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tv   Alex Witt Reports  MSNBC  September 5, 2021 9:00am-10:00am PDT

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headquarters here in new york. rapidly approaching high noon in the east. welcome to "alex witt reports." we begin with more than 12 million americans bracing to lose their unemployment benefits or see their weekly payments plummet as three federal pandemic and aid programs are set to expire tomorrow unless the white house or congress acts. we'll have more on that in just a moment. first, some new reaction today from the white house to the harsh new abortion law in texas. biden chief of staff ron klain saying the administration is prepared to protect women's rights by any means necessary. >> we protect women who are seeking to exercise their constitutional rights. we have the team at hhs looking at what means we can do to try to get women the health care ter advices they need. >> do you think it's possible you can do something on a federal level? >> we will find ways.
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>> one of two republicans on the select committee investigating the january 6th insurrection slamming his fellow house gop members for threatening tech companies to not comply with the request for their records. >> right now all we've said is we want these records preserved. there's a number of people, and then we'll decide what we need to see and what's in the american people's interest. i think to turn around and make ominous talk to these telecom companies that when we take over it's going to be different or we'll have payback, that's not, frankly, the republican party i remember and the republican party i ever joined. >> and new polling today from "the washington post" and abc news shows president biden's rating has dropped in the wake of the delta variant, down about 10 points since june. cedric richmond reacting to the numbers this morning. >> we're not worried about poll numbers. we're worried about the 1.2
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million people in louisiana who didn't have electricity, the people in new york and new jersey going through it. this has never been a president who worries about himself. he worries about the country. >> let's go to heidi przybilla. there are concerns the pandemic benefits are expiring too soon. how is the white house responding to calls for an extension? >> reporter: both the unemployment assistance for people who didn't traditionally qualify as well as those $300 weekly boosters expected to ex tire this week, critics in the republican party said that it was a disincentive to work, so they never supported extending these. alex, quite frankly, there doesn't seem to be a lot of political momentum on either side of the aisle when you listen to democrats including the white house chief of staff this morning who say that maybe now it's time for the states to take over. here is white house chief of staff ron klain. >> the delta variant is having an impact on the economy but not so much on employment. we're at the lowest unemployment
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rate we have seen in this country in a year and a half. so these benefits expire under law this week, this coming week, and we think the states have the tools they need to help people move from unemployment to employment. particularly, by the way, we have more unfilled jobs -- >> reporter: still, alex, there's a lot of questions whether this is, in fact, the right time. the white house agreed to the september 6th date before the delta virus was even on the scene and now there's questions about how this will impact back to work including schools and the ability of parents to go back to work if schools are going to be out again in individuals who don't want to take the lower wage service jobs that are open. and actually we've already seen in the 26 states that are run by gop governors and legislatures what's happened here. it's interesting because we haven't necessarily seen an uptick in employment. what we've seen is a change in the type of people who are being
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hired. so fewer teenagers, more individuals over the age of 25 getting back into the job market, alex. again, there's a lot of questions about how this will go down just because a lot of individuals, according to recruiting firms who have done a lot of polling and studying of this issue, say that a lot of americans have rethought work during the pandemic and what it is that their priorities are particularly for those individuals who might be front work facing service type professionals who don't want to go back in the middle of another virus surge. >> yeah, i know there's a lot to talk about. one thing this virus has taught us, we have to re-assess, have learned to be fluid. we've looked at benchmarks and have them be adjusted. it's in control in so many ways of so many things. anyway, thank you so much, heidi. i appreciate that. joining me right now msnbc political analyst julian castro, former hud secretary and a former 2020 democratic
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presidential candidate. welcome back. good to see you. so as we look at these expanded federal benefits set to expire tomorrow, are americans ready for this to end now? >> well, a lot of families are not ready. and you mentioned a second ago that circumstances have changed over the last few weeks, the last couple of months this delta variant that's surging at the same time the eviction moratorium is about to lapse. and so you have this potential maelstrom of misery for a lot of families who may have one or two adults who are still out of work, people who are facing eviction, a lot of gop states, 26 gop-led states that cut off that unemployment boost a long time ago. i'm from texas. we saw that. we also know, alex, and this is very important to note that analysis that has looked at this
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has said that this was not -- the unemployment benefits did not create a disincentive for people to work. people are looking for jobs. they want to work. yes, perhaps what they're looking for, the type of job they're looking at, has been affected by this pandemic. but people want to work. they're trying to work. trying to make a living. and so this is coming at a bad time for our economy and i think our country. and the thing i do agree with that the administration has said is that states need to get their act together and make sure we're investing in people so that they don't fall off this cliff and can't get back. >> yeah, 100% agree with you on that. here is a question if you look at all the numbers, the august jobs report was worse than expected. the economy added only 235,000 jobs in august, about a third or so of the 720,000 jobs expected. the unemployment rate is now at
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5.2%. but the new article we were reading in "the washington post" asks why america has 8.4 million unemployed when there are 10 million job openings. i mean, you address this to a degree. ultimately looking at the numbers, why does this is not add up? >> well, i mean, there are different reasons for that. one reason is those are top line numbers. there may be 10 million job openings and 8.4 million people looking for work. people's skills don't match the jobs openings so it's not a perfect match. on top of that there are gee grfk and industry differences in terms of the match and availability of jobs. and, also, things like child care. oftentimes people can't just go back to work because they don't have the child care that they need. we were counting on schools reopening up and folks sending
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their kids to school and things being quote/unquote, normal. well, that's been up-ended because of this delta variant. we've seen school districts in texas, school districts in other places that are actually shutting down because of the spread of covid. so as much as we would like to believe that all of this is on the up and up and that families are a lot more stable, there's still a lot of uncertainties. and my hope is that state legislatures and congress are going to be able to make the decisions they need based on new information, based on this delta variant surge and not based on information from six months ago whenever this deadline was set. >> what about the u.s. supreme court that ruled to end the federal eviction moratorium? do you think there will be a public housing crisis? are you worried about a covid crisis as well?
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i mean, that's the thing that the supreme court denied. we're not going to let a health industry or health aspect look at this. it seemed purely economic. >> well before the coronavirus and the pandemic has made it worse. the biden administration was smart when they altered the cdc eviction moratorium based on changed circumstances, that the delta variant had come along and was surging and creating greater problems. that was not recognized by the supreme court. i think the supreme court made a mistake. the upshot is we're going to have potentially, by one estimate, 3.5 million americans who lose their home within the next couple of years, including several hundred thousand in the next few months. other estimates have that higher. that's another reason that it's so important for congress, for state legislatures not to act
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like we're past all of this. we need to make those investments that will keep people stable beginning with making sure they have a good job and a safe and affordable place to live. >> so you're in texas. there are a few things to talk about in that state. let's talk about with the new restrictive abortion law. what do you think is the real-life impact of this law? what do you think people can do about it? >> well, it's dangerous. it tramples on 50 years, a constitutional right a woman has to an abortion. texas has overthrown roe vs. wade and supreme court refused to step in and stop that and other states are moving quickly in these conservative republican areas to do the same thing, and that's what i anticipate you'll see.
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the supreme court could come back and rule on the merits that it is unconstitutional but that will take time. in the meantime it's hurting people's ability to get reproductive care. it's hurting these constitutional rights that have been set for 50 years. and people shouldn't kid themselves. before roe versus wade, abortion happened. after this legislation and this nondecision by the supreme court, abortion is going to happen. but is it going to be dangerous. people who are willing to go to states where you can get an abortion. that is not the america that we ought to live in. my hope is that congress will codify roe vs. wade.
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it's time to look at judicial reform, reforming the supreme court because we need to make sure constitutional rights are absolutely protected going forward. >> secretary julian castro, there's a lot to talk about texas. you'll have to come back and see us soon. thank you for this conversation. new today the u.s. now hitting 40 million cases of coronavirus since the start of the pandemic as the delta variant is sweeping across the country this holiday weekend. millions traveling over labor day. the cdc issuing a warning to the unvaccinated, just stay home. telling even those who are vaccinated to take risks into consideration. and here is why. infections, hospitalizations and deaths rising across most of the country. the cdc announcing more than 206 million people have now received at least one dose of the vaccine am questions are being raised
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about the booster. here is what dr. fauci said. >> we were hoping we would get both the candidates, both products, moderna and pfizer, rolled out by the week of the 20th. it is conceivable that we will only have one of them out but the other will likely follow soon thereafter. >> and a sobering reality is emerging in the latest wave of new cases. several months worth of progress is unraveling in weeks. 5 million new cases added from august 1st to today, september 5. compare that to the nearly seven months it took for the u.s. to hit its first 5 million cases last august. this comes as the more than 1635 new cases linked to the mu variant are confirmed in los angeles county. this is the latest layer of concern heading into the second pandemic labor day. >> reporter: it's the unofficial end to summer, and you can tell
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with holiday celebrations in full swing. broadway is back and breaking records. thousands of music levers descended on napa. airport travel nearly matched prepandemic holiday levels with tsa screening. more than 2.1 million passengers and, of course, americans packing stadiums coast to coast as college football kicks off. for so many this holiday weekend was a relief, a return to the camaraderie people missed so desperately. take a listen. >> just having, like, so many fans everywhere is so cool and it's an awesome year and awesome team this year. it's really awesome to be back. >> we know that when people are close together shouting, screaming, happy shouting for their team, they can be spreading the virus. so this is a situation where you want to take as many precautions as you can so that you can enjoy the game and not take a souvenir home that you weren't intending. >> and that was nbc reporting.
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as for the mu variant dr. anthony fauci says it is not an immediate threat in the u.s., but he will be watching it closely. one week after hurricane ida roared ashore hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses in louisiana are still without power and you might be surprised at how long it will take to get power back to some. we'll see how folks are coping next. and, also, on january 10th, we ran a graphic that said libby andrews was among the people charged in connection with the capitol riot. that was incorrect. libby andrews has not been charged. e superstore where we've got the best deals on refrigerators, microwaves, gas ranges and grills. and if you're looking for... ♪ ♪ where we've got the best deals on refrigerators, microwaves, ♪
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now to the very latest on the devastation from hurricane ida. this hour almost 600,000 people remain without electricity in areas in and around new orleans. and a dire prediction today from the largest provider, entergy, saying at least five of the
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hardest hit parishes may have to do without power until the end of this month. new satellite images from maxar show a significant oil spill following ida. officials say it spans at least ten miles. and new video from philadelphia where cleanup is certainly under way after major flooding from ida. the storm killed at least five people in that area. let's go to vaughn hillyard who is about 40 miles or so south, gabe gutierrez in manville where the president will be on tuesday. gabe, we'll start with you. tell us what you're seeing there today. behind you, that's a mess. >> reporter: hi there, alex. as you mentioned president biden is scheduled to tour this area on tuesday and this is what we're seeing, all of this debris, people cleaning out their waterlogged basements and this is people's livelihoods on
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their front lawn. one woman told us she had to be rescued by boat by one of her neighbors. we're getting a clearer sense of the devastation here. across the northeast the floodwaters have receded but for some the desperation has not. >> the water was up to here. >> reporter: river castro and his family had to be rescued as the water rushed into his home. >> what will happen with our kids? they're about to start school. >> reporter: at least 27 people have died in the state alone, many of them drowned in their cars. the torrential rains shattered records and lives. >> a nightmare for me because the first time in my life that i experienced this. >> reporter: ida's impact is still ravaging the gulf coast. officials in new orleans are gathering vulnerable residents at the convention center and bussing them to shelters outside the city. across the region a massive but painstaking cleanup effort is well under way.
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authorities are urging some residents to come back. >> if you have somewhere to go, if you have somewhere and if you can manage it, we want to give everybody an option that needs an option. >> reporter: in the south ida has killed at least 16 people but its remnants took the lives of at least 51 in the northeast. some here are frustrated that officials seemed unprepared. >> we were not warned. even the town did not even warn us. >> reporter: new jersey's governor touring the destruction blames climate change. >> we have both infrastructure and a play book as a state and a nation that is not up to par right now. it's not made for the current reality, never mind the future reality. >> reporter: alex, this is what we're seeing. this is street after street in manville. just look at all of this destruction and actually these are belongings that have been waterlogged, people cleaning them out from thayer basements. we've seen, incredibly, several
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homes exploded because the floodwaters triggered gas leaks inside these homes, and the buildings exploded. thankfully no one was inside. for example, a woman in this building -- 11 hours because the neighborhood was cut off with all of this floodwater, she was rescued, as i said, by her neighbor across the street. came here, got her and her children out by boat. and they managed to survive and are back here now cleaning up. >> i mean, just one harrowing story after another. okay. thank you so much for that, gabe. let's go from there to vaughn hillyard in jefferson parish just south of new orleans. vonn, that area saw devastating floods, of course. we're learning the power may not be restored until the end of september? >> reporter: alex, we're talking weeks here. this is debilitating heat, no power, and you're talking about
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here in a community of about 1,000 here in which the water and the mud just overtook the homes here in this community. you can see lifted up this boat, brought it over here. the part is about half of the residents here waited out the storm, unable to leave and are still attempting to live here to this day despite the circumstances. there's an individual living in this trailer here that was obliterated. if you pan over to the right you can see they've begun to be able to clear the road to make it somewhat accessible for folks here. you can see the amount of devastation. this gentleman's home is sitting up here on his porch right now because of the lack of air conditioning inside, the lack of power inside here. you can see this was a home that was built after katrina when the homes were essentially lifted up off the ground. you can see our photojournalist derek will zoom in to the stairs, you can see how high the water, that pink towel that is up there is how high the water went. you can see the necessity to
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have those homes elevated here. a lot of questions as to why did the water breach the levees and why did the water overtake this community? the water had to go somewhere when you see the surge capacity. if you look down the road here you can see the, number one, the energy workers, the power line workers, trying to get the electricity back here in this area. they're trying to clear out the road. there are folks trying to make it back to their homes. a couple pulled up in their pickup truck asking our team if they could get over the bridge down the road because they've been unable to gain access over the corpse of the last week here. we're talking about not a storm that impacted folks for 24-48 hours but talking about a storm here that has left this area without power for at least several more weeks and of course we can only begin to barely understand the true impact on a community of 1,000 here long term. alex? >> it's never lost on me as well that the people, those guys working on the power lines, many of them are dealing with the same issues at their own homes.
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thank you very much, vaughn hillyard and gabe gutierrez in manville, new jersey. as lawmakers push for the truth about january 6th, supporters of the insurrection are planning another rally. the plan to keep the capitol safe this time around. age is just a number. and mine's unlisted. try boost® high protein with 20 grams of protein for muscle health. versus 16 grams in ensure high protein. boost® high protein also has key nutrients
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more republican pushback today against gop misinformation around the january 6 capitol riots. one of two republicans on select committee investigating january 6 says it's time for the party to focus on truth. >> i'm a republican. i would like to see actual republican values in the majority. all i can say right now is my party has to embrace truth. we have to have a full reckoning of what happened on january 6th. we have to turn away from conspiracy.
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>> joining me a democrat from committee. congressman, welcome back to the broadcast. always good to see you. donald trump is still very much the leader of the gop and we know his supporters are planning another rally on september 18th. how likely is the party to turn away from conspiracy theories? >> not anytime soon. they are clearly in the hands of donald trump. they are clearly going to follow him. he continues to purvey his lies and half-truths and conspiracy theories. the republican party will be controlled by donald trump. the problem is are there enough republicans like adam kinzinger and others i know, close friends, both in the congress as well as out in the general
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public. there's not enough of them nor are they loud enough at the moment to put donald trump down. >> okay. let's talk infrastructure with senator manchin saying he's not going to support the $3.5 trillion causing for a pause. >> perhaps he wants to pause on giving child care to women so they can get back into the economy. does he want a pause on health care right at the moment the delta variant is spiking? we had originally wanted a much bigger package because the crisis is so intense but we settled on $3.5 trillion. that was the deal made in the senate with senator manchin agreeing to that deal. >> so the question is how much of this internal debate among democrats is about each side sticking to its principles? how much is it about politics? and can these two be separated considering pretty thin margins in both chambers?
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>> it is in the interests of this country that we pass both pieces of legislation. we've seen the devastation from the recent hurricane. we know we need to build back better, and that's the infrastructure bill because it covers things like electrical grids, power systems and moving towards a green economy. that's all in the build back better infrastructure piece. the other parts of it, they also are necessary as you just heard. the question is where is the middle ground? at the end of the day i believe senator manchin will do what is good for this country and that is to find an area in which he's comfortable. we already know he's pretty much comfortable with the physical infrastructure. the build back portion of it. on the other side there is a large area in which compromise must take place. we need to be practical about this. we don't have much time. we have to get it done in the next month or two and we will.
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there is a compromise, we will find it. we must -- the country needs it. >> okay. let's take a listen to what the chief of staff from the white house ron klain said today. >> if i had a nickel for every time someone has told me this package has been dead, i would be a very rich person. we worked with senator manchin every step of the way. he has been a partner and has strong views. this package adds nothing to the debt. it is fully paid for by raising taxes. on wealthy people. we've had people become billionaires during the pandemic. >> does cbo analysis bear out this billionaire tax theory? >> i think it will. in the final analysis it will. right now there are some assumptions being made but yet we do not know what the tax package will be at the end of this process. but the fact of the matter is there is a necessity to raise the revenue and mr. klain said it exactly right.
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the wealthy who have not paid taxes, those 50 major largest american corporations that have paid no taxes, those enormous room out there for the increase in taxes on that particular sector. there's also a necessity to increase the irs enforcement. we know that there's probably as much money to be raised from proper enforcement of the current tax code as there is in the new taxes. together there's a lot that can be done and, yes, the legislation will be paid for and we'll get on with it. there is a compromise out there. it is necessary and i will tell you that the democrats in the house we hold strongly to our views until our views kill the bill in which case we will nodfy and we will find an appropriate compromise. >> sir, it's always a pleasure. thank you so much for your input. >> thank you. a series of global crises and the president's approval
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numbers are slipping. how the white house is responding. and coming up at 2:00 p.m. eastern, filmmaker and activist michael moore will join me. we have a lot to talk about including afghanistan and the biden legacy. den legacy tired of clean clothes that just don't smell clean? what if your clothes could stay fresh for weeks? now they can! this towel has already been used and it still smells fresh. pour a cap of downy unstopables into your washing machine before each load and enjoy fresher smelling laundry for up to 12-weeks. with relapsing forms of ms... there's a lot to deal with. not just unpredictable relapses. all these other things too. it can all add up. kesimpta is a once-monthly at-home injection... that may help you put these rms challenges in their place. kesimpta was proven superior at reducing the rate of relapses, active lesions, and slowing disability progression vs aubagio. don't take kesimpta if you have hepatitis b, and tell your doctor if you have had it, as it could come back. kesimpta can cause serious side effects, including infections.
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take on ra. talk to your rheumatologist about rinvoq relief. rinvoq. make it your mission. if you can't afford your medicine, abbvie may be able to help. new polling shows a slight drop in president biden's approval rating. according to numbers released by "the washington post" and abc news, 44% of americans approve of the way the president is handling his job compared to 51% who disapprove. white house senior adviser cedric richmond responded to the numbers this morning. >> i think what really will happen is people will start to realize what we need, the challenges we're facing. we have to really take an assessment of what the american people are dealing with right now. they're dealing with covid and the delta variant. they're dealing with hurricane ida. they're dealing with a number of
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things, and we're meeting the challenges. i think people appreciate that. does it always bear out in poll numbers? maybe, maybe not. >> peter baker, msnbc political analyst and chief white house correspondent for "the new york times." how much weight does the administration put on poll numbers? >> every white house tells you that poll numbers don't matter and then spends a lot of time studying them and telling you why the bad ones are no good but the good ones are all meaningful, right? this is a presidency that has been successful in the polls compared to the predecessor up until now. president biden had been at or above 50% throughout his presidency. president trump never got to 50% for a single day of his tenure. now you're seeing some slippage. 44% is a significant drop for this president. it reflects probably the chaos of afghanistan and the covid
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troubles at home where i think a lot of people are worried about where things are going. it's a temporary moment. the president has been around to know not to get too worked up for a single poll. >> a new poll that shows about the slippage with regard to the covid poll numbers and the approval. how much do you think this is creating some legit concern within the white house? >> of course it is because they know that covid is against which they will be measured. this president came to office promising to get a handle on the pandemic that his predecessor couldn't, and in his first few months in office seemed to be doing well. people approved of the way he handled it, vaccines were being distributed. the numbers were coming down. now they're going back up again. the white house will say that's because of trump supporters who won't get the vaccines or
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governs in the south who won't impose mask mandates and so on. either way if they can't find a way to get past this moment, if the pandemic continues to be an ongoing concern for many americans, politically that's a great risk for the president. >> texas and its new abortion restrictions is shaping up to be a major legal battle. you have president biden and the white house taking a firm stance against it. how much lift might this provide as we move forward? >> as a matter of politics this could be a transformative moment. we'll see what the court does f. they are going to go forward and either reverse roe v. wade or gut it in the way it has the same impact that will put that issue front and center heading into next year's mid-term elections. there's a passive majority, a pretty strong passive majority for abortion rights.
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if the right to have an abortion is perceived to be at risk or reversed under the supreme court that could motivate democrats and the pro abortion rights side to the spectrum in a powerful way. we'll see. it would drive upturnout among anti-abortion supporters for what the court is doing after all of these years, a product with supreme court justices on the bench to get to this point. it will transform the debate. a much bigger, more resonant issue everybody will have to address. >> peter baker, you will be addressing more questions from me no doubt. appreciate that. coming up next, the life and legacy of a tv legend. we remember our much-loved colleague, willard scott.
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take a look at this headline. the pandemic end game, is it already over, or do we have years to go? we all may be wondering what's the answer to that. that's at 1:00 p.m. eastern. today we have sad news to report regarding a legendary member of our nbc news family. willard scott, who forecast the weather on "today" for more than 30 years and spent 65 years at nbc, passed away yesterday. he was 87 years old. willie geist takes a look back at willard's life and legacy. good morning, willie. ♪ i'm singing to my jane ♪ >> reporter: he started every day with a smile. >> i don't do this for everybody. let's just see something here. >> reporter: this is how the nation first met willard scott on "today" in 1980. >> good morning, all.
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i'm tom brokaw with jane pauley and uncle willard, the newest member of the "today" family. >> reporter: willard came from wrc-tv in washington. >> and sunshine will come -- >> reporter: where he was the weather man. he began in 1950 at wrc and helped to create the popular joy boys radio program. willard played bozo the clown and even was the first ronald mcdonald. ♪ he's ronald mcdonald the hamburger happy clown ♪ >> reporter: he loved a laugh at his own expense. >> he's been juggling my career for 40 years. >> reporter: willard walked across the united states. >> maybe scattered showers by sunday. >> reporter: and traveled the world with "today." >> somewhere out in the saudi desert. this is spectacular. >> reporter: viewers loved his birthday tributes. >> happy birthday to all of our friends who have birthdays today. >> a bunch of us get together
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and send our pictures in to willard scott with a note saying we're 100. >> ma, that's ridiculous. >> you have a better way to get on the "today" show? >> reporter: and the big named loved him, too. >> holy mackerel. can you believe this? >> i wanted to see if you wanted to go with me. >> reporter: even a kiss from first lady barbara bush during the inaugural parade. he had a quick wit and a coal observing wal style. a coal observing wal style. we have a little dense fog here in studio occasionally seriously -- >> get to the weather. >> yes, we are in 2015, today celebrated willard's retirement after 65 years with nbc >> i'm going to be fading off into the sunset after 130 years at nbc and i'm going over >> where's yonder? >> over there.
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>> happy trails to you willard scott. >> what a beloved member of our peacock family. he's survived by his wife and two daughters. age is just a nu. and mine's unlisted. try boost® high protein with 20 grams of protein for muscle health. versus 16 grams in ensure high protein. boost® high protein also has key nutrients for immune support. boost® high protein. tired of clean clothes that just don't smell clean? what if your clothes could stay fresh for weeks?utrients now they can! this towel has already been used and it still smells fresh. pour a cap of downy unstopables into your washing machine before each load and enjoy fresher smelling laundry for up to 12-weeks.
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get ready. it's time for the savings event of the year.
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associated with trump's stop the steal rally are threatening legal action against 13 tech companies if they comply with requests to turn over that data. those include google, apple, microsoft, facebook and twitter. welcome the it's good to see you. ladies first, what do you make of the threats and do the republicans have any legal basis to make them? >> well, i think the threats are grand standing especially for an audience of one meaning the former president. we all know that kevin mccarthy does what the former president wants him to do. in this case, it's going after big tech like donald trump did when he was president. i don't think that there's much legal standing for this. i'm not sure what hasn't been reported, what laws would be broken if they went ahead and
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did this. i think the idea of retribution by political party to a business whose complying with a legal subpoena is a very dangerous thing and totally disruptive to our democratic process. our government is not supposed to interfere with our business with political threats. >> i just want to be clear that right now this is a request. it has yet to reach the level of subpoena but that may be what comes next on this. with you, david, kevin mccarthy said if the companies comply with the house committee request, republicans quote will not forget when ever they retake control of congress costing the companies the ability to operate in the united states. it cannot be forgotten he's on the list of whose phone records they want to see. we know he talked to donald trump during the insurrection. if he has nothing to high, why not comply? >> that's exactly right.
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once again it's important to baseline there and say kevin mccarthy is scared. not just because of what his personal knowledge is related to his conversations with donald trump that day and also perhaps some of the planning mechanisms that went into january 6th but he's scared of the political fall out of that. you seeing the swift reaction. i do think should this go to a subpoena, it very well may get litigated and litigated quickly. this is a request for information related to third parties. it wouldn't be unusual to have a court take a quick look at this. given the reasonableness of the request that individuals have knowledge that day as well as the gravity of the party, i think a court would give congress the authority. to kevin's specific reaction, this was a threat. i understand, i think it's obvious to everybody, this was not kevin saying i think telecommunication policy in the u.s. needs to be revisited for reasons of prudent policy or go
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to court to challenge whether or not they can comply to the request. this was a direct threat, the type of political thuggery you see in major cities in generations past he's brought to the u.s. congress. >> he said if you do this, we will do that. susan, the question to you. do you think this is legitimate case, a legitimate case of obstruction or do you think it's just mccarthy's attempt to try to delegitimatize and muddy the waters around this investigation? >> i don't know legally if it would be obstruction. david could probably speak to that. i heard a lot of legal experts say most likely no. it would be hard to go after him on a charge of obstruction. i do think as david said, this is all about operating from fear. they are trying to delay this as long as possible because eventually i think the truth will come out. kevin mccarthy is scared of the facts and that's why he's trying to bury them. >> the question of obstruction
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to you, david. this is a question. if it comes to a subpoena, those companies have no choice but to comply, correct? what could kevin mccarthy's threats do at that point? >> understand the in-house counsel said all these big tech companies are reviewing this closely. it's talking about third party communications related to that letter, i call them the crazy caucus. this is our confidential data. again, the reasonableness of the request by the congress is certainly satisfying. the question is, has kevin mccarthy engaged in any type of intimidation. yes. political behavior largely lies just outside the reach of the courts. there's probably very little
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enforcement other than the voters acting to show somebody out or saying we don't want republicans in charge so they can't act on that type of political thuggery. >> i love our chats. thank you so much. >> thank you. a very good day to all of you from msnbc world lawyers here in new york. welcome to alex witt reports. at this hour, millions of americans are set to lose a good chunk of their unemployment benefits. three federal programs that boosted the payments during the pandemic will expire. the change will affect about 12 million people unless congress or the white house acts. also, new reaction from the white house after senator joe manchin threw a wrench in the president's infrastructure plan saying he would not support the democrats reconciliation package. optimistic there is still hope.


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