tv Alex Witt Reports MSNBC December 4, 2021 11:00am-12:01pm PST
it's the eat fresh refresh™! let's meet the new all-american club™. this playmaker's coming in strong with new oven roasted turkey, black forest ham, and hickory-smoked bacon. it's good, hall of fame good. save big. order through the app. ♪ ♪ look! oh my god... i want my daughter riley to know about her ancestors and how important it is to know who you are and to know where you came from. ♪ we're discovering together... it's been an amazing gift. ♪ nyquil severe gives you powerful relief for your worst cold and flu symptoms, on sunday night and every night. nyquil severe. the nighttime, sniffling, sneezing, coughing, aching, stuffy head, best sleep with a cold, medicine.
it's another day. and anything could happen. it could be the day you welcome 1,200 guests and all their devices. or it could be the day there's a cyberthreat. only comcast business' secure network solutions give you the power of sd-wan and advanced security integrated on our activecore platform so you can control your network from anywhere, anytime. it's network management redefined. every day in business is a big day. we'll keep you ready for what's next. comcast business powering possibilities.
a very good day to all of you from msnbc world headquarters here in new york. welcome, everyone, to "alex witt reports." we're beginning with the breaking news out of michigan. the parents of the oxford school shooting suspect are each being held on a half a million dollar bond after their court appearance today. james and jennifer crumbley pled not guilty to all four counts of involuntary manslaughter. plus there's a look at the scene in detroit where that pair was arrested early this morning. the oxford sheriff giving us an inside perspective. >> they're not talking much to us. on a number of levels. obviously, sullen, but not a lot
of conversation. we have them in my jail, all in separate and segregated spots, keeping a close eye on them. we've not seen any remorse. i don't know whether the sullenness is from being caught or whether it's from, you know, other emotions that are going on. >> their son, 15-year-old ethan crumbley, is accused of killing four students and injuring several others, a tragedy the oakland county prosecutor says his parents could have prevented. >> this is a very serious, horrible, terrible murder and shooting, and it has affected the entire community, and these two individuals could have stopped it. and they had every reason to know that he was dangerous, and they gave him a weapon. and they didn't secure it, and they allowed him free access to it. >> it comes as members of that community are reeling, gathering last night for a vigil to mourn the loss of those teenage
victims, hana, tate, madisyn and justin. shaq brewster joins us. pretty dramatic developments and now we're learning this is far from over. >> reporter: that's exactly right, and this is something that played a significant part in the hearing that we saw earlier today where we saw these two suspects appear in court for the first time. it was their arraignment and there was a lot of discussion over why it took so long for law enforcement to apprehend them. now, their defense attorneys say they had plans to turn themselves in first thing tomorrow morning, they said that yesterday, so first thing this morning. however, law enforcement, including the county sheriff and the u.s. marshals had a full-scale manhunt for these suspects, eventually finding them overnight in detroit. and you know, we heard from the detroit -- the police chief there. something that was confirmed in your conversation with the county sheriff, and that's the
idea that because it took so long for them to be apprehended, they believe that there may be some other involvement, someone else involved in this process. i want to play for you a clip of your interview that i want to drill down on in terms of what they're looking at in terms of this investigation extending. >> it appears as if when, at the moment they weren't actually suspects, it was just around the time of the search warrant that was investigating their son, that they left and went to unknown locations and ultimately ended up in detroit. now, what we are actively looking at, then, working in close partnership with our partners in detroit, i just talked to the chief, we certainly believe that there may be something else that is potentially forthcoming about someone assisting them to be in that location. >> reporter: we know that the county sheriff says he didn't get any contact with the attorney until about 10:45, 10:30 p.m. last night, but they
do know that before then, in the hours since those four charges were filed, and until they apprehended him, they know that these suspects were in the area and then went to the detroit area instead after pulling about $4,000 out of the bank. again, their defense attorneys are saying they were not fleeing, they were never fleeing, and that's a media conversation that's happening, but when you look at the details that were presented in that arraignment, it paints somewhat of a different picture, alex. >> it sure does. shaq, stay with us. i'm going to bring in danny ceballos to join the conversation. danny, welcome to you. involuntary manslaughter charges against the parents of the suspect in a school shooting are pretty rare. how challenging is the burden of proof? >> they're rare but they're not unprecedented in michigan. in just 2018, the michigan court of appeals approved of a similar theory of liability for a parent who left a shotgun somewhere where the kids could get to it and tragedy resulted, and the
upheld that exact same theory of liability. involuntary manslaughter is not a crime specific to guns. it's specific to whatever creative theory a prosecutor comes up with. and in this case, the allegations are simply that through gross negligence, which is being aware of a risk and knowingly disregarding it, they allowed their son access, allegedly, to a firearm and that that access caused the death of these victims. so, the path to a conviction is there if the prosecutor has the evidence, then the michigan court of appeals has suggested that involuntary manslaughter is a possibility. what we may be seeing here is not unprecedented but it is probably part of a trend as prosecutors struggle to find things to combat school shootings in the future. >> so, danny, i was told during the commercial break that you grew up in michigan? and you're very familiar with the culture there, and i'm talking specifically about the gun culture.
i've got cousins in michigan. i know there's a big gun culture there. how much might that affect the way a jury pool, if it goes to that, in a case like this or affect a judge's perception of things? i mean, when you have a cultural environment that is very permissive when it comes to guns, can that affect the law? >> you have to understand, these midwestern states, michigan, wisconsin, i'm a native michigander and hunting is very much a part of the culture. students get time off from school for the opening of deer season to go hunting with their parents, so michigan not only contemplates minors having access to guns, it legislatively allows them to have access to guns. but i would tell you, i suspect that the hunters i know from the wolverine state would fully support prosecution of what they would see as irresponsible parents, because what these parents allegedly did has nothing to do with the spirit of
allowing minors to access firearms for the purpose of hunting and using them responsibly, and that's why mcdonald, the prosecutor, yesterday in her press conference stressed over and over again the concept of responsible gun ownership. she's sending a message. she's acknowledging that in michigan, there is a world where minors can responsibly and do responsibly access firearms. this, what these defendants did, she's saying, is not that. >> shaq, i understand you have some new information from the sheriff that you want to share. that coupled with anything else you may have heard in my extended interview with him that struck a chord with you. >> reporter: yeah, we just learned the sheriff will be out in front of the cameras and he's going to have a news conference. it says and it's billed as explaining the facts around the arrest of the crumbleys last night. we know that you spoke with him in that interview and you asked him extensively about that arrest, about the sound that we just played about whether or not this investigation is going to potentially involve others, and we do know that, you know, in
the arraignment that we heard earlier today, there were some conflicting facts that were being brought out and presented. the defense, for example, claimed that that gun, that gun that was used in the school shooting on tuesday by that 15-year-old student, the son of the crumbleys, the defense is saying that gun was locked away, but the sheriff in your interview said there is no evidence to suggest that the gun was locked or out of reach of this student. we know that the shooting eventually resulted in the lives of four people, and three people who are still in the hospital right now, so we'll see what this news conference is and if there any announcements to come from it but he'll be coming out in front of the cameras in just about two hours, alex. >> okay. we know you'll be taking that for us live. danny to, that point, i found, just like shaq did, that extremely interesting to me when the prosecution was talking about ethan's access to the gun inside his parents' house and then the defense earlier in the arraignment today saying, no,
no, no, we're going to show that it was locked and the sheriff said, flatout, it was not locked. where does that go from here, legally speaking? >> the defense really only has two avenues. number one, they have to try and argue to the extent they can that the gun was secured. what secured means will depend on a standard. not necessarily a law, because michigan doesn't really have a lot of laws dealing with how exactly to secure a firearm. so it's incumbent upon the defense to show that, no, this was secured and define secured in a way that at least a jury may buy. but beyond just that, even if it was not secured, remember, you're dealing with jurors in a community that understand that minors do have access to firearms, responsibly. so the prosecution will show that even if this gun was not secured, in addition, this child was not someone who was responsible enough to access a firearm, and all the clues were there, the prosecutor will say, and these parents should have known it.
>> there was another question that's being raised, danny, and that is the school's responsibility in the shootings. despite concerns about ethan crumbley's behavior, they called in his parents. they had a meeting the morning of the shooting, but he was allowed back into the classroom, despite them saying to the parents, hey, we need him to be taken home now and we need him to get some psychological counseling within 48 hours. but the parents reneged and said, no, we're not going to do it and they said, guess he goes back to class. it's a tough position, but should school officials be held legally accountable? would that be unprecedented? is there anything that you can see here that spells a bit of trouble for the oxford high school school officials? >> it was very telling at the press conference of prosecutor mcdonald that she avoided -- i wouldn't say avoided the question, but preferred not to answer the direct question of whether or not she thought the school bore responsibility, and i think we have not yet seen the end. indeed, we are only at the beginning of inquiring into what
exactly was done at the school, what administrators knew what, and when they knew it. when it comes to civil liability, it is very difficult to hold a government entity civilly responsible, but that doesn't mean that the potential -- and i'm saying very clearly, that potentially a government official who commits an egregious enough act cannot be held civilly and possibly even criminally liable but it would require something short of, you know, or something to the effect of intentional or very reckless activity. >> okay. danny cevallos, many thanks for that really keen assessment. shaq, thank you for yours as well. we'll look forward to that news conference at 4:00 with the oakland county sheriff. thank you so much. let's go now to the latest in the coronavirus pandemic. vaccinations are rising as more states confirm cases of the omicron variant. the cdc says nearly 2.2 million shots were given over a 24-hour period on thursday. that's the largest total since may. also the cdc director says the omicron variant could become the
dominant variant but delta is the problem for now. and parts of president biden's plan to combat omicron take effect soon. the effort includes expanding access to booster shots, extending the mask mandate on public transportation, and requiring international travelers to show a negative covid test now taken within 24 hours before arrival. that requirement begins on monday. let's go to nbc's steven romo joining us from here in new york city. steven, what's the response been like to the government's handling of omicron? >> reporter: yeah, alex, largely the people we've been talking to today seem to agree with the government response to the new variant right now, saying that lockdowns don't seem to be what they would recommend. they are hoping that masks and more vaccinations can lead the way in cutting down both on delta, which is still the most prevalent strain, and the new omicron variant. right now, of course, people are trying to put an emphasis on those booster shots. some of the people i spoke to
just a few minutes ago were telling me they actually got their booster because of the news of the new variant. the novelty of covid-19 hasn't worn off. a lot of people we're talking to say they want a wait and see approach, which is what we've seen both from the biden administration's response and here in new york from governor hokal and mayor de blasio's response as well, not talking about shutdowns, not even talking about more mask mandates but instead pushing the mask mandates that we already have in place and saying that those booster shots are what we need to worry about. one thing i did hear people talk about was a headline that several people have read about the south african data showing that the new variant may be spreading twice as fast as delta. of course, that's just initial information and it needs to be backed up by more research. that is something that's been concerning to them. still, many of them say the protocols we already have in place give them a lot of hope. here's some of what we heard today. >> i think they need more data for sure.
i think if everybody, like, if we do our part, like getting our shots, being vaccinated, and keeping our masks on, like, at least for the indoors, we have the impression to be safe. >> i feel pretty safe in new york, i think because they got so slammed early on, they're very responsible. >> reporter: and alex, it's hard to believe just last weekend, i was here speaking with you and dr. fauci had just mentioned that the new variant was likely already here in the united states. now we know 12 different states are reporting cases right now, 5 confirmed in the new york city area alone. alex? >> pretty stunning how this is all developed in the last week. thank you so much, steven romo from new york city. new alarm today from u.s. intelligence. russian forces appear poised to attack ukraine. it is a developing situation. i'm going to speak with the former supreme allied commander of nato, admiral james next. r of nato, admiral james next. ♪ limu emu... & doug ♪
♪ superpowers from a spider bite? i could use some help showing the world how liberty mutual customizes their car insurance so they only pay for what they need. (gasps) ♪ did it work? only pay for what you need ♪ liberty. liberty. liberty. liberty. ♪ spider-man no way home in theaters december 17th like pulsing, electric shocks, sharp, stabbing pains, or an intense burning sensation. what is this nightmare? it's how some people describe... shingles. a painful, blistering rash that could interrupt your life for weeks. forget social events and weekend getaways. if you've had chickenpox, the virus that causes shingles is already inside of you. if you're 50 years or older ask your doctor or pharmacist about shingles.
right now, leading defense officials are meeting to tackle the rising threats against the u.s. and this comes days before a planned phone call between president biden and russian president vladimir putin as tensions between the u.s. and russia are escalating. let's go to nbc's courtney kube who's joining us from california. welcome to you on this saturday. so, what are the key themes today? >> reporter: so, there's really two major things. i mean, there's a ton of overall national defense issues that are being discussed here, but there are two main issues that are really taking over the discussions. one of them is russia, what you just touched on, alex, and that is this growing concern about what russia is doing along the border with ukraine. we now know they have tens of thousands of troops that are along the border or near it, and there is a real concern among defense officials that vladimir
putin could be planning some sort of an invasion into ukraine and among the more concerning things that defense officials have seen recently is this increase or influx of some logistics capability into the area. so, medical and fuel. the kinds of things that actually can sustain a conflict. that's been a big source of discussion here today. the other major issue is china. we're expecting to hear from the secretary of defense, lloyd austin, in just a little bit and officials say that one of the major things he will talk about is the asia pacific region and specifically china. of course he just returned from the region from meetings in south korea, but he is expected to talk about the growing military threat and concern emanating from china. there's been a lot of attention to the hypersonic missile tests that they have conducted over the last several months, but beyond that, the u.s. military now says that china is trying to grow its nuclear arsenal, up to a thousand nuclear warheads by 2030, in less than a decade.
those are the kinds of things. they're also increasing their strike capabilities and other military capabilities that really have people here talking and a lot of defense officials concerned, alex. >> okay. courtney, thank you so much for that. and i love the backdrop there at the ronald reagan presidential library. you have that air force one that ronald reagan traveled on. it's pretty cool. thank you, courtney. well, president biden, meanwhile, is reacting to a warning from vladimir putin that any military action to help ukraine would be a red line. "the washington post" today says it obtained a u.s. intelligence document confirming russia is planning a military offensive against ukraine as early as next month involving up to 175,000 troops. russia deployed more than 90,000 troops in recent weeks with putin claiming that russia is threatened by nato drills near the border, and he added that if nato sends troops and weapons to ukraine, that would be a red line that would trigger a strong response.
>> reporter: has russia invaded ukraine? they're expected to invade in 2022. >> we're aware of russia's actions for a long time. and my expectation is we're going to have a long discussion with putin. >> reporter: putin, red line on ukraine? >> i won't accept anybody's red line. >> joining me now, admiral james, former nato supreme allied commander and nbc chief international security and diplomacy analyst and contributor. he's got a new book, the sailor's bookshelf, 50 books to know the sea. that sounds like a great book. i'd love to get a copy of that one. but admiral, as i welcome you, associated press is reporting the two presidents are going to talk on tuesday, but what do you make of all this posturing over red line ahead of an actual conversation? >> well, red lines tend to be bandied about when people are starting to get very concerned, and we ought to be quite
concerned, tactically, about what's happening here. i estimate about 90,000 russian troops along the borders of ukraine and russia. i would estimate thousands of tanks, vehicles, you heard courtney talk about logistics support, very key. aircraft are maneuvering in the area. frankly, it's starting to look like it did in 2008 when vladimir putin invaded georgia and he still is operating two chunks of that country. and 2014, when he invaded ukraine the last time and annexed crimea. so you know, we always say crime is where motive meets opportunity. certainly, he's got an opportunity that he has developed here. that's why you're going to hear a lot about red lines going back and forth. it's a good thing the two presidents are speaking this week. it's necessary. >> so, when you look at the options here, could it be an intimidation tactic or do you seriously take this as a
plausible sign of imminent military action? >> i think at this stage of things, it is very much intimidation, but you know, we talk about rattling sabers. i would say the saber is out of the scabbard and is being waved in the face of the ukraine president zelensky and it's designed to have an effect back in washington, alex. so what should we do about it, i think, is the question. we've got to increase our intelligence so we know exactly what's happening. we need to use cyber to probe the russian defense here. we need to give ukraine additional lethal but defensive weapons, missiles, anti-tank, that kind of thing. we need to rally the allies. we need to get this out of a u.s. vs. russia context and get it into a nato, western world against russia. so, we've got work to do and i am concerned, but at this stage, i would not predict an actual
invasion. but i'll close by saying, 2006, 2014, he's done it before. >> happened. right. if you're president biden, what do you say to try to reduce all this saber rattling when speaking with vladimir putin? what could he say or do that would be effective? >> i think you put it on kind of a two-track approach. one is, you say to him, we are going to respond very dramatically with economic sanctions. we're going to increase the level of them against individuals, including very senior people in the kremlin, mr. president. number two, you say, oil and gas. we don't want to go after oil and gas, your oil and gas, complicates things for europe, but that's what your economy is based on. don't force us to do that. and thirdly, the real atomic weapon here is secondary sanctions. you sanction anybody doing
business with russia. so, i think you kind of pull your saber out, which is economic sanctions, and you talk about the allies together on this, and then quietly, you say to putin, look, this is in nobody's interest. let's de-escalate this thing. let's have further conversations, but don't cross me on this one. i think that will be a tough conversation for president biden. >> but when you say this is in nobody's interest, i mean, looking at the things the united states could impose economically in terms of sanctions, what is vladimir putin getting out of this if, as you surmise, this is not heading for imminent military action? >> you know, as the saying goes, all politics are local. you're showing a picture now of putin speaking to the douma. this plays well to his base. it makes him strong. this is very popular in russia. his ratings went up after 2014. they went up after 2008.
there's a domestic political component, and then secondarily, alex, he is showing the world, particularly china, for example, that he is one of the main actors on the international stage. he derives a lot of benefit in his own mind from that. >> okay. so, is military action something that would be seen as being popular, and if that were to happen, what would that lead to from the united states and potentially nato as well? >> i think it would be initially popular inside russia, but if his forces got bogged down, if body bags started coming back to moscow, things get a lot less popular in situations like that, as we saw in iraq and afghanistan. so, he needs to be very mindful of that, and right now, he's making the calculus, can i get in there fast, accomplish what i want, grab another chunk of territory, and then survive the sanctions. i think at the end, he'll decide
that's -- that candle is not worth the gain. but we'll see. he's done it before. >> okay, admiral james stavridis, i appreciate your sage insight as always. many thanks. "the washington post" calls it a high stakes game of chicken. where it's happening and what it's about next. chicken. where it's happening and what it a'sbout next. mm. [ clicks tongue ] i don't know. i think they look good, man. mm, smooth. uh, they are a little tight. like, too tight? might just need to break 'em in a little bit. you don't want 'em too loose. for those who were born to ride there's progressive. with 24/7 roadside assistance. -okay. think i'm gonna wear these home. -excellent choice.
what makes salonpas arthritis gel so good for arthritis pain? with 24/7 roadside assistance. -okay. salonpas contains the most prescribed topical pain relief ingredient. it's clinically proven, reduces inflammation and comes in original prescription strength. salonpas. it's good medicine. unleash the freshness... [upbeat music] still fresh ♪ in wash-scent booster ♪ downy unstopables ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
on capitol hill, a key deposition in the january 6th investigation has been postponed. jeffrey clark, a senior doj appointee from the trump administration was supposed to testify before house investigators today, but at the 11th hour yesterday, he delayed that meeting until the 16th, citing a medical condition. joining me now, hugo lowell, congressional reporter from "the guardian." let's get into this. "the washington post" describes this whole back and forth between clarke and the committee as a high-stakes game of chicken. he had finally agreed to appear for a deposition after the committee voted to hold him in
contempt but then postpones it. it's not just clarke. kayleigh mcenany's scheduled deposition was also postponed, so what's going on here? is postponing the goal? >> so, i think that all of these trump advisors are trying to figure out how far they can push the select committee before they get held in contempt. clarke already voted to recommend his criminal prosecution if he doesn't cooperate and testify before the committee. of course, he delayed it, as you said, his deposition this morning, but he does have the deposition rescheduled so let's see if he cooperates then. but i think it's a case of them trying to find out what is the breaking point. >> now, i know you're also reporting on what questions the committee wants to ask clarke, so what do you have on that? >> yeah, so, the committee revealed in its contempt report or the transcripts backing up the contempt of court the kind of things they wanted to seek from mr. clarke, and involve communications that he had with
the former president as well as individuals not connected to the executive branch and that involves people at the hotel where trump's lieutenants were working to stop the certification of biden's victory on january 6th and in a curious note, chief counsel for the select committee noted among the transcripts that they wanted to ask him about whether the white house communications agency had helped him draft and prepare a letter to georgia state legislators, seeking to effectively tell them, don't send biden's electors to the joint session and i think this is interesting because again it ties the white house to what mr. clarke was doing. >> even as clarke has agreed to appear, he's expected to invoke his fifth amendment right not to answer any of these broad swath of questions. so how does this whole thing play out? i mean, no one's done this yet in this investigation. so, how do you expect the committee to handle it?
>> that's a very good question. we spoke to congressman jamie raskin after he came out of the select committee's business meeting when they recommended to hold jeffrey clark in contempt and recommended the house to pursue that vote. and he said, look, he may come in, as in, clarke may come into the deposition and he may claim the fifth amendment to every single question that is of interest to the committee beyond, what is his name, when did he meet people like scott perry, so if he does, then the committee may not learn anything new. but then raskin raised the prospect of, maybe we could give him use immunity wherein he is protected from prosecution by virtue of what he tells the committee, but in that instance, you would have to answer all the questions truthfully under oath, and so maybe the committee could learn some new information. so there's a little bit of, you know, give and take here, they're trying to figure out how they can get clarke to provide new information. >> what about former white house
chief of staff mark meadows who's also this week agreed to cooperate with the committee? he's supposed to be speaking with them next week. how significant do you think his cooperation is going to be? >> that is a -- that is going to be a really interesting proposition, because when that cooperation agreement was announced, what was telling was what the committee thought they announced and what mark meadows and his attorney thought they announced. so, they both got to the point where they think, yes, meadows is going to cooperate to a certain degree. the select committee thinks, you know, no topics are off the table, it's going to be a regular deposition, he can invoke executive privilege if he likes for certain questions but he's expected to testify as a regular witness. that's not the readout and the understanding that you get from meadows's side who seems to think that some topics are off the table and he's going to broadly invoke executive privilege, so while they both arrived at the same conclusion, that meadows is going to cooperate for different reasons,
right, meadows doesn't want to be held in contempt, based on what they've got there is very different. >> yeah, sounds like it's a little bit lost in translation, but we'll see what comes of it. hugo, thank you so much. come see us again very soon. if you have been watching msnbc, you've probably seen it. amon's promo for his new podcast, "american radical," how a shy woman from his hometown got lured into the conspiracy theory movement. i'm so interested. i know you're interested. we're going to find out more next. terested we're going to find out more next dad are you sure you're up to host? yeah! we want to keep it the way it always was, right? ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ that's your grandma. she was the best at the holidays.
mom, hurry! our show's gonna start soon! i promised i wouldn't miss the show and mommy always keeps her promises. oh, no! seriously? hmm! it's not the same if she's not here. oh. -what the. oh my goodness! i don't suppose you can sing, can you? ♪ the snow's comin' down ♪ -mommy? ♪ i'm watching it fall ♪
watch the full story at www.xfinity.com/sing2 a new msnbc podcast series is investigating the radicalization of a rioter who died after storming the capitol on january 6th. "american radical" presented by msnbc's ayman mohyeldin takes a deep dive into the life of rose ann boyland and now internet conspiracy theories fueled her shocking transformation into a devout trump supporter. >> rose ann started going down a qanon rabbit hole of child trafficking conspiracy theories. >> she was like, hey, have you heard about this? and i was like, no. so she researched it. so i left there at probably 5:00 in the evening, and she texted me at 7:00 in the morning. she had been up all night watching youtube. >> joining me now is the host of
this podcast, ayman mohyeldin. ayman, welcome, my friend. i'm going to reveal that you and i had lunch a number of weeks ago and you started telling me about this podcast over lunch. we talked for half an hour because i was like, tell me more, and i made you promise you would come on and talk about this. i'm glad we are here. it is so fascinating because this girl grew up in your hometown. you knew people in common. so, first of all, share your reaction when you found out that she had died after participating in the insurrection. >> yeah, you know, i didn't actually find out and make the connection, at least i think until three days after january 6. i mean, you remember at that time, it was chaotic, we were all working around the clock, focused on what was actually happening at the capitol that i didn't spend time to know who the victims were, and so there i was, four days later, i get a message from a high school friend of mine who actually is rose ann boyland's brother-in-law, related to the family through marriage, and he
reached out saying they believed that she had been radicalized in the span of a few short months, would i want to hear her story? so i began this relationship with justin, who i went to high school with, played soccer with, knew for a long time, and i started speaking to the family. our team did as well. and we started to learn more and more about her transformation, and again, they describe it as radicalization over the span of six months, going from someone who had a long history of problems and substance abuse problems but still someone that was very much part of their family to somebody who went down this conspiracy theory rabbit hole and became an ardent supporter of donald trump and qanon and made her way to the capitol on january 6th, much against the concern of her family. so, it was a remarkable entry point for me to know that this area where did gone to high school, where did gone to the same, you know, places that she had frequented as a young teenager, that we had that commonality. >> but you say that she hated
politics. how did she go from that to being this devout trump supporter, giving her life at this insurrection? >> that is the fundamental question that we tried to set out. her family described her as someone who was not very political. she had never voted in an election before this one. she had a long history of criminal problems that made it hard for her to vote but once she cleared that, she participated in this, and i think the question that we posed to the family about how this happened so quickly, it was because she spent so much time online. she was finding, from her perspective, a sense of belonging in this conspiracy world, a sense of purpose. she was very, in her eyes, committed to saving the children, which as you know is part of the conspiracy theory of qanon to, you know, break up this pedophilia ring that existed in politics and what have you. i mean, just some completely unhinged theories. but going down that rabbit hole,
she believed that donald trump was going to be the savior that was going to break up that ring, and so as a result of it, she committed herself wholeheartedly to it, spending time, being away from her family, being disengaged and ultimately going to january 6th with the hopes of stopping the transfer of power. >> did you learn anything in all your research about qanon? anything that you didn't learn before because you do know the number of people drifting towards this fringe group, fringe groups in general, it's on the rise. did this project give you a new perspective on how the country's become so divided, let alone just this young woman? >> yeah, and for me, the most fascinating thing into this, alex, is the entry point in how individuals who -- and again, i've covered extremism and radicalism overseas for years and i had seen this play out in other parts of the world, which is this kind of intersection between destitution, people who are down on their luck, having a hard time, people who feel they're going through hardship, the disinformation, the amount
of information that explains, that says this is why your situation is bad, these are the societal ills, and then you get a demagogue or some kind of demagoguery that comes to you and says, this is how you fix it. you have to fix it by becoming a terrorist. you have to fiction it by becoming an extremist. you have to fix it by going to the capitol and stopping the transfer of power and keeping donald trump in power. so, when you see the intersection of these three together, for me, you wonder where the entry point is for any given individual and that was one of the most fascinating things about qanon and learning about it is that it's widespread. it is a major cause of concern for law enforcement in this country. it appeals to a lot of people, sometimes with an entry point that seems to be valid, but the more you spend time in it, the more you go into these completely unhinged and crazy conspiracy theories that then hook you and shape your behavior. >> it's extraordinary. i wish we had more time to talk but you know what? people are going to get a lot more ayman coming their way. there's a whole bunch of ways
they can do it. first of all, as i thank you, my friend, and have a good show tonight, by the way. you can all catch aman's "american radical" podcast. catch him on msnbc. and even more so, you can also catch him, what do you have, you have the show on peacock as well on friday nights. there's a lot of ayman. all good. thank you, my friend. well, hiring has slowed in this country. wage growth has not. coming up next, the economic numbers that matter the most. numbers that matter the most if you're washing with the bargain brand, even when your clothes look clean, there's extra dirt you can't see. watch this. that was in these clothes... ugh. but the clothes washed in tide- so much cleaner.
if it's got to be clean it's got to be tide hygienic clean. no surprises in these clothes! couple more surprises. superpowers from a spider bite? i could use some help showing the world how liberty mutual customizes their car insurance. ow! i'm ok! only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty. liberty. liberty. liberty. ♪ only in theaters december 17th.
the latest jobs report is sending somewhat mixed messages about the state of the economy, according to the labor department, u.s. employers added more than 200,000 jobs last month, though falling short of expectations. in contrast, the unemployment rate dropped significantly to 4.2%. that is a new pandemic era low. and the labor force participation rate now sits at 61.8%, that's its highest level
since march 2020. let's go to my colleague, nbc's lauren egan who's joining us from the white house with new reaction to the jobs report. lauren, how's the president and the economic team interpreting these new numbers? >> reporter: they say we're making progress and moving in the right direction. while that number of jobs gained in november was a bit lower than what many analysts had been predicting, that 210,000 number, was the lowest monthly gain we've seen in about six months. the president was quick to point out that in the past few months, we have seen that number revised. we'll just have to wait and see in a few weeks whether or not that number ticks upwards as we have seen in the past few weeks so he's making the case that perhaps the report that we got yesterday could be a bit better than some of these initial numbers are suggesting. he did celebrate that 4.2 unemployment rate, of course, the lowest that we have seen since the pandemic first hit. still, the president said that he recognizes many americans are feeling some anxiety about the economy. whether that's due to rising
costs, supply chain issues are or now this new covid variant. will be to what he had to say about this at the white house yesterday. >> because the extraordinary strides we've made, we can look forward to a brighter, happier new year ahead, in my view. but i also know that despite this progress, families are anxious. they're anxious about covid. they're anxious about the cost of living and the economy more broadly. they're still uncertain. i want you to know i hear you. it's not enough to know that we're making progress. you need to see it and feel it in your own lives around the kitchen table and your checkbooks. >> the president went on there to make the case for his build back better plan that is still being held up in the senate right now. he said that that would address a lot of concerns americans have right now by lowering the cost for things like housing, child care, as well as medical care. alex, you might have noticed that the president sounded a little different there in that speech. he did confirm that he caught a
cold from his grandson. the white house is confirming that he has been tested for the coronavirus three times in the past week and tested negative. >> okay, that's good. so he's just battling a cold there. he did sound a little different but being around the babies at thanksgiving, what are you going to do? all right, lauren egan, thank you so much from the white house. that is a wrap, everyone, of this edition of "alex witt reports." i'll see you tomorrow. next up, my friend lindsey reiser, who's in for yasmin vossoughian here on msnbc. reiser, who's in for yasmin vossoughian here on msnbc. okay, we're not gonna ask for discounts on floor models, demos or displays. shopping malls can be a big trigger for young homeowners turning into their parents. you ever think about the storage operation a place like this must rely on? -no. they just sell candles, and they're making overhead? you know what kind of fish those are? -no. -eh, don't be coy. [ laughs ] [ sniffs, clears throat ] koi fish. it can be overwhelming.
think a second. have we seen this shirt before? progressive can't save you from becoming your parents. but we can save you money when you bundle home and auto with us. but you know what? i'm still gonna get it. it's the most joyous time of the year. especially at t-mobile! let's go to dianne. i got the awesome new iphone 13 pro and airpods, and t-mobile is paying for them both! and this is for new and existing customers. upgrade to the iphone 13 pro and airpods both on us. only at t-mobile. dad are you sure you're up to host? yeah! we want to keep it the way it always was, right?
♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ that's your grandma. she was the best at the holidays. clerk: hello, how can i? sore throat pain? ♪honey lemon♪ try vicks vapocool drops. in honey lemon chill. for fast-acting sore throat relief. wooo vaporize sore throat pain with vicks vapocool drops. i booked our hotel on kayak. it's flexible if we need to cancel. cancel. i haven't left the house in a year. nothing will stop me from vacation. no canceling. flexible cancellation. kayak. search one and done.
good afternoon, i'm lindsey reiser in for yasmin vossoughian. we've got a lot of ground to cover this afternoon. there will be a news conference one hour from now from the oakland county sheriff's department in michigan. this is coming as the parents of an alleged school shooter in michigan are finally in custody and went been a judge on manslaughter charges just a few hours ago. i'll talk to nicole hockley, who lost her son at sandy hook, for her reaction. we're also going to look at whether school administrators should be held responsible. plus, pleading the fifth is becoming very popular among key trump allies. is there anything the january 6th committee can do to get the information they need from them? more cases also of the omicron variant found in more states as the biden administration ramps up their fight against covid. and the latest fallout from this week's major abortion hearing at the supreme court.