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tv   Velshi  MSNBC  October 22, 2022 5:00am-6:00am PDT

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my thanks to you for tuning in and watching the katie phang show. velshi starts right now. right now. and a wonderful morning to you on your saturday, october the 22nd. i'm ali velshi coming to you live this weekend from detroit in the crucial swing state of michigan. for a very special edition of velshi across america 2022. i traveled here early in the week for conversations with a diverse group of voters about the prominent issues on the ballot this year as election day nears it. was a fascinating and important
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conversation. i will be sharing it with you with little bits all this weekend. michigan is a state that has been a key battleground for several election cycles now. this year is no different. even though it's not a presidential election year, and neither of the states two u.s. senators are up for election, there are outcomes of several races here that will have huge implications in the years to come, especially for the 2024 presidential election. for one thing, democrats hold a very slim majority in congress. the senate, as you know, evenly split. 50/50. in the house of representatives, democrats only have an eight seat advantage over republicans going into election day. right now, michigan has an even number of democratic and republican representatives in the house. seven representatives each, but due to redistricting, michigan has lost one district, which means one party is certain to lose at least one of its seats in congress. on top of that, four of the most competitive house races in the country this year are right here in michigan. just 17 days left until the
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election, and control of congress up for grabs, there is no room for error for either party. both republicans and democrats understand michigan's importance very well, which is why they have deployed their party's most popular figures to help the campaigns this year. at the beginning of the month, the former president, donald trump, held a rally in orange, michigan, in support of the state's republican nominees. a week from now, former president barack obama will be here to do the same thing for his party's nominees. it's just one stop on the campaign blitz that will take barack obama to georgia, nevada, and wisconsin in the final days of the election. control of congress is far from the only reason why this year's elections are so important here in michigan. the right to an abortion is literally on the ballot this year. michiganders will vote on whether or not to add an amendment to their state constitution that would explicitly protect and guarantee abortion rights in this state. that michigan is an interesting state when it comes to abortion. when roe fell in june, the state had a 1931 abortion ban
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on the books, which technically would have gone into effect, but was blocked and deemed unconstitutional by a state court last month. that allowed abortion to remain legal in michigan for now, but that wouldn't have happened if the states top executives, governor gretchen whitmer, the secretary of state joscelyn benson, and the attorney general -- hadn't acted to protect abortion rights following the supreme court's decision to overturn roe. all three of them are up for reelection this year, and are facing republican opponents who have expressed support for abortion bans. by the way, those republican nominees have also heard the and endorsement of the twice impeached insurrectionist as president, for his false,, baseless, and the funk lie about erection fraud issues. like other states michigan is still haunted by the ghost of elections past. trump's big lie and bigger ego have fundamentally deteriorated the integrity of america's democracy and electoral system. republican lawmakers in many
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states have also spent the past two years trying, and in some cases, succeeding, in some states, in passing laws and making changes that restrict voting rights. in florida, for example, this one is a doozy. governor ron desantis has created a so-called election task force to tackle election fraud, despite there being exactly zero evidence of widespread voter fraud in florida or anywhere else in america. as evidence in recently released footage by the tampa police department, nobody, not even law enforcement, really understands what governor desantis is trying to do. >> ma'am, we have a warrant for your arrest. >> for what? >> for voter fraud. >> i [inaudible] >> oh my god, hold on. >> why, why, don't tell him right here. >> so if you could put your hands behind your back, please. >> oh, my god. >> was essentially happening across the country right now is republicans continue to pedal the big lie and poet push voter
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restriction laws and make an uproar about accusations of voter affection that we have no outcome on the election, it's a grand scale effort to intimidate and discourage voters. many of whom already faced unjust hardships in exercising their right to vote. keep this in mind. according to recent reports by the new york times and the washington post, the majority of republicans on the ballot this year are election deniers. some of them would be in charge of administering and certifying the results of the 2024 presidential election. here in michigan, for instance, the republican candidate for secretary of state, christina karamo, is a first-time political candidate. she lost, she rose to prominence specifically because she unabashedly repeated lies about the 2020 election to anyone who would listen. she still does this, to this day. she went as far as the claim that she witnessed misconduct in the processing of absentee ballots at a center in destroy in 2020. those claims, and surprisingly,
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have never been corroborated or substantiated. now, she is the republican party's candidate to be michigan's top elections administrator who would be in charge of overseeing the 2024 presidential election. joining me now is michigan's current secretary of state, joscelyn benson. she is the democrat running for reelection against kristina karamo in this year's midterm. she is also the author of an important book, secretaries of state, guardians of the democratic process. secretary benson, good to see you again. thank you for being with us this morning. >> thanks for having me. welcome to michigan, ali. >> thank you. it's always a pleasure to be here. i was driving through detroit yesterday and i noticed you, your opponents billboards, and they only have a couple of things on them. one of them is fighting voter fraud. she has faced her campaign on fighting voter fraud in michigan. you and i have been talking about this now for two years. what's the status of voter fraud in michigan? you have conducted audits, so you, better than anyone, should have some understanding of the
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state of voter fraud in michigan. >> you have, voter fraud is minimal. we have several security protocols in place and michigan, and in other states, to ensure if anyone attempts to impersonate a voter or otherwise, pardon the integrity of our elections, that they are caught and prosecuted. it is rare, and we also make sure we are doing everything we can to make sure people know the rules so no one is caught up in inadvertently violating the law, which is oftentimes the case when you have incidents, but they may be rare, of attempted fraud. >> are there any incidents, or incidences of voter fraud that you've looked at? we there are isolated ones around the country, in which there would have been an impact on the outcome of any election in michigan. >> no. we are aware that sometimes, there are close elections. sometimes, one vote does make a difference. but oftentimes, if there is a, attempted fraud or any type of issue like that, where someone
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is trying to impersonate a voter or vote if they are not eligible to vote, it is caught prior to any final results being certified. but, no. it certainly doesn't impact, in a significant way, the election results. and certainly, what does have an impact on election results is whether or not people do vote proactively. so, we also prioritize that. right. >> that becomes the second question here. to what extent is all of this talk about voter fraud and the outcome of the 2020 election to what extent does that suppress votes? to that extent does that cause people to say maybe my vote doesn't matter. there's a concern that if you tell people the voting system doesn't work properly they feel disenfranchised, not in the legal sense but in a political sense. e but in a politic al sense. >> exactly, and that's what you have to surmise is strategy here. that's the goal. the goal behind those efforts
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to claim or two alleged falsely, without any evidence that fraud exists in the system. it's to deter people from voting altogether. it's to discourage them from believing in the process. and that is when we talked about this battle over the future of our democracy, that's what we're talking about. the goal is to cause people to give up on democracy to stop believing in their own voices and to be or not to be afraid to exercise that voice in the potential for consequences to occur, and that often underlies a lot of the misinformation. so, that's why people need to know when they hear this these false allegations, or evidence merit-less allegations of fraud, no it is an attack on our ability to believe in a process that allows us to hold elected officials accountable, our voting rights themselves, and it's a response important we respond to the allegations with a double down effort to fight for democracy. >> let's talk about the abortion question that's on the
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ballot here, proposal three, which would codify the rights to end abortion in michigan. at the moment, you still have the right to an abortion in michigan. that is because of a judicial decision that is stopping the 1931 law from going into effect. tell me about proposal three. i focus on michiganders yesterday, some of whom had an understanding that there is a second part two proposal three that would affect a parents ability to have and put into their child's decisions about their gender assignment. >> there's a lot of misinformation around proposal free flying around right now. there's a lot of line is that it really codified roe in our state constitution and ensures that fundamental rights and conversations about your reproductive health stay between you and your physician and don't get politicians involved in them. so, it's important opportunity for citizens to weigh in on this issue that affects their lives and affects their rights and freedoms, and people could also go to slash
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vote to actually read the entire text of the initiatives, so they can understand all the different details of it. the bottom line is, it keeps politicians out of the doctor's office. >> probably really important for everyone to understand, particularly in michigan, go and read that thinks that you're not confused by it when you go into the ballot box. joscelyn vincent, thanks as always for being with us on the show. helping us understand democracy at large, but particularly the challenges we face in michigan. michigan secretary of state, jocelyn benson joining me this morning. after the break, we will join by hayley stephens representing the district just west of detroit, representing the biggest manufacturing towns in the country. and my viewers know my favorite thing across these america shows is that i get to talk directly to people, face to face, to bear witness to the issues that are important to their lives which has weeks to go before the upcoming midterms and with a host of major proposals on the ballots, i had an illuminating conversation
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with six michiganders from across the political spectrum about which issues are driving them to the polls, and their tips on how we can overcome all of the division in this country and come together as a nation. that is still to come, on velshi live, from detroit, michigan. michigan i'm talking to neighbors, and not being afraid to have intelligent discussions with people you don't agree with. it's nothing wrong with doing that, and make it. fun joke a little bit. don't make it to where it is a personal battle, or a fight. subway's drafting 12 new subs, for the all-new subway series menu. let's hear about this #7 pick, from a former #7 pick. juicy rotisserie-style chicken. you should've been #1. this isn't about the sandwich, is it chuck? it's not. the new subway series. what's your pick? my asthma felt anything but normal.
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velshi across america, live from belle isle, michigan.
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this is in detroit by the way. you can see troy over my salter. you can also see the distance of the ambassador bridge, which is a really, really important thing. there are a few ways to get from canada to the u.s., or the u.s. to canada in detroit, but that one is actually one of the most important. you'll remember in that little moment or candidate was more america than canada, would be a trucker strike? that was the ambassador bridge targeted. it was one of the bases border crossings in terms of volume and trade in the entire continent. that's that behind me, over my shoulder. you could see detroit. that's canada. this is one of the only places on the continent where canada's south of the united states. when you're looking from detroit to windsor, you're looking south. this is so much about this place, it's so interesting from a perspective of trade, why? because this is the heart of automaking in america. i'm joined now by that democratic congresswoman haley stevens. she represents the 11th congressional district of michigan, which is located northwest of the city of detroit. it currently contains parts of
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wayne and oakland counties, but we're gonna talk about that, because due to redistricting, i'll get that word right, it's been redrawn and will be wholly encompassed in oakland county, come january. representative stevens is the first woman to represent the 11th district. she's up to her third term in congress this november. welcome. great to see you. >> great to have you back. >> you are sort of a mainstay of our visits to michigan. so, we appreciate. that first of all, i want to talk to you about this redistricting thing. i had a conversation with a missing gander of day. some really liked what had happened. they felt the redistricting hero as necessary as a result of gerrymandering that had occurred in the past. others, particularly the republicans on my panel thought, they didn't like it. can you just tell my viewers who may not be familiar with it at all, what happened to michigan? >> we finally had a voter driven redistricting process. we called it, voters not politicians. it was a ballot uninitiated in 2018, and we had a transparent, cohesive process. it wasn't done up in lansing by state lawmakers. frankly, it wasn't done with
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incumbents in mind, but rather, with communities of interest, which is now why we have this 11th district, home of automation ali, a hub of great commercial activity and innovation, all encompassed in oakland county. you're not driving down, or not cutting through three different districts. you've got one, cohesive districts where we can have those policy conversations, and i can legislate from washington. >> in your perspective, the way things have been re-distracted in michigan now, this second version of, it is good? >> absolutely! it was transparent. and, look. there's always difficulties that come when you draw lines. you don't have all of oakland county in one district. why? because it's 1.2 million people. these districts are just shy of 100,000. so, you've got the little pain when a line comes down, but we've got pontiac to hazel park, over to commerce over here to detroit, michigan, and i'm fired up about! it >> you mentioned pontiac. remind me of cars. we are in car country, in motown. your district in particular, it
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has a real focus on technology, automators technology. i was talking with an automaker yesterday who seemed excited about something that automakers were not excited, or auto workers, or not excited about, which is changes in technology, including battery technology, electric vehicles. they sort of initially felt that would hurt their jobs and job creation, and now, they're a little more excited about it. >> look. i kept my finger on the pulse of this as the subcommittee chair for research and technology on how science committee our innovation didn't stop, even though we had a covid-19 pandemic. we are proliferating and assuring in the electric vehicle technologies, the hydrogen technologies, that zero emissions, you know we got that inflation reduction act done for the first time in history, we have the environmentalists and the automakers saying, we want the same thing. we want to win the future together, and it's happening here in oakland county, the place i am so privileged to call home. >> those used to be at opposite ends. environmentalists need the end of cars, and automakers stuff that environmentalists will
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kill the car business. i wanna talk about that bridge. this is representative of what's going. on that, we have inflation in this country. a lot of people feel that if they're trying to buy a car, because semiconductors go into cars. that has become very expensive. this is a big issue for autoworkers. people slowdown buying cars, and if there's a recession, that is going to worry them. what is your sense of supply chain and manufacturing and their input costs? is it a bigger issue in michigan that and they were? else >> 2020 was an absolute wake up call for us, particularly in terms of the semiconductor chip shortage. i have been evangelizing this for a long time. we innovated these puppies here, in the united states of america, but through incentives and low labor costs, they started getting produced overseas. so, the wake up hits, and now, the investment is here. we've got the chips and finance act done, and it's not just chips. we are looking at and all of supply chain opportunity. you are absolutely right. we are preeminent export definition, we make the products here, we ship them
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across the world, the r&d is happening here, but we need a localized supply chain. not just for national security purposes, but also for economic purposes, because i have spent the last years talking to my friends of the uaw. this is the number one concern, because they're experiencing those layoffs. they are experiencing those shortages, when particularly, a small, smaller supplier has those material shortages, they can't purchase in realtime. why? because prices are changing every 24 hours. we need to have goods here. we need to have commodities here. and i really believe that the midwest is going to lead the way in terms of winning the future for manufacturing. >> that's amazing. well, i'm glad you're. here is always good to see you. the way you can tell that haley stevens is a real michigander is i am here in a gloves and a jacket and a hat, she's wearing a light coat. i'm from canada! i should be able to handle this! >> your blood is thin. >> my blood is the! and good to see you. democratic representative haley stevens of michigan, who always comes to visit over michigan,
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representing the newly redrawn 11th congressional district of michigan. up next, from the elected to the electorate, a dozen of key races on the line, and several important initiatives on the ballot. i spoke to a group of michiganders from across the political spectrum to better understand what will motivate them when they make their choices in next month's midterm elections. let's listen. i tried everything to remove fabric odors, but my clothes still smelled. until i finally found new downy rinse and refresh! it doesn't just cover odors, it helps remove them up to 3 times better than detergent alone! find new downy rinse & refresh in the fabric softener aisle. the new subway series menu. the greatest sandwich roster ever assembled. tony, the new outlaw's got double pepper jack and juicy steak. let's get some more analysis on that, chuck. mmm. pepper jack. tender steak. very insightful, guys.
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kids getting hooked on flavored tobacco, including e-cigarettes. big tobacco lures them in with flavors like lemon drop and bubble gum, candy flavors that get them addicted to tobacco products, and can lead to serious health consequences, even harming their brain development. that's why pediatricians urge you to vote yes on prop 31. it stops the sale of dangerous flavored tobacco and helps protect kids from nicotine addiction. please vote yes on 31. vote yes on prop 31.
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covid-19. some people get it, and some people can get it bad. and for those who do get it bad, it may be because they have a high-risk factor. such as heart disease, diabetes, being overweight, asthma, or smoking. even if symptoms feel mild, these factors can increase your risk of covid-19 turning severe. so, if you're at high risk and test positive, don't wait. ask your healthcare provider right away if an authorized oral treatment is right for you. we are 17 days away from what could be the most consequential midterm elections in modern history. i'm standing at one of the, in one of the states with the most at stake for its own citizens and for the rest of the country. i'm bringing you a special addition of velshi across america, 2022, from detroit, michigan this weekend.
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here in michigan the governor, the attorney general, and the secretary of state are all in reelection battles against challengers, who have embraced election fraud conspiracies. abortion is literally on the ballot here. michiganders will have the option to vote on something called proposal three, the rights to reproductive freedom initiative, which would essentially protect abortion access in the state. to learn more about how the election is playing out on the ground in this crucial state, i travel to the henry fork new zoom of american innovation in the city of dearborn, just outside of detroit. there, i was joined by six voters from across the political spectrum, who eat, sleep, and breathe michigan. it was a powerful and important conversation. here is some of what they had to say. >> i think that the biggest thing that anyone can think of is michigan is often sort of a barometer or, what would you say, the canary in the coal mine on national issues. listening to michiganders is as close as you can get to a lot of ways in listening to the
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voice of most americans. we have a unique opportunity to present ourselves to the country as a swing states, and as a group of people, a population that are really engaged and really diverse. and i think that but more we listen to michigan, the better informed we will be about back national politics. >> alina, you spend your time in a couple of states. so, what lilly was saying is kind of interesting. what do you see in michigan as it relates to the rest of the country when it comes to these elections? >> one of the things that i always want people to remember is that how detroit goes is how the state goes, and how the rest of the process moves, and it's oftentimes unfortunately, people forget that in the metro detroit area, it is predominantly black area. african americans have gone through so much to be resilient, a resilient part of this country, it is so important that our voice be heard. so, when i talk with people from different states that i'm
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a visit or live in, i remind them first of all, as we've talked earlier, i'm from detroit. that's a powerful statement in and of itself, because we are a strong people. we are a vibrant people. we are people who come from all different parts of the country, from the great migration back in the 60s and prior to that, too now. it is so important that we remember that, and we take that to the polls. >> in my professional life, i am speaking to women all around metro detroit and across the state, and one of the biggest motivators for women getting out of the midterm is the proposal three, reproductive freedom for all. we are worried, i would say, not only about our own bodily autonomy, but we're worried about our children's. just, them being able to choose when they grow or don't grow their families, those have
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economic impact and also social impact and people should be able to make those decisions for themselves. that's what i'm hearing from women all around metro detroit and when i'm speaking to women around the state is that this is a huge motivator for people getting out to vote. we've seen a lot of women who haven't been voting for a while coming back. we have women from both parties that are coming out saying they believe in us so strongly. they are going to vote. and they are talking to their friends and family about voting too. that's something as a grassroots activists i see a huge change from 2018, even, and yes we've had female candidates that motivated people in the 2018, top of the ticket in michigan, but a lot of the motivating factors seemed to be coming from washington in 2018. i see that changing. issues are local now. >> i think we're in dangerous times. you know when we take a look at
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what's actually on the ballot in 2022, i think it's very important that everybody actually takes the time to express themselves. there are things that people will hold back on but it's important that we are talking, we talk to the people we work with. we talk to the people we live by. it's important that we talk to those who are making the decisions that impact our lives. in the plant, it's even more of a microcosm of society in general. we have the full gambit from your very limit liberal democrat, you're very conservative, and in some cases, election denying qanon people. manufacturing is the backbone. my grandparents came up from texas. specifically for the general motors jobs. i'm a third generation employee at a third generation uaw member. as the automotive industry goes michigan tends to go. >> sometimes so does the country. >> so does the country. >> you have an interesting perspective here, because
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you've been on the city council in troy. you were a state representative here in michigan. you've been in politics and your tenure and politics started before politics felt like the swamp that it can feel like today. you were elected as a republican? correct >> i still yield towards the republican party but because it's been taken over by donald trump, i don't want to be affiliated with that sort of thing. the truth of the matter is i've always been of an independent mind, and if you look at some of the things that they've introduced when i was in the legislature i took a more washingtonian approach to politics. in other words i'm not a big fan of political parties. in fact, i think that elected officials should be elected on a nonpartisan basis and stand for what they believe in and the electorate should be able to evaluate them based on the individual. it's a real herd mentality right now. you've got the democrat votes and you've got the republican folks, and they get elected, and they go to washington, and very few of them are going to
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stray from there heard, if you will. and stand for themselves. it is an incredibly difficult road to walk, if you go that way. so, as a young boy growing up in michigan, i was really enthralled by the whole american concept of the marketplace of ideas. and that's really where i come to the political table in all of this. i truly believe that it doesn't have to be a zero sum game. i win you lose, you win, i lose, i think we can all give a little ants take a little and that is really about the american dream is all about. >> you come by, obviously, you are a republican. what is your issue with republicans right now? >> just the ones that, you were talking about earlier the ones that are a little bit just too far out there. their belief system is not consistent with what i've -- i've come to reject -- republicans. so it's a lot different now. >> by today's standards he's kind of a liberal. >> i come from the school of working with republicans and
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democrats or king together for a better good of the people that serve. if i don't hear that coming from a republican, and i don't know the personally, it makes a difference. >> you come from detroit. you heard molina talking about black americans, and having to feel heard and having their voices heard, and being engaged in the process. you worry that is not actually the case of michigan, that black representation isn't as good as you'd like it to be. >> i mean you can see what's happening with redistricting. state reps all the black state reps have lost their seats in the primaries. they've lost them to democrats who live in the suburbs. they're not bad people but you know people are not voting in the city if you take all those votes spread them out in the suburbs, you end up losing a lot of representation. to me that's a big problem with black voters. none of the people they know who support is on the ballot at this point. there's no donald trump to drum up and get democrats angry so
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then you have proposition three in there. there's a couple things in there that are problematic for democrats. >> that was a great conversation. there's a lot more to it by the way. want to thank all six of those folks are joining the at the henry fork to cnn dearborn yesterday. there's a lot more of that we're going to air more of that conversation on the show tomorrow morning, including what each of them deems the top issue for voters in michigan and what to make of the seaming never-ending political division that has infected this nation. coming up next, i'm going to head abroad for the latest on another, more deadly battle for democracy. a live report from kyiv, ukraine is next. russia's brutal war in ukraine and the american response is something that i've discussed during my panel conversation with the former michigan state representative margaret carlock who is of ukrainian descent. he is a registered republican and it's disappointed, to say the, laced with the direction some in his party appear to be going in relation with ukraine. >> it's more than just a personal matter. it's a moral matter to me and
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so one of the things that happened in the last week is that kevin mccarthy basically came out and said that he opposed all further aid to ukraine which really incensed me here you have a people who are fighting against what i perceive as something as quite evil and you have a big portion of the electorate here you're talking about disinformation you have a portion of the electorate that is to strictly the servant because you will see this actually permeate faith communities who truly believe that russia and putin is the second coming of jesus christ of some sort and he is saving the ukrainians from hell
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all right let's head overseas now to another fight for democracy last including russia's close allies china and india. a handful of nations. our believers continues to host a large number of russian troops. a senior u.s. defense official tells nbc news that north korea is selling ammunition and other supplies to russia, and iran is selling russia shied kamikaze drones which are proven effective and deadly attacks mainly on civilian targets. and while the white house has confirmed that iranian military personnel are now in crimea, training and assisting russian forces on those drone attacks, u.s. and allied officials tell the washington post that iran is telling to supply russia with ballistic missiles.
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the u.s. is not independently conformed that report. there is an escalation of what's going on in the ground. joining me now in kyiv ukraine, a place that in recent weeks has become substantially more dangerous, it's nbc news correspondent cal perry. , kalamata, and it is good to see this afternoon where you are. ken what can you tell us about this increasingly complicated relationship between russia and iran as it relates to this war? >> i think the difference maker at least since october 10th in the last two days has been these drones. these drones that according to intelligence officials, iran is supplying to russia. the rockets by and large were getting knocked out of the air by this air defense systems. what we've seen in the last 12 days is the russians using a combination of these rockets and these drones, trying to trick the air defense system. today, ali, we had 1 million people here lose power at one time. so the energy infrastructure here is really starting to fall apart. it is literally being blown apart. and now we have people who don't have power for long periods of time. desolate relationship with iran
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it's a thing that ukraine has pointed to for a long time. it's something they've been talking about they've had of intelligence officials out there saying that they are the ones pulling the strings behind russia. so much of what you're hearing from officials here is that russia is running out of ammunition. they're running out of a man power, they're losing ground in the east, they're losing ground in the south, in and around kherson. so what russia is doing is they are going to the last ditch effort. again, if you listen to officials, here which is not just the drones but also hijacking so many of these specific energy sites like this aboriginal or power plant. like a dam outside of kherson that people now worry they could blow up flooding villages. so does this kind of throw slow, methodical bombing it coupled with a campaign to make this part of the country unlivable that russia is clearly trying to carry out right now. >> cal, please stay safe as always my friend. good to see you, nbc's cal perry is in kyiv ukraine. coming up next, weapons of mass delusion. i'm gonna talk to you in author of an important about the dives into the demagogues that have
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risen to the part top of the republican party since the january 6th insurrection. republican party since the january 6th insurrection january 6th insurrection ♪♪ voltaren. the joy of movement. ♪♪ it's the subway series menu. 12 irresistible subs. the most epic sandwich roster ever created. ♪♪ it's subway's biggest refresh yet! don't mind me. i'm just the flu. i'm quite harmless, really. and when people ask, “but aren't you linked to dangerous flu complications, like pneumonia, heart attack, and hospitalizations?” i just say, “but, i'm just the flu.” it's him! who? i'm just the flu! fight the flu with sanofi flu vaccines. they not only help prevent flu in older adults, they've even been shown to provide better protection
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york times magazine writer robert draper was approached by his publisher to write a book about the republican party under trump. jaipur, who has been running about american politics for 25 years, agreed to do that. on his first day out of the field, reporting for this new project draper was on capitol hill buying lunch. it was january 6th 2021. it is solvable that the january six insurrection could have been a wake up call for the republican party. maybe the party could've reached beaver pitch, a turning point. maybe an insurrection by trump loyalists would join the party to it senses. instead, the party doubled down. draper's book is called weapons of mass delusion. when the republican party lost its mind and details that doubling down, and follows the
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figures that have risen to the top of the gop in the almost two years since the insurrection people like paul gosar, kevin mccarthy, matt gates, and lauren bovey. jaipur also extensively interviews or caught people across the country, chronicling the rise of marjorie taylor greene from a fridge qanon candidate to congress to a maga icon with influence reaching far behind her own state of georgia. jaipur looks at those republicans who dared stand up to trump who have now been shunned by their own party. this is all playing out in realtime as the midterms drawn here. for the washington post count, there are currently 291 republicans on the ballot across the country who have denied that biden is the rightful winner of the 2020 presidential election they are running in 48 states for congressional and state offices. of those, more than half, 171, they are the ones in the dark color on the top are favored to win their races. nearly 50 more are in races that are likely going to be extremely close.
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and here in michigan, the washington post counts that they are nine election deniers on the ballot. five are favored to win, the other four races should be very close including the race for the attorney general. the republican challenger in that race is matthew deperno who is currently under investigation by the state for allegedly tampering with voting machines in 2020. this is the guy running for attorney general. after the break, robert draper just joins me to discuss his new book and how trumpism has melted the new gop. lted the new gop lted the new gop it's the subway series menu. 12 irresistible subs. the most epic sandwich roster ever created. ♪♪ it's subway's biggest refresh yet! (vo) with verizon, you can now get a private 5g network. so you can do more than connect your business, you can make it even smarter. now ports can know where every piece of cargo is. and where it's going. (dock worker) right on time. (vo) robots can predict breakdowns
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if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have kidney or liver problems, including hepatitis. if you have hepatitis b, do not stop taking biktarvy without talking to your doctor. common side effects were diarrhea, nausea, and headache. if you're living with hiv, keep loving who you are. and ask your doctor if biktarvy is right for you. among my patients, i often see them have teeth sensitivity as well as gum issues. does it worry me? absolutely. sensodyne sensitivity & gum gives us the dual action effect that really takes care of both our teeth sensitivity as well as our gum issues. there's no question it's something that i would recommend. breakthrough heartburn... means your heartburn treatment is broken. try zegerid otc. it contains the leading medicine to treat frequent heartburn, uniquely designed for absorption. get all day, all night relief with zegerid otc. my most important kitchen tool? my brain. so i choose neuriva plus. unlike some others, neuriva plus is a multitasker supporting 6 key indicators of brain health. to help keep me sharp. joining me now is robert draper
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contributor to the new york times magazine and author the brand-new book weapons of mass delusion, when the republican party lost nine. robert, congratulations on the. book thank you for waiting in. interesting thing about the book is that it is not dial, and as the when. you are literally there on january six. you like many other people would have thought, hey, the average republican or elected republican on congress might look at that and say, all right, this has gone way too far but in fact, for many republicans january six was there a moment to go from obscurity and the fringes of the republican party into what has become the center of it. >> that is very true, ali. it did not become a point of
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shame or a moment for reflection but instead they kind of opportunity and ultimately a badge of honor. and what's resulted is a kind of hardening of the republican party where trump remains the center of gravity in the party. trump isn't in the party, instead of becoming patented i guess you it's after january the six has instead become angry or, more offensive, more performative and more delusional. in the sense that it is embracing in spewing out a succession of lies that have very much affected the republican electorate. >> it seems in that moment after january 6th, the days and to some degree weeks, what you are describing could have happened had started to happen. and then it was a reversal. it became the marjorie taylor greene's of the world to you spent some time interviewing, became ascendant to the point
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that she told you there was some consideration of her being donald trump's running mate of events in 2024. >> that is right. the first time that greene told me that was in february of this year but she in later conversations i had with her said that those conversations were in fact continuing. to be fair, ali, it is very likely that trump has had this conversation with half a dozen other people to. in a key haley being one, carry light being potentially another, kristi noem also. but what green possesses that trump so craves's loyalty. i mean she has always been ever trump, she has always had his back and after his experience with his last running mate mike pence, it is clear that he is going to prize oil to above all else. so i wouldn't count it out and in any event i think it is significant that this has been a point of dialogue for them
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for months now. >> in fact glenn youngkin somebody talked about him running the other day when they were in an appearance together. he didn't ask out that. he sort of suggested that that might be possible. let's talk about kevin mccarthy. if democrats lose control of the house in on november 8th kevin mccarthy could become the. that is obviously been a big goal of his for a long time and he in your book tied that to trump's denial and the things that trump was doing around that denial of the 2020 election on january 6th. >> among the things that mccarthy told a confidant that i quote from my book is, if trump loses and biden then becomes the president, then the historical headwinds that usually blow against the party in power will work to mccarthy's favor. the silver lining is i have a pretty good chance of being coming speaker of the house. he is in fact really the only
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candidate of the house freedom caucus, grain, gohmert, gates and the rest. for all of their suspiciousness towards mccarthy, haven't fielded a candidate of their own so mccarthy in turn has courted green in the others assiduously. not because he loves, them but because he knows what they represent and they are close to trump. they are sort of the proximate lawyers for the maga base that is the center of the republican party. and he knows he can be speaking without them. >> robert, i want to ask you about your perspective on this. you are widely seen as a fair reporter at these things particularly when you talk about the republican party. yesterday i spoke to number michiganders. two of whom identified as republicans. both of whom are concerned about the cult of some of the republican party. the adherence to donald trump. this is that kind of thing that you can talk about your father who was a conservative but wouldn't have approved of where
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the republican party is right now. >> my father on his luttrell deathbed, and this was in november 2019, a lifelong republican, proud republican, nonetheless he hoped that joe biden would become the democratic nominee. he used to believe that biden was the only democratic defeat trump and that was what he wanted most of all. i, mean hourly you are right. and i've heard this from other republicans as well. the chagrin that they express that the republican party have essentially become whatever donald trump wants to be on any given day. and a personality cult, frankly. and you hear the republicans, when they are campaigning out there they are talking about critical race theory, they are talking about the border. they are not talking about the things that concern voters the most about inflation. they might be complaining about inflation but they certainly don't have a program to fix it.
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and the typical republican arguments regarding the economy and what to do are just not central to what republicans are campaigning on. they are campaigning on the social wedge issues that are part and parcel of the populists demagoguery that is donald trump. >> robert draper, thank you for an important can take you for taking time to talk to us about it this morning. what robert, draper the author of weapons of mass delusions, when the republican party lost his mind. he's also a writer at large for the new york times magazine. don't go anywhere, there's still plenty more to come on the special michigan edition of velshi across america. straight ahead, we will discuss what is at stake in the upcoming midterms with the attorney kearny general. i will give you, hunt it is democracy itself. plus, much more for my illuminating panel with a group of six michiganders. another hour of velshi, live, in detroit michigan, begins now. >>


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