tv The Rachel Maddow Show MSNBC August 11, 2021 1:00am-2:01am PDT
odd but not explicit e-mails from mark foley. even though i have not seen the e-mails i reported what i'd been told. i've since been told newspapersa had these e-mails for months and foley lied about them. later more e-mails were revealed. so i forced him to resign. i'm disappointed i didn't catch his lies before. for that i'm sorry.ig >> and that's the end of the ad. it ends like that. for that i'm sorry, go to black. he's sorry for that. he's very sorry about that, but what exactly is he sorry about?
his name is tom reynolds, republican congressman from new york first elected in the late '90s and that apology ad, one in the pantheon of apology political ads, it ran, actually, as a campaign ad. not just like a video he put on his website or something. it ran as an ad. in 2006 right before he was up n for re-election in the mid-terms that year. and although you cannot tell in the text of the ad himself, what he was apologizing for was a po role played by him and his office in one of the grossest congressional scandals in recent history. he mentioned this guy foley. mark foley. in 2006 mark foley resigned from congress in disgrace after it ng was revealed he'd sent very explicit messages and horribly inappropriate emails to teenage
hill who were serving on capitol hill as congressional pages. these young assistants who work at the u.s. capitol. that story first broke -- the mark foley story first broke to the public in 2006 right before the mid-term elections.g ry but the fact congressman foley had been sending inappropriate a emails to teenage boys, the public didn't know that, but it had been known on capitol hill for aen long while at that poin including by his colleague congressman tom reynolds of new york. congressman tom reynolds was not just a new york congressman. he was in leadership. he was the fourth most powerful republican in the house. it turns out one of the pages, the teenage boys who was gettine these wrong e-mails from congressman foley, he went them to a member of congress who sponsored him to become a page, that member of congress went to republican leadership to tell him about it so something could be done. reynolds and his office
therefore were told about mark foley about these emails. they were told more than a year before the story broke and foley had to resign. reynolds knew a full year before that something was wrong. he says he did forward the information. sio he says he told the house speaker who then was denny hastert who then would later have his own problems with these matters.wh he said he told the house speaker but he did nothing further and meanwhile mark foley stayed in congress the whole time. ultimately tom reynolds' chief of staff was interviewed by the fbi. the fbi then was investigating whether mark foley had been shielded from investigation by his colleagues in congress. tom reynolds' chief of staff resigned although he said he did nothing wrong. heading right into the mid-term elections in 2006 that was why congressman tom reynolds, number four republican memberf of the house, had to put out this weird, vague and abrupt apology ad.rimbir trying without really explaining
to dispense with the role that he and his office had come to playha in that very nasty, very ugly scandal, before voters went to the polls in november to decide whether or not he'd be sent back to congress. in the end voters in tom reynolds' district, they did re-elect him. he squeaked by which was notable because that was a really, really republican district. and he was an incumbent and in leadership and very well-known. it was a narrow victory for him given the size and the shape of that district. and that would be his last race for public office. after he did get re-elected in 2006, he announced that he would retire and he wouldn't run again. he said it was time for him to take on new challenges.it and so instead of running for reelection the next time around in 2008 he endorsed a new republican to take his seat, a guy named chris lee. t and chris lee seemed like a real up and comer in the republican party.s he ended up winning the tom
reynolds seat by a huge margin. chris lee was a vocal anti-gay, anti-abortion republican, a married family values kind of guy who really campaigned on io that as one of the reasons he should be in congress. he voted against the repeal of d don't ask, don't tell, about gay people serving openly in the military. he voted against the fair pay act for women getting equal paya but even though chris lee was this up-and-coming conservative republican from a totally safe republican seat in new york, hi- time in congress ended up being short-lived.bl because just a month into his second term in congress chris lee abruptly resigned after this photo of him surfaced. oh, what are you doing with your hand? turns out family man chris lee was soliciting women for sex on craigslist, yes, craigslist
hence the shirtless, flexy phote which was apparently part of that whole process. so that comes out. chris lee resigns. he resigns from the same seat f that tom reynolds had retired from after he and his office got caught up in the mark foley child sex predator scandal. they go from reynolds, they get chris lee.in chris lee is only a short time. then they get a special electiot to fill chris lee's now vacant seat. and again that was a same republican district in new yorkh but after those couple of scandals and those couple of th guys voters in that new york district in that special er election decided to change d course and they decided they would choose a woman to represent that district and they would choose a democratic woman to represent that district, the first democrat elected to that e seat in like 40 years.mo and her name was kathy hochul. the same kathy hochul who two weeks from today will take the oath to become the first woman governor of the great state of new york.
and how kathy hochul got to this point in her career turns out to be a path paved with just an astonishing number of men behaving astonishingly badly in power, getting caught and thereby being forced out of offices they would have otherwise preferred to hold onto. i mean first just stick with that one congressional seat for a second, right? there's mark foley, the guy ma sending sexually explicit message to minors. the incumbent in that seat in new york tied into the mark foley scandal, his career sort a of ends in disgrace then there's the shirtless tiny fist flexor s guy, chris lee whose career ends in disgrace. then kathy hochul gets that seat. d it's a seat no democrat had any business winning. but she wins it in large part wi thanks from those scandals from her republican predecessors. she holds that seat for that term without any scandals of her own, which is a notable thing in that case. but then that district gets caught upt in a bit of
redistricting in the 2012 elections. again it's still very much a republican seat and she loses that seat after one term to another republican man, a man r named chris collins. oh, remember him? chris collins would go to pick up the baton from badly behaving republican men from this one single congressional district. chris collins ended up getting arrested while serving in congress, indicted on 11 felony charges for an alleged insider trading scheme. he pled guilty. he was sentenced to multiple years in federal prison before he was ultimately pardoned by president trump because he's a republican who supported president trump. but that's just origin story j number one for the woman who's about to become the new governor of new york. this congressional seat with skid marks all over it from ther felonies and sex scandals and child sex abuse scandals of all the men who held it other than her. meanwhile in 2014 having survived her brief tumble in
that totally toxic congressional district kathy hochul ran to become the lieutenant governor of new york state. her running mate was a man who's running for governor along side her andrew cuomo. helps to remember how cuomo c r himself ended up running for governor in the first place. he was the previous democratic governor of new york? eliot spitzer forced out as governor of new york in a lurid prostitution scandal. afteron spitzer was forced out r that,ut his number two david patterson took over the job as new york governor. but david patterson was basically forced out too after a corruption scandal revealing serious domestic violence allegations against his top s aide.on and governor paterson's alleged interference to make those allegations go away. patterson was ultimately found not to have committed witness tampering but the aide against which the allegations were madea did plead guilty to harassing e his former girlfriend. in the midst of that scandal and the investigation thereof
governor patterson ends up not running for another term. andrew cuomo steps up, he wins the democratic nomination to run for governor of new york in 2010 after that mess from the two previous democratic governors. in order to actually ascend to the top job, though, cuomo had to go through the general election, right? and he had to defeat the guy the republicans had nominated for governor that year. that candidate was named carl paladino. carl palladino, during his complain, was found to have had a frequent habit of circulating wildly racist and profoundly -- profoundly -- i mean profoundly pornographic emails to a surprising large number of political pals. i'll tell you just from a personal perspective or pulling back the curtain here a little p bit, the carl paladino pornography email scandal in
that race actually led us on this show to set up a whole set of rules internally we still use how to handle the reporting and broadcasting of stuff that is news worthy and so wildly, wildly offensive it cannot be described at a staff news meeting without all of us getting referred to hr.e wi and it can't be accessed on work computers without them getting seized by the company. so that's how -- that's who andrew cuomo beat to become governor of new york after the eliot spitzer and david patterson scandals. that's how kathy hochul ending upen becoming the congresswomanf new york. she's elected thanks to an assist from congressman mark foley sending sexually explicit solicitations. and the other family values conservative congress who posts the sad cheesecake chest hair photos of himself, thanks to hio she gets her term in congress. then she loses her seat to the guy who loses 11 felonies.
that frees her up to go to albany as the running mate for the guy who succeeds the h prostitution scandal governor and the domestic violence was it witness interference scandal governor which leads to a special elections contest. against the fantastically pornographic candidate in that race. kathy hochul covered in other peoples slime but none of her own eventually becomes lieutenant governor of the greae state of new york. ta-da. but how does kathy hochul become governor of the great state of new york? glad you asked -- sort of -- not really. this is eric schneiderman. he used to be the attorney general in the great state of new york. he used to be the attorney general in the great state of new york. he was one of the attorneys who made the gig into a very national profile job. new york attorney generals in particular tend to do that. it's -- being new york attorney
general is a job that brings with it a lot of power, a lot of opportunity for news making. typically it brings with it a lot of swagger. eliot spitzer was new york attorney general before he became governor. so was andrew cuomo, for example. but eric schneiderman took over on the fast track in 2018 and presumably greater things beyons all possible doubt.yo in may 2018 "the new yorker" published a granular detailed 01 just heinous accounting of how eric schneiderman had subjected four different women to what the magazine described as nonconsensual physical violence. all four women alleged schneiderman repeatedly hit thea often in a sexual or at least sexual degradation context but a never with their consent. schneiderman denied he ever assaulted anyone. but just three hours after that story dropped in "the new yorker," he resigned in disgrace as attorney general. and that is how the great state of new york got its first ever woman serving as attorney
general, barbara underwood. she'd been the long time solicitor general of new york, which means among other things, she represented new york in its major court cases. barbara underwood stepped in to temporarily take over the job after the schneiderman scandal e and his shock resignation. and that's a high pressure, high profile job, right? and underwood took it over at such a high pressure, high profile time. and she took it over in such a weird way, that she's suddenly shoved into that kind of a job which doesn't have a natural successor lined up, but barbara underwood stood up, took the reins and nailed it.rw she sued donald trump's fake family charities straight out of the existence. sued the epa for rolling back climate policy, successfully challenged trump's inhumane challenges in court like that citizenship question on the census and forced family separations at the border. underwood won seemingly
universal praise for her brief tenure as new york attorney general i mean aside from the defendants whose door she beat down.nei barbara underwood took that job under the weirdest and highest pressure circumstances. but she was nails. she was great. she was super effective.gr among other things she proved, she showed, she lived that for sure new york was ready for a woman to be attorney general of the state for the first time ever. barbara underwood took over.evun she held down the fort after the schneiderman scandal. in the next election it was letitia james, tish james who ran for the job outright and ran by a mile. she won by a more than 25-point landslide. underwood had been appointed to the job in the immediate wake of schneiderman's scandal. that made her technically the first acting attorney general of the state of new york. tish james was the first woman ever elected to the gig.
and tisch james also turned that job into a nonstop head line generating machine. as attorney general of new york tish james sued the nra, leading the almost indescribably influential and powerful gun lobby to declare bankruptcy and flee the state. right now she's leading a big multi-state lawsuit against the almost unimaginably influential and powerful company facebook. she started a civil investigation into the trump organization, which has since morphed into an ongoing criminal inquiry into the former president's business. but then there was this. in december a former staffer to governor andrew cuomo accused him of sexually harassing her for years. two months after that another former cuomo staffer came forward saying she, too, was sexually harassed by andrew cuomo when she worked in his office. cuomo denied.
that he ever inappropriately touched anyone who ever worked for him. tish james went to the governoro asked him to allow him to conduct an independent investigation of these allegations. ultimately the governor agreed.n that was in february of this year. between now and then more women came forward with similar allegations about governor cuomo.me others made allegations adjacent to the claim, of a toxic, emotionally abusive workplace. for months governor cuomo continued to deny he'd done anything wrong. but then last week tish james reported her finding. she dropped the report that w included -- that contained the findings of her investigation - into governor cuomo's conduct. it was a bombshell. she found during his time in office governor cuomo had sexually harassed at least 11 women. according tish james' investigation, the governor broke both federal and state
laws and, in fact, created a workplace culture of harassment and fear.at five different prosecutors, five different district attorneys ff have since requested the underlying evidence from tish james investigation to ees potentially conduct criminal inquiries into governor cuomo's behavior. there are at least two criminal inquiries already under way.ats at least one woman identified in the report has already filed a criminal complaint with one county sheriff's office. and now today in a stilted, oddly staged difficult to watchd rollout, governor andrew cuomo of new york resigned saying his resignation is effective two weeks from today. he's still adamantly denies thal he knowingly did anything wrong. but regardless either way that makes his number two, his lieutenant governor kathy hochul, now the next governor of new york.nt kathy hochul has spent nearly her whole life in new york state. she was a practicing lawyer before working as a legislative aide on the hill. w she worked in the new york state assembly.
ultimately won a county clerk seat. later she won that ill-fated seat in congress. w since she became lieutenant governor during cuomo's second term she's famously driven to or every county in the state every year she has been in office. she's originally from a traditionally more conservative part of upstate new york. in the past she described herself as an independent democrat.t she was once opposed progressive priorities like issuing driver's licenses to undocumented immigrants. at one point she got an endorsement from the nra. but she has moved to the left o at least to the center since then.ha she's renounced her old stance on the driver's licenses. she's adopted a more traditionally progressive slate of policies. she's considered to be essentially pragmatic and to have followed the same sort of path that a lot of upstate new york relatively conservative a democrats have followed when they've moved into state wide or, indeed, national office. essentially lining themselves up more with the party at large as they get into bigger settings that account to larger numbers of voters. s by all accounts kathy hochul's
governing style is nothing like that of her former boss. she's probably known as able, well respected, pragmatic, scandal-free. she's a totally worthy inheriter of this job. but the inheritance of this job honestly is thanks to an almost unbelievably relentlessly depraved pantheon of terrible men of both parties doing absolutely terrible things in office, mostly, but not exclusively, to women and teenagers. i mean, that is what happened with all those terrible men doing terrible things. right. it took her to the congressional seat she held, the governorship, took her to the scandal and investigation that led today toh her getting the governorship of new york. and on one hand it is cause for some sort of celebration new york finally has its first woman governor and an able and well respected one at that.
but maybe to get the next one shouldn't take a prostitution scandal, a child sex abuse scandal, a domestic violence scandal, a bizarre online sex solicitation scandal, sexual abuse scandal and a serious sexual harassment scandal to make this possible.s maybe that shouldn't have to be the path to women having power. maybe. that kind of a path where finally at the end of the day d after all that women who aren'tt depraved and aren't doing terrible things have to come ina and cleanup the mess after all those dudes. maybe.
today's announcement by new york democratic governor andrew cuomo that he will step down from office in two weeks means that lieutenant governor kathy hochul, is poised to become the first woman governor of new york state. once she steps into that role in two weeks time hochul will cease of course being lieutenant governor of the state. according to state law the person who will temporarily replace her as lieutenant governor is our next guest, the president of the state senate in new york, the majority leader in the state senate. she'll also now be acting as lieutenant governor of the great state of new york. her name is senator andrea
stewart-cousins. she's led the democratic party in the new york state senate since 202. that makes her the first woman to lead a state party in new york. she'll soon be the first black woman to serve as the state's lieutenant governor. but that is happening under these extraordinary circumstances that have been a long time in coming. andrea stewart cousins called on governor andrew cuomo to resign all the way back in march. today he finally did. democratic majority leader andrea stewart-cousins, of the new york state senate joins now. thank you for joining us. i know this has been a difficult and intense day. >> it has been very, very difficult, very intense. but i so appreciate your pattern recognition because i always like to tell the history of how we get to places, and that is such incredibly important history. so thank you for that. >> thank you for thanking me, but it makes me feel like i need to take a shower just talking about it. i mean it is absolutely bipartisan.
it spans federal office and statewide office up to the very highest levels through multiple generations of political leadership with all different kind of creeps. i have to ask you if you have a diagnosis for what accounts for all of these levels of men behaving terribly that led ultimately to this resignation today. >> well, you know, rachel, i think we know what it is. we know that people get kind of enamored with their power. they get enamored with titles. they get enamored with the position that they hold over other people. and their egos kind of get really big. and sometimes people forget. it is extremely, extremely hard to forget if you are really centered on public service. and somehow i don't understand why people feel if you do this then maybe you're allowed to do
other things. for women i've found in this position, and certainly it's a position that had been largely male, largely white male, that when women get an opportunity to show up, we have to -- first of all we thought 20 times before we even decide to run. and then we've been told by a million people that we can't. and then you find yourself in this place. and you have to really focus on doing your job exceptionally well in order to be able to retain it for yourself. and you also know that you don't want to be the last. that women fight hard to get in our spaces, and we don't want to be the last. we want to lay a path for our daughters, our granddaughters and for every other woman who might be inspired by what we do. so i think the focus is certainly -- you know, i won't say every man -- but i'm just saying that most women come in with a mind-set they really have to prove themselves.
and frankly, i think we're at this moment now where our leadership is going to be paramount to the success of not only our state but our nation in many ways. >> and you are going to have a key and unique role in that new leadership. this we assume temporary role as lieutenant governor right now which you've assumed essentially through the power of succession. lieutenant governor hochul ascending to the governorship. what should the country expect from lieutenant governor soon to be governor hochul? how long do you expect to be in the lieutenant governor position? obviously the national spotlight is here because of the scandal for the man now leaving the position. but what should we know about soon to be governor hochul and yourself? >> okay, so first of all i think i have to clarify because people are saying oh, you're going to be the lieutenant governor. i don't believe that will be the case. why?
because there's a two-week span between the time the governor actually resigns. so, had he been, as remember as governor spitzer did, had he said, oh, i'm stepping down immediately. then immediately the succession happens. lieutenant governor kathy hochul is still the lieutenant governor while the governor is still the governor. so she will have two weeks to make a decision about who will be her lieutenant governor. and i believe that's what's going to happen. so i'm glad i get a chance to clarify this because i've gotten a lot of congratulations and the reality is -- which is fine -- but i'm perfectly sure she'll pick a lieutenant governor in the next two weeks. and then if she doesn't, yes, i get to ascend to that until she does. but i'm looking forward. i spoke with her this morning. i'm looking forward to as her partner, as being one of those people. remember there are only three
men in the room until i showed up in the room frankly because it's always the governor, the speaker and the majority leader. and up until the time i was elected majority leader in 2019 there were only three men in the room. the room is going to look very different now. the first woman governor, the woman majority leader -- the first woman majority leader and the speaker, an african-american male. very different room, and i'm looking forward, frankly, to seeing how we can, again, continue to move us forward in our progressive way so that we can continue to build our economy, fight covid and prove once again that when you let other voices at the table and you let people have a chance, amazing things can happen. >> do you expect that governor cuomo may yet be impeached? obviously he has said he's leaving office and as you note that'll happen within the next two weeks. one of the things impeachment could theoretically address is
prohibiting him from holding office again. do you expect that there will be 'effort to actually continue with his impeachment proceedings, despite his resignation? >> i think there's certainly people who are wanting to see that happen. there are other people who feel like, you know, the fact he's stepping down is something really significant and we need to move forward. for me i trust the assembly will take a look. i know there's another meeting of the judiciary committee on monday. i believe they'll take a look at what they have. they were having as you noted a broader investigation, so they were looking into nursing home numbers. they were looking into the book deal. they were looking into vaccine test preferences. they were looking into different things. so i think that in addition to what the attorney general has looked at they may have some things they might want to look at further or maybe not. but i do believe we'll know a
lot more next week once they've had an opportunity to reconvene and, you know, start talking about how to go forward. we, i want to say in new york, have really taken steps around sexual harassment and workplace safety and really creating an environment that needs to be welcoming with zero tolerance in sexual harassment. since 2019 we've had sexual harassment hearings around the state. none have been had in 25 years. so this a very serious thing. and the fact women came forward, this very powerful man and stood their ground, it was corroborated by our very able attorney general is really significant and i think, you know, more than enough to say that, you know, times up, we've got to move forward. and that's what we're doing. the rest i think we'll know more about and maybe there'll still
be impeachment. but whatever happens we need to progress. >> andrea stewart cousins is the majority leader of the new york state senate, one of the three men in the room at this point. and i mean that with all the irony with which i deliver it. thank you so much, madam majority leader. i know these are going to be trying times ahead as well. keep us apprised. we'd love to have you back as new york goes through this transition. >> i so enjoyed being here. thank you, rachel. thanks for what you do. >> i appreciate it. all right, we've got so much more to get to tonight. stay with us.
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them turned out to be covid positive. 60 prisoners and 14 staff. two days after that press conference that sheriff himself, the man who made the announcement about the outbreak in the jail, he himself tested positive for covid. the day after that the spokesman for that sheriff's office announced he too tested positive for covid. a week after that, the second in command at that office, a man named allen white he not only tested positive for covid, he was hospitalized with it. four days after that the sheriff himself died from covid, sheriff lee vance, age 63 years old. this is all in hinds county, mississippi. the most populous county in the state. the local paper there the clarion ledger, this is their front page today. undersheriff will get vaccine. that back story is that tragedy that's unfolded over the last couple of weeks there.
hinds county allen white returns to the office. white who is unvaccinated said his experience with the virus over the past few weeks has made him a believer in the vaccine. in addition to becoming extremely ill and getting hospitalized himself allan white lost his boss and friend sheriff lee vance to covid last wednesday. i understand mandates and my body my choice as an individual. i can only speak from personal experience, and what i believe in and what i recommend to everyone is get the vaccine. white said his doctors told him because he now has coronavirus antibodies he doesn't need to be vaccinated for three months. quote, but after my 90 days are up, he said, undersheriff allan white will be standing in line with his sleeve rolled up. with his sleeve rolled up. that was the front page of the clarion ledger in jackson, mississippi today. done in biloxi, mississippi,
down on the gulf coast, here's the front page of the "sun herald" today. coast hospital sends plea to public as icu's reach capacity and up in column a there, the worst is yet to come. it was a weekend of sickness and health in mississippi. the head line is a quote from the hospital officer. quote, we are rapidly depleting our hospital resources. the worst is yet to come in mississippi. please get vaccinated. over in arkansas here's the front page today of the democrat gazette. after record admissions icus down to the last eight beds. only eight intensive care unit beds were available in the state of arkansas monday. and the hospitalizations of covid-19 patients jumped by the largest daily increase yet to the largest daily total yet since the pandemic began. in louisiana here's the front page of "the advocate" from
baton rouge today. delta variant driving surge in hospitalizations. quote, we just don't know how far this is going to go. and listen to this from that front page article. quote, at children's hospital in new orleans there were 12 children hospitalized with covid as of monday morning, half of whom were under the age of 2. three of the child patients were on mechanical ventilators including a 1-month old infant. over in alabama the decatur daily's front page also leads with how sick kids are getting right now. younger residents in hospital as infections rise. it's the same idea right now in florida. here's the front page today of "the florida times union" which is out of jacksonville. baptist health admitting more kids. children admissions for covid double in a week. quote, the number of patients including children hospitalized because coronavirus in jacksonville continues to rise just one day before local schools reopen their doors. baptist health in jacksonville saying this time last week they
had ten kids hospitalized from covid. but it's gone to 21 kids hospitalized including six kids in that icu in that one hospital. jacksonville. in pensacola, florida, today the pensacola news journal front page is a photo of this very brave 14-year-old getting her shot. at the browns vi community center. they put that over that stark headline, virus hospitalizations break all-time record. speaking of florida, the federal government today did send 200 ventilators and 100 other high flow oxygen machines to the state of florida to help florida deal with its record number of covid hospitalizations. ron desantis is now not just insisting but threatening personal retaliation against school district officials who require masks as kids come back to class. those same kinds of fights are brewing in texas as well where texas governor greg abbott had to ask state hospitals to pare
back and make room for all the sick people with covid. he also authorized the state health department to hire in extra medical staff from out-of-state to alleviate some of the burden on texas' overrun hospitals and medical staff. nonetheless the front pages in texas are just as stark both in the scale of the problem and the inability and unwillingness to fight it. icu beds projected to fill up soon. in beaumont, texas, new high. in galveston, texas, two galveston county pastors die with covid-19. in houston tents pop up at lbj hospital as delta pushes harris health to capacity. more children going to hospitals. in dallas look at this big front page above the full headline. abbott's order denied, county challenges ban on mask mandates. dallas school district requires coverings. dallas and san antonio are two big texas cities that have sued
the texas republican governor greg abbott after he has tried to ban any municipality or any school district from having a mask mandate. today san antonio got somewhere with that. they issued a temporary order, against governor greg abbott and his mask ban. that will at least for now allow san antonio and bexar county itself to require masks in schools which their health department wants them to do as kids head back into the classroom. joining us now is the mayor of san antonio. i know this is a really busy time for you and your city. >> thanks for having me, rachel. >> let me ask you first of all, if i explained that correctly in terms of the impact of that ruling and the nature of this conflict you've got right now with the texas governor. >> the delta surge is so dangerous and so rapid that every day matters.
and so we contended that the governor used his emergency powers unconstitutionally to behind bind the hands of local health officials from dealing with the actual emergency. it's tragically ironic he'd use his emergency powers from dealing with the emergency. effective immediately our public health authority has implemented a mask mandate for all public schools. so it is effective immediately. it's already going to have impact and we believe it'll save lives. >> tell us about the balance of health capacity right now in and around san antonio in terms of how bad the current surge is and how strained your health resources are and what you're expecting as schools go back into session. obviously the mask mandate per anthony fauci on the show last night should make a difference and should help in terms of trying to limit the spread of covid in schools. but how worried are you about health capacity and schools getting started back up and continuing transmission?
>> our hospital capacity, our medical capacity in general like most major cities in texas is already stretched beyond its limit. and you saw the governor already issue a call, which we've been asking him to do for weeks for outside help, for nursing contingents. it's a bit like an arsonist calling 911, though. our capacity is already past its limit, and the surge of this delta variant is not slowing down. that's our concern is that our hospital capacity has already been breached and there's really no abating it if we don't mitigate. and so we have work to do including getting folks back in masks now that we have that authority. we're going to do that. and we also have to ensure that folks who can get vaccinated are being vaccinated, and that work continues. we did exceed the biden administration's goal quite a while ago. but back in june san antonio had one of the lowest positivity rates for several weeks, months,
in fact, less than 2%. it has gone up almost 20-fold, rachel, in the last 6 to 8 weeks. and so the case numbers are just out of control. and let's not forget the hospital workers, the medical workers, the nurses, the doctors are putting themselves in harms way which they have done triple time for the last 18 months. and they're getting no relief. and they're oftentimes taking this risk back home to their families with how dangerous and contagious this particular variant strain is. >> incredible series of challenges, remarkable that one of them has to be in court literally to give your own health authorities the ability to do what they think is right. ron nearenberg, the mayor of the great city of texas, thank you for being here tonight. we'd love to have you back as you continue this fight. >> we're going to keep fighting for our constituents, rachel. thanks for having me. >> we'll be right back. stay with us. thanks.
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i was not just wrong. i was explosively wrong. is that the right way to put it? i was wrong with a side of fries and every dipping sauce. whatever the opposite of i told you so is, that is what i should say right now. i was completely wrong. today after months and months of back and forth, democrats and republicans in the u.s. senate passed a $550 billion infrastructure bill and they did it together. i was so sure republicans were pulling the same trick they pulled with obamacare in 2009 where they dragged bipartisan talks out for like a year and pretended to be so interested in supporting something and voting for it only for none of them to vote for it in the end. they were just wasting time. i was so sure they were doing that again. i was totally wrong. i was so wrong that it wasn't even just the bare minimum ten republicans that they needed to vote for the bipartisan infrastructure bill today. not just ten of them.
it was 19 of them that voted for it including senate republican leader mitch mcconnell. so take it from me, don't take it from me. [ laughter ] i am very bad at predictions. that said, with that enormous caveat shaped piece of humble pie as an appetizer. here is what i think will happen next. i'm sure i'm wrong but why break the streak? despite sort of celebratory remarks today from president biden and vice president harris about this bill passing the senate, i don't think this bill will be on it way to president biden's desk any time soon. i think it will sit in the house for awhile now. speaker of the house nancy pelosi and the caucus of the house are united in the determination and plan to not touch that thing until the senate passes the other infrastructure bill that is in play right now, which is much more important to progressives. that other bill is a way bigger bill. that's the one that has the focus on big, ambitious
priorities like health care and child care and huge amount of stuff on climate change. democrats plan to try to pass that through budget reconciliation which would mean they won't need republican votes at all but also means the process is complex and a little bit different from a regular bill. the senate is actually still in session right now as i speak working on something they will send over to the house so the house can start technically writing that big $3.5 trillion bill. the senate is expected to have finished this process and punted this over to the house by the end of this week. today speaker pelosi told members of the house that they need to cut their vacation plans short and come back early from their recess. they need to come back august 23rd to get to work on their part of it. ultimately, it will take a lot of time. all the details of this $3.5 trillion bill will have to be ironed out and agreed on after all of that is done and the house manages to pass it will then the big one, the $3.5 trillion bill go to the senate for the senate to pass. if the senate then passes that,
then the democrats and the house have to pass the bipartisan bill, which the senate passed today. so lots of celebration today the senate did this thing i was sure they wouldn't do. it will be awhile yet. looks leak we're talking at least another month, maybe two months here, before if the house progressives get their way, both of these bills will finally come to a position where they can become law. a month or two months. that's what i say. like i said, i've been wrong before and i will definitely be wrong again. [ laughter ] watch this space or don't. i mean, take it easy.
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and medications including botulinum toxins as these may increase the risk of serious side effects. see for yourself at botoxcosmetic.com that is going to do it for us tonight. i'll see you again this time tomorrow. "way too early" is up next. the report said i sexually harassed 11 women. that was the headline people heard and saw and reacted to. the reaction was outrage. it should have been. however, it was also false. now, don't get me wrong, this is not to say that there are not 11 women who i truly offended. there are. and for that, i deeply, deeply apologize. new york governor andrew cuomo announces he is stepping