tv Morning Joe MSNBC May 6, 2021 3:00am-6:00am PDT
jim vandehei, thank you very much for being here this morning, we really appreciate it. and we will see you on "morning joe." and as we close our show today, liz cheney is stepping out and betting on american democracy. she's saying, it is worth standing up for this and people are going to reward me for it in the long run. puts a lot of responsibility on all of us for making sure that we are thinking about what our priorities are and participating in our democracy in a way that makes us all better. thank you all for getting up "way too early" with us on this thursday morning. don't go anywhere. "morning joe" starts right now. >> i thought, she looks good, she looks like good talent, but i did not realize when she opens that mouth, you are killing them, elise. you are killing them. >> if donald trump were the 2024 nominee, would you support him? >> i would not.
>> okay. liz cheney. very good catching up with you. >> there grow, two very different directions for the gop. and apparently the republican party has made its choice. good morning and welcome to "morning joe." it is thursday, may 6th. along with joe, willie, and me, we have msnbc contributor mike barnicle. co-founder and ceo of axios, jim vandehei is with us. and member of the "new york times" editorial board, mara gay joins me this morning. we may as well dive right in. this morning, republicans are another step closer to pushing out congresswoman liz cheney from her role as gop conference chair. house minority whip steve scalise now publicly backing congresswoman elise stefanick to replace cheney in the position. a spokesperson for scalise said, quote, house republicans needs to be solely focused on taking
back the house in 2022 and fighting against speaker pelosi and president biden's radical, socialist agenda. and elise stefanick is strongly committed to doing that. a spokesperson for cheney responded to that statement saying liz will have more to say in the coming days. this moment is about much more than a house leadership fight. willie? >> and liz cheney, joe, is leaning into this, explaining what this moment is about. a new op-ed for "the washington post" -- >> of course she is! >> here's liz cheney -- >> i mean, they're walking right into her trap. they don't understand this. i mean, the number one rule of politics, what is it? they even said it on "the simpsons" last night when i was watching a repeat with jackie, keep your friends close, keep your enemies closer. wait. why would i want to do that? you just do. so do they really want this free
agent outside over the -- it's just so stupid on their part politically. >> well, here's what she wrote in "the washington post." "trump is seeking to unravel critical elements of our constitutional structure that make democracy work -- confidence in the result of elections and the rule of law. no other american president has ever done this," she writes. "the republican party is at a turning point and republicans must decide whether we are going to choose truth and fidelity to constitution. we republicans need to stand for genuinely conservative principles and steer away from the dangerous and anti-democratic trump cult of personality. in our hearts, we are devoted to the american miracle. we believe in the rule of law, in limited government, in a strong national defense, and in prosperity and opportunity brought by low taxes and fiscally conservative policies." cheney went on to write, "history is watching. our children are watching. we must be brave enough to defend the basic principles that underpin and protect our freedom
and democratic process. i am committed to doing that, no matter what the short-term political consequences might be." joe, we talked about this yesterday, this is the definition of a turning point. this is a critical moment, as she writes, for the republican party. are they going to push her out of leadership and make the statement that defending donald trump and a lie about the 2020 election is more important than all the things liz cheney laid out there? >> well, what liz cheney laid out there is what liz cheney has been her entire political career. and it's what donald trump has not been, because he really is valueless. it's about donald trump. we're repeating things that we all know. and what's so remarkable is, if you read liz cheney's op-ed, you see what she's talking about, these are just basic statements that, you know, two years ago,
we would have yawned at. now, actually, looks like they are the words of someone who is fighting for the heart and soul, not only for her party, but also for what this country stands for. january 6th was a dividing point. i don't have to tell you that. it was a dividing point between two groups of americans. one who believe in the rule of law and believe in the peaceful transfer of power and those who do not. and there were a handful of republicans who stood out on january 6th, whether you're talking about ben sasse or mitch mcconnell or liz cheney, there were a handful of republicans that stood out and said, we're about the rule of law. we're not going to steal elections. mitch mcconnell, who's going to be in the news today for some other things that he said, said, it was the single most important vote of his life.
and it was. and here we are, three, four months later, and the republicans, jim vandehei, are trying to run liz cheney out of town. you know, it's very funny. i keep seeing these liberals writing op-eds going, we don't like you, liz cheney. what you're doing is a good thing, but we don't like you. the cheneys don't give a damn whether liberals like them or not. you don't call dick cheney, her father, a war criminal for like two decades and then like worry about whether liz cheney is liking you or not. she doesn't! liz is doing this because this is what liz believes. and it is -- i would say it's a turning point for the gop, but there have been about 87 turning points for the gop, jim. >> the sad thing is, it's not! >> they just keep turning that golf cart in towards donald trump. nobody has ever jerked it the other way. and i just, i just wonder if
they're not playing right into liz cheney's hands, ultimately, by making her actually the alternative that people like me and suburban voters in atlanta and suburban voters in maricopa county don't look at liz cheney and say, okay, there's somebody that believes in small government, there's somebody that believes in traditional foreign policy. yeah, sounds okay to me! >> i just disagree with her that it's a turning point. the party turned. the only thing we're looking for now is the party turned over the last four years into the party of trump. after he loses, what we're looking for is indicators of, okay, was that kind of a one-off and the party will reinvent itself around a set of policies, or is it going to become even more the party of trump. there were some signs early on that there was an authentic debate about that. liz cheney is a party of a few.
when you look at elected republicans, there's very few of her. then you have to think, what's going to happen over the next two to four years. you're going to have house races and senate races. what type of candidates do they nominate? do they nominate people who look and sound like liz cheney or people who sound like donald trump? every indication is, it's going to be a lot more trump people. so by the time she might decide that she wants to run in 2028, you're going to have an entire elected class, an entire elected infrastructure of the republican party that is trumpian. and so a lot of the things that she talks about might sound sane to a lot of republicans sound way saner to every single democrat, it doesn't to the people who are getting elected. the party infrastructure is donald trump. it's more trumpian, i would argue, today, than it was on january 6th. look at all of these -- the profiles in courage of the ten members that voted for impeachment. what have they said since then? almost all of them, nothing.
because they know the price they'll have to pay. and liz cheney will probably pay that price next week. she will be booted from house leadership after winning a house leadership election merely weeks ago. that's how quickly things are changing. now you have this de facto leader of the republican party who doesn't have facebook, doesn't have twitter, has a blog, it's called from the desk of donald j. trump and sits there and spitballs liz cheney and mitch mcconnell and the party favors with him and not liz cheney. >> and we've got to ask about aaron rodgers. what's going on there? you going to lose a quarterback? >> we go from narcissist to narcissist. yes, we're going to lose somebody! he's sabotaging our entire organization. he doesn't like anything about it. it's a travesty. the guy's got the best damned team in football. he would probably guarantee himself to be in the nfl championship and the super bowl if he could perform in clutch
moments and now he'll end up playing for the raiders. >> that's getting rough at lambeau field, from narcissist to narcissist. >> hell of a pivot, joe! >> reporter: well, apparently, jim, there was a through line from donald trump to aaron rodgers. i'm sure he'll be pleased to learn that. so willie, again, it doesn't make sense when you're talking about republican politics, but it is so important to remember that we are talking about republican primaries. a lot of people are talking about what happened in texas. that was a republican party where the guy that was very conservative, the former marine, the guy that spoke out and said, hey, we need to move beyond donald trump, he was running a campaign in texas, a republican primary. i don't know if he expected people to come out and hand him daisies and vote for him, but it's probably not going to happen deep in the heart of texas. but if you're making the calculation that liz cheney is making, okay, maybe 20, 25% of
republicans agree with me. maybe by the time 2024 comes along, donald trump's been charged by new york prosecutors. maybe that number's a little higher. maybe by then, it's 30 to 35% of the people want to move past. so you have a presidential field that has josh hawley and ted cruz and -- you name it, nikki haley, ten other people pledging fealty to donald trump. and then you've got one anti-trump candidate, one pro-conservative, anti-trump candidate. and if you're gaming things out, that's not a really bad place for liz cheney to be in 2024. >> yeah, if that's something she wants. if she's setting he's up to run for something. also, of course, the big specter hanging over all of this is will donald trump be in that race and wipe everybody else out. we'll see about that. but mike barnicle, it's amazing to think about the scandal louse, controversial statement
that has liz cheney's job in question here, and she'll probably lose the leadership position a week from now, is that joe biden was the free and fair winner of the 2020 election. she's basically affirming everything the court have said, everything republican secretaries of states have said in these swing states, people who count the votes and secure the voteses have said, it was a free and fair election, joe biden won. that simple statement is what's getting her run out of statement in the republican party. >> you're right, willie. and that simple statement makes some people wonder whether we are actually underselling this moment in history. liz cheney's behavior, her verbal behavior, her newspaper column. because what is she doing? she's taking on a person who's actively engaged in a daily manner urging sedition. she's urging the nullification of the national vote, more
people voted for president than at any time in our history. and that person she's talking about happens to be a former president of the united states of america. that's an incredible thing to put together. an incredible thing to even actually talk about every single day, as if it's a congressional fight, which it's to the. it's much larger than that. >> senate minority leader mitch mcconnell was asked about the cheney situation during a news conference back in kentucky yesterday. he dodged the question, saying this instead. >> 100% of our focus is on stopping this new administration. i think the best way to look at what this new administration is, the president may have won the nomination, but bernie sanders won the argument about what the new administration should be like. we're confronted with severe challenges from a new administration and a narrow
majority of democrats in the house and a 50/50 senate to turn america into a socialist country. and that's 100% of my focus. >> when asked about mcconnell's remarks, president biden referenced a similar comment mcconnell made in 2010, that the gop's top priority should be to make barack obama a one-term president. biden said yesterday he will still, quote -- was, still, quote, able to get a lot done with mcconnell during the obama administration. here is how white house press secretary jen psaki responded to mcconnell's latest remark. >> i guess the contrast for people to consider is 100% of our focus is on delivering relief to the american people, on getting the pandemic under control, and putting people back to work. and we welcome support, engagement, and work with the republicans on that. >> mara gay, mitch mcconnell once again showing that the republican party has no options.
that they just are against whatever the democratic administration, whether it's obama or biden, are for, and that they've got this huge crisis within. maybe it's not a turning point, but liz cheney is offering a turning point and they're not taking it. >> yeah, i think that the problem here is ultimately that the coalition that elected george w. bush, the coalition that was behind mitt romney, though they didn't win the election, that longer exists. you don't have a situation in which republican voters can come together along the lines that liz cheney is talking about on principle, on tax policy, the things that animate mitch mcconnell. now they may work for mitch mcconnell to keep his caucus in order, but that doesn't ultimate animate republican voters anymore. what animates republican voters are the red meat, xenophobic,
racist in many cases, but also just the culture war debates that donald trump has deployed over the past four years. and you know, the gop was happy you know, in all quarters, to jump on that bandwagon, on the trump train, when it was working for them. bail out themselves to create this monster. they participated in it. they benefited from it. and now that they lost the election, the question is, well, where do you go? the question is, these voters are not animated on these traditional republican issues. they're animated on that red meat that donald trump is throwing them. so that is the situation in which republican leaders find themselves, and really the way forward is to start telling the truth to their voters to to the american people about what trumpism is, what is anti-democratic. but until a broad constituency and coalition of them are willing to do it, i don't see this changing.
>> and jim vandehei, it's so interesting we met each other first when you were a reporter on the hill. and i was with a group of republicans that, as you know, fought every day to balance the budget, do all the things that we talked about doing. but mara said that these issues don't animate the rank and file republican base. they haven't now for, well, since we left town. it's been tribal over the past 20 years. i've actually written three books on where the republicans should go and it's always, they need to be more conservative economically on, you know, as far as small government. they need to be more fiscally responsible, right? and nobody, just nobody wants to hear that. and that's why when you have joe biden and his team and the democrats putting out the most
massive spending programs in -- my god, in 40, 50 years, maybe ever, there's just not a cogent conservative small government response. and it's really hard. because a critique you would offer of joe biden is that you're spending way more money than the country can afford, but you're coming off a president who spent money to care about deficits. it would seem hypocritical. by the way, i think this is going to get worse for republicans. if you look at redistricting and the off year election that's coming up next time around. if you're a betting person, you might bet republicans are going to win back the house because of historical precedent and the way the districts are drawn. well, that's going to have donald trump and people who support donald trump pointing to it and saying, look, my approach works. this approach works. and i do think that republicans will buy into that. and what i would say to republicans who are watching,
just explain, like, what is the ideology of the modern republican party? i hear a lot more talk of, we're going to be the party of the working class, but yet, to the average voter, you're seeing opposition to a lot of plans, a lot of which are aimed to the working class, and seeing opposition to raising taxes on the wealthy. that seems incongruent to most people. somewhere, somehow, republicans probably have to go through the process that liz cheney is talking about, which is, what do you stand for? you have to have an alternative that's tethered to policy. it can't be about flags and whether or not -- whether or not meat is becoming politicized. there are all of these weird issues that are not substantiative. there's not a substantiative policy debate taking place on the right in the way it did when you were in congress. you might have liked or hated republicans in the 90s, but there was a coherent, strong national security, fighting for deficits, smaller governments. that's why the tea party was born. there was an ideology there.
there's just not an ideology. it really is around donald trump. and i thought there might be an opportunity for some break, and you do see it from mitch mcconnell, who's broken with donald trump, but the rest of the party has not. and in the house, if anything, look at mccarthy, look at scalise, look at -- you know, look at whoever they end up replacing with liz cheney with. they're all going to be trumpers, and the candidates that win primaries are all going to be trumpers. people who have the energy, people who have the endorsement of him. and people who can sort of take off on social media. and so that is the problem facing the republican party. if you institutionalize this and institutionalize something that doesn't stand for something bigger, it's really hard to win persuadable voters. and that's the box they've been locked in now really for five years. >> and you're right. there is a difference between the house and the senate right now. you have mitch mcconnell coming out against donald trump on january the 6th. you have a lot of other senators keeping their heads down, hoping donald trump goes away, trying to stay out of the fight that's
going on. but i do need to underline something really important. and mika, we talked about tactics and strategy on the night of joe biden's speech, iz his 99th day speech. the republicans right now, they're a party that have tactics, but don't have strategies. i think those tactics -- and i think the calendar, the way things break, will likely lead to a big republican night on the night of 2022. election night 2022. kevin mccarthy will likely be the next speaker of the house if you just look at history. the overwhelming weight of history. if you look at redistricting, dave wasserman talking about the republicans picking up 25 or six, seven, eight more seats just by redistricting. you add the average of 25 to 30 seats that are usually picked up. i mean, it should be a really good year for republicans, but
then you wonder, is it going to look like the eight years when bill clinton was elected president, you know? he lost in '94, republicans picked up a few in '98, but he got elected. . barack obama had a huge loss in 2010 to the tea partyers, but he got elected in 2008 and 2012. and you just wonder whether again, republicans could win in 2022. and that would set them up to go even further down the trump road. and when the national election comes along, then we could possibly see the same thing that happened with bill clinton and with barack obama, both getting elected despite the fact that they got drubbed in the first midterm. again, we are getting way ahead of ourselves, but again, that's what strategy is about. you can talk about tactics, how do we win next year. you can talk about strategy. how does the republican party
plan for the next ten years? they're just not doing that. they're only worried about one thing, and that's keeping donald trump happy at mar-a-lago. >> it's unbelievable day trading. still ahead on "morning joe," facebook upholds its ban of former president donald trump, but an outside watchdog group calling the ruling, quote, a smoke screen. plus, former defense secretary robert gates joins us with his reaction to the withdrawal of u.s. troops from afghanistan. also, white house communications director jennifer palmieri -- former -- and education secretary miguel cardona, as the biden administration looks to double his agency's budget in what would be the largest expansion of education in generations. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. be right ba. among my patients i often see them have teeth sensitivity as well as gum issues.
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welcome back to "morning joe" on a thursday morning. let's turn to the decision to uphold the company's ban on former president donald trump's account. the 20-member board made its ruling, but ultimately handed the final decision back to facebook. the board said the social media site cannot invent new unwritten rules when it suits them and recommended facebook either permanently ban or reinstate trump within six months. trump was banned indefinitely for his posts after the january 6th insurrection where he referred to members of the mob as special and patriots. joining us now, long-term journalist, carol cadwalliger. she's a member of the real facebook oversight abort, a group that critiques facebook's policies. carol, what did you make of the ruling of this, they call it an
independent board, that handed down the decision about donald trump and basically kicked it down the road a bit and said, after six months, it's up to you, facebook. >> i'm really glad that you called it semi-independent and they call it independent, because, of course, it's not an independent board. it's a board that was set up by facebook. they made its terms of reference. and they were essentially trying to have this external body, where they could shove off the most difficult decisions it didn't want to have to deal with and let somebody else take responsibility for them, essentially. and what we've had is this situation where this board has come back and said, actually, this is on you. you've got to take responsibility and they just kicked it right back at them. and you know, in many ways, i think that is -- this is a good thing in that, you know, this total denial of facebook to just
take responsibility for what goes on on its platforms is, you know, we've just seen it time and time again. and this is a -- you know, this is a sort of huge example of it. so it's sort of -- i mean, it's a ridiculous and sort of slightly farcical situation, but it is quite helpful in that it turns the attention back on to facebook. but what's really unhelpful, i think, about it, is that it's a kind of side show going on, that takes -- that distracts attention from actually, you know, the real dangers of facebook. and you know what, i've been thinking about it this morning and actually listening to the conversation that you've just been having about january 26th, i think is really, really important in this context. because i think what's going on here is allowing facebook once again not to own up to its
complicity in what happened. and essentially, i find it -- you know, they're making this all about donald trump. what do we do? how do we solve a problem like donald trump? and actually, the question that facebook should be asking is, how do we solve a problem like facebook, i think. >> so carole, all of that last comment that you made, it struck me and i think a lot of people yesterday that the buildup to the announcement that we all heard and shared and are talking about now, the buildup to that announcement is that a separate government was going to make a statement and it was covered as if facebook was a separate government. and perhaps facebook does have the power of a separate government. but my question to you is, and it gets to the point that you just raised, how is it that with all of this controversy over so many months, years, actually, how is it that mark zuckerberg and sheryl sandberg skate away
from responsibility every single time? >> well, you know, you've just hit the nail on the head so acutely there, i think. because that is what this endeavor is all about. that it's -- it sets up a very grandiose board. it pays a lot of money. it's got some really incredible people onboard, and it's cloaking it, it's dressing in this sort of judicial wrapper. it called it a supreme court. and that is a way, as you say, of taking the spotlight off mark zuckerberg and sheryl sandberg, which is where it should be, and off on to this sort of side show going on over here. and so, i'm -- you know, i think you're absolutely correct that it is that endeavor, it's a way of making that concrete, giving us all something else to focus
on, when what we should be talking about here is mark zuckerberg and his failure to -- his failure to sort of like take control of his platform and stop, you know, these incredibly dangerous and malignant activities, which we know are going on on it right now. and that we saw come a head so acutely on january the 6th. and that is where our attention needs to be. and as i say, i think the real issue here and i think this board did like -- they have come -- they have -- they did identify it in a way, because facebook wouldn't -- they asked facebook questions about trump posts and about the algorithms and about the activities around january the 6th and facebook
didn't answer those questions. so it wouldn't even answer the questions for the board that it itself had set up. but it's because i think it really is, it's complicit. facebook was complicit in what happened. and it hasn't reckoned with that. and it's refusing to reckon with that. >> and mara gay, donald trump is claiming martyrdom, at least for another six months over this decision, but obviously, he would like and need nothing more than to be back on facebook, a platform where he raises a lot of money and pushes out his message. >> yeah, you know, my question for carole, just to turn this back on you, how do you solve a problem like facebook? how do the american people think about this? when we talk about accountability, why do the american people need to rely on a semi-didn't board to bring that? is there something else to do? what is the role for congress, for the biden administration here, without getting too political, if possible?
>> look, we can't rely upon this board. this is -- you know, this is -- it's like, you know, using an example. it's like phillip morris setting up the independent tobacco board and saying, it's fine, they're going to sell who we sell cigarettes to. no, that is not fine. we know this is just a way of avoiding the fact that they cause cancer. and you know, essentially, what facebook is doing is causing cancer. and what is essential for the american people is to recognize that and to recognize that you have an urgent, critical problem here. and you have to legislate. you have to take really tough decisions. and that is what you need to be focused on right now. so forget this side show, okay? you know, they've made some recommendations. great, let me get on with it. but what you need to be focused on is the fact that this company that has far, far too much power, which has far, far too much influence in your public discourse and what happens in your politics, this needs to be
dealt with now, because otherwise you'll be in exactly the same situation in four years' time. and maybe the insurrection won't be thwarted next time. you know, it was -- you know, you think about how close you were and you think about the role that facebook played in that, and you think about the fact that facebook is now trying to cover that up, you know, they've done an internal report, but they didn't release that, they're not even letting the employees read it. they know that stop the steal was organized on facebook. they know that. and i think this is -- let's use this moment as a wake-up call in that you have to legislate, you have to regulate, you have to break this company up. no company should have this much power. and it is dangerous. so that's where i think the attention needs to be this morning. >> so, carole, let's back up
just for a minute and just talk about trends and american politics and how facebook actually could make the -- reinforce some negative trends. you've seen in this country, i think in large part because of new media, because of new technology, because the way people can be targeted as much as they can. you saw bill clinton getting re-elected, george w. bush getting re-elected and barack obama getting re-elected. it took something extraordinary, having a president as clumsy and bad as donald trump to break that re-election streak, which was the most since the early 1,800. what we have with facebook, it seems, is this monopoly that embraces donald trump and the ruling power, when they actually control washington, d.c.
and now, even for those of us who think donald trump should be off the platform, now, who's not surprised that they're doing what democrats would want them to do, as well? this is not a state-run media operation, it is a media operation that keeps its eyes on who's running the state. and their decision-making process always tends to break towards those in power. which consolidates power even more behind whatever party is running the country. >> i mean, that's exactly, exactly it. and that's not just in america. it's in all sorts of countries across -- really, explicitly in england at the moment. but it sucks up to power, it sucks up to donald trump for four years. it only took action against him after he lost the election. it's something like, oh, actually now, we think what he's doing is bad and we're going to
kick him off the platform, but now that democrats are in power, we're terribly responsible and setting up this responsible board with eminent law professors that are going to help us now. this is like political theater and it really is up to us to see through what is going on. and you know, you make a really interesting kind of historical comparison there. like, what has changed? what has changed? what has enabled somebody like donald trump to become president. and it's this, it's this what's happening underneath the surface. we see what's going on, you know, we watch the news, we can see what people are saying in public, but there's a kind of, you know, entire sewer system which runs underneath the public life and it's out of view and it's invisible and that's where these noxious currents are flowing and growing and that is essentially what is happening on
these platforms in darkness, where we can't see, where it's totally invisible to us, the public. where a private company has the keys to that and they're refusing to let us in to see. and that is the, i think, the kind of like the acute thing that has changed. and you know what those currents are still there and their going to be getting stronger and more toxic over the next four years. this problem has not gone away. all that's happening right now is they're a group. but until you do something about that platform and until you do something about these sort of, like i said, this sort of sewer system underneath the surface, you are just restoring up trouble for the future. >> could not agree with you
more. carole cadwalldr, thank you very much. if you really want to understand, she las it out so well, her ted talk, especially. it helps the public understand what's really wrong here and hasn't changed. back now to the republican party. we've got a theme here, pushing liz cheney out of its leadership. republican strategist susan del percio writes in a new piece for nbc think, quote, as impossible as this may seem, the gop has not hit rock bottom, not even close. the party does not want to leave donald trump and trumpism behind. it would rather knock the stuffing out of true conservatives like utah senator mitt romney and liz cheney. i hear a lot of people discussing the emergence of a new wing of the republican party, but that's not going to happen. the cheneys and the romneys of the party will be long gone by the time the republican party turns itself around.
until then, the gop will continue to nominate the most extreme representatives. perhaps, eventually, such extremism will knock state and local leaders out of power. but when? it will be a long and ugly time for the party. we thought trump was the worst, but it turns out the worst is yet to come. and susan joins us now, along with adjunct professor of register and philosophy, susan nelson. she's writing about this in a new piece for "usa today," entitled, representative liz cheney is courageous while republican men are profiles in cowardice. we'll get to that in just a moment. first, susan, if the worst is yet to come, what does that look like and why is it that some of these top republicans who have been in politics, who are holding positions right now, why can't they see what has already happened and where this is leading? what does it look like?
>> well, it's going to get a lot worse, because most of the current republicans in office right now are only concerned about being in office right now. and they know that if they want to stay, you know, with leadership, unlike liz cheney, she's willing to put it out there, and most of them are not. so we're going to see the state and local parties for a very long time, i believe, really keep working through trumpism. this isn't actually anymore about trump. it's about the idea of these extremists taking over the state parties and nominates the most extreme and losing congressional votes as a result of it most likely. but even in 2022 works out for the republicans, but long-term, it won't. who's joining the republican party now? no one? as a matter of fact, people are leaving it in droves. this is going to keep going on for a while. anyone who thinks it's going to correct itself in 2022 or 2024,
is just missing the point. and i will add, i think, liz cheney is playing a very smart long game. she's betting, i think, that trump is going to have some legal problems coming up, which most likely will play out a certain way. and this committee that she's been -- the bipartisan review of january 6th, that basically she was speaking for, is going to happen and kevin mccarthy is going to look like a fool. >> and i would say, overall, she's betting on the country and the principles this country is based on. usually when you bet on america, it ends pretty well, for those who believe in our constitution and the principles this country is based on. sophia, you write about what's going on and you say this. in the final analysis, as a woman, as a woman of color, and as a former republican from 1988
to 2016, i have seen this movie before. these republican men do not like nor do they support mouthy, strong, bold, independent hillary clinton-type women and right now liz cheney is not toeing the line. she is speaking truth to power and they are going to make her pay with her leadership post. you know, sophia, i was -- i kind of had like a visceral reaction when i heard kevin mccarthy say, she wasn't help carrying the message. what the hell is that message that he thinks she's supposed to carry? >> good morning, mika and susan. a couple of things. one, the message is clearly this. donald trump won the 2020 election. joe biden stole the election. kamala harris is on a milk carton, missing in action. the fact of the matter is that they believe that socialism is taking over, cancel culture is
taking is over, mr. potato head is over, i could go on and on and on with the ridiculous foolishness of what the message is. but kevin mccarthy to the point that joe and others were discussing earlier, mika, is talking about the fact that he knows this base is very trumpy. it's happening here in the commonwealth of virginia. the virginian republican party is no longer anything that i recognize. it is a far-right, extreme group of people who during this primary that we're having right now, mika, are tripping over themselves to suck up to a man who lost the election, lost the house, lost the senate, and who's been banished from social media. so let that sit with you. i think that liz cheney is playing the long game. i think she's also playing like you, the american wins democracy game. i believe that, susan believes that, you believe that. but this current republican party, we have just started accepting that this isn't a revolution. there's not a civil war in the republican party. this is who these people are.
this is what they believe in. this is where this party is headed. and we're not going to be able to save it. and i agree with susan, it's probably going to take a decade in my opinion before this writes itself. they're going to have to lose so much and so big. the senate, the governor's races, the house races before they get a grip. >> susan, the lesson over the last several years for the members of congress, if you hug donald trump close enough, you ascend to new heights of of power in congress. if you take congressman elise stefanick of new york, she was a republican republican, she helped paul ryan in 2012. conventional republican by most accounts. and then she got close to donald trump, she defended him in the first impeachment hearing, and now perpetuated all of these conspiracy theories and lies about the 2020 election in defending him there. and now, she will likely take liz cheney's job as the chair of
leadership in the party. so is it not the lesson for other republicans that if you're liz cheney, you're punished. if you're elise stefanick, you get a new, bigger, better job? >> well, in the short-term, it absolutely is, willie. but i think what liz cheney is doing is so important and mika touched on it. are you there for yourself or are you there to serve the country? for all of those republicans that want to follow in elise stefanick's steps, they're going to. it's going to happen. but they will be found out for what they are. but, yes, they will have short-term gratification while they destroy their country in long-term. they will be remembered in history not for the leadership roles, but for the decline of what they did to the republican party. >> incredible opportunity missed, i think, for elise stefanick, who should have a long career in the republican party. mara gay has a question for sophia nelson. mara? >> sophia, it's great to see
you. my question for you is about voters. how many former republican voters like you are there really left? and where do they go? do they just go to the democratic party? or if not, how do moderate republicans retake control or influence in the republican party? >> well, i promise you within the next month, you're going to hear a response to that on a very big national level, and that's all i can say about that right now, but with respect to republicans like myself, those moderate, independent, centrist-leaning northern virginia republicans, if you will, in other state, we have left the party. and as susan mentioned earlier, mara, if you look at the roles in states like even -- not alabama -- i'm sorry, arizona and other states, republicans are leaving in large numbers. and that's your suburban, swing voter, independent type of centrist women voters that register republican, but they kind of swing back and forth.
those of us like myself have had to vote democrat in the last number of elections, particularly on the national level for president. because the options that we had on the republican side were so unacceptable that we kind of had to vote the other way. but the reality is, we're politically homeless right now. i hope that's going to change. i'll be a part of that change. i think susan and others will be a big part of that change as well. but hold your powder. you'll hear from us real soon. and this action of elise stefanick against liz cheney is so not the woman code. i'm embarrassed that another woman would wait in the wings to take another woman's job and kick her while she's down. if that's what we're teaching our daughters, our nieces and young women, we're failing. democracy is under assault and so is sisterhood and solidarity. >> susan del percio and sophia
nelson, thank you very much to you both. yeah, there's a lot going on there that we can talk about and we'll have to continue this conversation. sophia's book, by the way, is "the woman code". the it's amazing and it's great that you brought it up in light of all of this. also, "epopulars by one." and coming up, the biden administration comes out in favor of waiving patent protections for covid vaccines. what it means for developing countries struggling to get shots in arms. "morning joe" will be right back. s in arms. "morning joe" will be right back ♪ ♪i've got the brains you've got the looks♪ ♪let's make lots of money♪
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welcome back to "morning joe." the biden administration announced it will support waiving covid-19 patent protections in order to increase global production. nbc's brian sullivan joins us now to more on that. great to see you this morning. obviously, this would free up a lot of vaccine around the world, but it is controversial, not terribly popular in certain corners, is it? >> and by certain corners, willie, you mean the big pharma industry. this is setting up to be a big fight between the white house and big pharma. the president is supporting suspending the patents on vaccines, right? patents give you exclusive rights to produce something. in return, you get a profit. we're talking about pfizer, moderna, johnson & johnson with their vaccine. the problem is, they have limited production capacity. they're making a lot of it. the united states, in a very good spot. some developed nations in a very
good spot. but you look at countries like india and other poorer nations, they simply don't have the capacity to either make it themselves or to buy it. what the president wants to do is suspend those patents so that any pharmaceutical manufacturer, willie, would be able to manufacture those pharmacies. think about it. if you've got 20 pharmaceutical manufacturing facilities around the world, either sitting idle or not necessarily needed for the drug it makes, make the vaccines there, double, triple, quadruple, whatever global production. get the vaccines around the world to those underserved communities. but big pharma says, we need a profit motive here, otherwise, there's a risk of developing drugs. that's a serious story. i want to leave you with some serious money. you know what doz coin is, like one of those like bitcoin. it was started as a joke with the shiba inu dog with its mascot. it's been on fire. here you go.
if you had put $1,000 into dogecoin on january 1st, said, let's roll the dice on this crypto, you would have $120,000 today. 1,000 to $120,000 since january 1st. it's up 12,000%. a crypto used mainly as a token to tip people on the internet, making some real coin. by the way, elon musk who loves the doge, is hosting "saturday night live" on saturday night. i'm not joking. that's one of the reasons why dogecoin has gone up in value. think about that, willie, you and i could have thrown in some change from the nbc cafeteria and you could have finally had thatferrari. >> loves the doge. quickly, what's the long-term prospect on something like this?
is this just a fad? if i hold on to it for six more months, am i back to a thousand bucks. >> you can't ask me that. i'll tell you this. but you jus did. there's about 50 different cryptos out there. a lot of them have real uses, on the blockchain, financial payments, et cetera, there are going to be some big winners, but i've been doing this 25 years, willie, 25 years. i remember the internet boom. i'm not sure i've ever seen anything quite like this. there will be some losers and there will be pain. where that is, i don't know. i'll just say this. be careful. it's up 12,000%. the doge. barking loudly. >> i'm not ready to proclaim my love for the doge just yet. >> never been on the dogs. >> cnbc's brian sullivan, great to see you, as always, my friend. still ahead on "morning joe," robert gates joins our conversation. plus, education secretary miguel
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no-hitter since jim palmer did it 52 years ago in 1969. >> and if we continued that call, you would have heard the announcer say, this one's for you, kasie hunt. kasie is with us this morning. kasie, congratulations. first one since jim palmer in '69. >> it's a really great way to fully understand how difficult and how much loyalty it has required to be a baltimore orioles fan for all of this time. but, hey, here we are. it's awesome for him. one pitch away from a perfect game. one wild pitch away. >> explain that. that was a strikeout, but because the catcher dropped the ball, the runner advances to first. >> and the runner was thrown out trying to steal second. john means faced only 27 batters. it was technically a perfect game except for the wild pitch. he got his no-hitter, which is
good for him and great for baltimore. >> by the way, the orioles only three games out. meanwhile, america's falling in love, mika, with this new york yankees team as they've won five in a row. only one game back of the sox in the loss column. there's a real love affair in the country right now, you can feel it with this scrappy group. >> nope. thank you, willie. good try. also with us, we have chief white house correspondent for "the new york times," peter baker and co-host of showtime's "the circus" and host of the podcast, "just something about her," jennifer palmieri. good to have you on, jen. today republicans are another step closer to pushing out congresswoman liz cheney from her role as gop conference chair for telling the truth. house minority whip steve scalise is now publicly backing congresswoman elise stefanick, who will apparently not tell the truth in order to have this
position to replace liz cheney in the position. a spokesperson for scalise said, quote, house republicans need to be solely focused on taking back the house in 2022 and fighting against speaker pelosi and president biden's radical socialist agenda. and elise stefanick is strongly committed to doing that. let that breathe. a spokesperson for cheney responded to that statement saying, quote, liz will have more to say in the coming days. this moment is about much more than a house leadership fight. ceney is out with an op-ed in "the washington post" this morning, entitled, the gop is at a turning point. history is watching us. also in the post, dan balz has a piece entitled, the effort to dump liz cheney is the consequence of a party that lost its way. he writes in part, principled conservatism no longer seems in vogue among the bulk of the republican party.
fealty to the former president, no matter what he says is more important. that and winning power at whatever cost to truth. the story of the republican party in 2021 has been described as a battle tea party's soul. in reality, the battle is over, at least for now. cheney and romney and a handful of others daring to speak the truth about trump's election lies are on the losing side. trump has prevailed, cheney may well be driven from the leadership in retribution, but most likely, with her conscience in tact. peter baker, what's happening on capitol hill wins -- i'm interested in the dynamic around elise stefanick, you know, who one of the youngest people to be elected to congress, woman, very educated, bright young woman.
i just am wondering how people make this decision to go with something which is clearly, no matter if you're a democrat or a republican, i know you're backing a lie here. >> yeah, this is obviously a defining moment for the republican party. it's, once again, approving that it is donald trump's party more than anything else. the party of personality, a party of an individual rather than a set of ideas. remember, this is the party that didn't even have a platform at last year's convention. their only goal at last year's election, in effect, was to re-elect donald trump and those who supported him, not to stand up for a particular set of ideas. and it's a remarkable moment, because there is a big fight going on in this country or could be a big debate about where it should go. what president biden is proposing is a classic, you know, dividing point of american politics. the size and scope of government. should we be spending a lot of money to accomplish these goals?
what about the deficit and the debt? these are issues that republicans engaged on for decades, often very successfully. but instead of having that fight, they are busy finding ways to demonstrate their loyalty to donald trump. their loyalty to the person who lost the last two popular votes for them. and it shows that the january 6th clearly did not break the republican party of its addiction to trump or maybe more specifically, to trump's base, to their voters that they're afraid will punish them for any apostasy against trump. and it is a remarkable thing, because you cannot argue that elise stefanick is a better conservative than liz cheney. my the numbers, liz cheney is far more conservative than elise stefanick. voted with trump more often than elise stefanick did on the issues, on the policies that they eventually did decide on. it's all about loyalty to one individual, something that we haven't really seen in modern times in either party. >> peter, you're right about
those numbers. and the chamber of commerce gave elise a higher rating. just on policy, that liz cheney is more conservative than elise stefanick. but it's not about that. kasie, yesterday we saw the house republican whip steve scalise come out in support of elise stefanick's bid to unseat liz cheney. this seems like a foregone conclusion. is there any chance that liz cheney holds on to her seat come next week? >> i don't think so, willie, but she's going to make it as uncomfortable as possible for the republicans who are standing with donald trump. i think she recognizes clearly that if this is the position that she holds, there's no room for her and so she's decided she's going to embrace it and
step out and take this position. after four years of republicans essentially being silent on former president trump, trying to look the other way, trying to almost stick their fingers in their ears and pretend that he was just going to go away, it's obviously become clear, based on all of their behavior now that he actually lost that that strategy didn't work. and liz cheney is making a very long bet here. she is betting in the long run, american democracy is going to prevail. and i think it's going to be a real test for the entire country, including american citizens, who will have to decide whether getting their news and their information about what's happening, because that is a real piece of this problem. and cheney and romney are alone, basically, for the most. and we'll see they're able to convince people that they need to follow them. one test is going to be to be, we haven't had an election since
the insurrection. and i think there are people whose minds were changed by what happened at the capitol. but we haven't had a real test of that, yet, willie. >> all right. meanwhile, republicans are vying for several competitive congressional seats after some house democrats won't seek re-election next year. at least five democrats will leave vacant seats in districts likely to significantly change once they are redrawn based off the 2020 census data. among the open spots include congressman charlie crist of florida and congressman tim ryan of ohio, who will run for the senate. these types of shifts could be the first signs of a coming political wave in the 2018 cycle, 48 house republicans didn't seek re-election and 14 of those vacancies were won by democrats. as "the new york times" puts it, quote, now republicans are
salivating over the prospect of reversing that dynamic and erasing the democrats' six-seat advantage. jen palmieri, what's the opportunity and also the concern here for democrats in terms of how these -- how they handle these down-ballot races. so there's three big things that are pushing against democrats' success in the midterms. one, of course, is history, which traditionally you don't do well. and there's a lot of these retirements. so i think one of the big existential questions for the democrats in congress, for biden is how do you prevent a republican failed party? and i think the best weapon that the democrats have is to fight that kind of dysfunction and to solve the problems that are affecting people in their everyday lives. and, you know, while it's -- i still think that it's tough for the democrats in the midterms, if the economy is getting better, the pandemic is gone, if
they have passed an infrastructure bill that is actually providing jobs. if they do this in a way that doesn't wreak of politics, but just of like trying to address the problems that people are facing, they have a decent shot. and on the republican side, there's not, as you note, there's not a good argument coming out from their side. peter talked about this. they don't have a cohesive message to argue against a biden agenda. they're fighting with themselves. and at the state level, you see a lot of state legislatures on the republican side passing bills to make it harder for people to vote. couple that with the insurrection, and independents will not look to favorly on a lot of these republican candidates. >> peter baker, i'm wondering in your meanderings around washington, around the white house, capitol hill and just bumping into people who you know, in government each and every day, do any of them ever
leave the moment that we're in, talking about liz cheney and think about, you know, 5, 10, 20 years down the road when people will be asking, how did it happen that a total charlatan, a man who urged nullification of an election, a man who urged his followers basically to adhere to sedition as he champions the cause each and every day, how did it happen that seemingly an entire political party, the republican party, fractured itself, perhaps even destroyed themselves because they were thinking about just this moment. any long-term thinkers who you bump into who are republicans and talk about that worry? >> you do obviously talk to a lot of republicans who look at the down-range implications of what's going on. i think there had been an expectation after january 6th, there might be a reckoning or rethinking about where the party was going to go. that trump would begin to to
depart from the scene and they could theory what the party was going to be, what kind of agenda they wanted to present to the country. they have a potentially good future. as jen palmieri sort of indicated here, history is working against the democrats in the midterm election, especially given how narrow these majorities are. the last election showed that republicans have an appealing message at times for senate and house races. but they are at the moment still obviously enthrall to president trump. and that is not something that has actually changed the way many republicans thought it might after january 6th. there's a lot of time between now and the midterm. a lot of things can happen. two years in politics is an eternity, four years before the next presidential election is even more so. but for the moment, they're busy debating levels of loyalty to somebody who did not wane the
white house, you know, on re-election -- for the first time in 30 years, of any incumbent president. and i think that shows not his appeal to the broader public, but to the republican base. i talked yesterday with a republican senator who is saying, look, in my state, he still has 85% support among republicans. what am i going to do to go up against that? that's at the highest that george w. bush ever had among republicans. and so they're still looking at that very short-term predicament that some of them see as a -- you know, as a box that they're in. and that they don't know what to do in terms of that 10-year, 20-year time frame that we're talking about, mike. >> as we talk about january 6th and the politics around it, it's worth remembering what happened that day. michael fanone, a d.c. police
officer injured in the capitol attack sent a letter to members of congress who said he's upset by those who, quote, continue to downplay the events of that day. republican congressman adam kinzinge of illinois posted what he calls the must-read letter to twitter. in it, fanone writes, the fighting here was nothing short of brutal. i observed approximately 30 police officers standing shoulder-to-shoulder maybe four to five abreast using their bodies to hold back the onslaught of violent attackers. the indifference shown to my colleagues and i has been nothing but disgraceful. it's been 183 days since we stopped a violent insurrection saving countless members of congress and their staff from almost certain injury and almost death. the time foul yto fully recogni these officers' action is now. that's officer fanone, d.c. police, writing there. donald trump called them special and patriots, that's part of
what led to his suspension from facebook, which was just upheld by the social media giant's semi-independent oversight board. the 20-member board made its ruling, but ultimately handed the final decision back to facebook. the board said the site, quote, cannot inevent new unwritten rules rent it suits them and recommend that facebook either permanently ban or reinstate trump within six months. joining us now, nbc news reporter ben collins. ben, it's good to see you this morning. first of all, what is this board exactly, because i think that's an important part of this story. >> the board is 20 largely academics, human rights activists, free speech activists who facebook chose. they chose these 20 people to make basically this decision.
this is a board funded largely by facebook, $130 million was sent to this board to make decisions like this. they've made lower grade decisions in the past. but this was about creating a board to figure out what to do in this worst-case scenario. and the board said, we don't have enough rules. you're trying to make us the supreme court. you don't have a constitution that is applied equally. so what do we do here? they said, we're going to ship this back to you guys. you have six months to get it together. get rules that apply to everybody on your platform. then we can come back and say, is this guy worthy of permanent expulsion? and what does that mean that if you can be banned from a white house that a billion people use. >> so facebook handed it to the oversight committee, the oversight committee hands it back to facebook to make longer term rules for its own social media website. what do you expect that facebook does from here? they didn't want to make this
decision and now it looks like they might have to. >> they'll make some hard and fast rules now, because they have to. facebook has said that whatever the board says is binding. whatever they say we have to do, they're going to do it. they're going to come back and try to determine basically what that means. we were in a dangerous predicament yesterday. people could have conflated personhood with the ability to post on a private website. these 20 people could have done that and that would have been a mess, because these people are not the law, regardless of who makes this decision, this is not the supreme court. this is a private moderation panel, basically. so that's what they said, too. we're a private moderation panel. i'm not sure if we should be making this decision. facebook will go back and figure out what it takes to be banned from the white house. and by the way, you don't want a website where you cannot ban somebody. that means extremists, that means people running bot nets and scams. you know, you want a website where it's safe for people to be on or website.
and it's not driven -- the conversation is not driven by the loudest person there. that's in part what this panel said, too. we have to figure out, as a group, you know, why one individual can have so much power on your platform. why is that guy available to this fire hose when most average citizens are not. facebook has to figure out algorithmically why this is happening. >> let's bring in ramesh shrinivaszen. i wonder if you see this same issue in the overall problem that is facebook, because continuing to ban trump, doesn't
that require facebook to now live up to that precedent? and isn't that possibly very difficult for them? >> i think it's so important, mika, to remember how symbiotic and positive in a certain sense economically the relationship is between president trump. and really anyone who promotes outrageous content, inflammatory content, on facebook and other big tech platforms. because as ben was just mentioning, these algorithmic systems, which decide what we're going to see each of us, as american citizens, not only function to erode a sort of free press and a public atmosphere where all of us can come together, but they are based on grabbing content that is predicted to grab our attention. this is something we talked about four years ago, as you might remember, mika. it's a prediction bade on what will grab your attention, and therefore it is focused on
outrage. in a certain sense, our psychological, our behaviors, and our emotions are raw materials being sort of worked with by these technology companies, specifically facebook in particular, that monitor us 24/7, 365, and try to understand us in such a fine-tailored sense that they will just serve us with content that will arouse and outrage us. and that at scale is extremely polarizing for democracy and dissolving of journalism. and this is not just an issue in our country. facebook has 2.5 or so billion users around the world. and if you include instagram and whatsapp, which are major companies with well over 1 billion users or so that facebook, the company owns, you can see how facebook at scale can erode any open of democracy or any hope of journalism actually serving the public interests. >> so, ramesh, listening to what
you just said, listening to the last two minutes of what you just said, to my ear, you described one of the most dangerous elements confronting our culture, our society, and our governments. should facebook be broken up? >> i certainly think that regulatory action is needed. and look at the situation where facebook says, hey, oversight board, take care of this for us. we'll appoint you and pay you. it is very typical of what we've seen the last few years. what we really need is governmental action and protection of or democracy. and we're at an amazing moment where we have bipartisan agreement that something needs to be done. and these sorts of decisions to deplatform the former president are just going to add fuel toot fire for the republicans who have falsely claimed that facebook and other big tech
companies are responsible for their losses in 2018 and 2020. and president trump, former president trump has stated multiple times that big technology companies who me fed off of, symbiotically, so regulation is needed. >> ben collins, facebook has done something interesting, especially yesterday, which is to bring democrats and republicans together on the idea of, quote, doing something about facebook. when you have ted cruz criticizing the decision to continue the ban on donald trump. elizabeth warren wants to break up facebook. is there appetite to, quote, break up facebook, and what does that even mean? >> they're coming at it from two different angles, anti-trust, this company is simply too big
and has a market dominance that makes it so we'll never see what's under the hood. ted cruz is coming at it from "stop banning my friends," which is a completely different thing. but you might come to the same answer. the same answer might be them breaking up these companies, one punitively, and the other coming at it from the idea that companies shouldn't be this big, and if they're this big, we can't really see what's under the hood. i think that's where we'll end up, frankly. but it's going to be the opposite of how bills usually get made. i think you'll get this big, wild, swift response, something like breaking up facebook, and the reasons for why it's happening are all over the place. >> so jen palmieri, to bring this all back to what's happening in the republican party and all the garbage and vitriol that is flying around and then disappearing into thin air on facebook, it really does connect to what is happening to liz cheney right now. and to the value of the truth.
she wrote this op-ed in "the washington post," but in a way, it's as if she's leaving, because at this point the tide is turning against her and the reason for it is lies. >> and that op-ed, i commend her for doing it, but it was like she signed her own death warrant. it's like she was trying to get ahead of what was going to happen next week and leave the party on her own terms. she said the first thing the republicans had to do is support the ongoing ooj investigations from january 6th. there's very little support within the republican caucus to do that. just like it's a turning point, i think it's already turned. i think that the republican party is acting -- if you judge it by normal, democratic, small "d" standards, it's a failed party. it operates in silos of
disinformation, it's -- by forcing -- by the base forcing leader to buy into the big lie, they're forcing them to buy into undermining democracy. and that is why you saw president biden yesterday express consternation over this. i'm a democrat. i want there to be a healthy opposition party will work in opposition, but at least is on the same base line as facts. if you're not on the same base line of facts, you can't really compromise with people. and if it's just democrats out there on their own, it's very scary. the cynicism doesn't stay isolated in the republican party. and i think the best way for democrats to fight that, you're not going to convince trump voters that biden really won, but you can convince everyone in america that you're trying to solve problems. that you're trying to make government work for them. and that dysfunction really feeds that political division. and that is the best weapon
democrats have to try to fight back. >> jennifer palmieri, we want to mention again your podcast, "just something about her ", which i was happy to join you for. a new episode out today. and i appreciate your doing that. thanks for being on. we'll see you back again here very soon. and nbc's ben collins and ramesh, thank you both as well for being incredible conversation. still ahead on "morning joe," new data shows president biden has hit his goal of having most elementary and middle schools open for full in-person learning in his first 100 days. but many students still continue to learn at least partly from home. education secretary miguel cardona is standing by and joins us to talk about the push to get kid back in school and what about kids back in college? you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. . helping to prevent gum disease and bad breath. never settle for 25%.
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like, if you're really tired, you can take a little nap. >> yeah, you just turn off the camera. i've seen that. >> a fifth grade student in virginia telling first lady dr. jill biden all about the perks of remote learning during biden's visit. the days of napping during remote schools are almost over as vaccinations rise and safety plans are implemented to get children back into school. president biden set a goal to get kindergarten through eighth grade schools open in his first 100 days. joining us now, u.s. secretary of education, miguel cardona. thank you very much for joining us. you know, that cute kid, the napping, it's actually a real issue, remote learning, kids don't learn as much, there's data that shows they learn a significant amount less.
we've got to get these kids back in school. what does september look like? will we be at 100%? >> thank you for having me. first of all, i have to take this opportunity to thank all of the teachers across the country for their great work. it is teacher appreciation week and we don't need a pandemic to realize how important teachers are, but let me take this moment to say thank you. and with regard to the september, yes, i expect all schools to be open full-time in person for all students. we really need to make sure students have an opportunity to learn in the classroom. and quite frankly, i would rather have it this spring. students don't learn as well remotely. there is no substitute for in-person learning. and i'm pleased, as you mentioned, we have 54% of our pre-k through 8th schools in class every day. about 90% are offering in-person learning for students. until we're at 100%, we must keep our foot on the gas pedal. >> yeah, i better give a
shout-out to my teacher that i appreciate, kay cordliou in high school, i think i took algebra i and algebra ii twice and she sat with me for hours and hours alone trying to make it happen. i barely got through, thanks to her in all of my classes. but i'm hearing about colleges, graduate programs, they're still remote. this is going to be several -- maybe a generation of students, for at least a four-year span that is interrupted terribly by this pandemic. not blaming the administration, but should we be back in school now, before we see the long-term ramifications on these kids right now. >> absolutely. what we're doing right now is monitoring more closely. we have data systems that we set
up. and we're reaching out to make sure in that places where they're not offering in-person learning or full-time in-person learning, we want to make sure we're supporting those states and districts to find out why they're not. we have a clearinghouse we released last week of hundreds of examples where it's working and strategies we can use. we need to make sure we keep that level of urgency. our kids can't wait. and the same is true for colleges. while i expect blended learning or some form of remote learning being the new landscape, it doesn't substitute in-person learning. so that's why we're pushing hard to make sure all students have an opportunity to get back into the classroom as soon as possible this spring. >> mr. secretary, it's willie geist. thanks for being on with us. by some measure, 3 million students have lost touch with their school since the pandemic began. meaning they haven't checked in for remote learning, sometimes the school doesn't even know where those students are. that has huge implications for
those schools, those students, their futures. when you think about 3 million young kids who haven't even been to school in almost a year and a half now, what do you do about that? >> sure. so when i was a commissioner of education in connecticut, we realized that many of our students who were experiencing the trauma of the pandemic, they had to move. their families had to relocate to different parts of the country for various reasons. so we have to make sure we're using the american rescue plan funds to make sure we're doing more to do outreach, to get folks out into the community. to reconnect those students and provide them not only the academic support they're going to need, but that social/emotional embrace that we know our students will need to be success. the american rescue plan does provide unprecedented funds for schools to think outside of the box, reconnect with our families, working with outside agencies. the american family plan proposes community school funds so we can make sure we're connecting our students into the classroom and our families back
into the classroom where they belong. >> mr. secretary, when you look at the state of our schools, in new york city, for example, they have been since the pandemic began, among the safest places in this entire city. we know that transmission is lower with kids. we know they do better if they do get the disease. we know they need to be in school. you've said all of that. as you look back on it now, has this country been too slow to reopen the schools. and is there any defense now for not having all the schools open? >> one of the experiences that -- one of the things i learned from my experience is that one size does not fit all. i went on a help is here tour and visited about nine states, about ten different schools. and what i noticed is that the differences in why folks weren't coming back in, in some places, we had buildings that were 130 years old and the ventilation hadn't been touched in years. i see that in many places across
the country, school has been in session since august. my children have been in school since august. there are examples where it's working. in those places where they're sputtering along, i want to make sure that this agency that i'm a part of is there on the ground supporting them, pushing. our students need us more than ever now. we need them to be in the classroom. >> knowing all the impacts of having the schools closed and knowing that the disease isn't transmitted on surfaces, we don't have to go through all of this deep cleaning that we thought we did, do you think the school should have open earlier? >> without looking at the context, it's difficult to answer that. we do rely very heavily on cdc guidance. it's critically important that we're listening to our health experts, because this is a health pandemic. in many cases, as we learn new information, plans change. and i've seen school systems change plans mid-course based on new data. i'm pleased to see that those districts were able to bring students also did it in a way that's safe. you don't want to skip the
mitigation strategies, but districts that are nearing the end of the year are not taking their foot off the gas pedal. do everything you can to get students in now. because that emotional connection that our students need is critically important now. think about summer learning experiences, think about how the fall looks better and different. i want to make sure that our folks are still trying to get our students in this year. >> mr. secretary, i would like you to discuss a specific group of students. and i know you're familiar with them from your history in connecticut. and this would be k-8 students, kbrung people, obviously, who have basically missed two years of education, a year and a half at least of socialization. these children come from homes where their parents can't afford tutors, where perhaps there's no laptop or internet or broadband ready to roll for them. what specifically can be done to help these students who have
already lost so much in terms of making sure that they don't lose even more? >> that's going to be our work moving forward. the pandemic has really sharpened our sword for the fight ahead, addressing inequities that were exacerbated by this pandemic. we need to make sure we never lose that sense of urgency, for the next several years, provides social and emotional support for those students, make sure the class sizes for those students are much smaller. make sure we're doing wraparound services for those students. i spoke to a sixth grader recently who told me, when i came back to school, i found it difficult to socialize again because i was in front of my computer for a good part of a year. we need to make sure our schools are prepared to provide that social/emotional support and we have to realize, this is not just about turning on the lights, providing face masks. this is about making sure we're
providing mental health support. all of these students faced trauma in their lives. we have to be prepared to work with that, but also the academic needs. i expect summer learning opportunities for students to be hands-on, outdoors, engaging with one another. like a camp almost. we need to double down for our students. this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to hit the reset button on things we know didn't work and give our students the attention that they deserve. the american rescue plan provides the funds for that, so we need to step up for them. >> education secretary miguel cardona, thank you very much for being on the show this morning. appreciate it. >> thank you. >> it is really going to be a tough transition for kids coming back. i notice it, peter baker, with even college age, graduate level kids, they have been holed up for a years and that has had an impact on their lives. what are you hearing from the administration in terms of the fight against the virus and the
issue of getting kids back to school. are they happy where they're at at this point? >> i think they've made a lot of progress, obviously, in the 100 plus days that biden has been president. the challenge now is not so much getting the supply of vaccine out there, for instance, but finding people who haven't taken it yet and convincing them that not only is it okay to take it, but they should take. it's a community duty. not just about protecting yourself, but your neighbors and family members, as well. it's not just an individual choice. obviously, in terms of schools, that's been a frustration. the biden administration had some stutter start messaging on that. republicans accused them of moving to slowly, being too cautious in terms of returning kids to school. i think broadly speaking, the biden administration looks at the handling of covid and the
return to normalcy so far as one of their strong points. july 4th, the president told us, is a time where we can begin to expect near-normalcy. the biggest challenge in some ways right now might be overseas. the crisis is a reminder that the rest of the world is still suffering greatly from this pandemic. >> peter baker, thank you very much for your reporting this morning. coming up, former defense secretary robert gates on the u.s. troop withdrawal from afghanistan and the other top foreign policy issues facing the country. plus, this morning, we're celebrating baseball's oldest living hall of famer. the great willie mays turns 90 years old today. "morning joe" is coming right back. "morning joe" is coming right back
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way, way, back. it is gone. >> that is known as the legendary willie mays making one of the most memorable plays in baseball history. an over the shoulder running catch in deep center field in game one of the 1954 world series. today, the say-hay kid is now 90 years old. he said, i think i was the best baseball player i ever saw. joinings now, national baseball columnist for "the new york times," tyler kepner and senior writer at espn, howard bryant. good morning to you both, guys, tyler and i go way back to our freshman year, work at the vanderbilt hustler in nashville, tennessee. good to see you, t.k., my man.
mike barnicle, let me put that question to you. is willie mays, as he said, the greatest baseball player of all time? >> i think he is, arguably, the greatest baseball player of all time, only one other him. ironically, i think it's his god son, barry bonds. and that catch, i can remember watching that catch on a black and white tv off the bat of vick wurtz in the 1956 world series. it's still stunning to see it today. >> and you watched it through a furniture store on main street. >> in fitsberg, massachusetts, yeah. >> i thought that only happened in the movies. let's talk about willie mays on his 90th birthday. for baseball fans maybe too young to appreciate his greatness, you can look at all the numbers, but what was it about his that made him perhaps the greatest of all time? >> well, it was the numbers for one thing, but also, he played with a -- bill clinton once said, he played with a combination of greatness and
joy. he exuded joy and tried to be an entertainer as well as a great player. he tried to bring a flare to the game. and i think he entertained fans on both he coasts pt in the middle of his career, he went from new york to san francisco. he played in the world series in four decades because he played in the negro league world series in the 40s. he played for the in, giants in '54, san francisco giants in '62 and then with the mets in '73. and he did it with such grace. >> when i think of willie mays, i often think of the lost possibilities that would have been involved if he had played his entire career in new york city. of course, he didn't. the giants moved to san francisco. people in new york were favored. giants fans at those times still hate people for moving hem to the west coast. but willie playing in new york
would have had a larger impact especially on young black men who play baseball and today major league baseball has a real lack of numbers in terms of black ball players compared to the way it was in the late '50s and early '60s. what do you think? >> i think a couple of things. i think the first thing is that, yeah, willie is the reason why we watch. you think about what he brought to the game in terms of the joy and the energy of the sport and also i think that the numbers were shifting. you start looking at no matter where willie played, the numbers were going to shift the way they shifted. when i think about possibilities, mike, i think about boston. i think about the fact that we go back to jackie robinson and the ill fated tryout in 1945. let's not forget that the red sox had first crack at mays in 1949. the city of boston, you had the chance of ted williams, jackie robinson, willie mays all place in the same city and in 1952, about the boston braves signed
hank aaron. imagine that, all four of those guys playing in the same town. >> what kind of star was willie mays? he's in the 3,000 hit club, 18-time all-star starter. but there was something bigger about him. what kind of a celebrity, what kind of a star was he in baseball in the country? >> well, i think what he was was he was a babe ruth level superstar in terms of why we watch. in baseball today, we talk so much about analytics and we try to sell the game through data, through numbers, through science. this is somebody that you wanted to emulate. you wanted to be just like him and not only did we want to be like him, but his peers wanted to be like him. in 1956, the manager of the milwaukee braves wants to put hank aaron in center field and aaron says to his manager, i'll never make an all-star team. that's willie's fate. one other thing about mays, i think he's the first guy that other players warranted to emulate in terms of their
numbers. babe ruth might have had the greatest player of all time, but nobody else wore number 3. think about the number of players who wore 24 just to be like him. whether it's bonds or ken griffey jr., all of these players, he was the standard of why they played the game and how they wanted to play the game. >> tyler, howard just mentioned briefly the element of save-o-metrics in baseball. do you think this concentration on wins against replacements, stuff like that, resulted in us watching games where it's either strikeouts or home runs, nobody hitting behind the run, no hit-and-runs any more, very few stolen bases any more. is baseball losing the popularity of its game to saber metrics? >> well, there's something to that. if you look at the way saber metrics spreads things out, it's like, well, hit a home run. that's the most valuable play you can do so that leads to a lot of strikeouts. but it's a little more complicated than that.
pitchers right now are so good at dictating the action and making the ball do crazy things. hitters think i'm not going to score a run with three singles. let's just hit one out of the park. so it's getting to be a game and it's still a wonderful game. but there are fewer hits than ever and more strikeouts than ever. so that means fewer balls in play and less chance for the exciting kind of plays that we would see with willie mays and the chance for players to show that all around gain. that's one thing baseball is hard to bring back is some of those all around skills that we can see and not just the power competition of throw it by the batter or hit it over the fence. >> let's talk a little current baseball. a.l. east, we have a boston fan, i'm a yankee fan, as you know. yankees are hot, they're pitching well, how is that division going to shake out? >> well, i can't see boston sustaining this. it's still kind of a transition year for them. it's probably going to come down
to the yankees and the rays. you know, the rays always kind of figure out a way to do things differently. they're right there in the middle of it right now. baltimore is off to a nice start. you showed the no hitter last night. but i think it's still probably the yankees division to take, but you can never discount those rays. they figure on out a way just about every night to make life miserable. >> so your fatalism and joe's fatalism about the red sox appears well place, mike barnacle. >> alex cora, that's the secret to the red sox success. alex cora will have a minute all summer. >> we'll see. tyler, great to see you, my friend. by the way, tyler was a great boss, a great editor, ran the sports section and then ran the whole darn paper. he's the man. >> what about walter howard speaking the truth and making me cry on tv. >> he got you there. >> tyler howard, great to have you along for this conversation and a great happy birthday to willie mays born on this day 90 years ago. still ahead, republican
congresswoman liz cheney on the verge of being pushed out of her leadership position refuses to go out quietly. "morning joe" coming right back. who goes right back to sleep after getting an alert of an unusual charge on their credit card? you do. round the clock fraud protection. one of the many things you can expect when you're with amex. find your rhythm. your happy place. find your breaking point. then break it. every emergen-c gives you a potent blend of nutrients so you can emerge your best with emergen-c.
looks like good talent, but did i not realize when she opens that mouth, you were killing them, alesse. you were killing them. >> if donald trump were the 2024 nominee, would you support him? >> i would not. >> okay. liz cheney, very good catching up with you. >> there you go. two very different directions for the gop. and apparently the republican party has made its choice. good morning and welcome to "morning joe." it is thursday, may 6th.
along with joe, willie and me, we have msnbc contributor mike barnacle, co-founder and ceo of axis, jim vandehei is with us and member of the "new york times" editorial board mara gates joins us this morning. this morning, republicans are another step closer to pushing out congresswoman liz cheney from her role as gop conference chair. house minority whip steve scalise now publicly backing congresswoman alesse stefanik to replace cheney in the position. a spokesperson for scalise said, quote, house republicans need to be solely focused on taking back the house in 2022. and fighting against speaker pelosi and president biden's radical socialist agenda. and alesse stefanik is strongly committed to doing that.
a spokesperson for cheney responded to that statement saying liz will have more to say in the coming days. this moment is about much more than a house leadership fight. willie. >> and liz cheney, joe, is leaning into this, explaining what this moment is about. a new op-ed for "the washington post" -- >> of course she is. >> here is liz cheney. >> i mean, they're walking right into her trap. they don't understand this. i mean, the number one rule of politics, what is it? i mean, they even said it on the simpsons last night when i was watching a repeat with jackie. keep your friends close, keep your enemies closer. well, wait, why would i want to do that? well, you just do. so do they really want this free agent outside over the -- it's just so stupid on their part politically. >> here is what she wrote in "the washington post." quote, trump is seeking to unravel critical elements of our constitutional structure that make democracy work. confidence in the result of elections and the rule of law.
no other american president has ever done this, she writes. the republican party is at a turning point and republicans must decide whether we are with going to choose truth and fidelity to the constitution. we republicans need to stand for genuinely conservative principles and steer away from the dangerous and anti-democratic trump cult of personality. in our hearts, we are devoted to the american miracle. we believe in the rule of law, in limited government, in a strong national defense and in prosperity and opportunity brought by low taxes and fiscally conservative policies. cheney went on to write, history is watching. our children are watching. we must be brave enough to defend the basic principles that protect our freedom process. i am committed to doing that no matter what the short-term consequences might be. joe, we talked about this yesterday. this is the definition of a turning point. this is a critical moment, as she writes, for the republican
party. are they going to push her out of leadership and make the statement that defending donald trump in a lie about the 2020 election is more important than all the things liz cheney laid out there? >> well, what liz cheney laid out there is what liz cheney has been her entire political career. and it's what donald trump has not been. it's about donald trump. we're repeating things that we all know and what is so remarkable is if you read liz cheney's op-ed, you see what she's talking about, these are just basic statements that, you know, two years ago we would have yawned at. she is somebody fighting for the heart and soul not only of her party, but for what this country
stands for. january 6th was a dividing point. i don't have to tell you that. it was a dividing point between two groups of americans, one who believe in the rule of law and believe in the peaceful transfer of power and those who do not. and there were a handful of republicans that stood out on january the 6th, whether you're talking about ben sass or mitch mcconnell or liz cheney, there were a handful of republicans that stood out and said we're about the rule of law. we're not going to steal elections. mitch mcconnell who is going to be in the news today for some other things said it was the single most important vote of his life. and it was. and here we are three, four months later and the republicans, jim vandehei are trying to run liz cheney out of town. it's very funny, i keep seeing these liberals writing op-eds going we don't like you, liz
cheney. what you're doing is a good thing but we don't like you. the cheneys don't give a -- whether liberals like them or not. >> they don't need her validation. >> you don't call dick cheney, her father, a war criminal for like two decades and worry about whether cheney is liking you or not. she doesn't. liz is doing this because this is what liz believes. and it is -- i'd say it's a turning point for the gop, but there have been about 87 turning points for the gop, jim. >> and the sad thing is, it's not. >> they just keep turning that golf cart in towards donald trump. nobody has ever turned it the other way. and i just -- i just wonder if they're not playing right into liz cheney's hands, ultimately, by making her actually the alternative that people like me and suburban voters in atlanta
and suburban voters in maricopa county don't look at somebody like liz cheney saying, oh, there's somebody who believes in small government, there's somebody who believes in traditional foreign policy, sounds okay to me. >> i just disagree with her that it's a turning point. the party turned. the only thing we're looking for now is the party turned over the last four years into the party of trump. so after he loses, what we're looking for is indicators of, okay, was that kind of a one off and the party is going to reinvent itself around a set of policies or is it going to become even more the party of trump? and there were signs early on that there was an authentic debate about that. liz cheney is a party of a few. they're just -- when you look at elected republicans, there's very few of her. so then you have to hi, what is going to happen over the next two to four years? you're going to have house races, you're going to have senate races. what type of candidates do they
nominate? people who sound like liz cheney or donald trump? every indication is it's going to be a lot more trump people. so by the time she might decide she wants to run in 2028, you're going to have an entire elected class, an entire structure of the republican party that is trumpan. so a lot of the things she talks about might sound sane to a lot of republicans and sound saner to every democrat. it doesn't to the people who are being elected. the party infrastructure is donald trump. it's more trumpan, i'd argue, today than it was on january 6th. look at the profiles of the 10 members that voted for impeachment. what have they said since then he? almost none of them, nothing, because they know the price that they have to pay. and by the way, liz cheney is going to pay that price next week. she would probably be booted from house leadership after winning a house leadership election merely weeks ago. that's how quickly things are
changing. now you have this de facto leader of the republican party who doesn't have facebook, doesn't have twitter, has a blog, and it's called from the desk of donald trump and it's mitch mcconnell and the party responds favorably to that and sides with him, not liz cheney. >> yeah. by the way, we got to ask about aaron rogers, what's going on there? are you going to lose a quarterback? >> we're going to -- we'll go from narcissist to narcissist. yes, we're going to lose somebody. it's sabotaging our entire organization and leaking out that he doesn't like anything about it. it's a travesty. he would guarantee himself to be in the nfl championship and maybe the super bowl if he could perform in clutch moments and now he's going to end up playing for the raiders. >> boy, it's getting rough at lambeau field. >> it's a hell of a pennant, joe. >> well, apparently, jim, there was a through line from donald
trump to aaron rodgers. i'm sure he'll be pleased to learn that. so, willie, again, it doesn't make sense when you're talking about republican politics, but it is so important to remember that we are talking about republican primaries. a lot of people talking about what happened in texas, that was a republican primary where the guy that was very conserve i, the former marine, he said hey, we need to move beyond donald trump, he was running in a texas republican primary. i don't know if they expected people to come up and hand him daisies and vote for him, but it's probably not going to happen deep in the heart of texas. but if you're making the calculation that liz cheney is making, she's thinking, maybe 20, 25% of republicans agree with me, maybe by the time 2024 comes along, donald trump has been charged by, you know, new york prosecutors, maybe that number is a little higher. maybe by then it's 30%, 35% of
the people want to move past. and so you've got a presidential field that has josh hallie and ted cruise and you name it, nikki haley, ten other people pledging to donald trump and then you've got one anti-trump candidate, one pro conservative anti-trump candidate. and if you're gaming things out, that's not a bad place for liz cheney to be in 2024. >> yeah, if that's something she wants. also, of course, the big specter hanging over all this is will donald trump be in that race and wipe everybody else out? we'll see about that. it's amazing to think that the scandalous statements that has liz cheney's job -- and jim is right, she's probably going to lose the leadership position weeks from now. is that joe biden was the winner of the 2020 election. she's affirming everything the courts have said, everything
secretary of states have said in these swing states, people who counted the votes and secured the votes, many of them said it was a free and fair election. joe biden won. that simple statement is what is getting her run out of power in the republican party. >> you're right. and that simple statement makes some people wonder whether we are actually underselling this moment in history, liz cheney's behavior, her verbal behavior, her newspaper column. because what is she doing? she is taking on a person who is actively engaged in a daily situation, urging sedition. she's urging the overthrow of a legitimately elected governor, government, she's urging if nullification of a national vote when more people voted for president than at any time in our history. and that person that she's talking about happens to be a former president of the united states of america. that is an incredible thing to put together. an incredible thing to actually talk about every single day as
if it's a congressional fight, when it's not. it's much larger than that. coming up, it's a jarring juxtaposition. oil man, rancher, cowboy, slave owner. annette gordon reed is digging through some dark chapters of american history with a focus on texas. that conversation is just ahead on "morning joe." conversation on "morning joe. this is how you become the best! ♪“you're the best” by joe esposito♪ ♪ [triumphantly yells] [ding] don't get mad. get e*trade. some days, you just don't have it. not my uncle, though. he's taking trulicity for his type 2 diabetes and now, he's really on his game. once-weekly trulicity lowers your a1c by helping your body release the insulin it's already making. most people reached an a1c under 7%. plus, trulicity can lower your risk of cardiovascular events.
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do you have any comments on the efforts to oust liz cheney on the leadership post? >> i don't understand your question. >> senate minority leader mitch mcconnell was asked about the cheney situation during a news conference back in kentucky yesterday. he dodged the question saying this instead. >> 100% of my focus is on
stopping this new administration. i think the best way to look at what this new administration is the president may have won the nomination, but bernie sanders won the argument about what the new administration should be like. we're confronted with severe challenges from a new administration and a narrow majority of democrats in the house and a 50/50 senate to turn america into a sociologist country. and that's 100% of my focus. >> when asked about mcconnell's remarks, president biden referenced a similar remark mcconnell made in 2010, that the gop's top priority should be to make barack obama a one-term president. biden said yesterday he was still, quote, able to get a lot done with mcconnell during the obama admin vacation. here is how white house pretty secretary sacky responded to mcconal's latest remark.
>> i guess the contrast for people to consider 100% percent of our focus is getting people back to work and dealing with the pandemic. we welcome republicans on that. >> mitch mcconnell showing the republican party has no options. they just are against whatever the democratic administration, whether it's obama or biden, are for, and that they've got this huge crisis within. maybe it's not a turn point, but liz cheney is offering a turning point and they're not taking it. >> yeah. i think that the problem here is ultimately that the coalition that elected george w. bush, the coalition that was behind mitt romney, you know, although they didn't win that election, that no longer exists. so you don't have a situation in which republican voters can come together along the lines that
liz cheney is talking about on principle, on tax policy, the things that animate mitch mcconnell. they may work for mitch mcconnell to keep his caucus in order, but that doesn't animate republican voters any more. what animates republican voters are the red meat xenophobic racist in many cases but also the culture war debates that donald trump has deployed over the past 40 years. and, you know, the gop was happy, you know, in all quarters to jump on that bandwagon on the trump train when it was working for them. they allowed themselves to create this monster. they participated in it. they benefited from it. and now that they lost the election, the question is, well, where do you go? the problem is these voters are not animated on these traditional republican issues. they're animated on that red meat that donald trump is throwing them. and so that is the situation in
which republican leaders find themselves and, really, the way forward is to start telling the truth to their voters and to the american people about what trumpism is, which is anti-democratic. but until a broad constituency and coalition of them are willing to do it, i don't see this changing. coming up, former defense secretary robert gates is standing by. he's writing about american failures, successes, and a new path forward. that conversation is straight ahead when "morning joe" comes right back. ahead when "morning joe" comes right back experience capability, crafted by lexus. the remarkable gx and lx. lease the 2021 gx 460 for $529 a month for 36 months.
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25 past the hour. former u.s. secretary of defense robert gates joins us now. his book, exercise of power, american failures, successes and a new path forward in the post cold war world" is out now in paper back. it's great to have you, sir. >> secretary gates, always an honor to have you with us. let's talk about in the book america's retreat from the world and its -- its changing world
view of going from a country that was the indispensable power to a disorganized country with a jimbled foreign policy. >> first of all, it's a pleasure to be with you all again, mika and joe. i would say that our withdraw, if you will, is based on a couple of things. the first is 20 years of war. after initial military successes in both iraq and afghanistan, the american military was given a mission of nation building, in effect, and a mission for which they were neither equipped nor trained and we've had a long slog. we've tried to impose democracy at the point of a gun in places as diverse as somalia and haiti in the early 90s to iraq and afghanistan in the early 2000s.
so i think there's a frus sdpragz an exhaustion on the part of the american people with these wars that has contributed to an impatience with trying to continue to exercise american leadership. would he have dismantled all those instruments of power that were so vital in the cold war for strategic communications and diplomacy and development and so on. haven't found anything to replace him here. a few years ago, china's leader invested $7 billion in creating a strategic communications capability for china and we don't have anything comparable. and i think that the domestic paralysis polarization herelty home has contributed to a sense of pulling back and to a loss of
american leadership. we no longer are seen as the model by much of the world as we find it impossible to do big things domestically. >> and your argument has been that the united states should have left afghanistan not in 2009 or '10 or '11, but as early as 2002? >> yes. as i point out in the book, you know, we had accomplished our mission. it was an extraordinary military achievement at very low cost and very few casualties. and by 2002, by january 2002, you had an afghan government that was recognized internationally. all the different parties in afghanistan were participating, except the taliban, who were hiding in pakistan. you had international agreements to provide economic and military
assistance and in the taliban wouldn't, as we see now, wouldn't return at all for at least three or four years. so there was a window there and that would have been the moment for the united states to basically declare victory and declare success and turn the problem over to the international community and to the afghans themselves. >> secretary gates, it's willie geist. good to have you on this morning. people like general petraeus said we should keep a small force in afghanistan because the taliban will come back, will pop its head up again and we'll be forced to go back and deal with it. do you believe that is the right way to go or what happens if we pull out, if we go through the complete withdraw before the 20th anniversary of 9/11 as the biden administration has announced, no american troops on the ground and there is some type of attack launched from afghani soil? >> i'm sure that i would have
agreed with secretary austin and the joint chiefs that we keep a modest military presence there both for morale purposes and to provide the on-site training and equipping of the afghans. but it's a very tough choice. the president is presented with only bad options here because the fact is, even with 2,500 or 3,500 american troops in afghanistan, the taliban are gaining ground every single day. they are increasing their control over the countryside. and there is no reason to believe there's anything in the cards that is going to lead to a reversal of that. so of the many people outcomes in afghanistan, happy ending in my view is one of the least likely, which makes it all the more critical that we continue our economic and military assistance once our troops are out. when the social troops fully withdrew in 1988, the bullet
government that had been installed by the soviets actually lasted for three years, as long as the soviet flow of military and economic assistance continued. and when the soviet union collapsed and that assistance ended, the government collapsed. so if there's one ray of hope here for the survival of the afghan government and/or the freedoms that afghan women in particular have enjoyed over the last number of years, it is the continuing flow of economic and military assistance from the united states and our allies that helps the afghans and afghan government keep the taliban at bay. but it's -- it's a pretty grim situation, frankly. >> mr. secretary, i'd like to turn our questioning to russia. we've had following the situation with opposition leader alexei navalny and following the president gently mentioning that vladimir putin is a killer and
saying to him that he doesn't think he has much of a soul. what should the administration's posture be toward russia right now and how do you think president biden is managing his relationship with vladimir putin? >> well, i think that, actually, there's a -- in most respects, there's pretty much a great deal of continuity between the trump administration and the biden administration when it comes to russia. russia under putin is a great disrupter. one of his soul objectives is to create as much trouble for the united states and for the western democracies as he possibly can, whether it's longer boarders with eastern europe or in ukraine or the black sea or a host of other places or the interference in our own domestic affairs. so i think the tough line that has been taken is exactly the right one. i think we have to reconcile ourselves to the fact that vladimir putin is going to leave
off his feet first one way or the other. he's never going to give up power or want to. so this is a challenge that we're going to have to face going forward. and i think frankly the administration's approach is a tough approach is the right one. >> mr. secretary man, that, of course, mika loved and had a great deal of respect for you, dr. brzezinski, with a book called strategic vision. and we heard him on this show, but also privately complain about america's lack of strategic vision throughout the 21st century. you talk about our lack of a strategic vision facing china. why has it been so difficult for the last two or three presidents to have the sort of global wholistic world view and strategic vision that we had at least during the cold war?
>> you know, i think, joe, one of the reasons that it's been difficult is that, you know, he proceeded for a good part of the last 40 years on the mistaken assumption that a richer china would be a freer china. and i think that it's only been with the advent of president xi jinping in 2013 that we've seen a much more -- that a richer china will become a much more assertive and aggressive china. and so my concern, really, is that since that time, since it's become so clear that this is going to be a competitive relationship going forward, and unlike the cold war, one that is going to be waged, a rivalry that will be waged in many dimensions, it won't just be a military standoff, it will be economic, it will be strategic communications, development, diplomacy, all those things are part of a much more complicated
relationship than existed before and certain existed between the united states and the soviet union. and we have not been able to come up with cohesive strategy since 2013 on how to deal with this challenge that combines all the different elements of american national power, very much as the chinese have been able to do in pursuing their objectives. and until we can get an integrated strategy that brings all of these elements of power based on strong military capabilities, i think we'll -- i think we will be playing catch up ball. >> mr. secretary, two quick questions here. one, in your book, you wrote about joe biden, i think he has been wrong on nearly every major foreign policy and national security issue over the past four decades. do you still believe that? and two, what are we going to do about pakistan, a nominal ally, but perhaps an enemy. >> well, i think as i've said
before, i stand by that. i would say most of what i was referring to was during the cold war with the soviet union. president biden, then a senator, opposed virtually every element of ronald reagan's policies toward the soviet union, including the arms build up that forced them into a race that they couldn't win. and so on. i will say that during the obama administration, the vice president and i agreed on a number of issues. we disagreed strongly on afghanistan and how to proceed in afghanistan. for example, we were both opposed to the intervention in libya. so i think that, you know, as i say, i stand by the statement that i wrote, now seven years ago. i think pakistan is a very complicated problem for the united states. one of the reasons that we have
been unsuccessful in achieving our objectives in afghanistan is that the pakistanis have allowed not just the taliban to seek refuge in sanctuary in pakistan, but also as we are marking this year the 10th anniversary of the raid that killed osama bin laden, as i have said on various interviews. it's inconceivable to me that at least some elements of the pakistani government, maybe their intelligence services knew. it's inconceivable that they did not know that bin laden was there. so, i mean, it's a tough problem. and we needed pakistan in terms of our supply line to afghanistan. and we obviously have an interesting in preventing a conflict between pakistan and india. but i would say pakistan is one of our most challenging foreign policy issues just because it's
got so many different elements of sort of friendship and hostility involved in the same relationship. >> mr. secretary, final question. you know, we heard during donald trump's four years in the white house one foreign policy expert after another in this country and across europe especially saying that the united states would not be able to rebuild the relationships, would not be able to rebuild their strategic partnerships across the globe, that too much was lost. i'm curious, as we sit here three, four months in to a new administration, how was the united states doing? are you seeing any damage from over the past four years in straining of diplomatic relations that haven't already been patched back together or that you think may not be able to be patched back together?
>> joe, one of the things that i write about in the book is that one of our great -- one element of american power that is terribly important is our alliances and our relationships with our friends. our alliances are a unique american asset. neither russia nor china have any allies. they have clients, but they have no allies. i think one of the most positive aspects of the biden administration so far is re-establishing these relationships with our allies and strengthening, trying to restrengthen our alliances. i will tell you, though, that i think that the damage that has been done during the trump administration in terms of those alliances is not going to be put behind us in four months or in a year or two. i think that we've created an element of doubt in our allies and now their worry is joe biden
a one off. and will america return to trump-like policies toward our allies after biden leaves office. so, in all honesty, i think it will take at least two presidencies. president biden and his successor. adhering to those alliances, making clear that we will keep our commitments and that we will be there for our allies before they begin to regain confidence. you know, relationships between countries are a lot like relationships between people. it takes a long time to build confidence and trust and you can destroy it very quickly. and i think it's going to take time and probably time beyond the biden administration to restore the kind of level of confidence that our allies had in us beforehand. >> wow. that is -- you sound very much
like someone i know very, very, very well, mr. secretary. my dad loved you so much. and that was -- he would say these alliances take decades, really, to build. and when you see what's happening in the republican party right now, you're right, it might take a few presidencies and who knows if we're going to get it right. former secretary robert gates -- >> can i just say secretary gates is far more diplomatic than your father. >> he is. >> we're so grateful for you flying across the country and the extraordinarily kind words you had to say about dr. brzezinski at his funeral. it meant the world to mika and the entire family. >> thank you so much. thanks for being on today. >> absolutely. always good to be with you. his book out in paperback now is exercise of power, american failures, successes and a new path forward in the post cold war world. up next, what does texas tell us about the country that
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♪♪ >> is texas, mighty colossas of the southwest, a land of infinite variety and violent contrasts, a land where today's ranch hand can become tomorrow's multi millionaire. ♪♪ but more than a state, here is a state of mind. >> that was part of the trailer for the 1956 western classic "giant." in her new book on juneteenth, annette gordon-reed writes about how that film put forth the stereo typical image of texans as white ranches and cowboys and
adds, quote, there is, however, another important figure critically missing from giant. and other defining depictions of texas. a figure who helped make juneteenth necessary. the slave plantation owner, although this speice sis of texan no longer exists, the influence of the world he put in place continues to this day. and annette joins us once again now along with the founding director of the center for the study of race and democracy. at the linden b. johnson school of public affairs at the university of texas. professor peneel joseph. good to have you both. >> it's great to have you both here. i love that introduction. i love talking to texans about the republic of texas. and you, annette, remind me of what i've always heard about faukner's i love the south, i hate the south. in this book, you've talked a
good bit about texas and the dark legacy of slavery in texas and race in texas. but also, you sense, i think like peneel, that it is a bellweather and there's exceptionalism there and where texas goes, america is going to go. >>el with, people talk about the texification of america. so many trends. i knew when i was in high school about the ronald reagan phenomenon when he won the texas primary, all 100 delegates and everybody wag thinking, this is bizarre. how can this person go from being bedtime for bonzo, here is governor of california, obviously, but he wasn't taken seriously by people. but he was taken seriously in texas. eventually we know what happened with that. it is a bellwether for politics, for religion, all those kinds of things.
>> and you talk about the inventory of texas through the years. talk about today's texas. there are, of course, i saw senator corning tweet one time that for every one white baby there are nine hispanic babies being born. wove seen it with the shifting of the population with the 2020 census that people are now starting to flood into texas like they used to flood into california. i mean, this is really a -- you want to see where america is coming together as far as demographics, it is in your state, right? >> it is very diverse. and it's always been diverse. but as we were saying at the top of the hour, it's been much more the notion of white males, white oil men, those kinds of things were considered to be the image of texas. but, of course, it's grown even more diverse. not just african-americans, white, hispanic people, asians,
people from all over the world. when i go back to my hometown, which is basically white people of english and german extraction, african-americans, not even many hispanic people at that time. now it's everybody, colors of the there are people from all over the country. it's a very, very diverse place, and it still has this image of being -- i say in the book -- texas is constructed as a white man, and that's not what it is. it's never been that, and it's certainly not that now. >> professor joseph, you say this in annette's book, "i think the sense of texas's exceptionism is well-learned as gordon redumts throughout her book. the difference between anglo, indigenous, spanish cultures is unique, as is the difference between mexico, spain, afro america in shaping what becomes texas." and you say, where texas goes
america will go, but where exactly that is, none of us know right now. >> hopefully towards a multi democratic racial future. i think the book is reads so beautifully is a prehistory of texas. we always say remember the alamo. she has an essay from jim boone and the alamo. but you have latin and indigenous people and latinx folks who are here alongside whites, and even before that, how we think about texas. with the democratic explosion we're thinking about texas in the 21st century, i think professor gordon-reed shows us has always existed but we turned a blind eye. one of the best parts of the book and i bring this over to
professor gordon-reed when she talks about billy jack. he was half indigenous, half white and he was really on the side of what we would call hippies today. but she remembered that film and how many people loved billy jack in texas. >> it was amazing. i talk about how surprised i was at these very, very conservative people were watching the movie about the freedom school hippies, half whites in american, kung fu fighting martial arts expert who was whaling on people who were actually like the people in the audience but the sense of fairness and sense of justice appealed to them, even on the surface, felt like it would be
inaccurate but they loved it. >> at what point does this democratic explosion result in texas having majority/minority, which it probably does now, but in terms of progressives winning the day as opposed to wlapz in the texas state legislature? at what point does this truly explode, not just simmer as it seems to be doing now, but truly explodes? >> it's tough to predict. one of the things you have to recall, even though there's a demographic explosion, it doesn't mean the demographies will go the way people expect them to go. i was reading recently about latinx women in the rio grande who are quite conservative, fueling a conservative movement. so we can't just assume people will result in one -- texas
going purple or texas going blue. eventually that might happen. i think what has to happen first is there has to be less -- less emphasis on the capacity to suppress the vote. some people say that texas -- i've heard people say texas is not really a red state, it's the voter suppression state, that the number of people who would want to vote other ways are not allowed to do it. we saw what happened in the last election. the democrats didn't win but there was an explosion of voting among people. people wanted to vote. people who were eligible adults and had a legal right to do it want to do it if impediments are not put in their place. whether i was growing up my parents used to say polling places in black neighborhood changed every election. white people always knew where they were supposed to vote. every time there was an
election, black people had to figure out, okay, where do we have to go? those kinds of tactics that really interfered with the vote. i'm sure people persevered and did what they could, but it shouldn't be that way. in a democratic republic, people eligible to vote should be able to vote. when that happens, we will see how texas changes. >> and talking about the last election as well, picking up on the point annette made, democrats in the past just assumed people of color were going to continue breaking their way, hispanic voters were going to automatically break the republican way. and i must say, after four years of donald trump with the insults he made towards hispanics, calling them breeders, and other racist, sort of tinged language he used, it was a surprise to me
that at the border and in other areas you actually had hispanics breaking the republican way. explain that, if you will, and what your thoughts and reaction was to that and how democrats should understand that people of color aren't going to automatically vote a certain way just because they are hispanic americans or black americans? >> well, yeah, exactly. i think, joe, when we think about texas, there's one version of texas where texas becomes georgia in ten years and you're able to have that progressive majority like we've seen with stacey abrams. but the hispanic population here, like the african-american population, is very complex and the asian population as well. we're not as racially diverse as
the largest state. there's about 12% african-americans in the state and 7% austin, but austin is geared to be building the most wealth in the united states in the next two decades because of silicon hills here. when we think about those hispanic voters in the rio grande, at times this was based on lake of democratic outreach because of the coronavirus. at times it's based on the republican messaging, the scene calling democrats socialists, and that they're going -- they're bad for the country. at times it's based on democratic policies not reaching out to what that specific constituent means. just because somebody is an hispanic voter or latin x voter doesn't mean they're going to be pro immigration or pro $15 minimum wage. so the message has to be tailored in a specific way where you don't think one population. and that goes for african-americans. we saw black men voted in higher proportion than black women for the past president.
so no demographic is monolithic and certainly makes that case. >> yeah, all right. well, this has been absolutely fascinating. >> wonderful. >> we got to talk about not only juneteenth but giant and billy jack. i thought i was the only person old enough on this set to remember billy jack and the theme song "one tin soldier." and i'm not. good company. >> the book "on juneteenth" by annette gordon-reed. great to be talking about this book all week. we also want to thank former secretary bob gates for being on this morning on "morning joe." incredible interview. of course talking about his book "exercise of power" out now in paperback. look at the beautiful new cover. we'll post that interview on our website. if you didn't see it, it's worth going to joe.msnbc.com to get a
load of what he had to say. that does it for us this morning. stephanie ruhle picks up the coverage after a quick, final break. break. w ways for them to reach you... is what business is all about. it's what the united states postal service has always been about. so as your business changes, we're changing with it. with e-commerce that runs at the speed of now. next day and two-day shipping nationwide. same day shipping across town. returns right from the doorstep, and deliveries seven days a week. it's a whole new world out there. let's not keep it waiting. it's my 5:52 woke-up-like-this migraine medicine. it's ubrelvy. for anytime, anywhere migraine strikes, without worrying if it's too late, or where i am. one dose can quickly stop my migraine in its tracks within two hours. unlike older medicines, ubrelvy is a pill that directly blocks cgrp protein, believed to be a cause of migraine. do not take with strong cyp3a4 inhibitors. most common side effects were nausea and tiredness.
ask about ubrelvy. the anytime, anywhere migraine medicine. hey, there, i'm stephanie ruhle live at msnbc headquarters here in new york city. it's thursday, may 6th. let's get smarter this hour. a third of american adults are fully vaccinated, very, very good news. the cdc predicting covid deaths can drop below 100 a week. and the florida governor signing a new law minutesing that democrats say will suppress voting. a similar bill is now heading to texas. and president biden is pitching his economic plan in trump