tv Yasmin Vossoughian Reports MSNBC October 9, 2021 1:00pm-2:00pm PDT
ntrolling stress and emotional eating. at last, a diet pill that actually works. go to golo.com to get yours. welcome back, everybody. i'm yasmin vossoughian. hour two, if you're just joining us, welcome. if you're sticking with me all the way through, thank you. coming to your live here from msnbc world headquarters here in new york. so, in just a couple hours, donald trump, the former president, will be holding a rally in iowa, and we expect it to be a doozy. his first public comments since the white house rained on his parade when it comes to expectations that executive privilege would, in fact, shield him from the january 6th investigation. >> the president has determined that an assertion of executive privilege is not warranted for the first set of documents from
the trump white house. >> that's right. no executive privilege for one batch of documents requested by the bipartisan congressional committee that wants to know just what trump was doing leading up to and during the attack on the capitol. and then, likely, no executive privilege for those around him like steve bannon, who continued to use the privilege as a laughable shield to protect them from the committee for reasons, at least one democratic congressman sees all too clearly. >> if he was innocent, he would cooperate. the reason he's not cooperating is because he does not have an innocent explanation for his conduct that day. plain and simple. it's a consciousness of guilt. >> eric swalwell there. president biden continue to tout a covering economy. we got some analysis of numbers that show who's not coming back to work but why.
and of course facebook under fire from inside their organization as a whistleblower goes public with the damage the company is doing on a daily basis. >> kids who are bullied on instagram, the bullying follows them home. it follows them into their bedrooms. the last thing they see before they go to bed at night is someone being cruel to them or the first thing they see in the morning is someone being cruel to them. >> later on this hour, we're going to fact check the facebook defense from mark zuckerberg who says that he is, in fact, shocked anybody is criticizing the company. but we do, in fact, want to begin in iowa where former president trump is set to hold a rally at the state's fairgrounds about four hours or so from now. the event comes after a week that saw trump trying to block the january 6th committee at every turn. instructing former aides to defy the committee's subpoenas and trying to claim executive privilege to withhold white house records, which was blocked by the white house. nbc's gary grumbauch is in iowa for us. you've got the assignmentof the
day, i guess. what are you hearing so far about the rally and these efforts by the former president to subvert the january 6th committee? >> hey there, yasmin, you know the phrase, absence makes the heart grow fonder? absent no more, donald trump is here in the hawkeye state for the first time since before the 2020 election and he's coming here more popular than he has ever been. according to a des moines registerer poll out just this week, 53% of respondents say they have a favorable view of him. that's higher than the governor of the state, kim reynolds and even long-time senator chuck grassley, highest he has ever been but it's not all good news for donald trump here across the country this week as we're seeing a number of investigations ramp up in terms of the southern district of new york with donald trump, the individual, along with his hotel in d.c., the trump organization as a whole, and of course as you mentioned, the subpoenas related to january 6th. now, as we're talking to voters here on the ground at the trump rally, as it relates to january 6th, many of them tell me they
were there at the capitol that day, and they have a very different view than what you saw with your own eyes and many of our colleagues saw with their own eyes. here's what they had to say. >> when we got back to our hotel room on january 6th and turned the tv on, the stories we were seeing were no resemblance at all to what we saw. we wondered if it was made up. >> i'm in total belief it was a big set-up. i am. it was -- it's all a political scheme. everything is a political scheme anymore. >> they can investigate all they want. there was nothing that i saw that was wrong happening there. >> reporter: so, you get a sense of where voters' heads are here, many of them firmly believe joe biden did not win the 2020 election and many of them do want donald trump to one again in 2024. some of the names that are coming up as possible running mates include florida governor ron desantis and south dakota
governor christy noah. >> i want to bring in my panel, everybody, barbara mcquade, former u.s. attorney in michigan and an msnbc legal analyst back with us. david jolly, former member of congress, national chair of the serve america movement and an msnbc political analyst. kyle, i want to start with you on this one. i want you to give us really an update as to what's been happening so far on the january 6th committee. where are we right now? >> we're now at a point where the committee has to show us how serious they are about getting the information that donald trump and his close associates don't want them to get. so, as you pointed out, you know, the president is trying to invoke executive privilege. he's trying to get his aides to do the same despite some dubious legality there and the committee has to decide, are we going to hold these people in criminal contempt where we may have the justice department help us out here and are we going to, you know, go to court to fight to
prevent donald trump from trying to tie us up in legal knots so we can't get what we need? the committee's trying to move fast so we're going to find out very quickly how serious they are about really doing battle on all these fronts and in trying to win some of these fights. >> if they deny these subpoenas, kyle, you basically are right, it is putting the committee in a very tricky position. what do you mean by that? >> so, you know, they want to get this report done by the spring, and so they can't afford to engage in what donald trump has done for years, which is tie them up in courts forever, and so what they really need is, again, an assist from the justice department, the biden justice department, which they're hopeful will be helpful to them, and they need to potentially decide which fights are worth having and which are not because we're not going to win nearly fast enough to make this worth it. >> barbara mcquade, want to read for you a little bit from steve bannon's attorney, and i would like you to interpret it. if you can, of course. we will comply with the directions of the court when and
if they rule on these claims of both executive and attorney-client privileges since these privileges belong to president trump and not to mr. bannon, until these issues are resolved, mr. bannon is legally unable to comply with your subpoena request for documents and testimony. it seems, at this point, kash patel and mark meadows, they are in some way, shape or form speaking with the committee. so what do you interpret about bannon's attorney's comments? >> i think it is a stall tactic. i think it's nonsense. he was, on january 6th, not even a white house official. so, i see two problems with it. number one, anything donald trump said to steve bannon is not covered by the executive privilege ever, even if donald trump were still president, there would be nothing to protect that conversation. it is to protect the president's communications with aides, white house officials, and others. so, that's one reason it fails. the other is, this privilege now belongs to president biden. it is the current president who gets to decide, because the
privilege isn't for the benefit of any one president. it is for the benefit of the presidency, and so it is the current elected president who gets to decide that. the prior president can make a recommendation, but only the current president can invoke the privilege, and so steve bannon is right now in contempt of this order. now, what he seems to be saying to me is, i'm not going to do this until i hear from a judge in court. and so i imagine that if the justice department were tried to enforce this criminally, then steve bannon would raise some kind of defense before a court on executive privilege, and it could be a stall tactic to buy him some time before we get him to appear. but ultimately, he's got to respond to the -- and answer these questions. >> before i move on to david, barbara, i want to read from your op-ed that you wrote with chuck rosenberg. you write, it's difficult to imagine any sitting president of either party, trump aside, believing that invocation of the privilege here would benefit the republic. trump's claim, if he asserts it
in court, is not quite dead in the water. what, in fact, powers does the former president have here, if not for executive privilege? >> well, it would be an argument that this is protected by executive privilege and the biden administration is simply wrong or is acting out of political motives and this isn't actually a genuine defense. but because it is president biden's authority to invoke, it seems like it is an unlikely argument to prevail. the other reason is that executive privilege is not absolute. as the supreme court held in the nixon case. it said, it is there for public policy reasons, but it must yield under certain circumstances. one of them being what is in the best interest of the republic. is it to protect candid conversations that occur in the white house? to promote that sort of candor? or is this an instance where it must yield and when we have an attack on the u.s. capitol, an insurrection, it's hard to imagine a scenario where disclosure would be more beneficial to the republic. >> david jolly, i got to ask you
the $1 million question today is, what does this say about the republican party's dedication to donald trump? not only the way in which they voted when it came to reconciliation, right, over last week, but also what we're seeing when it comes to the january 6th committee. and abiding by these subpoenas. >> well, so, look, this is a party that's still bends at the knee of donald trump, and a lot of that is because of the political reality for the political actors that will be on the ballot, you risk your own political future by crossing donald trump. that's why you saw -- you see the activity of so many doubters of members of congress of the election results, because they have a party now that's somewhere between 50% and two-thirds of the party believe that the election was rigged and therefore, any activity to confront that rigged election now in trump world is justified. so, you have republicans who are living in this very republican
reality. at the end of the day, though, when it comes to the brass tacks of the 1/6 investigation, what they know is there is no good news for republicans to come out of this committee investigation. this was a republican fueled insurrection by the leader of the republican party, and look, the american people deserve to know as many facts as possible, let them render the political judgment that they think is important for which party, which actor should lead the country after the '22 midterms and going into '24. >> we just heard, interestingly, david, from my colleague, gary, who spoke to folks on the ground and i have heard this same thing over and over again, that there are many americans that believe their own truth as to what happened on january 6th. and then you got folks in washington, right, like congressman biggs and the exchange that he had with jamie raskin last week that i got to play for folks so they can actually see what took place there when biggs basically said, he didn't know who won arizona.
>> president biden -- >> who won the election is my question, mr. biggs? i'm happy to yield to you after that. who won the election in arizona, donald trump or -- >> we don't know because as the audit demonstrates very clearly, mr. raskin, there are a lot of issues with this election that took place. >> we're in this moment, right, where folks like kevin mccarthy could actually be held in criminal contempt by not abiding by these subpoenas. you got a bipartisan investigation into january 6th, but there are millions of americans that we just heard from that don't believe, essentially, january 6th even happened. nothing wrong happened. and you have congressmen that have been elected by americans who continue to deny the results of the 2020 election. >> yeah, yasmin, there's a lot at play here. first, politicians have the opportunity to either lead public opinion or follow and what you see is a bunch of weak republican leaders in washington
following the republican or the public opinion that has been set by donald trump. but what you also see in congressman biggs's statement is this. there are some conspiracy theorists in the gop, even in elected office, there are conspiracy theory lite, if you will, as well, but they also face the reality that the party today, nearly two-thirds, according to some polls, believes the election was rigged so their political reality requires them to aggregate a constituency of those who believe it was rigged and those who believe it wasn't, and i think the most dangerous thing that comes of this, yasmin, is the premise, then, that if the election was rigged, then anything you do to respond to that is okay, from suppressing votes among communities of color to changing the administration of elections in certain states to the events we saw on january 6th. if we tear down the integrity of our election administration system, then any response by these republican followers is therefore justified. that's the danger for the republic. >> barbara mcquade, back to the
idea of being held in criminal contempt. what is the likelihood that would actually happen when it comes to folks like kevin mccarthy, and what does that look like? >> well, i think it remains unlikely, because i think at some point, somebody will give, and somebody will budge. i think these witnesses know that ultimately they're going to have to testify. but if they remain stubborn and refuse, then it is a power of the justice department to bring a lawsuit, bring a criminal case that says you are in violation of federal law by refusing to comply with a lawful subpoena. it would require a judge then directing the witness to come testify and if the witness continues to refuse, they would be jailed until -- in criminal contempt, as punishment for their refusal to comply with that subpoena. >> kyle, what are we looking at in the pipeline here? are we expecting more subpoenas? >> yeah, i think we may end up seeing subpoenas on a weekly basis. that's how it's been so far. and to barb's point, i think we've now reached a point where this committee needs information from lawmakers themselves, like
you mentioned kevin mccarthy, and i think -- and several others too, andy biggs may be among them, people who talked to the president in the key period here leading up to january 6th. so there's a really a confrontation moment about to happen between the january 6th committee and their own colleagues in the house republican conference. >> kyle cheney, barbara mcquade, thank you guys. really appreciate it. coming up, everybody, we have breaking news out of new york city where a flight just made an emergency landing at laguardia airport there and a jet operating as republic airlines flight 4817 traveling from indianapolis to new york city landed safely at laguardia airport just after 3:00 p.m. local time after a security incident. that is according to an faa statement. we don't yet know why the plane made the emergency landing, but we do know that all passengers on board are safe. we are keeping a close eye on this story. we'll bring you updates if we get them. many republicans said that once you took away extra
unemployment benefits, people would return to work. but then why is the jobs market having a tough time rebounding? we're going to dive into what's holding the job market back with some new analysis about what's going back to work, and, by the way, who's not. we'll be right back. d, by the way, who's not we'll be right back. i appreciate that liberty mutual knows everyone's unique. that's why they customize your car insurance, so you only pay for what you need. [ nautical horn blows ] i mean just because you look like someone else doesn't mean you eat off the floor, or yell at the vacuum, or need flea medication. oh, yeah. that's the spot. only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty, liberty, liberty, liberty ♪ introducing fidelity income planning. we look at how much you've saved, how much you'll need, and build a straightforward plan to generate income, even when you're not working. a plan that gives you the chance to grow your savings and create cash flow that lasts.
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welcome back. the september jobs report was disappointing to say the least and is now the weakest we've seen so far in 2021. out of an expected 500,000, just 194,000 u.s. jobs were added last month. but what is driving those numbers is unprecedented. as economists correspondent heather long writes in the "washington post," americans are still struggling with child care and health issues and are reluctant to return to jobs they see as unsafe or undercompensated. heather is joining me now. heather, great to see you. i mean, we were awaiting these job numbers yesterday morning.
i was on the air at 9:00 a.m., expecting this 500,000, amazing report for september jobs growth. that is not what we saw. we did see a little bit of an uptick in wage growth, unemployment was down a bit as well, which was some good news. but expand for us more why we saw this disappointing jobs numbers of 194,000 jobs added for september. >> yeah, it certainly shocked a lot of people, but it probably shouldn't have. this is the story we've all been living for nearly two years now, which is any time the coronavirus cases surge, there is a bit of a pullback in the economy, particularly in people wanting to travel, stay in hotels, and go to restaurants, and you could see that in the jobs report. where was the hiring particularly weak in september? there were only 2,000 jobs added at hotels and only 29,000 jobs added at restaurants. so, still a lot of hesitancy to return to places where you're on the front lines of covid.
but i keep stressing to people, it's more than that. and when you actually talk to unemployed folks, what you hear over and over again, particularly from women, is, i'm still struggling with the child care issues. i thought the school reopening would allow me to go back to my career. it's been really uneven. and a key point, yasmin, in that record in september is 309,000 women dropped out of the labor force entirely. not working, not looking for jobs anymore, a lot of that is the direct result of the very chaotic school reopening process. >> yeah, and you break that down by race amongst women, 3.6% of white women unemployed, 4.7% hispanic women, and 8.8% black women. so, the disparity is pretty extreme to say the least. interestingly enough, you had a lot of republicans basically saying, listen, if we get rid of
extended unemployment, folks are going to have to go back to work. that's now done. and yet, folks are not back at work. so that wasn't the answer. >> yeah, it's clear that the unemployment benefits were not the main reason holding people back from going out and taking jobs. we now have several months of data from the months over the summer where just over 20 states rolled those mostly republican states, rolled those benefits back early and of course over labor day, 7 million americans lost their benefits or had them dramatically scaled back and we obviously did not see a rush back to work. most people understand what's going on here, that there are still some health concerns or even just people don't want to go back to a job that they feel they're going to have to enforce mask mandates, ask customers why aren't you wearing your mask, and also, i keep stressing to people, there's been what i call the great reassessment of work. we've all been through a really
traumatic period during this pandemic, and a lot of people, both very well-off people as well as people who are working class and in the $12, $13 an hour jobs are thinking very differently about what they want to do with their lives. they're trying to -- they're quitting their jobs at retail and restaurant, and they're looking for something different. >> i think it's interesting that this seems like a key time for democrats to really double down on reconciliation because you talk about child care or the lack thereof as one of the reasons why women especially aren't able to return to the workforce, and if we talk about the reconciliation bill, one of the major touting points of reconciliation, as they argue over the topline number, is money that they're going to be putting into child care and job creation. >> you're right. both child care and i would point out paid parental leave, so giving people some paid time off when a child is first born
or adopted, that is so critical to keeping particularly women in the -- working and in the labor force long-term. and i think you're right. that is probably the point that doesn't get stressed enough, that one of the potentially biggest benefits to the nation, to our health, and certainly to our economy from the build back better plan would hopefully be to get more women working again in this country. america was a leader in the '80s and '90s at the forefront of getting women into the workforce. unfortunately, we have fallen further and further behind. we are now well behind most of europe, canada, and even japan. so, there's a -- this has a lot of potential to help women and to help our economy. >> heather long, thank you. republicans played a dangerous and risky partisan game, and i am glad that their brinksmanship did not work. >> coming up, everybody, senate majority leader chuck schumer's
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welcome back, everybody. on capitol hill, a potential economic disaster has been averted for about seven weeks or so. after a power struggle between senate leaders chuck schumer and mitch mcconnell. lawmakers successfully voted to raise the debt ceiling this week, but it's only going to last until early december. and mcconnell has already said the gop will not help when the time comes. in a letter to president biden, mcconnell wrote this. i will not be a party to any future effort to mitigate the consequences of democratic mismanagement. and called schumer's post victory speech childish behavior that only further alienated republicans.
schumer's address on the senate floor slammed the gop as playing a dangerous and risky game and garnered frustration from moderate democrats as well as -- like senator joe manchin who shook his head and put his head in his hands as you see there, behind schumer. back with me to discuss, david jolly. also joining us, amanda, former national political director for hillary for america and ceo of code for america. that was quite a moment. when you saw joe manchin, who has been talked about literally almost every day on cable news, put his head in his hands and say, my god, i can't believe this is actually happening. and then you get this letter from mitch mcconnell, right, to the president, saying, i'm not going to help come december 3rd. but i think we already knew that from mcconnell, whether schumer's speech came across or not. >> yeah, yasmin, these -- look, these are very dangerous games that politicians play, unfortunately. they rattle markets. they rattle financial stability.
and let's certainly lay on the field that there is zero consistency here when it comes to the republican actions, but i will tell you, mitch mcconnell believes he's getting everything he wants. he continues to put the focus on democrats' ability to govern and he also is trying to forestall any likelihood of passage of that large $3.5 trillion human infrastructure bill that remains the priority of the biden administration and congressional democrats. and so, for mcconnell, he looks at this as a 50-50 senate and you look at joe manchin and then some cases kyrsten sinema and says, look, my colleague across the aisle, chuck schumer, simply does not have the votes and that gives me, mitch mcconnell, a lot of leverage. it's ugly, and you could say it is irresponsible based on the spending during the trump years, but that's the game that mitch mcconnell's playing. >> i got to say, amanda, it seems like what we're hearing from reporting that mcconnell's motivation here was to take kind of the pressure off of kyrsten
sinema and joe manchin, right? so they didn't have to do away with the filibuster. that would be mitch mcconnell's biggest nightmare, if, in fact, that happened, and that's one of the reasons why mcconnell seems actually had to step in the way in which he did. what's interesting to me, though, is that manchin and sinema would consider doing away with the filibuster to raise the debt ceiling but have never considered doing away with the filibuster when it comes to voting rights, which is fundamental to every american citizen. >> yeah, i mean, that's right. and that's what a lot of democrats are asking, but there is one thing to really think about in a broader perspective is, you cannot run the most powerful economy in the world by putting it on the economic cliff every 60 days. and practically, that is what happened. we are going to be here again in december. the second thing that really you can see it and feel it out of what schumer is dealing with is democrats are the leaders in congress. they do have a democratic
president, and if the structure itself doesn't allow them to lead at this very moment, there is a big question for democratic leadership, which is, what do you do? do you have to get rid of the filibuster in order to be able to lead? and that's really what happened. that's what we all saw, and we're going to be here again in 60 days. >> okay, so, let's expand on that, david jolly. who's to say we're not going to be here again in 60 days? i see the headlines now, right? we're already writing the banners for the show we're going to be having in early december, you know, days before christmas, falling off the debt cliff, right? washington -- i'm not great at writing banners. that's why i'm in front of the camera instead. but nonetheless, you get the point, right? we will be here. >> we will. and yasmin, it's a game of brinksmanship. you can make the case that mcconnell is getting everything he wants and putting the spotlight and pressure on democrats, but you could also make the case that mcconnell's behavior feeds the narrative of justification for democrats to
break the filibuster, to raise the debt limit, right? the american people largely, if you look at national polling, don't particularly care about debt as an issue, unfortunately, i think, but what they do care about is economic instability and economic downturns, and so if chuck schumer and joe biden and the democrats say, look, if mcconnell's not going to play ball, we have to break the filibuster to save the american economy, perhaps mcconnell's made that case easier for chuck schumer. i think bigger picture is democrats have to realize you just might not have the votes for the full biden agenda, so how do you take pieces of it and declare a win? they just passed a bipartisan trillion dollar infrastructure bill that donald trump couldn't get done. it got 69 votes, including with mitch mcconnell's support. biden and the democrats might want to take a victory lap on that and reset this narrative, showing how democrats really have been able to govern this year. >> okay, so, let's bring a couple things down here first. amanda, smart politics or not, for schumer to kind of destroy the republicans the way that he
did? >> i think it's important for him to have laid out that this is a 60-day -- that this is not an answer to everything, because that's actually the truth and he's going to have to deal with this in 60 days from now. and so, if this was a major victory, as though the debt ceiling was taken care of, then it wouldn't actually be laying the groundwork for the next negotiation that 60 days from now, which is to say, how do we get on the same page to actually come to an answer in order to move the debt ceiling, in order to move the country forward? and that part was important to do as, of course, he continues to build the relationship. it didn't do much for building the relationship, but you do have to state what's ahead for you, and what's ahead for the democratic party. right? and lay the groundwork that, in fact, you may need to wrestle with the filibuster in order to actually lead the country. >> what's the likelihood, david jolly, that this would be the straw that broke the camel's back when it comes to filibuster? because we've heard manchin over and over again on camera say, i mean, frustrated at this point, you know where i stand when it comes to the filibuster. it ain't happening.
>> yeah. democrats are going to face a bit of a prisoner's dilemma. you either go ahead and break the filibuster, which could be very hard to do with manchin and politically, or you have to concede something to mcconnell. and what mcconnell ultimately is going to say is if you need republican votes, that means you're not getting your $3.5 trillion human infrastructure bill. you might get something that looks different and smaller, but you're not getting that. democrats, are you going to break the filibuster or concede something to mitch mcconnell? you have seven weeks to decide. >> david jolly, thanks for sticking with us. amanda, thanks as always, good to see you. new details into what caused the oil spill off the california coast and it could have all started up to a year ago. we're live from huntington beach after the break. we're live from huntington beach after the break. (brad) apartments-dot-com's 3-d virtual tours are so realistic it feels like you're actually there. and that's all thanks to this guy, ted. (ted) oh, just a matter of perspective, really. (brad) apartments-dot-com. the most popular place to find a place.
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welcome back, everybody. so, we're getting some new information on the breaking news at laguardia airport. an emergency landing after suspicious activity was reported on the plane, and then we just got this video in to msnbc, posted by a passenger that showed the scene as everybody got off the plane. port authority, which runs the airport, says the plane, which departed from indianapolis, made the emergency landing shortly after 3:00 p.m. eastern time after passengers reported suspicious behavior from another passenger. no details yet on what that
behavior was. that passenger is in custody, and there is no indication that a threat was made to the airplane. the plane was american eagle flight 4817 operated by republic airways. there were 76 passengers, 4 crew members on board. everybody is safe. no injuries have been reported. we're going to continue to monitor this and update you when we have more information. all right, we are also continuing to follow new developments in the massive oil spill off the california coast. while it's not clear when exactly oil began to spill out, investigators are confident a ship's anchor hit the pipeline, not only moving it more than 100 feet but also ripping off its protective concrete casing. we are also learning that less oil was spilled than originally thought. nbc's scott cohn has more on this. scott, good to see you once again. are there any other details that you're uncovering today as we're really kind of piecing this thing together? >> reporter: yeah, it's getting to be a phase in this disaster,
yasmin, where the more facts that we get, the more questions they seem to raise. we're expecting to hear later this afternoon a little more about the situation, particularly with the wildlife and how that all has been affected by the disaster just a little bit more than a week ago, but we're also trying to piece together what is going on with the cause of this, and you pretty well laid it out. we know that there is a lot of traffic, much more than normal, off the coast of southern california, waiting to get into the ports of los angeles and long beach, roughly 60 container ships that are sitting there waiting for space to open up. and so, immediately, the thought became that it must have been an anchor that did this and sure enough, when they got under water, it looks like that's exactly what happened, but when they saw the damage with -- which had marine life growing around it, it was clear that damage did not happen just a week ago. it may have happened as much as a year ago as all of this traffic traverses the area.
and experts say that all of those events coming together, that's not easy. >> i think it is rare that something like this would happen, that you would cause damage to a pipeline, mainly because the pipelines are clearly marked on the navigational charts, and if you are certainly being very careful in where you drop your anchor, you shouldn't have any problem. occasionally, you might have your anchor fouled on something that's not charted, but it wouldn't be something like a pipeline. >> reporter: so, now, they have to try and piece everything together. they have detailed tracking data on all these vessels, and now they know they have to go back much further than just last week. so, they'll be doing that. but also looking at the company that owns the pipeline, amplify energy out of texas, and why they didn't notice that
something was amiss with the pipeline, and it may have been amiss for much longer than we initially thought. yasmin? >> scott cohn, thank you so much for that reporting. we appreciate it as always. coming up, everybody, in the wake of whistleblower testimony, facebook claims it is transparent and open to regulation. but will ceo mark zuckerberg ever share the company's algorithm? how can something so big be regulated? we're going to break down what we learned from this week's testimony. that's ahead. also up next, a power struggle in the idaho governor's office. that's my head-scratcher of the week. we'll be right back. cher of the week we'll be rightac bk. ♪ ♪ ♪ hey google. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
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and minerals, now introducing ensure complete! with 30 grams of protein. welcome back, everybody. my head-scratcher of the week, a strange political drama playing out in idaho that has us saying, when the cat's away, the mouse will play. coming to life. when idaho governor brad little left the state for a meeting with other republican governors in texas, his lieutenant governor decided to make her takeover a little more than just ceremonial. janice issued an executive order preventing employers from mandating vaccines for employees. governor little said, in a statement, that he had not authorized her to act and rescinded the order when he returned to the statement state. the lieutenant governor also looked into activating idaho's national guard to send them to the u.s.-mexico border when
little was away but that was rebuffed by the head of the national guard in the state. my high five of the week, two heroes of this profession and to anybody who celebrates freedom around the world. journalists awarded the nobel peace prize for this nobel peace prize for their right to free expression in the philippines and russia. maria ressa is the founder of ref ler focused on the brutal war on drugs waged by the philippines president. a job that takes a great deal of encourage. a nobel committee recognized the pair for their, quote, efforts to safeguard the freedom of expression, which is a pre-condition for democracy and lasting peace. we'll be right back. ♪
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welcome back, everybody. facebook is fighting for public trust following explosive testimony from whistle-blower frances haugen who shared her startling claims before congress on tuesday. among them, that the company's own researchers determined instagram could damage the mental health and body image of teen girls, that its cyber espionage unit is woefully understaffed, and its algorithms pose a danger to its users and our social fabric. facebook, of course, has not taken kindly to the allegations. with me now to talk more about
this and the company's response, of course, is "the new york times" technology reporter, coauthor of "an ugly truth." cecilia, welcome. thanks for joining us. i want to read for you a part of mark zuckerberg's response to haugen's testimony last week. and he writes, i'm sure many of you have found the recent coverage hard to read because it just doesn't reflect the company we know. we care deeply about issues like safety, well-being, and mental health. it's difficult to see coverage that misrepresents our work and our motives. at the most basic level, i think most of us don't recognize the false picture of the company that is being painted. cecilia, do you buy this? >> you know, i think that really important operative word is "our motives." i think facebook and in particular mark zuckerberg is
digging their heels in. the way the whistle-blower's findings impugns their motives. i think what she's revealed is through 10,000 pages of internal documents, facts, research, as well as emails and memos, et cetera, that show a pattern of behavior internally. this is from her testimony, that the company knowing about problems, being really concerned about those problems to some degree, but in many cases, ignoring those warnings and prioritizing instead the continued growth of its apps. so the actual messaging really is actually very consistent that mark zuckerberg said in his facebook post. that sounds very consistent with the company's public messaging since, really, its beginnings. they just really do not believe they're doing more harm than good. they believe that that's a calculus people should go by, so they ignore the fact that are real harms happening. >> how can her testimony also
implore congress to change section 230 which provides immunity for tech companies and also allows tech giants to ignore harm to users to a certain extent? what do you think is going to be the reaction from facebook to that? >> i think facebook is going to be very, very resistant to legal changes that only the internet sector has. they will say, and they often say, as anybody who watches tv, reads magazines, newspapers, et cetera and have seen their ad campaigns, they say we embrace regulation, we believe there should be regulation. but the key is what kind of regulation that congress comes up with. facebook has been accepting of some regulation, but as you can see, the record shows that any sort of small changes to internet regulation -- and there have been none so far -- are the kind of things that facebook knows is probably not going to really happen. so they will push very hard against any meaningful change to
section 230. this is their golden goose. in many ways, section 230 makes the internet companies protected more than any other sector. there are a lot of lawmakers that compare this to the big tobacco moment for silicon valley. but the big distinguishing factor is a couple things. the tobacco industry did not have legal liability shield. the tobacco industry was hobbled by nearly every single state attorneys general suing and resulting in a master loss, master settlement of more than $300 billion. that simply can't happen with the internet industry because of this particular law that you mentioned known as section 230 at the communications decency act. >> this is a two-part question. do you think so congress finally has a handle on what's happening when it comes to regulations that are needed for giants like facebook? and how did it take so long? how did facebook hide the harm
that was being done? >> yeah. i was really surprised to see members of congress appear to understand technology better than they have in past hearings. and i've been following these hearings for a long time from mark zuckerberg's first appearance in april 2018. at that time members of congress were completely blast bid the public for not getting it and understanding the most basics of how these companies function as technologies and as businesses. what i saw in this hearing earlier this week was members of congress talking about things like engagement ranking systems, algorithm amplification behind the news feed. they're clearly understanding how the systems work and that's important because a lot of the debate is over regulating speech, which we both know is not going to ever really result to much because of our first amendment. but now that they've started to focus on the systems, the way the technology works, i think
things can push forward. i forgot your second. >> yes, we ran out of time, so i'll have you back because i think this story is going to continue to grow because facebook is not going anywhere. cecilia kong, thank you. i'm yasmin vossoughian. bile back tomorrow at 3:00 p.m. eastern. reverend al sharpton and "politicsnation" starts right now. good evening and welcome to "politicsnation." tonight's lead, democracy versus despotism. right now our political life is driven by two factions that defy easy category. on the one side, you have the most democrats committed to the rule of law and at least participating in the business