tv All In With Chris Hayes MSNBC May 27, 2021 12:00am-1:00am PDT
tonight on all in. it's indicting a former head of state really that rare? tonight, more details of the trump grand jury in new york and a reminder that criminal presidents are indeed a thing. >> our long national nightmare is over. >> and new reporting of the undermining of democracy in arizona and beyond, and it's a member of the proud boys really participate in the center of a nevada election official? i'll ask john rotten. plus, on the eve of the big senate vote on january six commission the two democrats holding up the investigation. and today's remarkable statement from the white house about the two theories of the covid-19 origin story. all in starts right now. good evening from new york, i'm chris hayes. one true test of the nation's legal system is whether it can actually dispense a partial justice the most powerful
people in the country. often, those people are former leader is facing charges they may have done before, during, or after they were in office. and across the world, and all kinds of places in legal systems they do successfully need out justice to those people. example, right now in france former president sarkozy is facing a year in jail for corruption. he's been convicted of trying to bribe a judge. former korean president park gun hey is currently in prison serving a 20 year sentence for corruption and abuse of power. in 2019, israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu was indicted on charges. his trial is still ongoing. in fact, his predecessor served 16 months in prison after being convicted of bribery and obstruction of justice. of course former italian prime minister perhaps the closest contemporary analog to former president donald trump was convicted of tax fraud in 2012. he received a four year
sentence which he did not actually end up having to serve. and yet, in the united states more than 200 years of history we've never tried or convicted a former president. not once. we have not tested our justice system in that way. some might argue, well, america. what a great country. that's american exceptionalism for you. we've just never had a lead of his a criminal. i would point them to, i don't know, then prayed president birch killing alexander hamilton when it was illegal in new york and new jersey. you can also say maybe our justice system has not been up to task. i mean the closest we came of course was back in 1974 when it was basically understood that president richard nixon would be indicted after he left office for his role in the watergate scandal among other climates. done, just one months after taking office his successor president gerald ford, nixon's vice president, the man who assumed the white house never
having been elected, right? made with turned out to be an extremely unpopular decision. >> after years of bitter controversy and divisive national debate, i have been advised and i am compelled to conclude that many months and perhaps more years will have to pass before richard nixon could obtain a fair trial by jury and any jurisdiction of the united states under governing decisions of the supreme court. therefore, i, gerald are ford, president of the united states, pursuant to the pardon power conferred upon me by article two section two of the constitution, have granted and buy these presents to grant, a full free and absolute pardon
on to richard nixon. >> that was it. that was the moment. that's basically gerald ford saying, no, that's my do. that's my homey. he's a republican president, it won't be fair. he won't get a fair trial if we try him now so he gets to get off. a lot of people argued at the time that ford's pardoning nixon was an inflection point for the ability of the american justice system to apply accountability to those who were in the highest offices. 30 years later, we saw literal war crimes committed under the bush administration. torture ordered and applied, and no one was ever prosecuted. and so that is where we find ourselves one day after this report from the washington post, revealing the manhattan district attorney that ordinary almost mundane dispenser of justice, right, has convened a special grand jury. a panel of ordinary american citizens, that is now expected to decide whether to indict former president donald trump,
other executives at his company or the business itself should prosecutors present the panel with criminal charges. today, we're seeing the ripple effects of that report. a trump advisor telling political, quote, there's definitely cloud of nerves in the air. advisor added that the manhattan da's case feels different than the typical barrage of legal issues surrounding trump because there's pressure on the chief financial officer, allen weisselberg, to flip. quote, i think the weisselberg involvement and the wild card of that makes the particular situation more real because there is no sort of fluff and made up fictional circumstances around the guy. the fact that they're dealing with a numbers guy who just has plain details makes people more nervous. weisselberg, who was also under criminal investigation by the new york attorney generals office in connection with his personal taxes is now at the center of it all. he's under pressure and he knows if reporting is accurate and many peoples statements to this effects are accurate, he
knows everything about the trump organization's finances. and so will he turn and turn on his fellow boss? jane mayer the chief correspondent new yorker wrote a definitive piece on that question this months and she joins me now. you know, jane, when this news broke yesterday i remember the last conversation we had after your article came out and i remember talking to you from this very set and i said 1 to 10, how serious is this? and you said really quite serious. you appeared to have been correct. >> well, it's not entirely unexpected if you have been in touch with people close to the da's office in manhattan. but at the same time, it is very momentous since as you say this country we have not had a president who's been charged with a crime. and we don't know that we will have one here just because there's a grand jury that's been handled it doesn't mean they're gonna bring charges against former president trump
but it certainly, and if i were he, i would be very nervous about this. i mean, i think it has the feeling of the quicksand getting thicker. >> yeah. >> and so it's certainly -- the next serious step in this thing. it was interesting to me that the grand jury is and has been in panel. it's supposed to be in panel for the next six months which is basically the stretch of time during which the current da in manhattan, silence, expects to serve out his term. and i think he wants to be the one who makes the decision about whether to bring charges. so this is going to overlap perfectly with his tenure. >> now let's talk about, to meet, the black box here is weisselberg because there's been new reported quite a bit in this story about him. it's been clear that there are prosecutors have been looking at him. they've been looking to do some transactions around his family.
presumably in an effort to get him to cooperate. that's how these cases are often made. i want to play a little bit of michael cohen talking about the sensuality of weisselberg to the operation that maybe you can tell us what your own reporting indicates, take a listen. >> in the office with me was allen weisselberg and chief financial officer of the trump organization. >> i was at the time with allen weisselberg, the bottom signature i believe is allen weisselberg's. allen weisselberg. allen weisselberg. >> there are other people should be we meet meeting with. >> allen weisselberg. >> always allen weisselberg on the check. how important is he and how make-or-break i guess is his question of cooperation to you than? >> i think it's probably incredibly important. he knows the numbers. if this is a fraud case one of
the most difficult things about bringing it towards this, the prosecutors have to prove guilt that there was intentionality to commit a crime. the person who would know that would be the numbers man, the chief financial officer who dealt with trump. you could say, i told him. he knew what he was doing and he did it with his eyes wide open because otherwise trump is going to say, i had no idea. my accountant just this. i paid them a lot and it's their fault. so he's very important in parsing that. >> there's also this question of sequencing, right? in terms of what we saw happened with michael cohen, for instance was cohen was indicted. he was searched and then he was indicted and after he was indicted he was defiant, he was not going to betray mr. trump. and then he did. he cooperated. we don't have any word on
weisselberg status. we don't know if the man is committing any crimes and i should be very clear i have no idea if he has. but in terms of the sequencing, do you think that's noteworthy or not? >> well yeah. i think he's very much being put in-ifies. there's so much pressure on this man and he has two sons who also worked for the trump organization or here and one of them directly for it, the other in a company that's provided laws for the trump organization and so his sons, his whole family is in this suit. the people who know weisselberg, cohen, and weisselberg's former daughter in law have said he's not going to let this boys go to jail and he's really not gonna want to go to jail himself to protect donald trump yet this is the man who's been made donald trump and he's been incredibly loyal to -- he's in an incredibly tough
spot clearly. >> jane mayer, rioter of the new yorker. check back that piece on silences investigation. thanks so much. >> thank you. >> i want to bring in adam miller who served his deputy chief in the crime spirit, the manhattan district attorney's office. the same one that's investigating donald trump and now convene the grand jury. i wanted to talk to you because of your experience specifically. i think big white color cases i've had before have emanated out of prosecutors office more often like around for instance which is sort of a big example but talk to us a little bit about the process of the difficulty. from my understanding, these can be a hard case is to make. >> sure. and the manhattan da's office has a proud history of bringing large complex financial cases so while in other jurisdictions it may be more the belly wake of the federal prosecutors
dating back several years of the manhattan district attorney's office was taken on cases of an extraordinary proportion. that being said, they're very complicated but the da's office has unit which exclusively looks into economic crimes and there was one obviously major economic crimes. and it seems that this investigation would fall within that valley quick. >> what's the process in your experience of these sorts of cases before a grand jury, right? before you are actually either recommending charges or not. when you're just bringing witnesses before a grand jury to get them on the record under oath. >> well, what's very interesting about the state system grand jury is that witnesses that are called to get actual testimony get him unity. so the district attorney's office in any major white-collar criminal prosecution or investigation is extremely careful about who they put into the grand jury
because they're immunizing that person unless that person is just a record keeper and is going to authenticate books and records of an institution. so unlike the federal system, in the state system your conferring of unity if they're testifying under subpoena so they're very careful about who they immunize and how they got there they're evidence in that way. the preference generally is to speak outside the grand jury and find out with the witnesses have to give, but some witnesses will not speak outside the grand jury. and so the da's office is left with a difficult decision of whether i should put this person in the grand prix and thus confirming unity. >> walk me through the process or the meetings in that office about making a decision about whether to request charges from a grand jury. >> so prior to even going into a grand jury, probably the da's office is already written out what they believe would be
contained in the indictment and the grandeur is just going to flesh out that evidence. very rarely are they going into the grand jury without an idea of what the indictment is going to look like and what charges are going to bring. there may be witnesses that have refused to speak to them speak to the grand jury and quite frankly undermine a charge or enhanced the charge but are they going to be charging falsification or are they going to be charging a theory of larceny and they thought about what charges apply and generally whatever tints will be presented to support the charges before going into a grand jury. >> how much in your experience and i'm just speaking from your experience as someone who works and making these kinds of cases in the specific office independent of with the back say here in your experience this question of the complexity of what you can communicate to a jury seems like one issue, always. and the second is this question
of intent people spoke about, right? so if there are complex financial instruments and there's money moving around in certain ways. there's money this unpaid and taxes or something like that. the difference between some civil infraction like, oops pepsi, and fraud or theft, right? it is intent and how much. how do you go about establishing that? >> so it's paramount the intent. it's what's does the individual that's under investigation have to be generally speaking? are they falsifying the business record for a reason and what is that reason? is it to mark down an asset or is it to inflate an asset? is it to have shareholders believe that the company has more in its coffers than it does? so we're looking at whether or not it's a mistake or a accounting principle that could be criminal. whether it's criminal intent here essentially am i trying to
fool someone. >> adam miller who worked in the manhattan district attorney's office thank you so much for making time and sharing your expertise tonight. i got a lot out of that. >> thank you chris. >> all right tonight the wrought of the sham arizona and it audit wisconsin. plus nevada punishes the state for saying the election was stolen but now republicans in the state have a proud boy problem. john alston is here to explain next. [sfx: bikes passing] [sfx: fire truck siren] onstar, we see them. okay. mother and child in vehicle. mother is unable to exit the vehicle. injuries are unknown. thank you, onstar. ♪ my son, is he okay? your son's fine. thank you. there was something in the road... it's okay. you're safe now.
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the place to watch the anti-democratic vanguard. the american right isn't state republican parties and republican health and state legislatures. well today, the republican speaker of the house in wisconsin announced he's hired retired police officers to investigate the 2020 election and those investigators will have a broad mandate to spend about three months reviewing all tips and will have subpoena power. is the latest in trend the local republican starting investigations. in order to cast doubt in the 2020 election results to back for the big lie about the election being stolen and in arizona dangerous audit is once again underway after a pause to allow previously scheduled high school graduations in the audit space and a republican led house letter scripts that the democratic secretary of state any role in elections related litigation. they passed those powers into
the state's republican attorney general. next door in nevada at the local republican party center their own republican secretary of state for not finding any evidence of widespread voter fraud. and the censure vote happened at the republican party meeting last month and we've now learned that an avowed member of the far-right street brawling group the proud boys was invited to that republican party meeting and helped cast the deciding votes to censure the secretary of state. always it doesn't make sense in nevada politics i. want to bring in jon ralston, the editor of the nevada independent. thank you for being here john. all right let's walk me through the chain of events here. you've got a republican state electorate leader, secretary of state who somewhat like brad raffensperger in less vocal terms vouched for the integrity of an election that was actually free and fair and got flood for it, is that right? >> that's an understatement
chris. she was sued several times. she was vilified by republicans and they had right after the election trump said rideau and matchup out here with the former attorney general, adam black salt to spread all kinds of lies about voter fraud and barbara sagacity, who was, as you mentioned the only statewide elected republican in nevada stood up to them. she was under immense pressure of as the overseer of elections to do something. and the person who was standing next to all of these folks throughout this was the chairman of the state republican party i'm trying to bring this so what's going on now, chris, michael mcdonald, who is the person who's been accused by the local clark county party for of allowing these proud boys into the republican meeting and they're now boasting. although it's not clear to me
that there boasts are true that they were the decisive votes in century sagacity. by the way, that vote was very close. i believe it was 1:26 to 1:12. it almost didn't pass, and that's another reason i think the proud boys are boasting that they were the decisive vote. >> so the republican state party in the leadership mike mcdonald convicted meeting in which they consider essential resolution directed and we've seen this in state party after state party, right? state parties centering republican officials who did not overturn democracy and overturn the ruling voters, right? in nevada you've got this one for michael mcdonald convenes and it's a close vote. it's not like the parties sort of split on this. and the information we have now is this individual math anthony, and i want to sort of read a quote of his, most of the average people out here are starving for some kind of old-school tactics that used to go down in the city because that's what we need right now. we need toughness. we don't need keyboard
warriors. we should note that the proud boys have been involved in physical assaults in a number of places. that that guy and his associates were actually at that meeting and the question is, who invited them there? >> that is the question and mcdonald denies having anything to do with it but as you mentioned, these guys as the proud boys are everywhere are creeps and thugs and they always want to act like through the big man and so they want to be boasting of this. there are many layers to this. the reason that that vote was so close is that it's emblematic of what's going on in his country inside the republican party where you have the adherence to trump fighting with the people who say, wait a second, let's move beyond this, this is not a good brand for the republican party. and the state republican party led by michael mcdonald even after biden was still filing
complaints that with cegavske they brought boxes of what they called evidence of 20,000 or so spoiled ballots. all this other nonsense with cegavske, against her credit chris took a while to investigate and eventually came out and said this is other nonsense. the state republican party is still pushing this. part of what's going on is there are people in the republican party in the clark county party who is las vegas want mcdonald gone because they think he's going to prevent them and what he's doing is going to prevent them from winning elections and their two very important elections in nevada as you know next year, chris, one for governor and one for u.s. senate and the republicans the smart republicans are very worried about all of this going on now and the continuation of the michael mcdonald trump proud boy influence on the party. >> this dynamic where you have
the state party leader basically targeting for pressure, condemnation, censure and republican office this is been repeated and state after state after state. in nevada, you can get away with it a little more in the state of texas. you're not in a position of fighting these three statewide elections where republicans have been closed and knocked over the hump but there's a bigger cost opinionated. bigger cost opinionated. >> -- if the big lie campaign in the state. the >> the former former attorney general ran for attorney general ran for governor. if he had been governor, a lot of different things might have happened to if the republicans had had any influence in carson city, in the legislature. this might have been a different story. which is really frightening, chris. >> that's right.
adam lacks all, former attorney general. which fits in perspectively with what we're gonna talk about. next jon ralston, thank. you to that point, i'm gonna tell you another story about another attorney general. this one about the attorney general of indiana. and why his job is the embodiment of the threat to american democracy right now. stay with me. we'll see in a bit. in a bit
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>> all right, so there is a new member of the leadership board of the republican attorney general association. otherwise known as raja, which may seem like a fairly bit of news. but it also says everything you need to know about where the republican party is right now. as well as the truly existential threat to american democracy that we continue day by day, to face. state attorneys general are the top legal officers in their states. and they can propose legislation that can for enforce the federal law, they can represent their stay in federal court. they have a lot of power.
after the 2020 election, a majority of the country's or republican attorneys general, played a really insidious role in attempting to overthrow the election results. 17 of the 25, all right, two thirds, states attorneys general's signed on to a completely mirthless election lawsuit filed after the election. that intended, attempted to throw all 20 million ballots in wisconsin, michigan, pennsylvania and georgia. to overturn election that joe biden won in all order to install the loser, donald trump, over the winter. not to mention invalidating the other states votes. can you imagine? as an attorney general, suing to disenfranchise the citizens of another state, because you don't like who they voted for president? now this was just a different strategy for achieving the same goal as donald trump. when he called and asked the georgia secretary of state to find the votes he needed to win. and it's the same goal that the
trump mauve wanted to achieve when it violently stormed the capitol on january six. now the republican attorneys general association is also a who's who of upcoming republican storms. you've got for instance, texas is ken paxton, who started the lawsuit to disenfranchise more than 20 million americans who didn't vote the way he wanted them to vote. who was indicted on federal felonies charges six years ago. you've got the kentucky's daniel cameron, who mitch mcconnell is reportedly trying to install as his successor. and in the 2020 election, the republicans attorneys generals where the point of trump's spear. there were some of the most vocal, high-profile republican state leaders, pushing, pushing, pushing to overturn the election. to power the big lie. right? well now, the executive board of the republican's attorneys generals association as a new member. his name is todd rokita he is the attorney general from indiana. he is going to fit right in. you see todd rokita has made a
journey, not that different from a lot of republicans. including the new republican conference chair, elise stefanik, he was just a classic republican loyal soldier. he was in charge of indiana's elections for years as a secretary of state. in fact, in 2005, if you want some continuity between the old a new republican party, rokita helped pass a state law requiring voters require voters to show identification. which at the time was controversial. in fact it ended up going all the way to the supreme court. in 2016, rokita supported senator marco rubio for the republican presidential nomination. he called donald trump someone who is vulgar, if not profane. which is sort of humorous. because like, yes that's true, really the least of it. and then of course, todd rokita made the turn almost every elected republican has made. he went full manga. even though he's not a part of the lawsuit to overturn the election since he himself was just elected, he pays the
lawsuit. two days after the january 6th capitol, after the attack -- after he watched trump invite the mob down to the capital. after he watched donald trump treat about mike pence while the mob was ransacking and chanting hang mike pence -- he tweeted i will always be for our president, donald trump. and valentine's day he tweeted a meme saying, you stole my heart like a 2020 election. he tweeted a picture of the dare leader. ha, so funny. and then in march todd rokita voted against the senate voter access bill arguing that the 2020 election undermine people's face in the system. >> all this resulted in shaken confidence in our electoral system. and outright distrust about the results. americans saw mail-in ballots being processed in cavernous processing centers. tens of millions of mail-in ballots overloading processing
capacity of the system in many states. turning the tabulation of votes into a weeks long process. >> mountains of ballots were being tabulated. clearly something is up. right? this is the cowardly bad faith that these people do this. right? so as a reward for all of this, todd rokita has now won a leadership position in the republican attorneys general association. the vanguard of an increasingly anti democratic republican party, where he will fit in perfectly. and because the secretaries of states which supervises the election, held a line across party lines in ways attorneys generals did not. guess what? now republican state legislators are looking to move up our way from that office. so in georgia, the voting restriction bill that was passed in march explicitly took power away from secretary of state brad raffensperger, after he famously stood up to trump. and as we just mentioned earlier, in arizona,
legislature's stripped katie hobbs, a democrat, of her ability to do defend election lawsuits. and it gave the power to who? well exclusively to the attorney general, a republican. we are watching essentially, a slow motion insurrection being carried out by republicans, in suits and ties. in states all across the country. they are putting the pieces in place to do in the next elections, what the mob feel to do on january six. keep yours healthy with new crest advanced gum restore. it's clinically proven to detoxify below the gum line, and it restores by helping heal gums in as little as seven days. because you can't have a healthy smile, without healthy gums. advanced gum restore from crest. the #1 toothpaste brand in america.
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schumer has started the process affording the vote on the establishment of a commission to investigate the january 6th attack on the capitol. now that vote could come as early as tomorrow. but here's the thing, you watch the show you know. this right? it's not going to go to reconciliation. it's filibuster a bull. which means it needs ten republican sailors to sign on, or stand in the water. as it stands now, there were fewer republican senators on board with this commission voted to convict donald trump in his second impeachment.
the thing is, if democrats eliminated the filibuster, we wouldn't need any republican votes to pass a bill to investigate an attack on our democracy. but you might have heard of this. two democratic senators, joe manchin and kirsten cinema, have already said they are against refusing removing the filibuster. remember when the new democratic majority was trying to implement their agenda in january, and mitch mcconnell refused to let anything move forward until manchin and sinemaà voted that they wouldn't remove the filibuster so. now those two senators are begging republicans to get them enough votes to push them over -- which purposely exposes the roar of the whole problem of the filibuster and the bipartisan congress. the compromise was now saying, please throw us a bone here. how are we going to explain to people we need to keep the filibuster if you filibuster the january 6th commission. adam jentleson, knows this as well as anyone.
he's a former deputy chief of staff to senate democratic leader ed harry reid. author of the kill switch, the rise of the modern senate and the crippling of american democracy. he joins me now. adam, i thought of you when i saw this headline. right? because i don't want to be psychological about manchin or sinema, whatever the reasons are. they want to keep the filibuster. but then begging to be, you have to give us the votes to get this thing over is such a perfect irony. >> that's. right >> i think the big question that none of us know the answer to but we're all waiting with baited breath to find out, is are they going to this position where they are going to defend the filibuster, come hell or high water. or are they going to build a record that will allow them to provide a rational for shifting their position down the road. or is it somewhere between and
maybe they don't know which one is. which is probably the most likely answer. i think that manchin would like for nothing more for ten republicans come forward and then allowed them to move forward with this. bill that combined with getting corporation on voting rights, because they'll be able to show there was bipartisanship. but if there isn't any bipartisanship on these critical issues, then i think they face a really difficult choice. which is whether to give up on these issues that they care about. or find a way to move forward. >> well i think there is this interesting few. you have this counterintuitive take on this that i thought about a lot in the filibuster actually hurts bipartisan compromise instead of helps it. if something is going to pass, there's more incentive to try to affect the final product and we've seen it with the spending bills and nobody pays that much attention to and they do on capitol hill but not the day-to-day press and they do have some sausage making horse trading flavor.
there's some deals that are struck. you've got collins now saying there are changes to the commission on staffing and to wind it down 30 days earlier and it seems to me that these are fine commissions but again it's all a question of are their ten votes are not? >> right and we're seeing how the filibuster stifles bipartisanship before our eyes, right? if there was a majority vote situation it would pass on a bipartisan basis and they would probably get the vote. collins, romney, and murkowski. the filibuster is stifling bipartisanship because you have this arbitrary threshold of 50 votes and you could get former republicans beginning to get ten. this is how the scent used to work. the idea that it takes 60 votes is only recent and developed in recent decades. for more than 200, years the senate was a majority ruled body and so things that got larger super majorities like medicare and social security didn't have to clear a supermajority requirement. they were fought tooth and nail
until they were able to secure a majority. there's a famous memoir, memo famous if people ike me to lbj congratulating him and saying he was assured that medicare was passed because he was able to count more than the majority for support on medicare in the senate. of course, medicare eventually pass with about 70 votes but that was because once it was clear that they could secure a majority, a bunch of people jumped on board for the reason that you said. because they wanted to affect the outcome where they just wanted to take credit for something that was gonna be popular so they were fighting tooth and nail until they could secure a majority was the way the senate used to work and i think it's a way we should go back to. >> if that's a good point. without the filibuster, you'd have a bipartisan majority, democrats and republicans coming together to have a commission. instead, when you have as a party line minority that will block it, right? and so the bipartisanship is being killed here. what do you think about the status of these negotiations happening on the reconciliation track on the big jobs plan
which is the next big real agenda item for the agenda and does it need to go through the filibuster because it's in this reconciliation channel with the majority vote? >> well it seems like it seems like the infrastructures gonna pass mostly through reconciliation so it will be able to bypass the filibuster and pass on a majority vote because of the reconciliation votes. if i had to predict that now i would say it's unlikely that it will get 60 votes so i think reconciliation will have to be the way it goes. if it's gonna pass it all. but you never know. when i keep coming back to is that there are a structural forces that work here that are causing republicans to not want to deal with democrats. it's not that left of their own devices they would want to cut deals with democrats on anything like infrastructure spending which is popular in the state. the fact is they want to deny democrats victories. >> right. >> they want biden to fail just like they want biden to fail because it makes it easier for them to take back majority in
2022. >> the thing i would say here is that no one cares about process. no one cares about process. in either direction. people care about whatever get you the best policy can get. whichever way you gotta go that's the way to do. it adam thank you very much. all right next, a remarkable statement about the two theories behind the origin of covid-19 and why investigating every single aspect of the pandemic and our response is so important after this. rtant after this ing] [sfx: fire truck siren] onstar, we see them. okay. mother and child in vehicle. mother is unable to exit the vehicle. injuries are unknown. thank you, onstar. ♪ my son, is he okay? your son's fine. thank you. there was something in the road... it's okay. you're safe now. ugh, these balls are moist.
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just joined the joint growing number of credible voices calling for a full investigation into whether the coronavirus pandemic was in fact the result of human error at a lab in wuhan china. a rather remarkable statement today the origins of the virus they said the have coalesce around two likely scenarios but has not reach a definitive conclusion whether it emerge from human contact with an infected animal or from a laboratory accident.
they also added that he wants another reported 90 days on that question. where the coronavirus came from should really be investigated but the pandemic. the response to it like white was testing botched by the cdc so early? why was the mask guidance about in the beginning and so confusing? why did the cdc keep clinging on to the idea that the virus was transmitted primarily through direct contact from services or large droplets instead of airborne spread? why didn't they change their position on that until this month? those questions will hopefully be answered by the investigation currently underway in the house like subcommittee on the coronavirus crisis. but there were a lot of mistakes that were made up and down for a government across the board. most of them the more serious loans and cruel and sadistic and reckless ones work by donald trump and his administration. but not limited to that so i for one want a full audit. this doctor is the dean of brown university school of public health and maxwell is
the host of her own programs and they both join me now. doctor jha let me start with you just on this sort of question of getting our arms around what's happening because i do worry. i can feel the poll of memory pulling this whole thing. i can feel it myself. i get why nobody talked about the flu after 1918. let's just pretend that never happened. i get that but that would be incredibly dangerous and donald trump was so singularly horrible and acted in such a malevolent fashion that he blocked out other things that happened that we should also get the bottom of and i think there's a lot of accounting to be done. what do you think? >> absolutely chris so first of all thanks for having me back. i think the two key issues are, one, anytime you've gone through a horrible trauma like a country has the last thing you want to do is think about it so you want to put it behind you and that's fine. i get that notion but as a nation we can't let this behind us. and the second is we're tempted
to blame trump and let's be honest and clear the trump administration really botched this but our federal agencies failed. the federal state fracture failed and a lot of things went wrong and we have to fix those things. we're still seeing the remnants of that even in the biden administration. we've got to get a 9/11-like commission to do a deep dive into this and really understand all the things that went wrong and what we need to fix. >> what you just said about this fight or having over the january 6th commission and keep thinking we should i don't know for commissions the right vehicle but there needs to be sinful audit of this as well. >> you go ahead. >> this is a once in a generation pandemic and so here in a moment where you have donald trump politicizing and essentially corrupting the information flow of scientific information from the beginning and now you're in a place where essentially opening the door to
saying maybe the wuhan theory with some caveats that has merit or maybe it should be seriously looked at and you don't want to seem like you're aligning yourself with donald trump who nicknames this virus something racist and so i think he conflated the bioweapon theory with the lab accident theory if you will. and i think at the end of the day people just didn't want to see maligned with the man who told everyone on tv to inject bleach. and when you say in fact -- >> the information stream was so polluted from the beginning. it was very very difficult to make judgments and it's like i don't know, maybe the malaria drug works? i'm not running any clinical trials. i hope it does but everything that's being channeled through this fog of information is just going corrupt. our ability to inform judgment on it. dr. john. >> absolutely and that's the hardest part of our job in front of us is to look through
that fog and look at what is right and not. there are things the trump administration got right for instance. i think they got a lot of operation warp speed but the problem is if we look at this in an excessively political way, we're going to be stuck and what we want to do is really understand what one right, what went wrong, and then move forward building up a federal system that can respond to future pandemics like this. >> the other aspect of this among many the merits real focus and has been throughout coverage is the disparities of he got hurt by this and the racial disparities we see play out even now as we get into vaccination. that black residents in d.c. are accounting for more than 80% of covid cases in the district and you could see that divergence happening there and that's a divergence borne of divergent vaccination which just read scribes the divergences we saw on earlier parts of the pandemic. >> yes chris and one of the things i think is so important to understand is that those
morbidities that doctors like dr. john we're laying out as this virus was coming to the united states and everyone was sort of trying to wrap around what it meant for them the existence of those morbidities is the result of the same systemic issues that we talk about and other contacts so poverty, lack of education, lack of health care, lack of access to healthy food. if you live in a food desert, your heart is likely not going to be quite as healthy as someone who has access to again a fruit and vegetables every single day. so i just think that is important for us to look at those systems very closely because that's a piece of it too. even with the vaccine, which is a miracle of science, by the way. you can't get the shots in the arms unless you have all of the pieces together and you want to make sure that everybody has that correct scientific and information from the beginning so that by the time you get to the vaccine it's not too hard to convince them to take it. >> and finally in quickly here
there's things we get wrong and things we've done right. so on the vaccine front it's a miracle to surliness point. i love this headlight it ohio where mike dewine had the lottery and i was like a look at that at the numbers say it boosted 45%. there's good lessons to draw here to dr. jha. >> absolutely in at this point we just need people to get vaccinated, we need information to get to them. we need to make it easier and if that means lotteries and beer and donuts i'm all in. whatever is going to get americans vaccinated that's what we need to do. >> the new mta subway program in new york city's got 11,000 shots in arms which again go to work people are. doctor ashisha jha and zerlina maxwell, thank you for coming. that's all for this evening. the rachel maddow show starts now. good evening rachel. >> good evening chris, thank you my friend. much appreciated. thanks to you at home for joining us this hour. we're continuing to follow this very upsetting tragic news in
northern california today, a gunman opening fire and a light rail yard instead jose this morning. eight people are confirmed dead plus the gunman. shooting started around 6:30 am, pacific time at a train storage and maintenance facility for santa clark gunman. it appears the guy struck at a particularly busy time. the shift change when people who work the overnight were handing off to the day shift. santa clara officers said the suspect appears to have shot him self when the officers confronted him. he died and eight other victims. one person is still in critical condition. we still do not know the identities of the victims. authorities were in the process of contacting the victim's