tv Alex Witt Reports MSNBC November 14, 2021 9:00am-10:00am PST
trial, so talk about the mood there in kenosha today. what's it like, is everyone on pins and needles? >> you know, it's calm here, but to give you a sense of the climate surrounding this case, yesterday it was discovered that someone posted the home address of the lead prosecutor in this case on a message board. it was quickly taken down, but some saw that as a veiled threat. the governor has activated some 500 members of the national guard, and they are on stand-by should officials here in kenosha ask for their help once the jury delivers a verdict. closing arguments are going to begin tomorrow, and this could be in the jury's hands as soon as tomorrow night. >> i just hope everything stays peaceful. city can't have any more of this. >> there's a quiet tension in the city of kenosha as the prosecutor and defense prepare to deliver closing arguments in the homicide trial of kyle
rittenhouse. urging people to avoid the city this week. >> i think everyone is in limbo, scared. we're really fragile right now. >> rittenhouse is charged with six crimes related to the night he shot three people, killing two and wounding another with an assault rifle during protesters following the police shooting of a black man. the most serious charge is intengal homicide. rittenhouse testified it was self-defense. >> i didn't do anything wrong. i defended myself. >> some say it was an emotional moment. others say it was all for show. nb star lebron james tweeting what tears? i didn't see one. the judge in the case says he's inclined to let the jury consider lesser charges but he hasn't issued his final ruling. >> this case hasn't gone so well for the prosecution, the request for lesser included offenses is probably more to get some conviction on any crime because they may not be feeling any confident about first degree homicide at this point. >> there are currently 18 jurors and the final 12 will be
randomly selected out of this drum. >> what are you expecting to hear in closing arguments come monday? >> look for the prosecution to focus on the fact kyle rittenhouse was there for a gun, and they say that's because he was looking for trouble. but look for the defense to take the jury back to the elements and the burden of the prosecution, which is not only to prove each and every element of the crime but to disprove beyond a reasonable doubt kyle rittenhouse's climb of self-defense. >> an additional flash point in this case, early on, the judge ruled that the word victims could not be used to describe the people rittenhouse shot on that night in august. he said that it wouldn't be appropriate to use that term in his view because it relates to the question of self-defense here, and that ultimately, that is what the jury must decide. alex.
>> but didn't he also say those people that were shot or those people in the streets could be referred to as rioters and looters? right? >> he did. and that is where there was a lot of outcry and criticism of that judge, that this one word could not be used, victims, but he said rioters or looters would be okay with evidence. but it didn't make sense to a lot of people why one would be allowed and not another. others who work here locally says this judge often has a rule where he doesn't like the word victims to be used, but saying no and specifying the other two fairly loaded words are okay struck a lot of people as odd. and for many, concerning. >> makes sense. ellison barber, thank you so much from kenosha. >> the other big trial with developments for you, the killing of ahmaud arbery. three men facing murder and other charges in the killing. on thursday, a group of black pastors will converge on that
courthouse to support his parents. this in response to a defense lawyer's comment that black pastors should stay out of the courtroom. well, congresswoman karen bass weighed in on that today. >> i think it's despicable, but when they were selecting the jury, remember, they selected pretty much an all-white jury, and then the judge acknowledged that that was a problem and allowed the jury to be seated anyway. so i think that particular trial is off to a bad start. the trial is a trial of a lynching. that is exactly what happened in that case. >> joining me now is the man organizing this, benjamin crump, civil rights lawyer and attorney for the arbery family. very strong words from the congresswoman there. is that how you see it, sir? >> absolutely. it was offensive on every level, alex, when you think about this lawyer trying to say to the
victims of a gruesome, gruesome, horrific killing, ahmaud arbery was killed in the most despicable manner, and for him to now say to the parents of ahmaud arbery, we're going to dictate who is appropriate to come and support you as you pursue justice, it is offensive on every level. when you think about the kyle rittenhouse trial and how that judge has been so biased in his favor, you start to wonder how the system is portraying not only ahmaud arbery but ahmaud arbery's family. >> yeah. i'm curious, the impact that you think bringing 100 black pastors is going to have there, that you bring there to the courthouse? >> i think it's making a statement, alex, because these
trials are seen through different lenses depending on who you are. black america look at the kyle rittenhouse trial, and we are reminded again of what i wrote about in my book, open season, the legalized genocide of colored people, that the system coddles and protects young white men who commit gruesome acts of violence. we saw that on so many levels in the past. and then when you have black victims, you see how they treat us. when you think about this lawyer saying he is concerned about black pastors coming to pray with ahmaud arbery's family, what we believe he should be concerned more about is these white killers lynching ahmaud arbery, this unarmed black man, for jogging while black. so we're going to make a statement that our faith leaders can support us and any other victims, whether it's ahmaud or
trayvon or terence crutcher. we need our patchers there praying for us so we don't react in a different way. we want to react well for our faith in that christ intervened because we are so aggravated that without prayer, ahmaud arbery's father might act a lot differently sitting in that courtroom with the killers of his son. >> do you think, sir, that the focus on race helps any particular side since this jury is almost all white? >> you know, we have talked about the jury for the killers of ahmaud arbery's trial, and it is profound because we know historically that the demographics of a race does matter even though you -- they
are told that they're to follow the law and the evidence that's put before them, and that instruction that the judge gives them with the law, they talk about you can base it on the evidence, the law, and your common sense. and your life experiences. so when you think about this jury being 11 white people and 1 black man, you wonder how many of them can relate to the background of ahmaud arbery, the life experiences of ahmaud arbery, the perspective of ahmaud arbery versus how much they relate to the perspective of the three white men that chased him and killed him. that's a very real issue when you think about this trial because very few black people would accept this was self-defense. think about it, alex. if the roles were reversed, you had a black father and a black son chase an unarmed young white
man and kill him and right before they kill him, the father is on the back of a pickup truck with a shotgun and says to the young unarmed white man that we're going to blow your f'ing head off, nobody would say that this was nothing but bloody murder, and any proclamation of self-defense would fall on deaf ears. in fact, people would be offended by it. but because we have two justice systems in america, one for white america and one for black america, their self-defense alibi is given credence. >> i'm just taking in a moment listening to what you said, and yeah, it's extremely disturbing. and yes, i see exactly the point you're making. benjamin, let me ask you about, i understand you're also representing close to 200 people
who got caught in the tragic and deadly astroworld festival concert. you filed a lawsuit on friday. what is your sense of the civil rights violation at that event? are you representing, by the way, any of the families whose loved ones died? >> yes, we are representing the father of the 9-year-old ezra blunt, who was at this moment fighting for his life in an induced coma, and his mother and father are prayer for a miracle and ask that everybody will join them in prayer. but we believe, alex, that this was completely preventable. completely preventable. there never should have been where they didn't have appropriate crowd control procedures, they didn't have appropriate safety measures, they didn't have appropriate medical assistance on site. so these things were
foreseeable, so not only are we asking that people who attended the concert and were injured, but people who attended the concert and have video to visit us at astroworl claimshelp.com, because we want help for those who were injured physically, and also those who were injured mentally and dealing with serious issues watching people die next to them, fighting for their lives, thinking they were going to die caught in that melee, and more importantly, what we want is to make sure we get all of the evidence so we can make sure this never, ever happens again. live nation is the largest music promoter and concert promoter in the world. we as an industrial leader, we
need to change the standards in this industry because going to a concert should not be a life or death issue. >> yeah. that's for sure. benjamin, i just want to say, since you bring up live nation, they're certainly cooperating. travis scott may have not comment when asked about things, but he did put out that video. he looked pretty stressed out and he claimed remorse for whatever had happened and said he was going to try to help out the families who were affected by this. but nonetheless, i'm glad you're on the case, my friend. keep on keeping on, and we'll see you again soon. thank you, benjamin. meantime, we have new insight now as consumers across the country are dealing are record high gas prices over the last year, the gasoline index has gone up nearly 50%. making the national average $3.41. nbc's scott cohn is where it hurts right now, in san jose, california. that's the state with the highest gas prices in the country, scott. is there any indication that these numbers are going to drop
anytime soon? >> the short answer to that, alex, is no. if you are in one of those parts of the country where you're paying the average $3.41, think you could be in california where prices behind me are not at all uncommon. dle 5.09 at this station for regular. state-wide average is $4.67. a lot has to do with the high taxes in the state, but there are just a number of factors at play. and you look at just how fast prices have risen. that $3.41, again, the national average, that's more than a 50% jump from a year ago. what's going on? part of this is a positive aspect, and that is that the economy is strong, demand has come back as the pandemic has receded. and so there is great demand for gasoline and other forms of energy. and supply is just not keeping up. but that means that we're going to be looking at prices like these at least through the
holiday season and among other things, that has the white house dealing with some big political fallout. >> is the message to americans headed into thanksgiving where everybody will be driving to see family and friends that you think the current prices are acceptable? >> we certainly don't think that. the message to americans is that we're not just closely and directly monitoring the situation, which of course, we have been doing, but we're looking at every tool in our arsenal. >> the fact is, though, that there aren't very many tools in this administration's arsenal or any other's for that matter. there is the strategic petroleum reserve, but that's not riley set up to control prices and wouldn't be likely to do much even if the administration does decide to release oil from the reserve. they also say they're leaning on the federal trade commission to look at things like price gouging, but really what has to happen, alex, is the basic economic law of supply and demand. we could be looking at this well into next year.
>> i'm looking at that display behind you, $5.09, $5.29, $5.39 a gallon. yikes, scott. i'm saying walk home. thank you so much. so what could start to happen in a few hours. a big shift in attitudes by those subpoenas by the january 6th committee, plus the sound bite that lays it all out for why so many people want steve bannon to talk. so subaru is growing our commitment to protect the environment. in partnership with the national forest foundation, subaru and our retailers are proud to help replant 1 million trees to help restore our forests. subaru. more than a car company. you've been taking mental health meds, and your mind is finally in a better place. except now you have uncontrollable body movements
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now, look at the other headlines we're following for you today, including the big monday ahead in washington. first at the white house, president biden will be signing that bipartisan infrastructure bill into law. but it comes as new polling shows the president's poliies are more popular than biden himself. 63% of americans supporting the infrastructure bill. 58% supporting that build back better act. while president biden's apruchbl rating hits a new low at 41%.
it is mostly driven by the growing fears over inflation. this morning, director of the economic council brian deesy says that biden's agenda will help combat rising prices. >> so the challenge we have now is how to build on the strength of that recovery. while also addressing the prices. for us, that means three things. we have to finish the job on covid. number two, we have to address the supply chain issue, and the bipartisan infrastructure bill that the president will sign on monday is going to do more to help get goods moving more cheaply and freely through the american economy, and third, we have the address the costs that are the biggest pain points for american families. things like housing and health care and child care. that's exactly what the build back better bill that the house is going to consider this week will do. >> sorry, brian. i meant to say de, se. also, the president will meet
virtually with president she gin pang of china. they're hoping to ease rising tensions on climate and human rights. it comes as trump ally and adviser steve bannon is set to surrender and appear in court after being indicted for refusing to comply with a congressional subpoena. house investigators now hoping this will motivate other witnesses to comply. for more on that, julie tsirkin is standing by. welcome to you on this sunday. what should we expect when bannon turns himself in tomorrow? >> that's exactly right. we expect bannon to self-surrender at some point tomorrow before his first court appearance in the afternoon, kicking off a potentially long and nasty legal battle as bannon is sure to fight this every step of the way in court. but look, this is a big win for the committee and for congressional authority in their investigation into january 6th. but what it isn't a guarantee of is even if bannon is convicted on both of those counts of
contempt of congress, it's not a guarantee or a done deal at all that the committee will end up hearing his testimony, and that's exactly what one member of that panel, adam schiff, reacted to on "meet the press" this morning. take a listen. >> frankly, what that represents, basically, that the republican party at the top levels that is donald trump and those around him, seem to feel that they're above the law and free to thuwaters it, and there's something admirable about thumb your nose to the institutions of government. bannon did what he did because for four years that's what worked. they could hold republican party conventions on the white house grounds, they could fire inspector generals, they could retaliate against whistleblowers. it was essentially a lawless presidency, and they were proud of it. >> in addition to being a member of the select committee, adam schiff is also the chairman of the house intelligence committee, very familiar with trying to conduct oversight of the trump administration these last four years. and failing to do so because his inner circle is so evasive.
but look, as the committee looks ahead, they hope bannon's indictment will at least send a message to those like mark meadows, the former president's chief of staff and compel him to cooperate with their investigation. alex. >> jaw, let me ask about the senate, which is back in session tomorrow. lots on that agenda. walk us through the plan for this week? >> the senate is known as the world's greatest deliberative body, but they're also really good at procrastinating, and majority leader schumer send a letter setting up a laundry list of to-dos. it includes things like taking up the ndaa, which schumer has been criticized for by both sides of the aisle, the defense authorization that congress passes every year. that's set to take place this week, he said, while they wait for the house to take up the build back better act, and while they wait for the cbo to produce those scores that moderates are waiting for. in addition to taking up build back better, which i can't see happen on the floor until after thanksgiving break. they have things like voting
rights legislation and funding the government. so maybe i'll be here on christmas, i don't know, but we have a few weeks to find out if they can do it and get it all done. >> i tell you, you're echoing the sentiments of ro khanna. he said he didn't think the build back better would happen before thanksgiving at best. you're in good company. thank you, julie. joining me, peter baker, chief white house correspondent for "the new york times" and msnbc political analyst. how do you weigh the overall biden approval against a healthy majority that favors both the infrastructure bill as well as the build back better act? i mean, why do these two biden initiatives score better than he does? >> well, i think that one of the things you see if you unpack this poll from "the washington post" and abc news is that a lot of democrats and independents who supported biden last year are disappointed he hasn't done more. it's not that they rejected his agenda, not that they want him to stop spending so much, as
republicans would have liked to have the public do, because they think some of the spending is too excessive. what they're saying is they don't think biden has been effective in advancing the agenda they support. remember the build back better act has not yet been approved by congress. the infrastructure bill has just been approved by congress, not yet even signed into law. look, for the president, these are bad numbers, obviously, because what it says is his own personal credibility is pretty low. it's down in trump territory, and it's hard to climb back up once you're that low. having said that, the potential, you know, upside for him is, if he can get some credit for having passed this infrastructure bill, and if he can get the other bill through congress in the next few weeks or months, presumably, he can go out to the public and have more of an argument he is the effective president he promised to be. >> okay. what about the new poll out, and it finds this, that 70% of americans rate the economy negatively? that's a big one.
the white house may not have thought it would have been having to deal with this kind of inflation. however, it is becoming really a thorn in the side of joe biden. in fact, here's what jared bernstein, the white house council of economic advisers, he's on the council, here's what he told me yesterday. >> we know that we are creating historically large numbers of jobs, the unemployment rate is falling fast. unemployment claims are down 70%. record job creation. record job openings. at the same time, we have these price pressures. and the president has dispatched us to do everything we can to ameliorate them. this will ease inflationary pressures, but that's not all we're looking at. we're trying to help one of the fundamental causes, which is supply chain snarls, particularly at our ports and in our trucking sector. >> i'm curious how much control the white house really has in changing the trajectory of inflation, particularly in this somewhat still post-covid,
current covid still to some degree environment if you give the domino effect, like the shipping problems, supply chain issues. >> yeah, i think that's exactly right. remember, this is a white house that said not to worry about inflation back in the beginning of the year because it would be temporary, transitory thing that was happening because covid, you know, was releasing the grip on the economy. that hasn't turned out to be true. it's been pretty enduring inflation so far this year. it doesn't mean it won't begin to fall, but it's higher than it has been 31 years. that's a pretty tough development for americans who are seeing wages going up, but you know, seeing that offset and eaten up basically by this inflation and feeling a punch in the pocket book at the gas pumps and other places. what can the white house do about this? the fed has more control on the inflation rate than the white house. there is some concern that the infrastructure bill, which is not fully paid for, you know, could supercharge the economy
further. that might drive inflationary pressure, what the white house will say the next bill, the build back better bill, will be paid for, so therefore shouldn't affect inflation in a bad way. but it's a tough dilemma right now for the president. and he needs to get ahold of it, and he needs to sell the better aspects of the economy so that people don't feel quite so negatively about it, because right now, as you say, 70% feeling negative about the economy, you know, is a killer for a president who is trying to sell himself as the recovery president. >> yeah. look at you, peter baker. answering all of my questions in just two answers. so you're free for the day. thank you very much. we'll see you next week. meantime, loyal to the country or just to the party. republican lawmakers and constituents threatening republicans who voted for the infrastructure bill, and is anyone surprised georgia's marjorie taylor greene led the intraparty attacks? we'll hear from one congressman about a threat against his life. plus, the statement from steve bannon you need to hear to
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tomorrow, president biden will be holding a ceremony to sign a $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill into law. the 13 house republicans who voted to help pass that bill are now facing some pretty fierce backlash from within their own party. michigan republican fred upton revealed he's received death threats, and we want to warn you, this audio is disturbing. >> voted for [ bleep ], you're stupid urthan he is, and he can't complete a sentpence. you [ bleep ], traitor, [ bleep ] piece of trash. hope you die, hope your family dies. hope everybody on your staff dies. >> okay. earlier today, congressman upton spoke out about his concerns over the threats.
he and some of his other republican colleagues have been facing. >> it's a tough time, and it's so unsettling, you know, this is not what our democracy is about. these physical threats. not only do ourselves but also to our family members. as well as to our staff. it is a sad day in america when this type of stuff, got a better four-letter word for it, but i'll save you, when it happens. >> well, joining me now is illinois congressman mike quigley, a democratic member of the house appropriations and intelligence committees. and as i welcome you, my friend, i mean, really? if you listen to this voice mail, it's just -- it is extraordinary. yet we heard the congressman very graciously call it just so unsettling. but what's your reaction to all of it? i mean, the fact that this is coming from within his own party. >> you know, normally, i would
say i work with fred upton on a regular basis, on a bipartisan basis, on great lakes measures, stopping future pandemics. those are just a couple recent ones. do i stop saying that because i'm going to get him in trouble, get him in danger? and when did infrastructure become partisan? and how extreme is the house republican leadership become that when mitch mcconnell can vote for this and 18 other senate republicans, you know, they feel like they can attack their own for supporting something like this, which is good for the country. >> yeah, i'm going to pick up on that. georgia congressman marjorie taylor greene, she potentially instigated messages like this because she tweeted the phone numbers of fellow republicans who voted for infrastructure. what does it say about the state of gop politics that lawmakers who vote in favor of, to your point, improving the roads, the
bridges, the airports, internet access, things that everybody in this country uses, are being attacked by other republicans? >> sure. i mean, look, there's a radicalized portion of the republican party that are dangerous. january 6th shows that. so they know full well what they're doing, that they're putting people at risk. lives at risk, our democracy. the fact that you feel endangered if you think you're going to put country over party. so that is particularly scary. but it's part of a larger picture. remember, just one of my other colleagues, mr. gosar, put out this mean video that showed him, you know, killing another member of my party. and attacking the president of the united states. this is the new norm. it doesn't even draw criticism from leader mccarthy. so at this point in time, our members in the back of their heads going to change what they do because they're afraid for their lives or their families'
lives? that's a real threat to our democracy. not just to their safety. >> let's talk about steve bannon. as you know, he surrenders to authorities tomorrow after being indicted for contempt of congress. listen to what steve bannon said on his podcast, this was january 5th, one day ahead of the insurrection. >> it's not going to happen like you think it's going to happen. okay, it's going to be quite extraordinarily different. all i can say is strap in. the war room, a posse, you have made this happen, and tomorrow, it's game day. so strap in. let's get ready. all hell is going to break loose tomorrow. just understand this. all hell is going to break loose tomorrow. it's going to be moving. it's going to be quick. >> this is exactly why he must speak to the committee, right? this is why all of this is happening. how significant is it that we find out what this detail is that he's talking about?
what did he know? >> sure. i understand there was some sort of meeting on january 5th with officials talking about encouraging republicans to vote against the lawful election. like to know what happened there, who was involved, who said what, what were they aware of that was going to take place. and finally, this is long overdue. with chairman schiff, i serve on intel, and the trump administration has been defying lawful congressional subpoenas for over four and a half years. this can't be continued just because we have to know what happened on the sixth, we have to hold people accountable. the fact they have gotten away with it so long, it can't happen anymore. mr. bannon has to be brought to justice, and no one is above the law. >> and there are others here, other trump aides who have been subpoenaed. they're going to watch steve bannon battle in court.
mark meadows potentially faces criminal contempt proceedings for not showing up. do you expect key figures to start being more cooperative as they see what happens? >> there's part of me that does, there's part of me that thinks bannon sees this, what, as a misdemeanor, the worst he would get is a year in jail, which is hard to imagine we get to that extreme. and that, you know, how much do they want to be martyrs? this has gotten way beyond any sort of rationality. i do hope people like mr. meadows who i served with will understand not just because it's the right thing to do and it's lawful, but because this will impact his life and his liberty. and as the mueller investigation showed, there were over a dozen instances of obstruction during that investigation. so if we're going to find out what happened on january 6th and hold people accountable, this has to be the beginning of the
process. >> illinois congressman mike quigley, thank you so much. have a great sunday. i look forward to seeing you again soon. >> meantime, aaron rodgers is making a comeback after covid, but will it be all cheers in green bay? ♪ there are beautiful ideas that remain in the dark. but with our new multi-cloud experience, you have the flexibility you need to unveil them to the world. ♪ (swords clashing) -had enough? -no... arthritis. here. new aspercreme arthritis. full prescription-strength? reduces inflammation? thank the gods. don't thank them too soon. kick pain in the aspercreme. ♪ ♪
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covid. he took responsibility for the controversy surrounding his covid status when he admitted he said he was immunized. how much do fans care about this controversy? do they think he should be playing? do you think there's going to be cheers or maybe some jeers as well when he takes the field? >> yeah, i think it's going to be a little of both. i have heard too many things from fans when y have talked to. one, they're excited to have aaron rodgers back. they lost last week against the chiefs because aaron rodgers wasn't playing. two, they're saying he shouldn't have lied about his vaccination status or misled the public, because this all goes back to the idea that aaron rodgers is a high-profile athlete. these celebrities spreading mis and disinformation about coronavirus and the vaccine itself. when he tested positive, he was on a radio show saying he had taken that untested, unproven
horse medicine. he also said he gets his medical advice from joe rogan, the podcast host. there's been a wide variety of people who weighed in on this discussion, how dangerous what he's saying could be to the public discourse. but what do fans think? >> i think everyone has their own right to get the vaccine or not. but as a public figure, i think he shouldn't have lied. >> i don't think he misled very much. i think a lot of people kind of blew it out of proportion. i think he just tried to do what was best for him. i'm not too upset about it. >> yeah, i mean, you know. his job is to play football. you know, he's not a public health official. >> everybody got their opinion and how they say everything. but i don't know, it really doesn't bother me. i'm a seahawks fan. i let the packers deal with their issues. >> so seahawks fan there. you really making light of the
situation. but the damage has been done. rodgers was fined about $14,000 by the league, by the nfl for not wearing a mask inside the facility since he was unvaccinated. and he also lost some of his sponsorships as well. >> kind of hard to reconcile his covid approach with the guy who plays jeopardy so well. like, okay. anyway, by the way, when we come back to you next time, please have a weather report ready for us because i can see it's flowing. very curious to see what's coming your way. >> there will be snow again. >> there we go. >> new reaction from a republican lawmaker who is getting some death threats for siding with democrats when he said a short time ago about the price he's paying for following his conscience.
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so unsettling. you know, this is not what our democracy is about, these physical threats. not only to ourselves but also to our family members. >> republican congressman fred upton speaking out today after receiving death threats because of his support of the bipartisan infrastructure package. 13 republicans voted for it, all of whom are facing vicious backlash. joining me, founder of the voter protection fund. susan del percio, msnbc political analyst. and david jolly, former congressman from florida and msnbc contributor. otherwise known as my sunday family. susan, what does it say about the state of politics in this day and age? >> oh, it's so disturbing, alex. the congressman really touched on a nerve, i think, when he says this is happening to our
families. these attacks are not just even directed -- politicians take a certain amount of incoming, they're used to it. but when it starts spreading to your families and when it starts spreading in such violent terms, it's no wonder why decent people quit or refuse to go into politics. it's just not worth the sacrifice. >> sadly. and donald trump is demanding primaries for those, quote, rinos, sellouts, and losers, sounds like him there, who voted for the bipartisan infrastructure bill, david. what do you make of donald trump's statements and his involvement there? >> i think it's going to be an interesting test, a timestamp, if you will, for where the republican party is with trumpism. alex, we have yet to see a slate of republican candidates successfully navigate a primary, a republican primary, without donald trump's support or in the
face of a challenger with donald trump' support. that will be tested. republicans know what they saw in virginia and new jersey is an electoral environment without donald trump can be very favorable for republicans. but this will be an interesting test going into '22. can some of these incumbent members actually survive? i think all eyes will clearly be on wyoming and whether or not liz cheney survives a trump-backed challenger in the primary there. >> that's definitely one everyone will be watching. more notably, house gop leader kevin mccarthy has been silent. congressman gosar and his posting of an anime video showing him killing alexandria ocasio-cortez, don, what do you make of that? do you expect more than silence from the party leader? how is that demonstrating leadership? >> it's not demonstrating leadership. as a matter of fact it's a complete falter of leadership. to your question, do i expect more from kevin mccarthy, no.
because kevin mccarthy has tacitly allowed this environment to go on and fester under his watch, not only his watch but the two previous speakers before him. if you think back to just when john boehner resigned, john boehner resigned because he could not coral the freedom caucus, and the freedom caucus is the locus of where a lot of this stuff started to fester. it goes back to 2010, and we could even go into political history and go before that. but with the rise of the freedom caucus, with the rise of these ideas not being immediately rebuked, the last ten or 11 years, and i feel terrible for fred upton. i've received death threats and bomb threats, it's never fun. but i didn't see fred upton stand up and protest when it was happening to barack obama. everybody needs to condemn all of this craziness.
i would say somebody's going to get killed. people have gotten killed. >> that's sobering. yesterday, talk about sobering, i spoke with paul gosar's sister jennifer. here is a little bit of what she told me about her brother. >> at this level i am reengaging to pull my brother out of a cult, right? to pull him out from enabling and empowering the cult, because it's a very active -- and although he's a buffoon when he talks, he's active in engaging those people that want to hear that message. they want to feel better about themselves, they want to feel like they're not losing something. >> susan, do republicans not realize this kind of behavior, while they argue, it's harmless, it's freedom of speech, that it puts people in harms way? >> they know it and a lot of them do not care. that's where the need to be reelected or to stand out, maybe raise money, whatever it is,
people like gosar put his own personal feelings above what is good for this country. this is unacceptable behavior. i think she also in one interview, gosar's sister said he's a sociopath. i guess family knows family. i'm going to kind of leave it with her on that one. >> so david, if the vote was held to censure gosar, will any republican vote for it or are they too scared for being singled out and facing the taunts of donald trump? if every republican did what they say is the right thing and voted for censure, wouldn't they be immune to the critics if they came together and did that? >> oh, alex, you're expecting some profiles in courage, which we're not going to see. to your earlier point, when the party's own leader, kevin mccarthy, refuses to take a stand on this. i hate to put this on democrats' shoulders but they're the only party willing to lead in this
moment. nancy pelosi must move a censure resolution this week against paul gosar. i know it doesn't seem like much to people unfamiliar with the house but it is the highest form of rebuke and condemnation the house can issue to a member of congress. it also can remove gosar from committees and other places of authority within the house. expulsion requires two-thirds. it's not going to happen. there's a question of whether or not expulsion is even an appropriate remedy. but he glorified the murder of a colleague. if nancy pelosi and the democrats do not move a censure resolution, it will impugn the integrity of the house. i think the leader knows that, the speaker knows that. many democrats do as well. my hope is they move to censure paul gosar this week forthwith. >> do you agree with that, don? >> absolutely, because people not operating with as much intelligence, they act on these things. people will try to kill members of congress or members of the
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