugh, welcome to the "newshour". so first of all, what is the president's main goal tonight? >> tonight's a good opportunity for the president to lay out clear temperatures between his own accomplish minister and joe biden's failure of nearly five decades in washington. the president has accomplished more in four year that be joe biden. joe biden wants to raise taxes by $4 trillion and impose the green new deal on every person, business, building and farm in this country, so if voters go
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into the election booth and care about who's going to restore the economy, it's president trump and it's not even close. and i think you will probably he the president bring up the new revelation tope today about hunter biden's former business partner who confirmed that not only did joe biden know about the fact that hunter was selling access to his father the vice president around the world but that he also consulted, advised hunter on it and in some cases thewed sign off on those deals. i think you will hear the president bring that up if the moderator does not. >> woodruff: i'll ask you about that in just a momen are you suggesting the president's going to spend more time going after joe biden or talking about his own record and speaking about what he wants to do in the future, in a second term? well, i think part of any campaign is a contrast. the president's going to talk about what he himself has accomplished on behalf of the american people over the course of the last four years. chief among those is building
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the world's best economy, doing it once, he's now doing it a second time. we've already seen more than half the jobs return that were lost to the croes. when joe biden was in charge of the economy, it took almost 30 months for half the jobs to return during the slowest economic recovery that he oversaw. so it absolutely is a ways of laying out the differences and accomplishment versus failure on joe biden's side. but when you're talking about the guy who's been in washington for 50 years, almost, you absolutely are going to talk about his record. >> woodruff: let me ask you, does the president plan to abide by this new rule the commission is imposing wherein the microphone is cut off for the first part of each -- of the other candidate's remarks during the beginning of each of these six segments of the debate? >> sure. the president has abided by the rules previously and, look, what's going on here is that one side wants to turn the microphone of the other side
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off, and i think that's an indication of how they think it's going. but, of course, the president doesn't mind that. and this is putting a lot of power into the hands of somebody in the production truck at the debate commission, of course, and that's fine, the president will press on and he's going to have a good debate and nothing is going to stop the president because there's going to be free flowing conversation in between. nothing is going to stop theup from putting questions to joe biden that need to be asked if the moderator does not ask them. for one question, one in particular -- >> woodruff: well the reason. -- we know that he has been mentioned as being a financial beneficiary in deal struck with the chinese energy company. the question is joe biden compromised by the communist chinese? >> woodruff: so you're saying that's going to be a large part of what the president is talking about. the reason i'm asking you this, tim murtaugh, is we know in the first debate the president interrupted something like 150, 160 times. people want to know is that going to happen again? i do want to ask you about the coronavirus.
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yesterday, there were 64,000 new cases of the virus in the united states. the rate of increase is going up something like 30-something% of what it was a few weeks ago. is the president going to talk about how he plans to get this under control? >> sure, and the president will talk about what he's done already. the president has mounted an unprecedented effort both government and the private sector creating a testing regime where there was not one done before. this was done from scratch because this is a novel coronavirus. far and away more tests than anyone in the world, ramping up p.p.e., building more ventilators. we heard about the ventilator shortage that was going to happen. that never occurred. now we're sharing ventilators with the other part of the world because we made so many. and the president's record of cutting off travel from china at the very beginning of this and we know joe biden wouldn't have made that move because he called it xenophobic and fear mongering
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at the time. if joe biden had been president in january we would be worse off today than we are because joe biden would not have cut off travel from china. he know that because he said so. >> woodruff: the reason i'm asking is because we do have the murm of cases. we have 8 million cases in the united states. the problem is getting worse under the current policies. >> i would say the case mortality rate in the united states is among the lowest in the world. the fact of the matter is if you catch the coronavirus, the united states is absolutely where you want to be to be receiving treatment. the development of the therapeutics, the fact that we're far along the way and almost ready to have the vaccine released to the american people, hundreds of millions of doses of this life-saving vaccine, and on the vaccine, what does joe biden do and kamala harris, what do they do? they try to convince people not to take it. they try to turn the vaccine itself and indeed the whole coronavirus issue into one big political weapon, actually
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trying to frighten people away from taking a life saving vaccine. that is reckless and endangering people's lives simply to score political points. >> woodruff: we'll leave it there. tim murtaugh with the trump campaign. thank you for joining us. >> thank you, judy. >> woodruff: it has >> woodruff: it has been more than three weeks since joe ben and donald trump last squared off on the debate stage, and 47 million americans have voted since then. but for those still undecided, this is the last chance they have to see the candidates side- by-side before election day. the former vice president has been off the trail, preparing for tonight. there is a lot on the line as we move into this final sprint. kate bedingfield is joe biden's deputy campaign manager, and she
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joins us for the same spot joe did... kate, welcome. kate bedingfield, do we have you there? >> yes. hi, judy. >> woodruff: there she is. so kate bedingfield, i'm going to start out with the same question i had for tim murtaugh. what is the main goal of vice president biden tonight? >> sure. he's going to talk directly to the american people about the fact that if they have been unhappy with the chaotic, erratic leadership that they've gotten from donald trump over the last four years, they have another choice. he's going to talk directly about his plans to get this virus under control, he's going to talk about his plans to build the economy back better, to get our kids back in school and, to once again, lead this country with a sense of degreety and integrity. you know, judy, i was listening to tim murtaugh there, and that was just -- it feels like he lives in a different universe. that was lie after lie after lie, and to listen to him try to revive this smear, this long-dunked smear that they have been trying to work against the vice president for a year and a half, it's just a reminder that
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they don't have an argument to make to the american people about -- for donald trump's reelection. so i think if youe a voter who's thinking about owho you want to lead this country and you hear that from president trump tonight on the debate stage, you're just reminded that he doesn't have a plan to make your life better. and what you will hear from joe biden today is his plans to make their lives better. >> woodruff: and i did want to ask you how much is what he says going to be about his own plans and how much is a critique of president trump. but what about what we heard from tim murtaugh is the president will spend time, if it doesn't come up from the moderator, he's going to talk about this business deal that hunter biden was involved in and allegedly that joe biden profited from? >> i think the people want the american debate to be about their families and not the biden family. i ink every time donald trump tries to revive this smear, he reminds people that he doesn't have a plan. there is no merit to these attacks.
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this is something, let's not forget, that donald trump got himself impeached trying to smear joe biden and his family with. it's simply not true. if any of what, for example, tim murtaugh was just alleging about joe biden's relationship with china were true, you would see it reflected in the 22 years of tax returns that he's made public. but you know woo hasson made their tax returns public? donald trump. and you know why? at least in part it's because he has a bank account in china. so to hear donald trump who has paid more in taxes to the chinese government than he has to the u.s. government try to land this smear, you know, it's almost laughable, if it weren't such a threat to our democracy and discourse, it would almost be laughable. >> woodruff: two other things i definitely want to ask about, you talked about the pandemic, vice president's plans. what exactly would he do different? what i hear from a number of voters is what can anybody do different? joe biden has said he's not
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going to shut down the country, he's not going to have a mask requirement, so what is going to change the trajectory of this virus isoing in the wrong direction? >> fiferfirst of all he would nt politicize the virus which is what donald trump has done. he would lead as a president should. he would listen to the scientists. you know, what we've seen from donald trump from the last nine months is he's chosen to attack dr. fauci, to attack and try to undermine the credibility of the scientists who are helping us work through this crisis. he would put in place meaningful plans to ensure that schools and small businesses have the resources that they need to open safely to ensure that we're keeping them safe, and he would take decisive action. i mean, the other thing we can't lose sight of here is that donald trump knew the severity of this virus back in february,
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told bob woodward privately that it was a huge threat to e american people, and told the american people publicly that it was no worse than the flu. if the president can't be trusted to lead the country in a crisis, how are we ever going to overcome it? joe biden would tell the american people the truth and get us through this crisis. >> woodruff: and we should say the president denies what is in bob woodward's book. but let me also ask you about something that -- >> it's on tape! >> woodruff: i'm just saying, the president denies it. but kate bedingfield, with regard to something the vice president has been asked about is what to do about the supreme court, and what he would do about limiting terms, what he would do about adding to the numbers of justices. he has announced he's going to create a commission but you and i both know in washington creating a commission is so often seen as a way of ducking an issue. how is that grappling with this very important question to just side step it, frankly, by appoint ago commission?
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>> well, it's not side stepping it at all. it's a thoughtsful solution. he announced he would bring together a bipartisan group of people to think about the different reforms that we need to put in place because he believes the system is, in his own words, out of what can. the supreme court nomination and confirmation process has become a political football. we've seen the republicans bend the norms that used to ensure that this process was not hyperpartisan and hyper politicized, and now it is. and what he's doing is bringing together that you felt people -- thoughtful people to come to him with recommendations on how to reform the process and restore a sense of balance to the courts. so i think what he's doing here is actually a very thoughtful approach to tackle a process that sadly has been broken. >> woodruff: kate bedingfield, we are all on the edge of our seats. thank you very much. >> thank you for having me.
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>> woodruff: much has been made of the historic settlement announced yesterday between the u.s. department of justice, purdue pharma, and the sackler family over the opioids crisis. purdue pharma is the manufacturer and distributor of oxycontin, one of the principal opioids that fueled the crisis. the c.d.c. estimates that roughly 450,000 people died from an overde involving any opioid between 1999 and 2018. that included both prescription opioids and the illegal market. as william brangham tells us, in light of those consequences, some critics feel the settlement missed the mark. >> brangham: judy, it was a historic settlement in several ways. the $8.3 billion-plus settlement is the largest ever for a pharmaceutical company in the u.s., and purdue pharma pleaded guilty to three criminal felonies.
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but the company has filed for bankruptcy a year ago, so its listed assets are well below $8 billion. and, of course, there's no way to measure the cost of the enormous death toll and the incredible, ongoing damage to millions of people's lives. but, the sackler family insists they did not act illegally, and the company says it can't be held responsible for illegal opioids. a nuer of state attorneys general, all democrats who are part of a large national civil case, criticized the agreement. that includes connecticut's attorney general, william tong. purdue pharma's headqauters are located in his state. attorney general tong, very good to have you back on the "newshour". you criticized the settlement and called it a mirage of justice. how so? >> thank you for having me on. it's a mirage because we don't know the executives, the managers, the wrong doers, the ceskts of purdue pharma, they're
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going to get out of this business altogether. we have purdue pharma calling itself by a different name, possibly reorganizing itself under a different form but they're not totally shut down and we have no guarantee that the sacklers, the owners of this business who have flooded the market with illegal opioids, that they're not going to go out and participate in this industry again, start a new company. so we're not pushing them out of the business and, for me and many of my a.g. colleagues, tha- that was and is nonnegotiable. we have to shut down purdue and get these people out of business. >> reporter: i know this is not your jurisdiction but do you think there is evidence at the federal government could have brought tougher penalties against the sacklers or purdue pharma executive? yes, absolutely, and what outrages me and other people is it appears the sacklers are paying something like $200 million, and they may never get procuted criminally, and
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that's beyond unjust. how can we lookt at, take for example, connecticut, the thousand families that will lose somebody this year to addiction, more than $10 billion in damage to the state of connecticut, how can we look at that and say for a couple hundred million the sacklers, who are with tens of billions of dollars, can avoid criminal prosecuon? that's why this settlement is upside down. with the -- what the department of justice should have done is focus on criminal prosecutions, holding the sacklers and purdue pharma executives accountable criminally, sending them to prison, if they can, and leaving the civil cases to the states. >> reporter: the settlement doesn't preclude the federal government at a later date coming back and pursuing the executives or the sackler family p members, so it could happen. >> it doesn't say that they're going to, and they've had every opportunity to do this and, in
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exchange for $200 million-plus, i exec that the sacklers are going to want some kind of form of release -- me releases from future liability. so i'm very concerned about this. i'm very concerned about the roads that the department of justice is closing off to all of us to pursue justice and to make sure that the sacklers' riches and the money that they made in profiteering off other people's misery and addiction in this country, that that money makes it into the hands of people who need it and that it funds treatment and prevention in our states. >> is that what the money would primarily go for if you get whateverhare of this settlement comes to connecticut? that's what you want it for? >> yes, that'what it should go to, and the states and our cities and towns, we hav programs, we have therapists, we have strategies in place now to fund treatment, prevention and
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addiction science, diverting $8 billion to the federal government. i don't know where that money is going to go. i know we are ready now and we have been ready and that's why the states, in concert with the victims, have been fighting in court and now in bankruptcy court to hold the sacklers and purdue pharma accountable and, frankly, the entire addiction industry. you know, we're working on a whole host of other companies and wrongdoers, and this settlement doesn't help. >> reporter: i mean, as you mentioned, your larger civil case is being held up in bankruptcy court, so do you feel like you don't have any leverage anymore to affect any of these changes that you want? >> no, we're full steam ahead, and i know that my sister states and attorney general colleagues in those states, we are unterred, sure. it's hard in bankruptcy court. the department of justice in its settlement has made it harder, but we're full steam ahead. we are not going to let up. we are going to do everything we can to hold the sacklers and the
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individual wrongdoers at purdue pharma accountable. the individuals need to answer for their crimes. >> reporter: all right, connecticut attorney general william tong, thank you so much for being here. >> thank you for having me. >> woodruff: for weeks now, nigerians have taken to the reets of africa's most-populous nation to protest police brutality, and the heavy-handed tactics of one unit in particular. after demonstrators were shot by government forces on tuesday, nigeria's president addressed the nation tonight, appealing for calm. special correspondent phil ihaza reports from the capital, abuja. >> reporter: gunfire and mayhem in nigeria, during protests against police brutality. according to amnesty internationa 12 people were
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killed and dozens more injured after men in military uniforms fired live ammunition at protesters on tuesday in the southwestern city of lagos, the largest city by population in the country, and on the african continent. demonstrators have been demanding change for weeks across nigeria, defying a curfew imposed in some parts of the country. their target, the now-disbanded special anti-robbery squad, or "sars." but, despite the government disbanding the unit, protests continue. 34-year-old nigerian musician chike agada, says he was assaulted two years ago by policemen from the now-defunct sars unit. chike says the policemen beat him up and extorted him because they saw him driving a flashy car and wearing expensive jewelry. >> they shot the gun in the air,
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pointed it at me, pulled me out of the car and started beating the hell out of me. they beat me, then they drove me to their headquarters here in abuja. i had to pay them about 35,000 naira to leave there, after a lot of trauma. >> reporter: sars was created in 1992 to tackle robberies, kidnappings and violent rituals. but many nigerians accuse its officers ocarrying out the same crimes the unit was created to stop. amnesty international reports more than 100 cases of abuse on young people by sars officers within the past three years alone. a series of protests erupted across the country earlier this month, after a video showed a sars officer allegedly shooting a man and then driving away. the government has scrapped the unit and replaced it with a special weapons and tactical unit called swat. but the protesters are demanding more. they are asking for justice, and insist that the government prosecute rogue officers, compensate victims of police brutality, and reform the entire
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police force. and it's not just in lagos. after weeks of protests, many people in abuja, nigeria's capital, are exhausted. some afraid to go about their daily business. >> ( translated ): the past few days have been so difficult to move around the town due to the nsion in town. this has to stop. >> reporter: others see e protests as necessy. >> we support totally what the young people are doing, so we take those inconveniences as part of the sacrifice for nigeria to get better. >> reporter: nigeria's president muhammadu buhari has ordered an investigation into all complaints of police brutality, and directed state governors to compensate victims afterwards. he also committed to improving the welfare of police officers across the country as a way to encourage comprehensive police reforms. >> some of the demands that i've seen are not going to be implemented immediately, some of them are long-term demands, but if government can rebuild the confidence-- which i believe the president has the opportunity to do-- i believe that the needless
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loss of lives and the anarchy that is looming may be averted. >> reporter: the government efforts may also be an attempt to avert demands for further political change beyond the police. the whole world is now watching if these reforms c douse the tensions flaring across the country. for the pbs newshour, i'm phil ihaza, in abuja nigeria. >> woodruff: former senator joseph mccarthy died over 60 years ago, but a new book, "demagogue," from the "new york times" best-selling author larry tye, explores the senator's life and his lasting legacy on american politics. i spoke with larry tye recently, and he started by explaining why he chose to write about the notorious wisconsin crusader. >> so, it was a story that i thought was a piece of ancient american history, that didn't
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seem to resonate much, until the 2016 election. and then it suddenly went from being a story of yesterday to being a story very much of today in our world. >> woodruff: you say in the book that america certainly had its share of colorful characters, people like huey long, like george wallace. what was it, though, about joe mccarthy, someone who dominated the decade of the 1950s, and the way that he did so? >> he picked up on all the lessons of all the demagogues who came before, like huey long, like father charles coughlin, and he became the archetype for all the ones who came after. and what i think he did more brilliantly than anybody was understand the very legitimate fears that americans had in the 1950s at the moment that he was launching his crusade. we had just watched nationalist china turn into red china. we had watched the atomic spies, julius and ethel rosenberg, be
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captured, be tried and be sentenced to death. and we were about to do something that nobody who's not an older listener will believe-- we were about to teach our kids to do what they called "duck and cover," which meant that all you had to do, if there was an atomic bomb that struck while you were in school, was put your hands over your head and duck under your desk, and you would be okay. d that is how afraid we were. and instead of offering a solution for that fear, he offered an easy scapegoat, which was the communists that he said were behind every pillar in the state department, in the white house, and everywhere we looked in our own government. >> woodruff: there certainly were others who made a career of going after communism, but he did it in a way that made him practically the worst of the bunch. how so? why so? >> because he counted the alleged traitors, and he named them. he was a cowboy who understood that americans wanted to see
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something tactile. and, when he said he had in his list-- his hand, a list of 205 spies at the state department? that was irresistible. and that turned him from a likely one-term know nothing, never-heard-of senator, into a crusader who may have died in 1957, but whose cause in whose name as an -ism lives on today. >> woodruff: and larry tye, you do draw parallels with president trump and their styles in their approach, and acally in the person of roy cohn, who was close to joe mccarthy and was a lawyer for and an adviser to donald trump some decades ago. what do you see as the parallels there? >> so i see as the parallel that in lieu of solutions, both of them point fingers.
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i think with both of them, when anybody questioned them, they aimed a bulldozer at their assailants. and with both of them, they started out by charming the newswomen and newsmen. but when the news got bad, they pointed ngers and started attacking the news media. it is one parallel after another. and as you said, it was all the lessons that roy cohn learned at the knee of joe mccarthy, that 50 years later, when a young donald trump was starting out in the cutthroat world of new york real estate, his dad, fred, and young donald brought in an aging roy cohn to be his tutor. and it ended up that the mentee surpassed the mentor, and donald trump absorbed all those lessons. and i think that every day, the closer we get to the election, we see donald trump looking more-- not just like his tutor, roy cohn, but his tutors' tutor, joe mccarthy.
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>> woodruff: strong stuff. and i'm also struck, larry tye, by what you what you write about people who enabled joe mccarthy. a surprising group of individuals, many of them who didn't like what he was doing, but they didn't step in to stop him, including president eisenhower. and you see parallels with that today as well. >> i do. so, mccarthy's first set of enablers where his fellow u.s. senators, and they watched the mccarthy's enabler in chief was, as you said, president eisenhower, from day one of eisenhower taking office. eisenhower's brother mton whispered in dwight's ear, "bring down the bully." eisenhower instead said, "we're going to wait for mccarthy to do himself in." in that year and a half that he waited, lives were ruined. careers were crushed. but the ultimate enabler was us. it was the american people. we're the ones, in wiscons, who elected mccart
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overwhelmingly to be a u.s. senator, twice. and by the beginning of 1954, mccarthy's popularity rating was at 50%. he was the second-most popular public figure in america, trailing only our war hero, president dwight eisenhower. but i think that, while my book is the story of one of the most malevolent characters in american history, it is counter- intuitively a good news story. and the good news is that in our long history of demagogues, given enough rope, every one of them hung themselves in an our long history of buying into bullies-- given enough time, the american people have seen through and discarded those bullies. >> woodruff: such an important book, such an important moment in american history. larry tye, thank you. >> thank you.
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>> woodruff: mahogany l. browne is a poet, author, and mother. in tonight's "brief but spectacular," she delivers a poem called "apply pressure," which was initially written for breonna taylor's mother, tamika palmer. taylor was fatally shot by police in her own home last march in louisville, kentucky. >> when i see brianna taylor, i see myself, i see my daughter. i see my students. i see my aunts. i see my sisters. i see my cousins. i see the first lady. i see citizens that deserve better. "breonna is gone eleanor is gone we the people read the names and only recognize the flames of
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injustice syllable count heat close enough to the neck fred is gone the people utter their nam during protest, during prayer during wake and repose louisville and mississippi and detroit and chicago our streets are still slick with the blood of our endangered citizens mike is gone qiana is gone who else got time to sage the polls and the political office? evil is alive and only answers to the tune of money indifference is a tsunami thrashing against our chests george and eric and trayvon florida and milwaukee, and d.c. o' america we did not resist your attempts to murder us on a plantation just to be murdered on a plantation california and georgia can't you see? we ain't leaving the land we
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toiled we ain't leaving our voice you attempted to spoil we refuse to submit we are parents and formerly incarcerated we are queer and public defenders we are educators and entrepreneurs we are the vote we commit to freedom our spirits have fled from the fire for so ng we liken the heat to cornbread and debates over the supreme court and the remote control our vastness is indisputable our ability to joy and woe and rage and love, all tangible all present. all possible. how else we goin' feed these babies? we will teach them to know themselves despite your disregard our children will not fear their own shadows our children will not fear their reflection from the white gaze our children will focus on their own ways of brilliance and we will continue to stoke the flames burn down the racist monuments
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burn down the bigotry burn down the pedestal that lifts up your fragility we have never tried to hide from this history we have never demanded more than we're owed you can run, but you can outrun this destiny our ancestors already vowed riding low beneath the water des or inside the hull of this tion's nightmare we will never be gone again." my name is mahogany l. browne, and this is my "brief, but spectacular" take on honoring breonna taylor. >> woodruff: powerful. and you can find all of our "brief, but spectacular" segments online at and that is the newshour for now. i'm judy woodruff. stay with us for special live coverage of the final presidential debate starting at 9:00 p.m. eastern. we start our special coverage online right now with our pre-show hosted by dan bush.
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tune in there right now, at for all of us at the pbs newshour, thank you, please stay safe and we'll see you soon. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> architect. bee-keeper. mentor. financial services firm raymond james. life well-planned. >> for 25 years, consumer cellular's goal has been to provide wireless service that helps people communicate and connect. we offer a variety of no-contract plans, and our u.s.-based customer service team can help find one that fits you. to learn mor visit >> johnson & johnson. >> bnsf railway. >> the ford foundation. working with visionaries on the frontlines of social change
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hello, everyone. welcome to "amanpour & co." >> making history, pope francis backs same-sex civil unions. father jamestin joins me. >> i think that the apathy has just grown and become so pervasive in our community because people are trying to survive. >> african-american women, the back bone of the democratic party. i asked civil rights activist and historian martha s. jones about why they did with equal rights is so often ignored. >> the reality is we have two very distinct candidates in front