tv Jose Diaz- Balart Reports MSNBC October 29, 2021 7:00am-8:00am PDT
discover card i just got my cashback match is this for real? yup! we match all the cash back new card members earn at the end of their first year automatically woo! i got my mo-ney! it's hard to contain yourself isn't it? uh- huh! well let it go! woooo! get a dollar for dollar match at the end of your first year. only from discover. good morning. it is 10:00 a.m. eastern, 7:00 a.m. pacific. i'm chris jansing in for jose diaz-balart. president biden at this hour in europe at the start of a week that he told democrats could determine the future of his presidency and democratic control of congress. in just a few minutes, he's going to hold his first face-to-face meeting with french president emmanuel macron since
the u.s. announced that submarine deal that the french called a stab in the back. the president hopes to arrive in europe with a victory on his infrastructure and social spending agenda. instead, the struggle continues to get it past the finish line. and that plays into election day, now just four days away. we've got a look at how women voters will be crucial to the outcome of the virginia governor's race. also this hour, the person in charge of weapons on the set where alec baldwin shot and killed a cinematographer breaking her silence this morning. and the biden administration may pay millions of dollars those migrant families who were separated at the border during the trump administration. very busy friday. and this morning, the high stakes on capitol hill after president biden told house democrats that, according to one person who was in the meeting, quote, i don't think it's hyperbole to say that the house
and senate majorities and my presidency will be determined by what happens in the next week. one day after unveiling the framework of a bill aimed at reshaping the social safety net, with the hope that it would trigger a vote on the bipartisan infrastructure bill, the fate of the president's agenda is still up in the air. while progressive lawmakers have endorsed that framework, they're holding out for assurances it has the votes to pass. joining us to start off our coverage this hour, nbc news capitol hill correspondent, ali vitali, "new york times" political reporter, jeremy peters, and eugene daniels, politico white house reporter and playbook co-author, as well as an msnbc political contributor. good to see all of you this morning. so, ali, the house and senate are out of session. they're not going to be back until next week. so what are we expecting moving forward here? >> reporter: yeah, chris, some very empty halls of congress around me as everyone has cleared out for the weekend. but the key players are still at
work, having these negotiations. as much of the framework was released yesterday morning, what's the problem here and why they haven't been able to move forward is the fact that there's no firm consensus around it. on the progressive house side of this, you've seen people led by pramila jayapal, the head of the house progressive caucus, saying that her caucus endorses the framework, but needs more assurances, specifically from the senate side. yesterday, many of us up here in the capitol hill press corps tried to pin down these senators. congresswoman jayapal met with one of them, senator kyrsten sinema. she said that meeting was good and productive, but clearly when people are using words like productive and negotiating in good faith, that's not the sign of a bill that is signed, sealed, and ready to be delivered. that sort of leads them to next week. all of the tables that have been put down on this, as moments where these bills must be passed by, all the timelines are artificial. yes, it would have been nice to have this as a bill that was passed before the president landed in rome.
that was speaker pelosi's initial goal yesterday, after he left her caucus for that morning meeting. of course, that wasn't able to happen, because progressives would have tanked that bipartisan infrastructure bill. they also would have liked to see something passed before tuesday's virginia governor's race. that doesn't look like it's going to happen. all of the timetables, though, were artificial, and what they did last night before leaving town is they gave themselves a little bit more breathing room to get this done. passing the surface transportation bill that allowed highway funding to continue. they kicked that can until december 3rd, which is very much looking like it's going to be a busy day here, which is also the day that government funding runs out, that the debt limit runs out. at the same time, i talked to one congresswoman yesterday who said she's got good vibes for november. she thinks this will wrap up at some point before the end of the month. >> well, wrap up at some time before the end of the month, which of course puts us after terry mcauliffe is trying to get the governor's seat. look, the president delayed the start of his trip because he
wanted to secure a victory that he could show off, because terry mcauliffe is up for election on tuesday. where does this leave us? >> i mean, right now, i think we have this framework -- i don't think the white house really, really thought that this was going to completely figure itself out, be completely hashed out, because they knew progressives were still balking, knew that progressives didn't fully trust and still don't trust that the reconciliation framework that turned into a bill is going sty that way, even though they've endorsed it and said, we're okay with this. so that framework is something that the president seems hopeful to take over and say, you know, democracy is messy. sausage making is messy and hard, as jen psaki always puts it, and try to put a positive spin on this, right? we saw the white house and the administration sending out things to their allies yesterday, talking points, saying, you know, the president is working.
he is working on compromise. he is working on consensus. and that is what he promised to do. so they're trying to put that spin on it. but like ali laid out, there are still so many things that need to be worked out. they will get this done at some point, right? some sometime this month. and it's hilarious when they're talking about vibes. vibes are one thing, but getting everybody on the same page is something completely different. but they're going to need to make sure what they do after they make this sign. this is the most important thing not for terry mcauliffe in the virginia race and not for president biden's trip over to europe, but for his presidency and those majorities is the logistics of the rollout of whatever ends up being in this final bill and also -- up for that infrastructure bill. because if they can convince the american people that, you know, ignore the messiness, ignore the back and forth, the lack of trust that was exposed during this process, but look at what we've done for you. these are the things -- look at your roads and bridges. look at what we did for climate
change mitigation. that changes things a little bit. and whether voters care next november how messy this process was, if they're getting things that were in this bill, even though there's a lack of paid family leave, which a lot of folks wanted and still want, that is something that they're going to -- that they're thinking of the long game in that way. >> so there's a reality here about the president's political vulnerability, jeremy, as you well know. his poll numbers have been down. they haven't shown any sign of improvement. is the message here, essentially, terry mcauliffe, you're on your own. mr. president, you're going to have to figure out how to make nice with europe leaders, in spite of this, without having a victory to show. what's your take on where things stand right now? >> well, biden leaves the country now at a moment of tremendous consequence for not just his presidency, his domestic agenda, but for any hope the democratic party has of holding on to control of the
house of representatives in next year's midterm elections. this was always going to be a very difficult climate politically for the democratic party, chris, just given the historical nature of the party in power being down and out in the minds of voters, in an off year. but you also have an incredibly tight majority, because democrats lost seats in the 2020 election. and that wasn't expected. so, the issue they're confronting, that the president will have to confront when he gets back, that the democrats in congress will have to confront when they return to capitol hill is this idea that's been simmering in both parties. and that's that the debate on capitol hill right now is not in
sync with where most voters are. most voters don't understand what's in these bills. but more importantly, they don't think that infrastructure spending and social programs, as important as they are, you know, as significant issues as these are, are the priority. i mean, most people are focused on their bottom line. their pocketbooks. how is the country going to recover from the pandemic? what's going on with the economy, inflation, supply chain tightening that has really created a lot of uncertainty over the upcoming holiday season. those are the front of mind issues from voters. and what we've seen in the past is, obama saw this, is that if you are on the wrong subject, voters will punish your party for that in elections. and that's what happened in 2010 with the democratic party and a lot of democrats fear that could happen again next year. >> yeah, that's the concern. jeremy peters, ali vitali, gene
daniels, thanks to all of you. joining us now to continue the conversation is new york democratic congressman, richie torres. he's a member of the congressional caucus. the american people are confused. they've heard, this is in, this is out. they don't really know what's going on here. what they know is that it's not getting done. do you know what's in these bills? are you ready to vote? >> well, i'm more optimistic than ever that we're going to pass these two bills. and once the build back better act becomes law, every 3 and 4-year-old will have access to pre-k. >> so why not have done it yesterday? why not have started it yesterday, if you feel confident it's going to pass, are you confident about what's in it? do we know where this stand? >> reporter: well, the president came to us yesterday and announced that he has a framework, that he's confidence will pass both the senate and the house.
so we have to flush it out with legislative language, but i'm hopeful that in the weeks to come, we're going to pass both that bipartisan infrastructure framework and the build back better act. >> do you understand the conversation? and again, this is what jeremy was talking to, that a lot of the american people feel, you know, this morning, the white house coms director went on "morning joe" and said, you know, praise pramila jayapal, the progressive caucus leader saying, look, she had great things to say about where she stands, about what's in it. and yet, if you're praising it, does that not assume that you know what's in it and you're ready to vote on it? i mean, what do you say to voters who say, this is more of the same old washington that the democrats were elected to fix? >> we are going to get the job done. right? we're on the verge of making history. and in the long arc of history, no one is going to remember the messy process. people will remember the end product. no one remembers the process that led to fdr's new deal or lbj's great society. people remember medicare, social
security, and i guarantee once we pass the build back better act, people will remember the child tax credit, home care, investments in fighting climate change, affordable housing. each of these achievements is transformative on its own, but the sum total is monumental. it's historic. >> knowing that this is going to get done -- because that's what you're telling me -- you feel very confident that it's going to get done. so, if, indeed, that is true, did you have any hesitation, did any of your fellow caucus members have any hesitation about waiting on this, given the election that's happening in virginia on tuesday and given the fact that the president is in europe right now with some pretty tough conversations coming up and would like to have a little wind at his back. >> the position of the progressive caucus from day one has been to guarantee the passage of both bills. the progressive caucus trusts the president, but the position has been trust but verify, and the best form of verification is an actual vote on the build back better act in the senate. an actual vote in the senate will guarantee the passage of
both bills. >> so what's going to have to happen between now and wherever that vote happens? you know, ali vitali saying they're hoping to get it done by the end of the month. what's going to have to happen for you to say, i'm comfortable now, for members of the caucus to say, i'm comfortable now and we're going to vote. when does that happen? >> i think once we translate the framework into legislation and once the senate passes it, the house is prepared to pass both bills. that could happen in a matter of weeks. >> do you have in line in the sand? is there something that if it's not in there, that you would have a really hard time with it? >> i can vote for both bills in their present form. and i feel the build back better act should not be compared to the ideal. it should be judged by its own terms. and by that standard, it's one of the most transformative pieces of legislation in the history of the united states. >> congressman richie torres, if you were a betting man, when do you think this bill happens? >> before thanksgiving. so we'll have much to be grateful for this. >> thank you.
appreciate your time. and it's time now for a look at the headlines out of the west coast. the armorer on the set of "rust" is breaking her silence after last week's fatal shooting. in a statement released by her attorneys, hanna gutierrez reid expressed her condolences and defended her actions, but she says her superiors cut corners on gun safety. joining me now is nbc's emilie ikeda, who has been following this for us. what more can you tell us about what the armorer is saying here. >> reporter: like you said, this is the first time we're hearing from the armorer since the deadly shooting on the set of the production of "rust." her lawyer releasing a lengthy statement saying that hanna gutierrez reid had no idea where live ammunition came from. she said it was extremely difficult for her to focus, because she was hired for two positions on the film. she said she and the prop master gained control over the guns and she never witnessed anyone shoot live rounds with these guns nor would she permit that. they were locked up every night
and at lunch. there's no way a single one of them was unaccounted for or being shot by crew members. hannah still to this day has never had an accidental discharge. that according to her attorneys. investigators say hundreds of rounds of ammunition were recovered from the set, including suspected live rounds. the santa fe sheriff's office told nbc news the investigation right now is largely focused on reid and the assistant director. the two people who handled the gun before giving it to alec baldwin with a real bullet inside. chris? >> let's talk a little bit about something that we just touched on, and is certainly on the president's plate. logjams, ships off the coast of california, which are not only causing logistics issues, but environmental issues. >> as supply chain issues and port backlog continue, toxic pollutants are expected to worsen for some california communities. for example, in march, there were about 25 carrier ships idling and research shows that led to a spike in pollutants, equal to exhaust emissions from
50,000 trucks every day. well, now we're talking about four times that number of container ships at nearby ports, sounding the alarm for some environmental scientists. the ships release what's called particulate matter, which can cause cardiovascular issues like heart attacks and strokes. they tell the epa they're working to reduce diesel pollution. >> and i know you have a follow-up for us on those in-n-out locations that closed in l.a. county. >> reporter: you can expect longer drive-through lines at in-n-out as the family-owned business shuts down its five contra costa county locations for indoor dining. that's according to local news reports. in-n-out says it refuses to be the vaccination police and had two outposts closed down by health officials already for ignoring local mandates and not checking indoor diners' vaccination status. it's a hot topic. we've seen growing protests throughout the week. >> i'll bet. in-n-out very popular out there. thank you, emilie, appreciate it. we're keeping our eyes on rome right now. in fact, i think we have live
pictures of president biden, who is going into meetings with italy's president and prime minister. running a little bit behind schedule. we're waiting for that big meeting when he sits down with france's president for the first time since that breach over a submarine deal. we'll dig into what this trip overseas means, next. plus, virginia residents voting early in that oh, so, close gubernatorial race. we'll be live with some voters' biggest concerns as they go into this election. you're watching msnbc reports. this election. you're watching msnbc report s.
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this morning, president biden will meet with french president emmanuel macron after meeting with italy's president and prime minister. he just went into that meeting. but the meeting with macron is the one that's getting so much attention. a lot more scrutiny than you might expect given that it will be the first time that the two leaders have met since france retracted its ambassador because of that american arms deal that they called a stab in the back. so the question this morning is, will these two longtime allies be able to make amends? we're closely following everything about this story and will keep you updated. earlier, the president arrived in rome for his fourth meeting with pope francis. joining me now, nbc news's senior white house correspondent, kelly o'donnell, who is in rome for us. kelly, good to see you with that gorgeous backdrop. what is the white house walking
into this meeting in a little bit with emmanuel macron? where do things stand with france right now? >> reporter: well, there is work to do for president biden, trying to repair a relationship that is critically important to the united states. france is the oldest ally and the united states in this instance really did not understand some of the mess it created with a real diplomatic snag here. and that goes back to a deal the u.s. set up with the united states, the united kingdom, and australia, for nuclear submarines to be deployed in the water around australia and that wouldn't seem to be a problem on its face, except that france had its own deal with australia and this cost france roughly $60 billion in defense contracts. and they didn't know at the time, and were really stung by this. and the white house acknowledges that it could have been handled better and there are real frayed feelings about this. that along with france having a different view about the u.s.'
exit from afghanistan. and just a sense of this not having been handled in a way that would be respectful of france, its own need to have that kind of a partnership with australia, the kind of respect that they want, and a lot of work has been done, white house officials say, in the weeks and months since this sort of blew up between the two countries, to try to repair the damage. phone calls, a visit from the president's national security adviser in person, the vice president will go to france next month, and now today, an important chance before the g-20 begins for president biden and president macron to meet and be able to move on to the areas they have common interests and common values. this is an important test for a president who has a lot on the line, after everything we've been talking about, what's been happening back home with his own domestic agenda. this is where the foreign policy piece of this trip is a bit thorny.
that's also true in a much smaller way with the meetings that he's having from officials from italy, where he's at the residence now for the italian prime minister, earlier meeting with the president of italy. some tensions and agreements about the u.s. withdrawal from afghanistan there. not as big a dustup, but there are things where the u.s. president has a pit of work to do. and that's something that we're seeing play out before the g-20 even gets underway, chris. >> kelly o'donnell just named senior white house correspondent. and as somebody who worked by your side in washington for three years, so well deserved. great to see you, kelly. congratulations. thank you for that. i want to bring in david ignatius, foreign columnist and associate editor at "the washington post" and an msnbc contributor. always great to see you, david. so you've got meetings with the pope, with macron, g-20, cop-26. big trip, jam-packed for this president. but a very different environment
than previous trips. a lot more attention directed at the u.s. set the scene for us, as you see it. >> i think you could give us a headline for this trip. is america back again? the theme of the president's quite successful trip to europe in june was america is back. america was participating in all the multi-lateral forums that president trump had eschewed. there was a feeling after that trip that biden was really delivering on his promise of a different foreign policy. and then came a series of real difficulties, the withdrawal from afghanistan was chaotic, our european allies thought they weren't being consulted. and then this really sharp reach with france, a traditional ally over the submarine deal that we had done in secret with australia, replacing the french. the biden administration has worked very hard to try to repair that damage. as i understand, from my french contacts, the french wanted three things. they wanted american help for french efforts in africa to deal with terrorist groups there. that's been done.
they wanted american support for french independent defense efforts in europe. independent additional to nato. that is being done. and they wanted signals that france would genuinely be a partner in america, efforts to deal with china, competition in the indopacific and also that is being done, as officials talk in detail how to draw france into their efforts. i think they've worked hard on this. we'll just have to see over the next days whether biden is really back. whether he's seen as representing a strong and united america or whether european doubts continue. >> what are you going to be watching for to give you that answer? >> i'll be watching, as always, at these gatherings, the body language. i'm going to be watching the communique. i think biden will go to the glasgow summit conference, which begins on sunday, with a very strong hand, assuming that he can get the progress he's seeking and finalizing his
budget deal. to go with a commitment of $555 billion in climate change spending to a conference where nobody has got anywhere close to that in terms of commitments will be significant. so the white house spin machine will be working overtime on this trip to try to convey some impressions. we need to really make sure that the european reaction is genuine and that they're solving the problems that they've had in the months since this successful june visit. >> if it's perceived whether or not there's a vote, which it certainly doesn't look like, but if it's perceived that the united states is going to take this huge, unprecedented step towards climate change, in reality, how much mjo does that give the president in trying to put pressure on other countries to do more, to address this global crisis. >> so i think the pressure really comes from global expectations, that the u.s. has been hectaring countries to
increase their commitments. secretary kerry, the climate envoy, has traveled nonstop the last few months trying to make that case. i think if there's a successful cop summit with the united states having this major commitment, what it does is increase pressure at home in these countries. i've listened so chinese climate activities talk over the last week about their movement in china to bring greater commitment to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. that's the kind of pressure that's going to change things for xi jinping. it's really not american demands and assistance or the level of our spending. it's the pressure they feel at home and the pressure they feel to be international citizens in an acceptable way. >> david ignatius, always great to see you. thank you so much for being on the show. still ahead, former new york governor andrew cuomo now charged in connection with his sexual harassment scandal. what he's accused of doing and
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we've got big news out of capitol hill where adam kinzinger has announced that he is retiring. kinzinger, of course, the republican from illinois, who was often a thorn in the side of president trump, often clashed with him, as well as members of the republican party. he says in a video that he just
posted to twitter, "i remember saying during the campaign that if i ever thought it was time to move on from congress, i would and that time is now." we are gathering more information with our hill team and we'll have more for you on adam kinzinger's decision to retire coming up. meantime, there are new worries for democrats in virginia this morning, as that closely watched governor's race enters the final days of campaigning. there's a new fox news poll that gives republican glenn youngkin an eight-point lead over former democratic governor terry mcauliffe among likely voters in a state that joe biden won by ten points. right now, youngkin is meeting with voters in charlottesville, hoping to build on that momentum. dave wasserman of the cook political reporter tweeted this. "do i think it's possible youngkin wins by eight? sure. the last time the political climate was bad for democrats, bob mcdonnell won by 17 points, a year after barack obama carried virginia by eight points. do i think it's likely?
no. "nbc news correspondent heidi przybyla shot down with some women voters who will be key to the outcome of this race and joins us from richmond, virginia. so, heidi, every vote counts, but again, it's women, suburban women, who are going to be critical here. what are they telling you about how they're feeling right now about this race? >> reporter: yeah, chris, suburban women here in virginia really vaulted democrats to power in 2017, and that portended the midterms and even in some ways the 2020 election. but someone named trump is not on the ballot here, chris. and so the question is now that this is no longer seen as a referendum for many of these women, how are they feeling? we sat down with a broad spectrum of women, including women on both sides of the aisle and here's what they had to say about this neck and neck race. >> i think he's a desperate president trying to get a whole bunch of democrats willing to follow him over the political cliff. >> i've heard this term, framework. and i've seen a little of it.
i know this. they're going to try to crush small business. and they're making tax policy on the basis of class warfare. >> reporter: so, chris, here's what we have. we have numbers and we have history. and the numbers are telling us that republicans are just more enthusiastic. we have history, which tells us that this state likes to elect members of the opposing party. however, democrats do have the voter registration advantage here, and that is growing, particularly in northern virginia. it's about 450,000 voter difference. and just because women say they're fatigued doesn't mean that they won't vote. in fact, a lot of the democrats i've talked to said, yeah, we're tired, we're worn down, but we're still going to vote. that was actually the one thing that women on both sides of the agreed on, chris. is that after a year of virtual schooling, after a year of shouldering most of the child care burden, they're just plum tired.
>> i think a lot of people around the country, not just in virginia, feel that way. sorry about the problem with the tape, heidi. thank you. we appreciate it. you have summarized it very well. heidi przybyla in virginia for us. we want to go back now to that breaking news from capitol hill, that illinois republican congressman adam kinzinger has just announced that he's retiring at the end of this term. of course, he's been a republican critic, especially of former president donald trump. one of two republican members of the committee investigating the january 6th insurrection at the capitol. nbc news capitol hill correspondent ali vitali is back with us from capitol hill. so this is somebody who not only has been at odds with members of his own party, but was facing some pretty nasty realities with redistricting. what are you hearing about kinzinger's decision? >> reporter: yeah, chris, this is an explanation of both politics in a washington sense, in the post-trump era, in the republican party, but it's also a conversation about the realities on the ground, because of redistricting in illinois. they were going to be losing a congressional seat, illinois
democrats in charge of this process were likely going to carve up his chicago district. that's going to be part of the reason. but it's hard not to see this as kinzinger lacking a home in the republican party as it exists right now in the shadow of former president donald trump. you mentioned some of the things on his resume, on the january 6th committee, one of two republicans who are there. he's alongside fellow trump detractor liz cheney who is facing her own tough re-election. for kinzinger, though, he said in this lengthy video about five minutes long that he just released on twitter, he derided the tribalism in washington, while also denouncing a government that doesn't work. and saying that there are leaders here who won't lead the party in this time where they do need to make some tough decisions about the future of republicanism is. he also said, though, that as he did when he came to congress, he said that he would know when
it's time to leave. clearly now on this friday, announcing that this is the moment for him. he has tried to play in electoral politics outside of the hill. he has a pac that has endorsed other candidates that are not exalt in the trump mold. but at the same time, the thing you and i know to be true here, is that this is a republican party in the mold of donald trump. he's someone who will likely be on the ballot again in the upcoming presidential election, or at least that's something that he continues to hint on and his advisers continue to talk about. he is the leader of this party. he might not be in washington, but that's just the truth when you look at the way that especially republicans in the house contend with trump. kinzinger very out of step with them and today announcing that he's going to be one of the republicans retiring from congress. >> at least one punctuation point on the ongoing question of whether there's room for moderates in washington. thank you, ali vitali, we appreciate you. it's official now, former new york governor andrew cuomo has been charged with a sex crime. that crime charged in albany
city court is forcible touching. a class "a" misdemeanor. cuomo did intentionally, according to this filing, and for no legitimate purpose, forcefully place his hand under the blouse/shirt of the victim and on to her intimate body part. the name of the accuser is redacted in the complaint, while the details are similar to accusations made by brittany camiso. >> that's when he put hand under my blouse and cupped my breast over my bra. >> what exactly is a class "a" misdemeanor in this context and what happens next? >> basically for the governor, it's a penalty and a charge that doesn't come with the potential, if convicted, of a lot of jail time. the maximum here would be one year in jail, if he was convicted. his attorney saying that no assault took place, period. and that she says that this is a political prosecution. it's very unlikely that the governor would face a year in
jail. three months probation and some fines are another possibility. based on some of the state statutes and some of the details likely about the victim, it's unlikely that the governor will have to register as a sex offender, again, if convicted. this all goes back to an incident that occurred in december of 2020, according to this charging document, which says that in the late afternoon, between 3:50 and 4:07 p.m., apparently this alleged forcible touching took place. they say that they were able to get phone records, blackberry p.i.n. messages, if you were those. they were also able to get swipe information. so from a badge industry, and be able to put all of that together to eventually petition the court, go speak to the court and say, do we have enough probable cause? the court agreed and so they issued a criminal summons for the governor to appear on november 17th at 2:30 p.m. where he'll have to answer to these charges. >> shocking given that a little more than a year ago, we were talking about whether he might run for president. tom winter, i know you'll keep
us posted on this and there are other jurisdictions that are looking at potential charges as well. tom winter with that report. still ahead, the biden administration may have to pay millions to former migrants separated by former president trump. those details are next. you'rewatching msnbc reports. was refresh where there is so much new, some say that it can't fit in one ad. i say... ...we're talking a new all-american club, deli-style oven-roasted turkey and... oh, that's the new steak & cheese. oh yeah, i knew that. that's the one with the new... ...seasoning. and that was the new mvp parmesan vinaigrette . right. which makes a next level foot... hold up. the subway logo? wait i'm out of time? growing up in a little red house, on the edge of a forestgo? in norway, there were three things my family encouraged: kindness, honesty and hard work.
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it is 45 past the hour and we turn now to the border. the biden administration may soon be paying millions of dollars to migrant families separated at the border under former president trump's zero tolerance policy. we all watched in 2018 as children were kept in cages, taken from their parents, simply because their parents crossed the border illegally with them. today, more than a thousand families are believed to still be separated. for more on this, i want to bring in jacob soboroff who's been following this story from
the very beginning for us. so jacob, what triggered this compensation now and do we have a dollar figure? >> tort cases, chris. those are lawsuits against the federal government for the treatment of these individuals during that family separation, what they call the zero-tolerance policy during the trump years. and remember, physicians for human rights called what those families went through torture. that's a nobel peace prize winning organization. the american academy of pediatrics called it government-sanctioned child abuse. so what "the wall street journal" has reported and we have confirmed is that there are ongoing negotiations in which the victims could be paid out potentially hundreds of thousands of dollars each. but these are ongoing negotiations. nothing has been finalized and ultimately, that's going to be a decision that's going to be reached between the biden administration's department of justice and the lawyers for the plaintiffs in this that were sed by the trump administration. >> all of which is an opportunity for us, jacob, to
bring folks up to date, to exactly find out how many of those families are still separated. do we know how many of the kids are out there, first of all? and at this point, after all of this time, is the expectation that reunification is unlikely to happen? >> i'm so glad that you brought that up, chris. because there are basically two tracks going on here. there are these civil lawsuits against the u.s. government for financial damages, but there's also the reuniication effort that's being run by the biden administration's reunification task force, headed by michelle brawnier, who was brought in to head up this effort. there are a thousand families, approximately, that remain separated. around 303 according to the last court filing. the parents of those children haven't even been able to be reached by the u.s. government, because of how shoddy the record keeping was during the trump administration. the idea is that the biden administration will be able to track down with non-governmental organizations, legal aid service
providers, people on the ground in central america, all of those remaining unidentified family. but when we talk about the trauma, the torture in the words of physicians for human lights, the child abuse in the words of the american academy for pediatrics, this has been a multi-year ordeal that's still playing out to this day. that's very active as sort of the resolution of what really was, you know, some folks have said, one of the most shameful factors in modern american history. >> money is one thing, but the long-term effects, something altogether different. jacob, thank you for staying on top of this. we appreciate it. and still ahead, protesing those vaccine mandates. first responders in new york with just hours to get a covid vaccine or be put on unpaid leave. you're watching msnbc reports. d leave. you're watching msnbc reports. feel stuck with student loan debt? move to sofi-and feel what it's like to get your money right. ♪
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nbc news medical contributor. let's stay away from the politics of this which is fraught and get to the medical part of this. there are first responders who argued that natural immunity should be considered in the exemptions. should there be some sort of temporary exemption? does that make medical sense to you? >> good to be with you. you're right. the natural immunity does exist, and even before we had vaccines we knew this could be protective against a reinfection. here's why i still recommend anyone who has had an infection get vaccinated. number one, we know natural immunity is not specifically targeted against all variants. and we know the current vaccines, all three actually hold up against the delta variant, the most immediate threat. number two, we know that immunity decreases over time. and chris, even if we had the
best most easy, simple test that you could check at home to see if you had antibodies, we don't know if that level of antibodies is sufficient to overcome direct exposure, particularly as we head into the winter months. more people are going to be indoors, and we see people lifting mask mandates around the country right when we see global cases rising. all three things go together really reinforcing the value of a vaccine and the timing of now being important. >> and then there are the ongoing questions for some parents about whether to get their kids vaccinated, given that we're hoping that there's going to be an approval. news week has a cover, and there's the scared looking child on the front, and a headline, would you give this child a shot? some doctors have gone on twitter and say they plan to vaccinate their own children. i want to get your reaction to this cover, and what do you say to parents who are making what is an important decision right now? >> i think it's very important just like we did with new york city workers, taking the kind of
fear of politics and tactics out of it and looking at the situation at the ground with the facts. we know that there are too many children that are being kept from school because of positive cases. quarantines. and then we know about 10% of children with covid are having long-term symptoms, and all of this is preventable with a vaccine where the benefits do outweigh the risks. at the end of the day, that cover, i saw that, and it's not -- it just jars me as a mother. i think it relates to any parent who is scared. doesn't want to harm their child. think about it this way. what harm could we be doing if we have a safe and effective vaccine that could prevent cases j hospitalizations, and in the worst of circumstances, which we have, death. and i think that's how i present it. i would also remind people, myself included, that we have vaccine mandates for so many other vaccines that have also been tested. and we've never had a vaccine where we've had over a billion people receive it and been able to look at what's happening and
what we're giving children is a reduced dose of that. i still come out on the side of encouraging mandates. i also encourage the conversations even about the scary pictures. try to remove those and keep it to your child and your situation. >> we only have seconds left, but i want to get to this. the cdc recommending a fourth booster for some immune compromised people. so how do you figure out if you're one of those folks? >> right. immune compromised. think of it has the people who needed a third dose. organ transplants, certain immune conditions. people taking medications. ask your doctor, but it might be time for the true booster. the third dose was a dose to get the complete series. you need a fourth shot to get the boost that we're recommending for all other people as a third shot. >> doctor, always great to see you. thank you. and that's going to wrap up this hour for me. i'm chris jansing. thank you so much for watching. craig melvin picks up more news right after this quick break. isk coaching. new workouts.
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and good friday morning to you. craig melvin here from msnbc world head quarters in new york city. folks, it's a packed hour. president biden is overseas. despite an all out push, his agenda has not yet got an vote in congress. we're also following broking news in congress. one of the two republicans sitting on the january 6th smee, congressman
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