tv All In With Chris Hayes MSNBC March 5, 2021 5:00pm-6:00pm PST
people who canceled the book. the real winner, though of who won the week is rene montgomery who went to battle against kelly loeffler, a former player and now a part owner, bought out kelly loeffler's stake. she won the week. that's tonight's reid out. do not miss the cross connection. all in with chris hayes starts now. tonight on "all in." the first known trump administration official indicted for attacking police during the capitol riot.
tonight major developments in the january 6th investigation including a new civil lawsuit filed against the former president. then -- >> as for our friend from wisconsin i hope he enjoyed his thursday evening. >> senator raphael war nocon the ongoing covid relief vote and how on earth the minimum wage vote went up in flames. plus devastating new reporting on what looks like an andrew cuomo cover-up. and ezra coastline on why joe biden's anti-trump presidency is off to such a successful start. when "all in" starts right now. good evening from new york. i'm chris hayes. we now know that in the mob that stormed the capitol on january 6th pushing into the building and fighting the police was at least one trump political appointee. an active employee of the trump state department. on that day his name is fredrico
klein. he was a special assistant in the bureau of western hemisphere affairs. tech analyst on the 2016 it campaign. then join the state department as a staff assistant with the trump transition team. according to the affidavit as of january 6th the day this all went down, the insurrection, klein also had an active top secret security clearance. that same 16-page fbi affidavit published today by "the new york times" reveals that klein was present in some of the most grisly, violent, upsetting scenes at the capitol at january 6th. this image captured by surveillance cameras shows klein in the red maga hat along with other members of that insurrectionists mob entering a tunnel that leads to the doors of the capitol building. you might remember that police were stationed at that entrance desperately trying to use their bodies to keep the mob out. and body camera footage shows
that klein himself pushed his way to the front of the crowd. that is a trump administration official in the mob pushing his way to the front of the crowd, physically and verbally engaging with officers attempting to stop the invasion. it also captured klein violently shoving a riot shield towards the officers, pushing it in between doors so they couldn't be closed. fredrico klein continued to fight to breach the police line and enter the building according to the affidavit until an officer deployed a chemical irritant spray. the fbi also identified klein in this publicly posted video from january 6th. again, a trump administration official who's still an official when you're seeing him here. you'll see him in the center of your screen in the red cap, dark green jacket with his back to us. you may recognize we've shown you pieces of the scene before because in this scene the mob violently tries to break through the police line at the entrance to the capitol building.
and you will hear klein, a trump administration official, encouraging members of the mob to come forward as reinforcements. >> what the [ bleep ] are we doing ini can't even see. we need fresh people. we need fresh people. make a hole. >> that's a mob violently attempting to invade the capitol and stop the peaceful transfer of power. and that man, fredrico klein, according to the fbi saying we need fresh people to the help with the invasion on day he's still working with the state department. later on the fbi notes we see further action from klein. you can see him on the right side of your screen here pushing and shoving with the mob trying to break down the line of police
blocking the doorway into the capitol. right up against the officers riot shields. and he's visible again just a few minutes later struggling with officers, pushing back with the shield as they keep trying to disperse the rioters attempting to stop the peaceful transfer of power. klein was arrested yesterday charged with multiple felonies including assault on police officers, interfering with police during civil disorder and obstruction of an official proceeding. in a brief court appearance today conduct by phone it was advised two of the six charges he's facing carry a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison. the fbi found and arrested fredrico klein thanks in part to tips from the public, and they included his photo in a seeking information list posted online they were able to identify his identity in details through interactions on social media and videos like the one we just showed you. but there are still questions about other individuals involved in the attack on the capitol as well as the organization and
planning behind it. the fbi is investigating whether foreign government, groups or individuals may have funded extremists who helped plan and execute the january 6th attack. fbi sources telling nbc news that the bureau is examining payments of $500,000 in bitcoin apparently by a french national to key figures in groups in the alt right before the riot. that's kind of weird. also note the fbi collected thousands of phone and electronic records connected to people at the scene of the riing including many records from the members of congress and staff members who were there that day. fellow democrats have called for the senate ethics committee to look into the behavior of republican colleagues in relation to january 6th. and today congressman eric swalwell of california actually filed a lawsuit, and it's the second lawsuit on these actions. this lawsuit accuses former president donald trump, his son donald trump, jr., rudy giuliani
and republican congressman moe brooks of alabama of violating civil rights law and local incitement law with their speeches at that rally near the white house on the morning of january 6th. the lawsuit alleges the capitol attack was, quote, a direct and foreseeable consequence and in direct response to the defendants expressed calls for violence. josh gur seen haib covering the arrest of trump appointee fredrico klein and joins me now. this guy was not particularly high up in the state department, but when i read the story i thought he had left. he was working there, right? like until the end of the trump term? >> that's right, chris. i was told he tendered his resignation on january 19th, so that's two weeks after the storming of the capitol, and it became effective a couple days later.
so i guess he was wanderering around at foggy bottom knowing full well as he'd taken part as the video appears to depict in this assault on the nation's capitol in congress. >> tell us more about this individual. >> so he's 42 years old. he's served in the marine corp in iraq, according to his mother. i haven't been able to determine much in terms of a work history. he had a couple jobs on capitol hill about 15, 20 years ago as an intern briefly working for the house small business committee, but he seems to have sort of pottered around to different kinds of posts before fetching up at the trump campaign in 2016. there are pictures on his facebook page showing him working at trump tower i believe on election night in 2016 with a couple of other young men there. and then he managed to turn that into a political appointee job at the state department in this special assistant position.
exactly what he did there is also a little murky. i have to say i spoke to a number of people last night who worked in this department at the state department, this office of the state department and a lot of them didn't know him or said they'd only met him briefly. he seems to have ended up in an office that handed brazilian and what they call the southern cone affairs. i think those are the andes countries, and then somebody told me he was eventually transferred, believe it or not, chris, to the freedom of information act congress. >> this quote from his mother said it burned a little hot, she said. i don't have any evidence nor will i ever ask him unless he tells me where he was after he was on the hall. it's striking to me here you have someone who literally worked in the administration, who is on a million videotapes in some of the most video hp
taped and violent moments of assault, a political appointee of the state department and nothing happened for two months. >> yeah, it is a little surprising. and while the fbi did get some tips on him, they don't seem to have gotten as many as they did about other people. i've read some of these affidavits where there are half a dozen, a dozen more tips. here they got a couple that were correct it look like and a couple that were inaccurate. and after running down like where peoples cellphones were and so forth they said, okay, it's not those people. but you're right, chris, it took quite a while and there weren't that many people coming forward to finger him for his role here. then again there are more than we think around 800 people that went into the capitol that day and over 300 people who have been charged already. >> that's exactly what i was going to bring up next, that ratio. we've got 300 charges and that's
striking. because that's two months of work, lots of shocking almost sort of overwhelming amount of evidence, and still less than half of the people in that building as far as estimates are concerned with cases against them. >> yeah, that's right, chris. i mean i'm not totally clear how many of these people they've been able to specifically identify individually. i mean one of the issues is they may not have despite all the great video angles, they may not have great pictures of everybody. perhaps some people in the crowd were wearing masks, there's a lot of hats that people had on and so forth. so the fbi hasn't succeeded yet in getting all these people, but it is a massive, massive effort. and i think once they think they know who someone is makes sure they nail down the details and have all the evidence. it's a complicated process. and we've got prosecutors across the country as far away as
alaska working on this investigation right now. >> i remember on that day thinking watching this in realtime as people are just walking out to go away. and i've covered protests where one person chucked a plastic water bottle and i watched 50 people get arrested immediately. like it's a lot harder to arrest everyone once they've all gone to the four winds than it is at that moment. but as we see from those videos police weren't in the condition to do that. shocking story. i've got to say really wild. thank you very much. >> thank you, chris. tonia perry is former federal prosecutor in the southern district of new york. also served as deputy attorney general for the state of new york. she joins me now to break down this new lawsuit from congressman eric swalwell. this is the second lawsuit donya, we've seen betty thompson of the naacp file under a reconstruction bill informerly called the ku klux klan act.
what is the legal theory behind this lawsuit? >> this one's a little more focused on the president himself, the former president himself and his immediate close entourage. representative thompson's lawsuit was also targeting some of these right wing militant groups, the proud bois and the oath keepers. this really focuses in very closely, very directly on the former president's actions not just of course on the dale of the action, of the insurrection but also in the days and weeks leading up to it. there is the same core nucleus of operative facts, which is the incitement to violence based on, you know, the big lie that the election was stolen and that patriots were duty bound to come forward and to saddle up, no longer to standby and to take back our democracy.
and so there are many overlapping theories of law and many overlapping facts. >> one of the things that has been clear is that the bar for criminal prosecution of incitement is quite high and appropriately so. i mean the first amendment is really -- pertains here. but this is civil standard, right? you're suing someone from saying like you caused this foreseeable disaster with your words and actions. is that an easier bridge to cross in a legal sense than say a criminal charge on incitement? >> absolutely. you have a very different standard. you don't have to meet the very high burden of beyond a reasonable doubt. here i really think that the executive privilege defense will probably be the subject of perhaps years of litigation as it goes up and down the court
system. i don't think that the first amendment defense is going to be the main defense here. and of course the plaintiffs will still have to prove intent. so there are going to be ainable of defenses, but i think the executive privilege one, there's a distinct lack of clarity around that. there's very little precedent. there's a lot of questions about whether a former president can claim executive privilege at all, over what, whether the sitting president can claim it. and now we're getting a kind of interesting nuances to the question of whether the privilege will be invoked and whether it will prevail. >> it's not just the president. don, jr. is also a party in this lawsuit. i want to read from the portion of the suit here. trump, jr. conspired with the other defendants. trump, jr. also promoted and spoke at the january 6th rally.
he addressed the crowd at this event and directly incited the violence at the capitol that followed. i mean, there are sort of -- you never know what's going to happen with a lawsuit and whether it's going to get tossed in summary judgment and how far it's going to go. in your legal opinion is this a lawsuit that actually has a chance of going somewhere? >> it's a serious lawsuit. i think it's likely -- i think we'll see what happens with the executive privilege defense. but it really should survive a motion to dismiss based on these facts and based on the statute that is being alleged here. i think it will probably go forward, and of course trump, jr. does not have the same defense, so you have some pretty fine rhetoric there, and he will be called to account for it. >> same for rudy giuliani among others. danya perry, thank you for making time for us. >> my pleasure, chris. thank you. we saw this stunt last night where republican senator ron
johnson used this procedural motion to force the senate clerks to read all 628 pages of the covid relief bill. it may be the biggest delay tactic turned face plant ever because in order for his stunt to work the senator had to stay on the floor and listen as they read the bill. according to one reporter watching in the gallery, quote, i cannot underscore enough how miserable senator johnson looks right now with many hours to go. so did the senator manage to sit through a 13-hour dose of his own medicine? a surprise twist. that's next. n medicine a surprise twist that's next. about the future, she'll say she's got goals. and since she's got goals, she might need help reaching them, and so she'll get some help from fidelity, and at fidelity, someone will help her create a plan for all her goals, which means suzie will be feeling so good about that plan, she can just enjoy right now.
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bounce forward, with comcast business. did i not force that 11-hour reading i sat on the floor of the senate and i listened to the entire 11 hours, what we would have been doing is going to vote ramma last night, no time to read the bill. no time to prepare diseasant amendments. >> republican senator ron johnson defended his stall tactic forcing senate clerks to spend 11 hours reading the covid rescue plan out loud. saying he sat through all 11 hours, but he had to. once the reading ended this morning that's when they left and chris van hollen proposed cutting the debate time on the bill and since there were no republicans to object it passed right through and so much for ron johnson's silly delay. this afternoon the senate began a process known as vota rama
which allows any member to propose an amendment. but that process was stalled for eight hours as both parties tried to win joe manchin's support. we can report at this hour manchin has agreed to a democratic proposal that will decrease the democratic bonus. that's over the normal amount you get. $400 a week to $300 a week, but it extends it from august to september. it also keeps the first $10,000 of unemployment insurance benefits as nontaxable, which is pretty crucial because there are a lot of folks getting a surprise tax bill but that now applies to house with incomes under $150,000. senator raphael warnock pushed for an upset bill during his senate seat. and he joins me now. i want to ask about the details here, but the first thing i want to ask is every time i talk to people in the u.s. senate i say
i fool like i'm talking to a culture from another planet. it's a very strange institution, all sorts of weird traditions that are hard to explain. you're new there. what is it like to go through this? how strange does the institution seem to you or does it not? >> well, it's great to be with you here tonight, chris. we're going, you know, through the sausage making of legislation. but the good news is that after months of waiting -- and when you think about the long period where nothing happened under the previous administration, relief is right around the corner. help is on the way. and we'll be here for a little while, but we are there. and i'm confident that we're going to pass the relief that americans need and deserve in this moment. we're about to pass i think a historic piece of legislation that for one thing will cut child poverty in half. think about that.
we will cut child poverty in half, $1,400 relief payment to people that will go directly in their pockets. and we know when poor people and working class people receive relief they buy food, medicine that's needed, baby diapers, a coat for their kid. it help them and stimulates the economy. we're going to get this virus under control and get the american economy roaring again. i'm proud to be a part of that process. >> you are -- you were just elected in that special election in january obviously. it's a closely divided swing state, the state of georgia now. you will be up again in two years because it's a special election. i think you can say you have the most front line position of any senator in that caucus. so from the position of your political life what do you want to tell your fellow democrats about what you need to deliver back to your constituents in
georgia? >> well, we've been fighting that good fight from day one. not for me but for the people i was sent here to represent. you know that i come into this job as a pastor, someone who is used to walking with people through their pain. i've seen first-hand the ways in which people are suffering through this pandemic that has literally taken their loved ones, half a million americans, has devastated our economy. and the good news, again, is relief is right around the corner. help is on the way. we're about to pass a historic piece of legislation that will cut child poverty in half, will give workers the relief and the support that they need. in this bill we have $5 billion of debt relief that will go to farmers of color. and we're going to get this virus under control so that we can safely reopen our schools and our economy.
that's the good news, and i couldn't think of a better sermon for a preacher to be preaching on this weekend. >> do you think in terms of the future do you think about -- do you have hope for the second half of this year even as someone who, you know, there's a lot of clurmgy around the country who have not been breaching in person and who desperately want to commune with their flocks again. and do you think that that kind of thing is possibility in the second half of this year if things go right? >> what i can tell you is that we're making progress. and what i've insisted on from day one is that we have to follow the science. you know, my faith has no quarrel with science. it's been tough on those of us who worship, whether we worship in a synagogue or in a church on a weekend. but we have stayed apart from one another not out of a sense of fear as much as a sense of love. but the vaccine has been distributed. the president has said that
we'll have enough vaccines for every adult by may. and in this package is $20 billion of aid so that we can get the vaccine distributed. i know it's been a long, dark night. but i can see the glimmer of light just on the other end of that tunnel. and i just want folks to hold on, hang in there, continue to socially distance. help is on the way. >> one of the votes today in that voter roma was a vote on the $15 minimum wage. the democrats lost eight -- had eight no votes along with every republican. you were a yes vote. why'd you vote for it? >> oh, i think it's a contradiction to say people ought to work and not make work pay. i have long been an activist in the fight for $15. and i will not shrink back from that not one moment in any way. workers deserve to be paid for
their work. america deserves a wage. you know in a state like mine and city like atlanta there's a real problem around affordable housing, for example. and what happens is that working class people work all day, every day sometimes two or three jobs and they still can't afford the rent in any city in america. that's not right, and as often is the case what the morally right thing to do is also the smart thing to do. it's right to pay workers for the work that they do. and when we do i think we actually spur the economy and it helps all of us. >> all right, senator reverend raphael warnock, first time i think i've gotten to talk to you as a u.s. senator. it's a great pleasure, sir. thank you very much. >> thank you. great to be with you. >> all right, next. why did more democrats the bizarre thumbs down moment after this. e thumbs down moment after this in addition to the substitute teaching. i honestly feel that that's my calling--
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we've got the senate doing their senate thing today, right, the vote rama. something happened there today. seven democrats and one independent who caucuses with democrats joined with republicans to shoot down raising the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour. joe manchin, chris coons of delaware. keirsten cinema walked up to cast her vote. >> ms. cinema, no. >> now, she represents arizona, maybe that was an homage to the late john mccain, but that full thumbs down from arizona helped end hopes for a really big wage hike that the congressional budget office says would directly effect 17 million american workers. i want to bring in maria theresa
kumar founding president and ceo of voter latino, the senior advisor to democrat harry reid. let me start with you. i want people to understand this vote before we analyze this. this was a vote that was going to fail either way. it was essentially a sim bombing message vote because it needed 60 votes. so going into this everyone knows it's not going to -- it's not going to pass. no republicans are going to vote for it. so it's a free ride. it's a lay-up. you get to get up there and say, yes, we want a $15 minimum wage. so it was very, very surprising to me a lot of people to see democrats, eight of them in the caucus vote no. what is your explanation? >> well, chris, you've got to go back in history a little bit where president obama suggested raising the minimum wage to $10.10. it was hillary clinton during the 2016 campaign who suggested raising it to $12. it's been bernie sanders to
raise the wage to $15 an hour, and as a result of that we have gotten a lot of progress in the democratic caucus and not all the way. what's painful as you take senator sinema arizona has a $12 minimum wage. if you look at as it gradually raises over five years it would be at $12.50. and yet you have the senator denying millions of people around the country denying raising the wages. >> maria, what do you make of it? >> i used to work in congress as a hill staffer a long time ago on appropriations, and this was fairly unusual because what those eight did was say they were not going to deliver the biden agenda. and the biden administration right now is going to figure out how to channel a little lbj and demonstrate that there are consequences when they are not voting down for the president's agenda. as you mention, chris, this was a lay-up. but i have to say when we --
when we witnessed this thumbs down by sinema, i think for a lot of folks people felt at odds because when john mccain did it, it was to save health care for millions of americans. what she did today was turn down this idea there was going to be some sort of -- closer to economic equity for millions of americans. and $15 -- even $15 does not keep piece with the inflation rate of 1970s when minimum wages were first established. this is an opportunity really for joe biden to say you guys are going to have to come down to the white house because we're going to have a talking to. >> yeah, we should say senator sinema put out a statement today, a long statement basically saying she supports minimum wage but senators of both parties have shown support for raising federal minimum wage. we should keep open debate and amendment process separate from covid focus reconciliation bill.
i will keep working with colleagues in both parties to ensure americans can keep access to quality education, skilled training to secure economicallies lives for themselves and their family. it's a place that cuts off the feedback of democratic accountability. so no one ever knows what anyone is voting for or against, because it's like well we weren't really voting for it and it was going to fail in the filibuster. and actually our no vote is because we don't want to include this bill. and it's like people want to know what do you stand for. >> and the irony, chris, is that had the parliamentarian ruled our way and you would have a had a 50-vote threshold for the minimum wage i actually think the politics would have moved so dramatically you would have had the caucus supporting a $15
minimum wage. but because as you mention we have the filibuster and now we've got weird politics and people take a rider to show their moderateness. it is ludicrous we have procedural rules that are stopping us from delivering justice in america. >> the other thing frustrating about this there are lots of things people say that's not popular or you have this idea, you know, banning fracking or -- which is popular actually in a lot of places. there's lots of things that joe manchin like it's a trump plus 25 state. there's lots of things joe manchin can't vote for and hope to get re-elected for in the state. the minimum wage is not one of those things. the minimum wage is popular basically anywhere. >> what you're saying it's popular across party lines regardless of how you vote. most republicans, independents, democrats, they all believe that the $7 minimum wage is just not
sustainable. but this is the thing, chris, what i found really curious. every single senator that voted on the democratic side they're not up for re-election so they're basically voting that the voters will not remember them when they were up for re-election in 2024. that's one thing. but the other thing i find curious is that when sinema says she wants to have a stand alone bill because this is tied to appropriations, it's tied to financing, so to speak, it has to go and beat the filibuster. the filibuster which she supports. so it's kind of wanting to have it both ways but not speaking straight to the american people where she stands. >> and i think maria theresa makes a great point about this. i said this earlier we do have a tendency to interpret all political actions through a lens of political calculation. and i think it's something you'll agree with is senators have belief systems and
ideologies. some of them really believe in the filibuster, or they really believe that the minimum wage shouldn't go through reconciliation. i think that's a weird belief. i think it's a wrong belief, but these people have beliefs. some of them are bad beliefs, but they actually do have them and they act on them. and that was kind of what we saw today. >> yeah, i'll agree with that. can i just make a controversial statement about senator manchin for a moment? i think there's a lot of huffing and puffing a lot of theater. he hasn't gotten a lot. he wanted to cut a little bit of the direct payments. 115.5 million people are getting checks this time. for the 158 million people it's going to be $1,400 rather than $600. and this deal i'll cut for $100 for ui for like three weeks but what he's getting? this is progressive bill and there's a lot of theater and he's quite frankly not getting
much. >> i think joe manchin is a different category from all these people. you've got something figured out that -- >> he's playing to politics. all i'm saying is we've still got a progressive bill. >> i don't disagree with that. thank you both. joe biden has been in office exactly 45 days. the number of days joe biden has spent on the golf course is at zero, and he's finding political success in not being anything like his predecessor. we'll show you exactly how successful he's been coming up. w successful he's been coming up i think the sketchy website i bought this turtle from stole all of my info. ooh, have you looked on the bright side? discover never holds you responsible for unauthorized purchases on your card. (giggling) that's my turtle. fraud protection. discover. something brighter.
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new allegations of a cover up of coronavirus nursing home deaths in new york while the governor was writing about a book about his leadership during the crisis. ever since the pandemic began in new york state there have been reports the state was not fully disclosing the death toll among nursing home residents. now "the new york times" is reporting that top aides to the governor rewrote the official data into nursing home deaths.
not only that, it happened as the governor was starting to write a book on his pandemic achievements. the state attorney general finally got a look at the real numbers. she concluded in the report that coronavirus resident deaths associated with nursing homes in new york state appeared to be undercounted by approximately 50%. 50%, that's a lot. this all stems from a state directive that basically forced nursing homes to accept covid positive patients released from the hospitals. and in hindsight that looks like a pretty bad decision. at the time there were lots of decisions being made very quickly amidst a, you know, unprecedented pandemic. we were being confronted on something nobody had experienced before. and hospitals were overwhelmed, crunched for space. so given that some bad decisions are at least defensible. you're just trying to do your best, you make a bad judgment call. and the public has been pretty forgiving actually about errors in covid policy.
cuomo's administration is accused not only of erasing those deaths in the state total but deliberately not reporting them as nursing home residents if they died rather in a hospital rather than a care facility, a move critics say artificially deflated the nursing home death rate. the governor's office released a statement saying the aides in the "the new york times" story were involved in reviewing the draft report. out of facility deaths were not being listed as a subset of nursing home deaths as a concern related to potential double counting. last month governor cuomo's top aide told lawmakers the administration took so long releasing the full data because they were worried it would be used against them by donald trump's justice department. both the fbi and u.s. attorney inbriclen are currently investigating the cuomo administration's handling of death data. the new york statehouse just passed legislation to strip cuomo of the pandemic emergency powers they granted over a year ago. the governor has said he has no
plans to resign. but to state the obvious this is really, really bad. it's the lying and the manipulation that is indefensible. that's the thing about the trump administration and their covid management that was indefensible. when trump said, i want to keep people on the cruise ship because i didn't want those numbers, that's not a defensible position, right? you can make mistakes in managing covid, and people did. but that's not a defensible position. to artificially suppress the numbers, and that same principle applies here. nd that same prince applies here you'll need, and help you build a flexible plan for cash flow that lasts, even when you're not working, so you can go from saving... to living. ♪ let's go ♪
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joe biden is a pretty popular president right now, according to the polling we have. a new poll from the associated press shows biden with a 60% job approval rating. more tellingly that number jumps 10 points when it comes to the response specifically to the pandemic. 70% of americans approve of his handling of the covid crisis, including more than 40% of republicans. what's interesting here is that biden's reached this level of
popularity even though he has very much not dominated the news cycle. which is the exact opposite, of course, of the last president, who was not very popular, in fact, he was unpopular the whole time but remained an omnipresent force in the media. "new york times," ezra klein writes, by approaching the job as an anti-trump, biden can get the job done. we're on the same page. i love the column. i think there's something counter intuitive. which, i think people think about the presidency as a bully pulpit, they think part of the job of politics is draw people's attention to things and you can change their minds about it. but there's evidence that in the times we live in, it works the opposite, and biden's exploiting that. >> yeah, this is a function of polarization. i talk about this great study by steven nicholson. what he did was grave democrats and republicans a little piece of paper that read off different
policies. some would say, barack obama supports this policy, george w. bush supports this policy. what he found is fascinating. if you told partisans a president of their own party supported a policy, it didn't change their support, they were bought in or bought out. if you told them a leader of the other party supported it, it changes dramatically. a lot of people are okay with their party but they don't love it, what they know is they hate the other side. the more a president associates every bill with his personal, or in a different world, per personal success or failure, the more poll larrizing it becomes to the opposition. joe biden, not making himself a focal point of his own legislation, is to some degree avoiding that trap. it's notable the american rescue plan is 10 to 20 points more popular than he is. donald trump, his plans tended to be 10 to 30 points less popular than he was. >> it's stricking to remember the fight over the affordable care act, aca, which the right
balled obamacare. that was an easy shorthand way to signal to partisans, you don't have to know what's in it, just think of it as obama. it's obama, it's obama, obama. that was so central to the message. >> yeah, and president obama at some point embraced that. he said, they want to call it obamacare, i'll call it obamacare. i got that emotionally, but this research had made me think in retrospect that was a mistake. it was a constant refrain of democrats, the affordable care act was more popular than the bill itself but it acted as a refrain of how you felt about obama. democrats who understood differences in the bill, maybe more liberal democrats, bernie sanders democrats, who wanted single pair, they didn't like it for that reason. republicans knew how they felt about barack obama. so with biden, he's not made the american rescue plan, it's not bidencare, or the stimulus
payments are not bidenbuck, the child tax credit is not bidenkids. none of it is joe biden. joe biden is running a quiet presidency. there are reasons for that, i don't think it's all strategy. i think less is expected of joe biden because of the way he won the white house. i think he has a different temperament. i don't think people think he can an superhuman communicator. i think the right has become more split on economic issues and is obsessing on cultural issues. i kept thinking the right-wing seemed obsessed with dr. seuss, meanwhile, $1.9 trillion package passing through the senate and they seemed to have little say about it. a lot is going on here but i think strategy is meaningful. >> one of the things happening here too, you compare to it barack obama, barack obama had a real big difference from joe biden, right? he was the first black president named barack obama. and we know from a lot of data that fired up people in certain ways. particularly white folks, particularly white folks who were conservative or republican
and how they felt about barack obama. i want to read this paragraph from david buyingal at cpac, one of the most succinct explanations of this era i've ever read. he's talking about displays of anti-biden sentiment were fairly rare as the new president had not obtained the bogeyman status of barack obama or hillary clinton. i can't give the anti-biden stuff away, shirts including biden with a hitler-style moustache and "not my dictator." a t-shirt vendor at cpac still being able to move hillary and obama product that cannot -- to me it's like, there's something very deep and profound there, that maybe extends past how much biden is talking. >> i think that's right. but i want to walk a very careful tightrope here and you'll know why. everything you're saying about president obama is true. there's a great book from michael tesler on the way, the
way he was treated, profoundly unfair on that dimension. it is not case all white male leaders are nonpolarizing. bill clinton was intensely polarizing in his day, much more conspiracy theorizing around him, he and his family and hillary clinton, crazy stuff on the right, what bill clinton was and wasn't doing. joe biden, for a variety of reasons, manages to get away with different kinds of things. in part i think the right has walked idaho into a weird trap. donald trump's messaging about joe biden, he was a senile old man controlled by bernie sanders and alexandria ocasio-cortez. and to some degree i think they neutralized biden to their own forces. also the right has become more focused on gender and race identity politics. i don't think it's inevitable a white president would be able to hold back in a useful way. >> my question is, is it just the polarization machinery is
worrying to life? because my general priors on this is that, polarization rules everything around us, eventually everything's going to get to 52, that sort of 52/48 universe, somewhere around there. and do you think it's avoidable? can the choices presidents make about their rhetoric and omni presence avoid that? >> no, and i want to be really clear. i'm making a distinction here between what is going to -- joe biden and legislation joe biden supports. he already is polarizing. 12% or 10% approval rating among republicans. the key thing is the american rescue plan is polling 65%%, 75%, 80%. and how do you keep that delta between how popular a lot of the policies somebody like joe biden might want to push on and how
popular he is? i think the president hanging back is meaningful there. >> ezra klein, great column, "new york times." thank you for making time. that is "all in" on this friday night. "the rachel maddow show" starts right now. good evening, rachel. >> thanks, chris. and thanks to you at home for joining us. happy to have you here. at this hour, the senate appears to be back on track to pass the $1.9 trillion covid relief bill after what was a weird long delay. senate democratic leaders apparently have reached a deal with west virginia conservative democratic senator joe manchin, holding out over a provision to extend unemployment benefits. but an agreement announced within the last hour seems to have brought to an end what had been a nine-hour-long stalemate in the senate as democrats and republicans yanked on manchin's arms to try to pull him in either direction to get him to sign on to the