tv The Last Word With Lawrence O Donnell MSNBC March 29, 2022 10:00pm-11:00pm PDT
again tomorrow. -- logs show that gap in the former president's phone records, was there a burner phone. then, cautious optimism over the ukraine. russia talks of dialing back from kyiv as the shelling continues. the west is skeptical, saying the russians will be judged by what they do. and, that so-called don't say gay bill now a law in florida. what's actually illegal now, as the 11th hour gets underway on this tuesday night. good evening once again, i'm stephanie ruhle. we are tracking significant developments on the war in ukraine, tonight. our first story, the house investigation into the january 6th riot. it hs taken a new turn.
the washington post and cbs news obtained sections of trump 's white house phone records, now with the january 6th committee. the call logs show a seven hour and 37 minute gap, from 11:17 am to 6:54 pm on january 6th. during that very time, the violent assault on the capitol was underway. vice president pence and lawmakers were forced into hiding as police battled rioters storming the capitol. trump, reportedly spoke to senator tommy tuberville, and senate house leader kevin mccarthy during that eight hour window. yet, according to the white house documents, not a single call was made during that time period. it is possible that the calls were altered or deleted, or trump used some other phones. either way, the january six committee wants to know exactly what happened. >> one possibility when a gap like this exists is that the
president, or whomever we're looking at, is using a different phone. it could be a different office phone number, or it could be a burner phone for all we know. there's also the possibility that somebody is deliberately suppressing the release of these materials, we just don't know. >> but they want answers. the new york times reporting that the committee and the justice department are also looking in to how trump's comments may have set off the right. specifically, a december 19th tweet urging supporters to come on down in january 6th. quote, be there, will be wild. on thursday, trump's son-in-law, a former white house adviser, jared kushner, is set to appear before the panel for a voluntary interview. meanwhile, we are also following the latest on the war in ukraine, which is now entering day 35. nbc's richard engel, and as a latest on negotiations to potentially end the fighting. >> the new talks between russia
and ukraine, began with deep mistrust. no handshake, but after four hours, the most significant progress so far. russia's deputy defense minister announcing, russian troops would drastically reduce activity in central ukraine, around kyiv and the city of chernihiv. ukrainian officials saying, no foreign troops, all have to leave ukraine. but, that ukraine would negotiate, on the future status of russian-backed separatist areas in donbas, leave open the issue of russian held crimea. and critically, except neutrality, not pursuing nato membership. in exchange for international security guarantees. but is it real progress? or a trap? russia only agreed to scale back in areas where it was already suffering heavy losses. and in the east, russia continues to bomb civilians indiscriminately. in mariupol, and in kharkiv. >> our thanks to richard engle for that report. we will have much more on the
war in ukraine ahead. meanwhile, a new covid strain has taken hold here in the u. s.. the cdc says the even more contagious omicron ba. 2 variant is now the dominant strain here. today, the cdc and fda signed off on a second booster shot for adults, ages 50 and older. with that, let's bring in our experts this evening ashley parker, pulitzer prize-winning white house bureau chief with the washington post. she was on that european trip with president biden. lucas broadwater joins, those congressional reporter for the new york times. busy day for luke, he has two new pieces out tonight. one on trump's new tweet at potentially inciting far-right groups ahead of january 6th. the, other about those missing call logs. also joining us, former u.s. attorney joyce vance, who spent 25 years as a federal prosecutor, and now an analyst for us here on an msnbc. luke, you've got the fresh reporting, talk to us about trump. we know he was speaking to at least two republican lawmakers on the sixth.
yet, there is eight hours a missing call logs, with no record of it. fill in the gaps. >> right, well, we don't know what we don't know. we do know that there is seven and a half hours of missing calls, here. it's quite likely that donald trump was using somebody else's phone during this time. it was well known in the white house that if you want to get the trump, he often called dan scavino, who has purview used to provide any records of the january six committee, and was recently referred to for a contempt charge. it's very possible he was using scavino's phone, or somebody else's. there is a lot of passing around of phones in the trump white house, they didn't do things by the book. that said, there are potentially other explanations as well. i don't wanna rule anything else. even so, the records we do have from these calls are revealing, in that they show glimpses into donald trump's day, as he tried to pressure various lawmakers on capitol hill to overturn the
election. one of those, mitch mcconnell, i spoke about why he didn't return donald trump's calls, because he didn't want to go along with a plot. did not want to join the effort to throw out legitimate votes for joe biden, to keep donald trump in power. he said he hadn't talked to donald trump since the electoral college certify the election. so, we do have some evidence from these things, credit to the washington post forgetting these records, because they're really quite illuminating to donald trump's day. >> i actually, so it's no surprise, january 6th committee wants to know a lot more information about who trump was talking to on that day. how are they going to get it? trump is not going to cooperate. if luke's right, if he was using somebody like dan scavino 's phone, he's not cooperating, what can the committee really do? >> well, that's one of the key frustrations, and you are hearing that from committee and
other lawmakers, that even some of these trump allies who they have, basically, referred for contempt of congress, for defying the subpoenas. that president biden's justice department has not pursued charges, and that is a real source of frustration among democrats. it's worth noting that president biden very deliberately, and his attorney general very deliberately came into this administration saying, we are not going to be like our predecessor, right. i do not believe president biden, the my attorney general is my personal attorney, or my fixer. and merrick garland made a big point of just how independent he was going to be. so, this is, of course, an incredibly politically-charged and difficult issue, with a lot of nuance for the justice department to navigate. but you are now seeing democratic lawmakers who are increasingly frustrated. >> sure sounds that way. joyce, the missing call logs make for really bad headlines for trump.
but he knows how to ride out a new cycle, and the headlines pass. what it doesn't mean in the eyes of the law? >> well, for the january six committees purposes, it's a very interesting piece of information to have. ultimately, i think they will have some success, in putting together at least a partial record of the calls that are omitted in the white house's official records. because, they will be able to talk to staffers who were around. they will hopefully have some success with dan scavino, the justice department will now have the opportunity to look at enforcing that subpoena. but stephanie, when you look at the sort of gap and phone log records, and have to start thinking about people who are using phones off the books. government officials who understand that they're carles need to be log, to officially become part of records. when you hear talk of people like the president of the united states using burner phones, the kinds of phones
that are used by organized criminals, by people who are involved in drug dealing gangs, this really raises the suspicion that they knew, at the time, that what they were doing was probably criminal, certainly wrong, and will do nothing but reinforce the suggestion that the january 6th committee will drive home in its hearings, that this white house was up to no good, that this was not the president conducting the business of the american people, that this was a president who was engaged in a coup. >> now, let's dig deeper into that. i want to share, joyce, with the man himself, bob woodward, who is one of the reporters on this phone long story, said about that earlier today. >> he's a chronic, addictive, phone or. and there is the seven hour and 37 minute gap, it strains any credibility, and what happens? we have these 11 pages of white house records, which clearly establish and show what trump was doing that day. as one of the lawmakers, robert costa i talked to, so this is a
cover-up. this has all of the elements of an organized concealment. >> do you agree, joyce, was this cover-up? and beyond, is it the right thing to do or the wrong thing to do? legally, if it is a cover-up, what can be done about it? >> well, that last part is, i think, the easiest part, stephanie. if it is a cover-up, if it forms some kind of obstruction of justice, then that's the situation doj will have to look at independently of everything else that's going on here. there's a reason we say that it's always the cover-up, that's because often when you don't prosecute the substantive crime, there is a cover-up there for prosecutors to look at. leaving that aside for the moment, it's not clear to me that this is a cover-up. i think that's one possible interpretation, that after these records were created,
there was an effort to excise them, so that even when they went to the national archives, or at some point, the actual records of those seven hours were no longer there. but, there's also a possibility that those records weren't created in the first place. for instance, dan scavino's phone was being used, that cia agents -- secret service agents funds for bemused. there is reporting from other instances of president trump grabbing a cell phone from a secret service agent. so, we are not very sure what the context is, here, whether this is a failure to create, or an actual deletion. whether it's something that happens in realtime, as the insurrection is underway, or whether it is a cover-up that takes place after the fact. those details need to be uncovered, and parsed, but what it suggests here again, is people who were fully aware of the criminality of their conduct, and who are taking steps whether in realtime or
after the fact, to make sure it didn't come to light. >> luke, let's talk about your other reporting out tonight, a piece about trump's tweets, and how they may have incited far-right groups to get revved up, and lead what happened january 6th. what are investigators looking for? >> yeah, so, if you have been following the criminal cases that have been coming out of the january 6th prosecutions. as people were attacking the capitol, trading violence against police officers, the reason that defendant after defendant, witness after witness says, for why they came to the capitol, is a single tweet from donald trump. it's in case after case. donald trump asked people to come to the capitol, and it will be wild, he said. we all saw that happen, it's not a secret he did that. but, the way it was interpreted, among militia groups, right-wing extremists, was a
call to action and call to arms. and if you watched the chatter on message boards, on text messages, on a group chats, families that prosecutors are getting, that the house committee is getting in some cases. you are seeing how these people responded, and how it motivated them to commit violence that day. so, we are seeing a pattern here, and we thought it was very important for the public to connect the dots here, to see how the presidents words were interpreted on the ground by people who ended up committing violence. >> ashley, you covered the trump campaign, and the white house for six years. given your extensive reporting, how will you know the trump family, on thursday, jared kushner, the president son in law will be speaking to the committee voluntarily. are we getting anything from him, you know this guy? >> probably not. but i will say, depending on how forthcoming and honest he
is willing to be, he would of course be incredibly valuable for the committee. i was trying to think of if i was a committee member, where his value would be. of course, on january 6th, he was traveling back from saudi arabia to washington, he double deliberately did not go into the white house today. people in trump world who are not fans of jarred, like to say he had a wave sweeping into take the credit, and disappearing when things got bad. but, his wife ivanka trump, trump's daughter, was there all day. she was one of the people kind of running in and out of the oval office, getting stuff, he would potentially have some visibility over that, then more broadly, the committee is looking not only into the day, but to the run up of january 6th. jarred was one of those advisers, who was involved in discussions from election day on as to what steps to take or not take when it came to try to overturn the results of a free and fair election.
yes, reminder, the president's daughter ivanka trump was with him at the white house, and though she has not sat down for a single television or print interview since they left office, she has made sure it has been leaked out to the media, that she was trying hard to get her father to do the right thing. she is welcome to come join us on the 11th hour, any night to discuss it. actually, luke, joyce, thank you so much for joining us. and starting us off on this busy night. coming up, russia claims its reducing forces near kyiv, the pentagon warns that the threat to the ukrainian capital is not over. why the u.s. says russia can start a major offensive in other areas. and later, we've heard a lot of noise about florida's so-called don't say gay law. so tonight, we are going to break down, exactly what is in it, and what it means for teachers, students, and parents. the 11th hour, just getting underway on a tuesday night. n a tuesday night.
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ourselves by the kremlin's now recent claim that it will suddenly just reduce military attacks near kyiv, or any reports that it is going to withdraw all of its forces. we believe that this is a repositioning, not a real withdrawal. and that we should be prepared to watch for a major offensive against other areas of ukraine. >> even as glimmers of hope emerge from the latest round of negotiations between ukraine and russia, the pentagon warned moscow can still inflict massive brutality. earlier today, president zelenskyy said ukraine is not reducing defensive efforts. my good friend and partner ali velshi joins us live in lviv tonight, early, early morning there. thank you for getting up, or staying up, ali. help us understand, are people they're hopeful that a diplomatic solution can be reached? it has been a long four weeks. >> they are not really, stephanie. the people i have been speaking to don't like the
idea of diplomatic solutions, largely because they do not even like the characterization of the fact that this is a war. they don't want any part of it. their view is that with crimea, eight years ago, they ended up giving a piece of their country, and there was a cease-fire that russia did not hold up to. so they don't feel like they get anything out of these deals with russia. they feel like they just keep losing parts of their country. at this point, the ability to sustain this battle against russia for so long, the fact that the ukrainian forces have pushed back, or at least held off russian forces, and the civil defense has been so strong, has emboldened ukrainians. so while they are very scared, and it is kind of horrible the number of people who have had to leave the country, and the 6 million people who are still in this country but displaced from their homes, i don't speak to anybody who has a defeatist attitude about this. they would like to work to start, but they do not want any deal that cedes territory to, russia because i have a feeling that this is happened before, and it will happen again, and it will not
end here, and that the west needs to get involved, and stop the idea that ukraine's territory is not sovereign, and not subject to russia's whims. so, no, for the moment nobody is taking these negotiations all that seriously and they are not all that hopeful about, at least people apps book and, to stuff. >> of course, the west is involved as far as military, ayton economic sanctions being put on russia. but have you noticed any change among people? how they view the war? how they view their safety and lviv? which was considered the safe part of the country. just a few days ago. >> yes. exactly. until saturday, this was where people who lived in the other parts of the country said their kids, or they would relocate to. embassies, businesses, all sorts of people came to lviv. this has been the safe place. there had been two attacks, one was west of here at a military base, that was relatively expected cause it was a military base, the other one was an aircraft parts manufacturing plant near the airport. then of course, on saturday, while joe biden was in poland before he gave his big speech about ukraine and
russia, there was a major attack in the city alone, and that has definitely shaken people. i was out there today. i will say, stephanie, it is amazing to see how people try to live normal lives. shops open, people walk down the streets, you can see over my shoulder there is traffic, the curfew is just coming to an end right now because the sun is about to rise, and you can see people driving now. this has not been the case for several hours. but, these air raid sirens go off half a dozen times a day. you will see some people carrying out their day as if it is nothing, and you will see other people running for shelter. so, things are changing here in lviv. somebody told me today we thought it was safe, now there is no safe place in ukraine. >> ali velshi, again, it is 5:24 am in lviv. excuse, me 6:24. and there he is, this man has been working for what? 14, 15 hours? for the last three weeks. ali, i am glad you are safe, good to see you. >> for you, anytime, my friend. >> let's dig deeper and bring in our experts, ben rhodes,
excuse, me former deputy national security adviser for president obama, and lieutenant general brett hodges, he was a commanding general for the united states army in europe. he was also a person share and strategic studies at the center for european policy. mr. rhodes, since i botched your title, you get the first question. do you buy this de-escalation talk from russia? >> no. i think the administration is taking the right tack, which is you look at the what the russians, do not but they say. even when you look at what they, do you have to watch for a long, time because we have seen in the past russia used in places like syria, cease-fires as things that they do not keep, it allows them to resupply, things that they used to get the enemy off balance so that they can then shift tactics. it is important to keep these talks moving, it is important to explore what might be solutions to the conflict. the kinds of things being discussed, neutrality, the future of the donbas region in eastern ukraine and crimea, those are obviously going to be a part of
any potential sentiment. but i think in terms of taking it face value, anything russia says, i don't think that is some good. trust what i think is clear is that russia failed at its initial aim is politically in this war to see a quick decapitation of the ukrainian government. so, it is natural that russia would recalibrate, and shift poses military and political strategy. i think that is what is happening. now i think the only person who really knows where that shifts is vladimir putin. even the people who are negotiating might not essentially know what putin's aims are. i think we have to be very cautious, even if we want to be supportive of the ukraine efforts at the. negotiating table. >> you predicted, as you said russia would not be able to capture kyiv two weeks ago. you said they would likely reach a culminating point, exhausting ammo and manpower. is that where we are? >> yes. the russians, exactly as ben just described, they have failed in everything they try to do. that is why they are
now redeploying, looking for a different set of goalposts if you will, because they do have to address this stuff for their own domestic audience. and of course, to the fact that they still have missiles that they can launch into lviv, and continue to pound away and kharkiv, that is going to go on for sometime. but the good news is that they do not have the ability to sustain land offensive operations to take more territory, which is why we need to start talking about winning instead of talking about avoiding escalation, or racing to get a cease-fire. now is the time to pour on support for ukrainians, to push the russians all the way back at least to the pre 24 february line. >> do you believe ukrainians have the tools, the support they need to do that? >> not yet. look, the united states has done a lot of stuff, as have other allies. i have
been very supportive of the administration's approach up until the last ten days or so. it seems like we have become overly cautious. i don't get the sense of urgency, frankly, coming from the white house or the pentagon about getting the things to the ukrainians that they need. if we are not going to impose ourself a no-fly zone, or something, to help protect these civilians from being murdered, then we have to give the ukrainians the ability to hit what is causing all of the damage. that means russian navy ships and the black sea, for a long range rockets, and firing from many miles away, we can at least provide intelligence about aversion, and give them the tools so that they can sink a couple of russian ships, and hit some of these rocket launchers that are causing all of the damage. we just do not have the sense of urgency. we don't talk about winning yet. i
think that we need to change our approach there. >> ben, do you see any signs, or did you see any signs of progress in the peace talks today? >> well, i think a couple of things -- first of, all the sign of progress is that the talks are in turkey, and if not in belarus. belarus is definitely a home game for the russians these days. it is a home country to essentially occupy. it shows that there is real mediation taking place. from a nato country, turkey, that has been quite supportive of president zelenskyy. i also think you do see the outlines of what would unavoidably be any negotiated settlement. the big question here though is, people focus on neutrality, they focus on nato status, that is not really the issue. i think everybody understands ukraine is not in nato right now. and it is unlikely that they will join nato in the future. the question is, not only is there the unresolved status of the donbas region where russia has increased the territory it controls, not only is there the question of crimea, which under these talks we heard is going to be discussed
over the next 15 years, but russia has terrorized the city of mariupol, and connected as you are showing on your map right now, that donbas region down through mariupol, down through crimea, they could regroup, they could push in utah, they could try to cut ukraine off the scene. they could try to consolidate their control of a very significant chunk of ukrainian territory to be the basis of the negotiated settlement that putin wants, which is essentially a de facto partition where russia consumes a big chunk of the eastern part of ukraine and cuts them off from the sea. that is something the ukrainians will never accept at the peace table. never. so we still have a long way to go here before there is a possible outcome here that can be agreed to by all sides. i agree with the general in the sense that the russians pull back a little bit from her on, kyiv they will be trying to re-fortify their own positions.
it is important that we do not let up on the and fortune of sanctions. we have seen the little given the sanctions regime over the course of the last couple of weeks. that is natural it would happen. it means you have to really get after reinforcement, and henry supplying the ukrainians themselves, who have gone on the offense around kyiv in ways that have prevented the russians from achieving their aims. prevented them from an circling keep in the same way that they have cities like mariupol. so it is very important that we continue to be that lifeline to ukraine going forward. let's just bring that map back up. if anyone's wondering why the russians continue to impossible mariupol, it is all about the map. they want that region. ben rhodes, ben hodges, thank you very much for joining us this evening. coming up next, madison hawthorne, not someone we cover often hear. for tonight, he is getting a talking to from leader kevin mccarthy, we will find out why when the 11th hour continues. bottles are made to be re-made.
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when you need help it's great to be in sync with customer service. a team of reps who can anticipate the next step genesys technology is changing the way customer service teams anticipate what customers need. because happy customers are music to our ears. genesys, we're behind every customer smile. look at all of these people, a lot of them i looked up to throw my life, and then all of a sudden you get invited to. we're gonna have kind of a sexual get together one of your homes, you should come. i was like, what if you just asked me to come? do you realize they're asking you to come to an orgy. or that there is some people who are trying to leaning on the movement to try to remove addiction in your country. then you wash and he of cocaine right in front of you. >> yes, that was for real. one republican congressman,
finally crossed a line that someone's party cannot ignore. north carolina's freshman congressman madison cawthorn's allegations of sexual perversion in washington, have landed him a talking to with minority leader kevin mccarthy. let's discuss, and bring in former republican congressman from texas, will hurd. he's a former undercover cia officer, and the author of the new book, american reboot, and idealist guide to getting big things done. will, today you had to be thinking, man, of all the days that madison cawthorn accuses his colleagues of orgies and cocaine use, you have to go on tv, but alas you do. when you left congress, you said, the republican party needed to find a principled vision for the future. are they doing that? with things like this. >> no, of course not. again, i don't know madison cawthorn, i'm not a lawyer, but i'd probably say that in the legal world, they'd say he's
not a credible witness. >> you weren't attending coke orgies with fellow members of congress? >> no, in my six years of congress, i never heard of such things, never had such hints of such things. but again, this is obviously, if it was it would be a bad thing, but this is a guy that maybe he's trying to deflect, i don't know. the problem is, when you have people like that in the party, you get away from the values about the gop is supposed to be -- 71% latino district, i had to take the republican brand to places i had never seen the republican brand. i was able to talk about those old values of freedom, leads to opportunity, opportunity these to, growth and growth leads to progress. and we don't talk about these things, it ultimately hurts. ice >> are those old values part of the new face of the party?
it may be a small portion of the party, but it's allowed one right now, that is sympathetic to putin. this is a party that calls themselves putin. >> we can dictate what percentage of the party that the madison cawthorn's another spot represent, but when i crisscross the country, i see a lot of americans who don't believe in those things. i see a lot of americans who have changed her opinion on the roll america should have in the rest of the world, and see the kind of destruction that is happening, i think in the previous segment, somebody that was been interviewed called it the massacre. the fact that americans want to see that come to an end, those are the people that i talked to, and if we are able to talk to those folks, right? we went through an election in texas, only 3 million people voted in the primary, out of 30 million. part of that is because of
voter apathy, because there are not people running for office that are inspiring people. right now, there is a brand in the republican party, that the leader is trying to fear longer rather than inspire. the opportunity that we should be looking at, in order to make sure we continue to have electoral success in the ballot box, is we have leaders that inspire, and it goes back to those values. that is the party that i want to get to, it's hard to get there, there's a lot of folks who don't believe in those things. but what i'm seeing from folks on the ground, they want to see that happen. >> well, just today, julie davis who translates russian state tv. i want to share what was said. it's time for the russian people to call on americans to change the regime in the u.s., before its term expires. into again help our partner trump to become president. >> trump, right now, is the de facto leader of the republican party. when you hear that, what do you think? >> of course. i've been incredibly critical of the president and his
positions before russia. this is also russian disinformation, you know, to store and foment discord here in the united states. >> but trump also compliments -- >> of course he does. i'm not debating any of that. but when i'm saying, is donald trump the titular head of the party? i bet moe blocks probably have some opinions on that, after the last couple of weeks. the reality is this. most americans recognize the unique role that we have in the rest of the world. this is something i get into in my book. the talk about the fact that our friends should love us, and our enemies should fear ice. when you have vladimir putin saying good things about you, that's probably not the place you want to be in. so that's where we should be going to focus on. and the reality is, when me and
my colleagues believe that way, most voters believe that way. and when we get more leaders that inspired, i think we're gonna be better off. that's why, 73% of americans are upset or scared with the country direction. >> this isn't just a book tour. when you talk about all these americans you're talking to, are you running for president in 2024 as a republican? >> i always said, if i had the opportunity to serve my country again, all evaluate it. the way i'm serving my country now is putting some ideas right now, on how we can get beyond where we are right now, and that's why i wrote the book. >> well, the only way we're gonna get beyond where we are right now, is if we do it together, will hurd, thank you so much for joining us tonight. the book is called american reboot, check it out. coming up, a really important fact check on that controversial new law in florida, that has teachers wondering how to talk to their students, when the 11th hour continues.
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to do, let that bill do it. let's do that. but like, the hippocratic oath says. please, do no harm. >> welcome back, tonight, a closer look at the so-called parental rights in education bill in florida, that the governor has signed into law. whereas critics call it, don't say gay. so which isn't? a narrowly focused law that gives parents more control in their education, or an overly broad mandate with unintended chilling effect on talking about lgbtq issues at all. well, for facts sake, let's see with this bill actually says. first, it prohibits schools from teaching about sexual orientation or gender identity to kids from kindergarten through the third grade. but it also adds, or in a manner that is not age-appropriate, or developmentally appropriate for students in accordance with state standards.
so what is age-appropriate? what are those state standards? it's under -- the classroom discussion about sexual orientation, or identity. so it's not just instruction, it's any discussion at all. so does that mean a third grader with gave parents can't talk about her parents in class. since the law gives parents the right to sue if they're unhappy with what they believe their kids are being taught. this is where don't say gay comes from. fear, that even saying the word, raising the topic, can put the school in real trouble. if adults are afraid to speak, kids will be to. i want to be clear, there is nothing shameful about being gay, or transgender. but being forced to lie about themselves or their families will put lgbtq kids in a risky position. they will feel like there is something wrong with them, and that is what's scary. we know that lgbtq kids are already four times more likely to consider suicide than their peers.
and as new york magazine puts it, this bill isn't don't say gay, it's don't be gay or trans. so let's discuss. mary ellen close, the state bureau chief for the miami health -- florida state senator shevrin jones, he is the states first openly gay senator. mary allen, you've recorded extensively on this. am i getting all of it right? >> well, yeah, there are many provisions here. it is intentionally written vaguely, but that is because they have a rulemaking process that the secretary of education, yesterday, said is going to be used to help give teachers some guidelines. so whether or not those guidelines do help teachers figure out what is acceptable to say in classes, is yet to be determined. >> senator, every state has all sorts of issues they need to address. what was happening in florida,
that was so problematic, the republican lawmakers needed to prioritize this issue, and pass it into law? >> and there was nothing, the governor and my republican colleagues continue to make non issues issues within the state of florida. governor desantis wants to continue this national identity, with things like crt and don't say gay bill, and make it known the top issues, continually forgetting about the kitchen table issues that we need to be talking about in the state of florida, like the property insurance, like the rent crisis revving right now. this is what's happening nationally, in more states than just florida. >> senator, governor desantis's spokesperson, a government employee tweeted this, quote, if you are against the anti-grooming bill, you are probably a groomer or at least you don't denounce the grooming of 4 to 8 year old children. how insidious is it, for a --
to equate the amir acknowledgment of lgbtq identity used to child abuse. how hurtful is that to hear? >> well you know not only is it hurtful, it is disingenuous to -- which is a melting pot of all types of different nationalities, people from different backgrounds. in the final days of session that we just wrapped up over last week, many on the other side, they said the final part out loud. the opponents of as you just mentioned of, we were called groomers by the government spokesperson. he didn't even -- as a matter of fact he jogged down on that word yesterday at his press conference. he called for a pedophile, he said schools are socially engineering children. the florida family policy -- called this a don't turn our son into a daughter bill.
this is what we are doing with in florida, and this is the tone that republicans are saying across the country. i believe that is -- you become desperate. this is the republicans last ditch effort, realizing that the state and country is going in a totally different direction than they are. >> mary allen, the way this law is written, it calls on parents to sue the school districts at taxpayers expense. could that not bankrupt a school district within months? >> well, i spoke to a lawyer who represents about 17 school districts in the state. and, he is pretty confident that this is not something that we are going to see a lot of. part of it is they did modify the bill and include some provisions that allow parents to bring their parents to the district, and if the district doesn't respond they will have an opportunity to go to the board of education and they can hire a lawyer and file a lawsuit.
yes, the cost of the lawsuit against the school district and the attorneys fees will be borne by taxpayers and if the case is dismissed in two years, there are no damages but there will be attorneys fees. >> senator, i want to be really clear to our audience there are no schools actively teaching kindergarteners how to identify their sexual orientation. so, for people who want this bill to protect their kids from these teachings, there's nothing to protect against. but tell me, what does this do to children of gay parents. >> yeah, well first of all let's be clear the republicans knew exactly what they were doing. they are discriminating against marginalized people and they are doing all in the name of -- they believe it works. here's what i will say, the same is true for lgbtq parents
who are more often than not -- teachers are the first responders in the classroom. they have things that students share with me that they are not willing to share with their parents because they don't have the trust factor. it is the nucleus, a real support system that connects to other parts of our broader communities. that is why children should be going to school to share about their families. families might not look like the family of their cost me, but every family is unique, and every family is different. children should be able to know that. teachers should be able to teach children to show them that families come in many different colors. >> it is hard enough to be a kid, you shouldn't have to hide who your family's. senator, mary allen, thank you both for joining us. as one wise teacher told me, the only thing teachers are trying to indoctrinate into their students, is homework. mary ellen closs, state senator sherman jones, thank you for making us smarter. coming, up he shouted the five
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and once in a lifetime moments. two tickets to nascar! yes! find rewards like these and so many more in the xfinity app. the last thing before we go tonight, rallying the resistance. you have probably never heard of the ukrainian border guard --. but it is a good thing you heard about his bravery. it was on day one of the war in ukraine back on february 24th when he and his 13 fellow border guards on snake island in the black sea refused to surrender to the russians. it was him delivered the defiant and profane line that would quickly become a rallying cry of ukrainian resistance. russian warship go f yourself. after being initially reported
killed in action, he was actually captured alive by the russians and was recently released in a prisoner swap. today he was awarded an honorary medal in the home city of -- the governor says he is proud of him for holding firm, and today called him an example of ukrainian strong spirit. he says it will make victory happen. after receiving his award, this hero had some more wards, not just that one line for his fellow ukrainians. [speaking foreign language] >> the courage and bravery of a handful of border guards, defending a tiny island in the black sea, and inspiring a nation to persevere. russian warship, go f yourself.
and on that, no i wish you all a great night and from all our colleagues across the networks of nbc news. thanks for staying up late with us. i will see you at the end of tomorrow. tomorrow uk -- they are scaling back their offensive around the capital kyiv. a warning from the u.s. and the uk not to take that promise at face value. we will be speaking to the deputy prime minister to get his take pretty shortly. and an extraordinary interview with our chief correspondent -- who will be speaking to us for the first time he and his team came under fire reporting the war in