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tv   Deadline White House  MSNBC  July 31, 2020 12:30pm-2:00pm PDT

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. let's look at the headlines concerning the coronavirus pandemic. several states, including arizona, california, florida are reporting new record high death tolls on a daily basis with florida seeing its fourth new record this week. now florida already at the heart of a pandemic is bracing for the impending arrival of a hurricane. florida's governor declared a state of emergency for the county along the atlantic coast. the storm is expected to start affecting the state later tonight and cause problems
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throughout the weekend before, perhaps, scaping up the eae in coast. hampering efforts to confront the coronavirus. we are happy to have with us julia bag of wtvj in miami covering this pandemic and a hurricane. what's the situation there? >> reporter: florida certainly facing a double threat this afternoon from coronavirus, a fourth straight day of record deaths, 257 just reported, plus another 9,007 new cases reported today as well. of course, hurricane isaias looming just off of our coast. the state has closed down those open-air covid-19 testing sites along the east coast, including here in miami-dade.
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these are drive-thru and walk-up sites with tents and temporary structures not meant to withstand any strong wind. certainly not the strong winds of a hurricane. elsewhere here in south florida, families are taking home sandbags to protect their homes in low lying areas. i spoke with the mayor of one area about why the 20-pound bags are so crucial. >> as a mayor, i lose sleep over flooding, even if it stays offshore. we have seen microbursts here and flooding. >> the governor tells us that across the state, nursing home facilities and covid-19 facilities are prepared. 100% of them have generators in case they lose power. floridians know all too well just how deadly results can be for the elderly if their nursing homes lose power in this heat.
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>> julia, thank you so much for spending some time with us. this is the part in the hour where you head off to prepare for the 11:00 broadcast. i'm always amazed at how much new material you have at that hour. >> back at you, every day at 4:00 p.m. and the remainder of our 3:00 hour together. it is an unbelievable pace these days. and yet, to your point, we are always able to report something new in what many people would define as the dead of night. enjoy your weekend. thanks for having me. >> thank you, brian. have a great friday. when we return, donald trump is falsely claiming that kids are, quote, almost immune to coronavirus. it's not true. it comes as schools are
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reopening. in one hot spot state today without a requirement that they wear masks. that's next. did you know prilosec otc can stop frequent heartburn
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donald trump falsely claimed that kids are, quote, almost immune to coronavirus. this as our country grapples with an escalation of cases and uncertainty and concern about kids. experts have warned of the dangers of the president's push to reopen schools 100% in-person as he puts it and his narrative that kids have strong immune systems. now as schools across the country begin to open their doors, this alarming reporting from "the new york times" that a new study finds children may actually carry the coronavirus at high levels. the study says research finds infected children have at least as much of the coronavirus in their noses and throats as infected adults and children younger than 5 may host up to
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100 times as much of the virus in the upper respiratory tract as adults. kids returned to class today in georgia without any mask requirements in place. how is it going? >> reporter: we talked to two students this morning who said it was their first day back at school of their senior year. they weren't really feeling that excited, in part, because they were concerned about the fact that this school is not requiring masks when kids go back into the classroom. they sent a letter to parents saying masks were encouraged and they would be encouraging social distancing, use of hand sanitizer, extra washing f inin hands. but at the same time, masks are not a requirement. in response to that, these two girls who i spoke to this morning, rising seniors at jefferson high school, put a petition online asking the school to make masks mandatory.
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that petition was met with some support but also some derision. there was a counterpetition petition put up. this health debate has been linked with the politics of the moment, specifically the politics of mask wearing. as much as for these two girls, they say it wasn't about poli c politics. look in the comments to see for a lot of people, it is. listen to what the students told me. >> it's not -- to me it's about the safety of students and faculty and our community. a lot of students do involve politics. >> a lot of kids don't think it's the mask wearing. they don't want their rights taken away. >> but they never had a problem with dress code or anything else. >> reporter: all you have to do as i said is look in the comments on the petitions. you see things referencing liberal and conservative and trump 2020. it speaks to where we physically are, in a county that went for trump in 2016 and just again
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hammers home the point that mask wearing, although it's a public health thing, has really become this political touchstone, especially in georgia, against the backdrop of a state that's seeing spikes in cases across the board. >> ali vitali in jefferson, georgia, with fascinating interviews with students. a reminder that they are all watching and listening to all of this. that was great to see. back with us today, the president of uscf children hospital in san francisco and oakland, dr. michael anderson. he served as vice-chair of the national commission on children and disasters under president george w. bush. so much has changed since we last talked about the school debate. namely, cases have exploded across a lot of the country. when i first started asking you, it was deeply personal because explosions were in my hometown
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of manhattan. now the cases are from coast to coast. you listen to ali's reporting. students have now taken on the burdens of our highly politicized debates about what shouldn't be debated anymore. we will get specific about states and regions. what do you make of the politics having infected the debate about school return? >> that's just so sad. thanks for having me on the program again. you are right, this has become very political. from 20,000 feet, we see study after study that shows masks prevent the spread of this deadly disease. it's as simple as that. it has become very political. the study you previewed shows, yes, the good news is very few kids, kids under 12 are in the hospital with covid. that's good news. right? this study you alluded to out of
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chicago shows, younger kids, kids under 5, still have the virus. the implications of that is really, really big. you and brian were talking about the flood of information coming in every day. we in the pediatric space are just inundated. that's good news to me that we are getting more and more data. there was a study i haven't fully reviewed that came out from the cdc on a camp that had an outbreak. one of the things it looks like the root cause is they were not mandating mask wearing. i'm sorry it's political. i know it's tense. we have to make sure that we can continue to tell people, this isn't a political issue. this is us taking care of each other. >> so we did a little homework. let me tell our viewers, we put up this study that you mentioned. this is the cdc camp results. test results were available for 344 attendees. among them, 260 were positive.
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that's 76%. a lot of them were not symptomatic. here is what it says. among 136 cases with available symptom data, 36 patients reported no symptoms. 100 reported symptoms, most commonly reported were documents fever, headache and sore throat. i'm sorry. when my 8-year-old has any of those things, a fever or a sore throat or is sick, it is cause for alarm as a parent. what i am learning from conversations with pediatricians is that there's so much more we don't know than there is that we do. how are parents supposed to make decisions about schools when studies like this are still being done and the president is lying about the dangers and risks to our kids? >> yes. since last week's book, this debate of back to school has become more tense. i completely understand where the american academy of
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pediatrics is coming from, where other groups are saying, look, kids need to be in school because they need to develop. we have to have the eyes of professionals on them. the important things like the school lunch program. i really fully understand and support that we need to get kids back into school. but as you point out, we are seeing more and more studies that are showing, we've got to focus on the basics. that's social distancing, that is mandatory use of the mask, and that is our being able to work collaboratively if there's an outbreak in a school, how are we going to handle it. it's become a more tense time. i think that we have to rise above the politics of all this and say, how can we collaboratively work together to get kids safely back in school? >> let me just drill down on that. say your school opens and your child is in school and you get that e-mail that every mom and
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dad knows when they see it in their in box from the school nurse. usually it's pink eye or the flu. you get it. it says, confirmed covid case in second grade. what is the second sentence? yeah. the second sentence is, if you look at the data from across the world, a child who has been exposed to or infected with covid recently has a very, very, very, very low chance of getting sick. there's still data that shows when kids get infected -- kids can get infected -- that their incidence of decease is low. the second thing i hope that letter would say is -- by the way, for the past six weeks, we have taken the following precautions. we have screened everybody. we have done this thing called pods where there are smaller groups of kids together. we hand sanitize. we are transparent there's a case and this is how we are
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addressing it. there will be letters like that. we have to find some comfort in the fact that kids, once infected, rarely get sick from it. >> dr. michael anderson, thank you for being a voice of calm for anxious parents everywhere and spending time with us today. we are now just days away from learning who joe biden will select to be his vice-presidential running mate. when we return, what voters are looking for in his pick. we'll be right back. (announcer) carvana's had a lot of firsts.
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in just a few days, joe biden will announce his long-awaited pick to be his vice presidential running mate. and while biden has already announced his choice will be a woman, there are plenty of other factors that go into his decision. but what do swing state voters want to see in biden's choice. joining us is a familiar face at this hour and on this network, host of "velshi" here on msnbc, ali velshi. he spoke to a group of voters in pennsylvania, a key state krat contributed to president trump's electoral college win. ali, i've been loving watching you at 9:00 this week and
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8:00 last week. i don't know how you found time to go talk to swing voters. tell us what you think. >> i'll always find time if you're on tv to join you. i'm in a swing state. i'm in philadelphia right now. i'm not in a swing county. you have to drive a little distance away. i went up to bucks county and spoke to a number of people in that place in a socially distanced way about their aspirations for the election and what they want to see in a vice presidential pick. here's what they told me. >> because we only have two choices, at this point, that's why i'm going with joe biden, but i also say i feel joe biden does need an african-american woman vice president. i say that because the state of the nation, i feel like having a woman as a vp will be very important in that stride in healing the country. >> he said, look, i've got four
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african-american women on my short list. regardless, the expression he used is they brought me to the dance, and they will be recognized in this administration, quite possibly with senior positions in the cabinet. would that be satisfactory to you? >> no. i want him to select -- he narrowed it down to four people. he said he's already committed it's going to be a woman. i want him to -- my opinion, i want him to select an african-american woman. it's time. >> what do you think about a woman as vice president? >> i'm for a woman being president. you know, i agree. but what i really am for is the best person for the job. regardless of race, color, gender, sexual orientation. >> as you know, the good news for joe biden is depending on who you are listening to, there's a short list that has four or five african-american women on it, all of whom seem quite well qualified for the job
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if they were to be offered it. good news for mary catherine and the other guests with whom i was speaking. whether you want an african-american woman or a woman, joe biden is in a good position to make that pick. >> was there anyone they didn't want? >> as vice president, no. they had felt it was narrowed down enough because the vice president said he wanted a woman, and talked about an african-american woman, that the universe of people he'd been talking to, that the media has been reporting on, they all thought would be pretty good as a vice presidential pick. >> that's the beauty of the months-long trial balloon. you get to sample it out and voters are pretty vocal about what they like and don't like about it. ali, i love listening to voters in their own words and in a safe socially distanced way. thank you for bringing that to us. >> i appreciate that. >> we'll be watching you this weekend, as i said. i catch you whenever you are on. tomorrow at 8:00 a.m. coming up, new signs donald
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♪ hi, everyone. it's 4:00 in the east. as the coronavirus pandemic exacts a cruel human toll on the united states, with more than 153,000 lives lost to the pandemic. and more than 4.5 million americans infected. the front pages of today's newspapers chronicle the
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economic devastation already being felt by vast numbers of americans. the front page of today's "new york times" reads, quote, virus wipes out five years of economic growth. the front page of today's "wall street journal" has this -- "u.s. economy sees record down turn" and the front page of today's "washington post" with this headline, quote, u.s. economy contracts at record rate. it is against the backdrop of that economic carnage that donald trump's political fate appears to have been sealed with some of the lowest approval ratings of his presidency in the abc/ipsos poll. 66% of americans disapprove of his job performance on coronavirus. 64% of americans disapprove of his job on handling the protests and 63% of americans now day prove of his job handling russia. it's a political picture bad enough that nbc news is able to report that trump's campaign has
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paused advertising on television to, quote, review its messaging strategy. and "the new york times" reports this on donald trump's near certain fate as a big loser in november if things remain on their current trajectory. writing this. quote, when the moment came on thursday with mr. trump suggesting for the first time that the election could be delayed, his proposal appeared as impotent as it was predictable. less a stunning assertion of his authority than yet another lament that his political prospects have dimmed amid a global public health crisis. quote, the timing of mr. trump's tweet, as much as the content, highlighted the extent to which he has become a loud but isolated figure in government. and in the public life of the country. in addition to failing to devise a credible national response to the coronavirus pandemic, he has not played the traditional presidential role of calming the country in moments of fear and soothing it in moments of grief.
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journalist susan glasser writing in the new yorker goes even further than that, writing, quote, we cannot just ignore it when the president threatens to cancel an election. this is the kind of statement that should haunt your dreams. it is wannabe dictator talk. it is dangerous, even if it is not attached to any actions. and those who think that some actions will not follow have not been paying attention. my alarm stems from having covered russia when vladimir putin was dismantling the fragile, flawed democratic institutions that the country had established after the fall of the soviet union. it stems from reading history. it stems from having watched the past four years in america where day by day, the unthinkable has happened, has been justified, rationalized and explained away, end quote. susan glasser's articulation of where we stand is where we start today with some of our favorite reporters and friends. most of msnbc's politics nation and president of the national action network, the rev al sharpton is back.
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also white house reporter for the "l.a. times," eli stokols and david jolly, an msnbc political contributor. i want to start with the economy and with you, rev. it strikes me that donald trump was never going to be a leader capable of feeling anyone's suffering or pain. and it would seem that his niece has offered a psychological explanation of why that might be. we don't have time for that as a country, but that is -- let's just stipulate that is fact. but i have been under the belief that he cared about the economy, that he took some pride in strengthening the economy. so i am stunned that there is not an effort to figure out, not just how to stabilize the economy, but how to keep the economy functioning by not cutting off unemployment benefits but plussing them up. this president wants to keep the economy from slipping into a depression. you would think he would be the one on the phone asking for more relief for unemployed americans.
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>> your thinking is right. you would think that would be the case, particularly since that has been his whole pitch to america from the election going forward. that he was a businessman. and he thinks in terms of money. well, what people did not hear, with many of us that are familiar with him said, is he's not a good businessman. he never really managed well. it was more showmanship than it was about making things happen. didn't have a real board of directors or people that he worked with and had a business plan. so now we are having to ask ourselves why can't he make government work? because he doesn't understand how to make government work or to work with other people. his management skills are not there. and the -- what could have been his most saleable point has ended up coming to haunt him is
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you played like you were a businessman. you played that on television. you can't play that in the oval office. you have to really be an executive. something that he has never been. he has no idea how to get out of this ditch. when you're in a ditch, you do not ask for a shovel. you look for a rope. and he's digging with a shovel further and further in with the nonsense that he does set and the fact that there is no plan. can you believe we are looking at these headlines you just showed, nicolle, and there is no plan from the white house on how we turn this around. >> eli stokols there is no acknowledgment that the pandemic is the cause for the symptom of the headlines i just showed. the reason the economy has cratered is because this country doesn't have a testing program that has a turn around time of less than 7 to 14 days in some parts of this country. this country doesn't have contact tracing because without testing, who and where are you tracing? the other problem the president
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has is he is increasingly isolated. he was rebuked from both ends of the political divide for his tweet suggesting delaying the election, and i want to read you this from "the new york times" reporting that we quoted from in the lead. "far from a strong man, mr. trump has lately become a heckler inside his own government. promoting medical conspiracy theories on social media, playing no constructive role in eesht the management of the coronavirus pandemic or the negotiation of an economic rescue plan in congress. and complaining endlessly about the unfairness of it all." i mean, if he were somebody else, you know, you would forward the zoom counseling services. it just seems pathetic. >> there are a lot of pathologies that we could unpack here, but you're right. the undergirding point under all of this is that this is a president who reacts to television and is just incapable of foresight, planning and of
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leveraging all the powers of government from the beginning of the pandemic, he thought he could talk his way out of it to bluster and bluff and convince americans it was okay. obviously, that doesn't work when the caseloads are rising and they've been rising now for five months. this president has never taken the responsibility that a normal president would take and he has never connected some very obvious dots that, until you control the pandemic, the economy isn't coming back. because people will not have the confidence to go out and return to normal life. and he just has not been able to grasp that. that is the fundamental problem with the approach. that's why, when i talk to people on the campaign, and they talk about strategy and they talk about running on white fears, on trying to really scare white voters about the suburbs and about the mobs in the street and the radical left and defunding the police, when you say, what about the pandemic, that seems to be the most
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salient issue for voters. what's the message on that? it's only within the last couple of weeks the president has even started coming back to the podium to just halfheartedly discuss some of the issues around the pandemic, but there's still no national plan and the president's advisers kind of shrug and they just make it clear that's just not something that this president is going to be capable of mustering a serious response to this pandemic. that's why the country is where it is. that's why the president's poll numbers are where they are. and that's why he continues to try to distract and to talk his way out of this. today he's predicting that next year will be the best economic year. he's selling this optimism, but it's just not believable. and what the president -- what a normal president would be doing is understanding that this is actually the day that unemployment insurance runs out. what's our plan to deal with that. and it's only now in the last couple of days that the white house has even engaged and started talking about this publicly. they are attacking democrats. democrats passed a bill extending unemployment insurance
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back in may. the president opposed it. the eviction moratorium ran out on friday and the white house only started talking about it this week, oh, yeah, we want to repair that. they are incredibly slow to react here and all these problems have compounded and that explains the president's political standing and some of the panicky behavior you're seeing from him. >> well, panicky behavior or true colors, this is how "the new york times" describes what he's doing instead of dealing with the pandemic, david jolly. it's the kind of language resent in of conspiracy theorists, cranks and defeated candidates, not an incumbent living in the white house. and here's that language. let me play some of donald trump on delaying the election. >> i don't want a delay. i want to have the election. but i also don't want to have to wait for three months and then find out the ballots are all missing and the election doesn't
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mean anything. are all these stories about the fact that these elections will be fraudulent. they'll be fixed. they'll be rigged. and everyone is looking at it. and a lot of people are saying that probably will happen. >> so not a lot of people know about this, but jim baker and jimmy carter actually looked at voter fraud after the 2000 recount. you may know about this. and it isn't actually a thing. they came out with some compromise recommendations that having an i.d. is pretty sensible if it was in the era of blockbuster if you needed an i.d. to rent a movie, it wasn't an unreasonable thing. the idea there's widespread voter fraud in this country is a lie. what is the end game here, congressman jolly, of the president saying things like that? >> right. if there is an end game. there's a saying in politics that fish always flop around before they die. you see candidates engage in
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erratic behavior when they know they're going to lose. it's hard to measure that with president trump because he's been erratic from the beginning. he's reaching to justify a loss or look for somewhere to blame. to eli's comments and to the rev, at some point, and you are starting to see this, donald trump is going to have to embrace the crisis we're in. not because he is capable of fulfilling the role of an empathetic leader and the consoler in chief, he can't. donald trump will not change. but the reason he's going to have to act within his wings being clipped if you will, is because every other part of his messaging is so disconnected with the reality in america. this is a man who a year ago announced his re-election campaign was keep america great. well, one of the most important polls you watch week over week right now is whether we're heading in the right direction or the wrong direction. and about 70% of the country continues to say week over week we're going in the wrong direction. so if donald trump's machine is suggesting our messaging for
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november is keep, keep the course, keep america great, but 70% of the nation says we're going in the wrong direction, that's why you're seeing the ceiling where he's hitting 40% in head-to-head polls against joe biden. so at some point, he's going to have to either embrace that and work within the economic and pandemic crisis within the conversation on race, or he's just simply going to have to accept a loss and then look for something to blame, which in this case may be mail-in voting or rigging or whatever conspiracy he will come up with. >> you know, rev, i am glad that david broadened this for us a little bit because i think that what the times reporting makes so clear is that it's so bad. donald trump knows he's going to lose. and, sure, the autocratic impulses, the affinity for vladimir putin and duterte and the sort of disdain for leaders of democracies like angela merkel and our allies to the north, that is part of it.
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but the other part of it, the only reason you need to sow the seeds of distrust and delegitimize an election is because you know for sure you're going to lose it. so what do we do with that? a president with nothing to lose? >> we brace ourselves for some very difficult months ahead. i think that donald trump, and i think that everyone that is around him that will speak candidly will say, he is not one that can stand losing. so you must understand, he personally needs to psychologically convince himself that he's being robbed and cheated because i'm not a loser. i'm a winner. they took it from me. he needs to believe that himself. as he deludes himself, he sells himself on this because the reality is he knows he's going to lose so he has to make an excuse up that he can live
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psychologically with the lost and try to use that to pivot into having some sort of media or business or political movement around, i was robbed and go off to the rest of his life with that he's the president in exile. he was really elected, but it was robbed from him. it was stolen. and he was prepared to do this in 2016. the shock of his life was that he won. and i think that now he gets to make the speech he would have made that night. he gets to make it now. and he just updates it, and he uses all these other situations to try to act like it was the mail-in vote or whatever. and he has people around him, don't forget, his personal attorney general, rudy giuliani, tried to extend his term as mayor after 9/11. so it's not like he has anyone around him that's saying you can't do that. the constitution doesn't allow it. the congress doesn't. he has people around him that feeds those delusions, and he
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can live with himself, and he can try to launch a new career as president in exile. >> david jolly, i want to ask you about feeding the delusions. bill barr doing the feeding along with mike pompeo yesterday. two people who probably wouldn't have the jobs they had under a normal and respectable republican president, but the country's attorney general and secretary of state, all the same. do you see sort of a conspiracy to disrupt the selection? do you see any impending standoff between mitch mcconnell and the president and his cabinet? >> i think there will be an attempt. what i see is a fundamental ignorance of the constitution that includes the president's ignorance but in this case, the secretary of state and to a lesser extent the attorney general as well. what they think could happen in this event, simply will not happen. look, we have a federalist system of elections. the states administer the election. congress sets the date. the states certify it. the electoral college certified
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the presidential election. chief justice of the supreme court swears in the president. and if president trump thinks he's stepping around he's a tenant overstaying his welcome and he's going to get kicked out of the white house. what president trump will try to do is get the people around him to do what we saw from pompeo and barr yesterday, and that's where it gets very dangerous. it's also why this november is such a moment of accountability, not just for trump but for the people who have enabled him and protected him. we talk about it a lot, nicolle. this is bigger than donald trump, and you can look at the heart and soul of the republican party, and its current leaders, and say they all deserve to get run out of town in november. every last one of them. >> amen. the rev al sharpton, eli stokols, david jolly, thank you for starting us off. when we come back, trump today finding time for everything except developing a national plan for beating the pandemic. today's activity, live tweeting the hearing on capitol hill and
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seeking to rapidly respond to criticisms. on the other side, dr. fauci showing why he's the most trusted of the president's advisers on coronavirus by swath out the politics and delivering difficult truths. also ahead, the government compiling intelligence reports. it's not a russian dateline anymore. it happened in donald trump's administration, and we'll bring you the latest reporting on it. and the virus and racial injustice have entered into the openings of all professional sports leagues. athletes are using their platforms to be heard on the topics. we'll bring you the latest from the sports world coming up.
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is covid-19 going to magically disappear, dr. fauci? >> i do not believe it would disappear. >> is covid-19 a hoax? >> no. >> should people take hydroxychloroquine as a cure for covid-19? >> the overwhelming cumulative evidence of properly conducted randomized control trials indicate no therapeutic efficacy by hydroxychloroquine. >> can people cure themselves of covid-19 by injecting themselves with disinfectant or bleach? >> no. >> i'm sorry? >> no. >> that was congressman jamie raskin this morning. part of the house panel questioning top health officials on capitol hill today. addressing, among other things, the dire pandemic situation here at home and the white house task force response as well as some of the disinformation that's come from the president himself. dr. fauci, for his part, warned
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it remains unclear how long the pandemic will last, one day after the united states reported more than 1,000 new deaths for the fourth consecutive day this week. it was clear, however, the president was watching, at least the part where house majority whip jim clyburn asked the panel why europe was able to contain the virus and the united states still has not. fauci's response was simple. europe shut down early, and the u.s. did not. trump responded on twitter moments later with this. somebody please tell congressman clyburn, who doesn't have a clue, that the chart he put up indicating more cases for the u.s. than europe is because we do much more testing than any other country in the world. if we had no testing or bad testing, we would show very few cases. that is not true either. joining our conversation, politico senior washington correspondent, anna palmer and a physician and fellow at the brookings institution, dr. kavita patel. previously she was the obama
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white house health policy director and fortunately for us medical contributor for us here at msnbc. let me start with you, dr. patel. dr. fauci continuing to show why more people trust him than the president and giving us these unwelcome but provable truths about the pandemic not being close to over. and we are reaping what we sow by not shutting down for real. >> yeah, that's absolutely right, nicolle. and i think he gave the top line was the virus is here to stay. but he also had some messages around vaccines that were helpful as well as just building on the evidence that we have that these kind of, i feel simple measures, masks, distancing and hand hygiene, can work. but we have to take it seriously as a nation. >> dr. patel, my colleague ali vitali had an interview with two high school students in georgia going back to school in a very
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pro-trump county. and masks were not required, but these two high school students, they look like future leaders, if we're lucky, future congresswomen. had a mask petition. there was a counterpetition saying that we want to be free. no masks. i'm sure all of them wear seat belts when they get in a car, but what do you make of the fact that the infection of public health debates has now made its way all the way down to high school students around masks which are known to protect the people that wear them and the people around them. >> yeah, nicolle, it reminds me in the aftermath of the unfortunate number of shootings and violence we've had in schools where you had, you know, it took florida, the high school students, to really help us organize kind of protests and march. so i think what you're seeing is that we've been teaching our children about science and evidence and i know that my kids learn about fact versus fiction.
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and i think what you see with these high school students who are hopeful future leaders is we're trying to just -- i think americans really just want the facts. and we now have facts. we did not have this message months ago. i was one of the people that said don't run out and wear a mask. reserve it for the medical personnel, but we now have overwhelming evidence that the masks in conjunction with all these other efforts can actually decrease the incidents, even by half. so it is -- it's one of those things that i still feel it's not realistic to expect a national mask mandate. that's what we need. that's what you see in other countries. and i am hopeful that the governors just really get their acts together and you see more and more of them putting these mandates in place. >> anna palmer, let me show you jonathan swan trying to get some straight questions and straight answers from the president on
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testing. >> you know, there are those that say you can test too much. you do know that. >> who says that? >> oh, just read manuals. read the books. >> manuals? what manuals? >> read the books. >> what books? >> let me explain. >> what manuals? what books? does anybody think that the president has read, and he doesn't listen to fauci. we think he's off reading manuals and books about pandemics? >> yeah, i don't think anybody has found what books or manuals he was talking about, but i do think this issue of wearing masks is something that is not only playing out in high schools, but even playing out still on capitol hill. we've been reporting all week on the number of staffers and employees on the capitol complex that are very concerned because they might work for a republican who doesn't believe in the efficacy of masks and so they are pressured not to wear them. you're seeing that whether there was louie gohmert of texas who just by happenstance was tested because he was going to fly with the president.
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otherwise had been around the capitol without a mask on and potentially infecting people. this is something that isn't just playing out in the states but also playing out, really, ground zero as a superspreading potential incident in the capitol. >> you guys have had some amazing reporting and staffers reaching out to you directly almost sounding like trying to sound the alarms about what's going on. here's a piece of it i don't understand. members of congress are famously obsessed with re-election because they're up every two years. they get there and start walking to the dnc and rnc to make fundraising calls. here's the approval rating for republicans on following trump's lead on the pandemic. 66% of americans disapprove of everything they're doing. why are they following trump off a cliff? >> i think it's something we've seen time and time again over the past two years where these republicans feel like the president's supporters, and he has very strong support among
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those who really do support him, are going to follow him. i agree completely, it's something i've spent a lot of my career reporting on is the concept of members just looking towards their next re-election. i think we've seen a little bit of space from some members, certainly on the latest tweets yesterday around the election and whether it was going to be held or not. you had republicans break with him. but it's a rarity. and on the fact of the coronavirus, i think there are republican members particularly in the house that still do not believe in wearing masks even though you have dr. fauci, you have widespread medical experts saying that, yes, that does help. in the senate, we have seen more compliance. you've seen a lot more senators, mitch mcconnell himself, has put out public service statements saying it's time to wear a mask. they came to that several months. it wasn't right in march or april when it probably would have helped the american public know this was where the leadership was. it hasn't happened until a few weeks or months ago.
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>> anna palmer and dr. kavita patel, thank you for spending some time with us on the day's surreal coronavirus headlines. after the break, another brick in the wall for donald trump's lurch toward authoritarianism. his administration compiling information on journalists. that reporting is next. liberty mutual customizes your car insurance, so you only pay for what you need. i wish i could shake your hand. granted.
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okay. so let's say you picked up the
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newspaper this morning. on the front page there was a story about a foreign leader who, over the course of a month, sent government troops after his own citizens, got one of his buddies out of prison, suggested a delay in the upcoming election and assembled intelligence reports on journalists. you could call it what it was. headlines from moscow or the makings of an authoritarian crackdown. on the last news item, the "washington post" reports this. the united states department of homeland security compiled information on journalists covering the protests in portland through a government system meant to share information about suspected terrorists and violent actors. from the post report, quote, over the past week, the department's office of intelligence and analysis has disseminated three open source intelligence reports to federal law enforcement agencies and others summarizing tweets written by two journalists. a reporter for "the new york times" and the editor in chief of the blog law fare and noting they published leaked,
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unclassified documents about dhs operations in portland. after that story was published, the acting homeland security secretary, chad wolf, ordered the practice to be stopped and announced an investigation. but unnamed sources tell "the washington post" this is pretty much par for the course when it comes to the administration's aggressive response in portland. joining us is former managing editor of "time" magazine and state department official, rick stengel. lucky for us, an msnbc political analyst. rick stengel, you were the only person to, i wanted to ask to put this into context for us. i don't think it can be separated. it's just part of the portland story. this is part of the trump story. >> yes. you put it in the context of -- him being an authoritarian leader like other authoritarian leaders. he looks at their methods. i'd actually compare him to another authoritarian would-be leader which is richard nixon whom he claims to admire and
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emulate. i never thought there would be another president in my lifetime that would claim to be an admirer of richard nixon. and, remember, richard nixon also tapped the phones of journalists, investigated journalists, abused domestic and foreign agencies to spy on journalists. the fbi. donald trump is doing that all over again. and the fact that he doesn't understand the way government works, that he doesn't understand history is why he's doing it. and he has people who are not strong enough to resist him. not too get too far high up in the air, but president obama's beautiful oration at john lewis' funeral. he said democracy doesn't let go of itself. every generation we have to learn these things all over again. and what's so sad and tragic about this administration is that it's populated with people who never learned the lessons of the past. never learned the lessons of the nixon administration, and now we're seeing the same kind of
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authoritarian impulses and actions that we saw back then. >> i think another point that was affirmed by all three presidents was this sort of effort to reset us and ask us to look in the mirror and figure out what kind of country we want to be. what do we look like to the leaders of foreign governments? i know before bush made calls to foreign leaders, if it was a country that was -- with human rights abuses, he would say something about that on the call. what do leaders, foreign policy advisers, put on the list when they call donald trump. stop spying? democracies, this democracy has had or plays on the world stage certainly under your old boss, president obama, of trying to urge other countries to be more democratic. what do other democracies urge our country to be? >> well, first of all, they
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don't pay any attention, if we still urge them to respect freedom of speech and freedom of the press and freedom of religion. i mean, they'll say, look at you guys. you know, we've tended to not be a country that other countries advise. we have always been the country that has sort of been in the business of democracy promotion. but if you look at esteem for the u.s. around the world, we're at low points that we haven't been at probably since the end of world war ii. and i think the people are looking at the way trump has handled the coronavirus and thinking, you know what? maybe i don't always like the americans kind of interfering in our elections or talking about democracy. but we've always thought they were competent. now we've exploded the image of our own competency where people around the world look at the united states and think, this is
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a god damn "s" show that they don't know thou run a cartoon. that's going to take a long time to repair and it's not going to happen overtight. and i do think we'll have to look at, after trump is president under hopefully joe biden, he's going to have to look at all of these things like we looked at all of the agencies and laws after watergate and say what do we need to do to make sure these things don't happen again. >> and now you know why rick stengel was coveted at the highest levels of government because he spoke in truths. thank you for spending some time with us. it's perfect. you're perfect. after the break, finally, the nba is back. competitive excitement is in the air again. but there's more bad news for major league baseball. all those reports are next. it's the 11:05 endless-orders migraine medicine
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rudy got older and suddenly stopped eating...t, then we found freshpet. now rudy's 13, and going on 3. ♪ we have a long, long, long way to go before we get back to anything resembling normal. but last night was a step in the right direction. sports are back. the nba had two games last night from inside the orlando bubble. of course, it wasn't the nba we're all used to. it was quieter. a lot more spread out. but the excitement was still there. the competition is something many of us have sorely missed. and it's the topic of an extraordinary new nike ad. watch. >> we know things won't always
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go our way. >> and the world sporting events are postponed or canceled. >> but whatever it is, we'll find a way. and when things aren't fair, we'll come together for change. >> we have a responsibility to make this world a better place. >> and no matter how bad it gets, we will always come back strong stronger. because nothing can stop what we can do together. >> i could watch that over and over. joining us now, mike lupica, columnist for the new york daily news and also the host of the mike lupica
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podcast. and rene montgomery, a wnba player for the atlanta dream who has decided to skip this season to focus her energy on social justice causes. she's now working with lebron james' voting initiative, more than a vote. i'm happy to get to talk to both of you. let me ask you more about taking the season off. tell me why, tell me how, and tell me you'll be back. >> yeah, so, you know, i'm no different than everyone else. when i saw the string of tragedies and the murders and everything that was going on in america, i felt like i needed to do something. we all felt that calling that something is not right here. so my heartstrings are pulling at me and i opted out of this 2020 season. y it's just for this 2020 season, but i felt like this time right now, and i've said it a lot, that moments equal momentum. we have a lot of momentum right now, and i want to keep it going. >> what are your goals? tell us what you'd like, what you're trying to communicate,
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what you're trying to organize. what are you trying to do? >> first of all, with more than a vote, it's getting attention to arena polling and the thing about arena polling, it's open space. there's public transit. but they're also going with different initiatives. people have seen what's going on in florida. trying to help convicted felons. a lot of people feel once people are convicted they should have no more rights but more than a vote campaign is going to help with that. i have some initiatives of my own that's going to launch soon. i'm excited how things are going now. >> so mike, renee is doing off the court and with all of her time and energy, which is clearly formidable, what some of the players tried to get at last night on the court. and the nba has always had more ease with letting their players express -- use their first amendment rights, express their support for social justice causes. but that display last night was
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still -- it was universal. it wasn't just a couple of players exercising their right to do what they want. it was a statement by the league. what did you think? >> first of all, what renee is doing is a hymn to everything we want sports stars in this country to do in terms of social justice and actviivism. good honor. i used to live in connecticut. i saw her in college. i appreciate fully. and think about where we are. it wasn't so long ago the president was calling kneeling football players sons of -- i don't know. rick stengel could say it. he was calling them s.o.b.s. now we see what happened last night. and nobody has said that sports is essential. that we must have sports back. but it also feels important, and it feels important, not just because of t-shirts, because we are seeing levels of activism,
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the likes of which we haven't seen since al lee and my dear late friend, arthur ashe. and sports at its best takes great big places like america and makes them feel like small-town high school gyms. and i'll tell you, last night, i'm sure renee felt the same way. the last minute of that lakers/clippers game, when lebron james made sports look exactly the way it used to, you tell me. would you rather watch that or would you rather watch jim jordan try to smart mouth an american hero like anthony fauci? >> well, let me just stipulate as someone in the news, everyone would rather watch lebron james than the news. renee, let me ask you about something i saw coach steve kerr tweet today. he's not going to permit the league to be tainted with this trump and far right smear that somehow protests and kneeling is
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associated with anything less than patriotism. and i wonder if you think that the nba and wnba learned from what mike lupica is talking about. the president's campaign, trying to suppress the free speech of football players. >> yeah, you look around, steve kerr made a statement, but lebron james. after he did the go-ahead basket, reporters are asking him questions. he goes into detail about why it was important for everyone to kneel, about hoping that he made a colin kaepernick proud. that was a powerful message seeing a unified front where all players are kneeling. you see the shirts. but it goes past that. there's making a statement loud and clear. it's not that kneeling was not approved of and the whole team, coaches, everyone knelts. that's a statement within itself. i'm proud to be an athlete at a time like this. >> and, mike lupica, we have to talk about baseball. baseball also on opening day
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featured unity and featured kneeling and, as renee is saying, it was the players and the coaches. there are also, though, featuring some covid infections. what do you think? how is baseball doing? are we going to to the end? >> nicolle, your get is as good as mine. >> i don't know anything. >> no, the fact that they've got then far is great. can i tell you, they're going to finish? i can't. last week when the miami marlins had all of the guys test positive, i said this is not a baseball problem, this is a miami marlins problem. and and i don't know what they did to have that kind of cluster. they did something. i think 20% of the sport is shut down because of positive tests. and, again, as i said before, it is not essential. but it is felt important over the last -- it is what renee was
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just talking about. sports now feels like it matters. it doesn't bring back a single dead person, it doesn't ease any suffering or grief that families, it doesn't bring back george floyd but it does for a few hours do what sports can do which is make things look the way they used to look and people are desperate for that right now. >> they sure are. mike and renee, it is a tweet to talk to both of you. please come back. thank you so much. after the break, our continued celebrations of lives well lived. ived
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it was a virtual message in a bottle. back on new year's day, james walker sent his wife of 31 years vida, a video. for whatever reason she never got around to watching it. so when james died of the coronavirus and she set out to preserve every last bit of his memory, of their memories, vida came across the video again. james totally healthy and happy the at time spoke of how beautiful their life together was. about how she was the song of his life. their loif was so great that they celebrated their wedding anniversary on the same day every month instead of waiting for the one year anniversary. james walker was a police officer in the city of brotherly love. according to the philadelphia enquirer, he worked narcotics,
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internal affairs and traffic. he loved it. so much so that one time on the way to a show, he left vida to break up a robbery in his tuxedo. and he was back in time for the show's second act. vida, we are sending you all of our love today and thinking about you and your loss. along with christina hickman of san antonio. on monday she had to do something very difficult. she sorted through her late husband's boxes. according to spectrum news, they were full of his trademark imagination and wonder. old notes, books, memorabilia from movie theaters, hand made toys and toy parts. stewart lee hickman was an avid toymaker, after all he would sell his custom work at conventions. he was a poet and a kind, kind soul. after he died, following a battle with coronavirus, his participants said one of the worst parts was not being able to immediately embrace his
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widow. christina told spectrum she plans to keep sorting through the boxes. it seems like a very sad, sad task. but she said it often gives her reason to smile. the small memories, she said, are a, quote, overwhelming sparkle. thank you so much for watching. and for letting us into your homes during these truly extraordinary days. our coverage continues with chuck todd after a quick break. k
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this year, the alzheimer's association k walk to end alzheimer's is everywhere. all of us are raising funds for one goal: a world without alzheimer's and all other dementia. because this disease isn't waiting, neither are you. go to alz dot org slash walk. book two separate qualifying stays and earn a free night. the open road is open again. and wherever you're headed, choice hotels is there. book direct at
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♪ welcome to friday. it is "meet the press" daily, i'm chuck todd. we're following crises facing this presidency and now this democracy. as this day unfolded we're reminded that every one of crises might be worse than we thought. 154,000 deaths into the pandemic and public health officials today testified there is no end in


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