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tv   Morning Joe  MSNBC  April 20, 2022 3:00am-6:00am PDT

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thanks to all of you for getting up "way too early" on this wednesday morning with us. "morning joe" starts right now. delta, american, united, southwest, jetblue, frontier, and spirit announced they'll no longer require passengers to wear masks. though spirit airlines didn't have an official mask requirement because they don't have windows in the planes. >> delta updated their website to say, masks are now optional for employees and customers following the white house announcement. spirit airlines released this cocktail napkin, spirit has never valued human life. >> airlines are basically turning off the seat belt sign for covid and telling it to move freely about the cabin. if you thought omicron was bad, wait until you meet the spirit variant. >> oh, no. >> wow. >> ouch. >> kind of going after spirit. >> good morning. >> hold on, look at that shot of new york city. >> i know, it's beautiful. >> i mean, if you can have a shot of new york city coming in at 6:00 a.m. on a beautiful
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spring day, have the strokes playing, right? >> you can feel good about getting up and going into work today. look at that shot. >> all right. thanks for being with us. [ laughter ] >> that's "morning joe" for the day. drink that in. willie, mika and i went flying yesterday. >> yeah? >> first time without the mask mandate. look at that. look at that. >> good boy. >> stop it. >> you did a good job. >> we land and mika goes, put on your mask. i'll take a picture and told everybody i made you wear your mask. >> no, you were wearing the mask. >> mika wanted to wear the mask the whole time. you can take that down now. thank you, t.j. but, you know, i didn't wear it in the airport or the general areas where it was, like, wide open. the ceilings were, like, 800 feet high. didn't need to. but there's some really good articles yesterday about when is the best time to wear your mask in the airport.
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you're smirking. i'm not leading up to anything. there is no japanese proverb at the end of this. but, you know, it's just -- i think it is using your common sense. >> yeah. >> if you're walking into the airport and you've got a lot of space around you, why wear a mask? if you're at the gate and there are 100, 200, 300 people crowded around, might be a good time to wear a mask. when you get on the plane and off the plane, you know, that's probably good time to wear a mask, too, because you're not getting the circulation from the plane. you know, flying, for the most part, i started taking off my mask and kept it off until a guy started sneezing like gary oldman in "slow horses." at that point, i put it back on. that is a -- >> what a reference. >> what is a deep reference. [ laughter ] >> oh. >> you have to see it.
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if you haven't seen "slow horses" on apple tv, gary oldman is amazing. when you get to the sneezing scene, you'll know what i mean. it is unbelievable. anyway, here's the thing, so here's my quiz for you. andrew ross sorkin had a quiz for us yesterday. on the plane, what do you think, flying into a red state, what do you think the percentage was of people wearing masks on the plane. >> in their seats, you're asking? >> in their seats. >> 30%. >> jonathan lemire, what say you? >> i'll go a little higher. i saw some anecdotal tweets about this yesterday. people said people were surprised by how many people were in masks. let's go 60%, 65%. >> wow. >> that's good. >> wrong! i'll tell ya, willie, it was surprising. i was at 80%. our plane was at 80%. >> really? >> most of the people were wearing it on the plane. >> florida. >> we had a friend with us you
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know well. i'll say her name. rachel. >> yeah. >> she wasn't wearing a mask. she was not going to wear a mask. she didn't wear a mask. people were staring at her. she smiled as she walked past them. i thought everybody would be wearing a mask. i would not be wearing a mask yesterday, but, man, about 80% of them were. i was very surprised by that. can i say this, too? everybody was so cool. everybody was relaxed. >> it was more relaxed. >> the flight attenattendant, i, "congratulations. you're not a referee anymore." he put his hands up in the air. i've got to say, everybody was so polite. the pilot made the announcement, there were no cheers. there were no jeers. everybody was very chill. it was a nice thing to see. >> that's good to hear. that's what i hoped would happen. humanity would prevail, which is to say, if there is somebody on
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the plane who needs to wear a mask, wants to wear a mask, somebody is walking around the airport in a mask, you don't know what's going on in that person's life, the person's child's life. have respect for each other. it is a fundamental thing, and we can move forward through this. >> right. >> i'm interested to hear you say that about, you know, there's no confrontation. i know that assaults and all those things have been way up in the last couple years, mostly over masks. that tends to be the vast, vast, vast minority of humanity. they get a lot of attention. the videos go viral and all that. it's terrible. >> yeah. >> it's ugly. flight attendants shouldn't be in that position. but most people are good, which is something we have to remind ourselves when we see the coverage and some of the things happening in the world. >> yeah. i just agree with you so much. i know, willie, you travel around a lot with your work. we do the same, too. man, i've got to tell you, even during the most intense times,
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during the trump era when he was accusing me of being a murderer and saying horrible things about mika's face, trying to face shame her and everything else, i've got to say, i've got to say, most people are really nice. even, like, if people supported donald trump that come up and say, hey, you know, how you doing? >> i don't like you, but that was mean. >> they'll say, don't be so tough on my guy, my president, whatever. i go, well, we'll see how that goes. but everybody -- i mean, for us, at least, willie, most of the people have been decent and polite on both sides of the political spectrum. i say this also, back when i was a republican and i was considered to be too right wing and too extreme, i mean, people were polite and generous on both sides. >> no question, it got more intense over the last five or six years. i do agree with you, and i think the extremes in this country, and this is a much larger conversation, of course, get a lot of attention. a lot of people on twitter get a
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lot of attention because they are the loudest voices. the truth is, most of the country is made up of normal people going about their lives. they have opinions about politics, but they're not going to get in your face and scream about it. of course, there are people who will do that, but we're good people. we're a good country. i hope that this mask mandate works out the way it should, which is respect for people who want to wear it and respect for people who don't think they need to. >> amen. >> and speaking of kind of pushing back against the loudest voices, we have an incredible story. >> yes. >> coming up about a michigan lawmaker, which we're going to show you. >> yeah. a christian woman, a suburban housewife. >> she lays it out. >> a state senator who is accused of grooming and being in a pedophilia ring, for the most part, or something along those lines. we'll get the full story from her. mika, she really, in her own way, like zelenskyy is doing on
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a huge scale, on a smaller scale, she's speaking out about disinformation, against lies. >> democrats should watch this. >> well, everybody should watch it. >> everybody should watch it, you're right. >> the lies can't go unanswered. the best way to respond is with facts. extraordinary woman. extraordinary leader. we'll have her on later in the show. also, with us this morning, we have u.s. special correspondent for bbc news, katty kay. and associate editor for the "post," david ignatius. russia declared the next phase of the war was under way in eastern ukraine, claiming it aims to, quote, liberate the donbas region. the british intelligence says russian forces are still struggling. according to the uk, the ukrainian military continues to beat back russia's attentiottem advance, even amid the increased
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shelling and strikes. british intelligence says russia's inability to progress is impacted by the resilience of the ukrainian military and by the same environmental, logistical, and technical challenges that have hindered its forces all along. >> as general mccaffrey says, that's not changing overnight. >> the pentagon believes russia is still building up to an even larger military offensive in the east. >> willie, that is the case. as general mccaffrey says all the time, nothing is really changed as far as russia's ability to handle basic logistics. as admiral stavridis said yesterday, it email ei eats str lunch. >> russia isn't going to suddenly have a competent military. they can supply troops better in the east, but so far what we're hearing from western intelligence services and from inside ukraine is early on, and it is early, we emphasize that,
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ukrainian troops are holding up. david ignatius, we've been talking a little about mariupol, as well. that could fall. there's one last group of holdout ukrainian soldiers. a particular regimen protecting civilians in the steel factory. the expectation is at some point, mariupol will fall, a key, strategic win for vladimir putin. largely, what do you make of what we've seen here in the early days of the early hours, as a matter of fact, of this new eastern offensive from russia? >> willie, i think the russians are trying to make up for the failures in round one by, in round two, concentrating their forces in a much smaller theater, bringing much more firepower to bear. mariupol is an example of just overwhelming force. it is also an example of why ukraine is in this war, why even, i guess, the overwhelming firepower that's being assembled, that they stand a
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good chance, if we can keep them supplies with guns and ammo, as a pentagon official puts it, they can prepral. prevail. on the "washington post" website, there is an interview with the commander of the last holdout in mariupol. he says, essentially, i'm going to die here. this is the last place you'll hear from me, but we're going to fight until the end. he expresses that absolute commitment that we've seen from ukrainians all over the country. now in mariupol against much greater forces. in mariupol, he says the force ratio is 10-1. i've heard from the pentagon it is more like 20 or 30-1. they hold out day by day. that's the tenacity that is going to force this. my sources tell me the next two to four weeks will be crucial. if the ukrainians can stay in the field, bloody the russians even as they advance over these next two to four weeks, we may have the beginnings of a
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stalemate. then president putin has to make some tough choices. his economy is really going to begin to be hobbled by then by sanctions. morale is going to be difficult at home. then he has to make some choices. but for now, they're going to try to roll with all the traditional might of the russian army. >> to your point, david, we're less than an hour away from russia's deadline to ukrainian troops who are holding out in the besieged city of mariupol to surrender or face an end that will be, quote, bitter. the head of russia's national defense control center yesterday said if ukrainian forces holding out in that steel plant in the city stop fighting by 2:00 p.m. local time, which is 7:00 p.m. eastern, they will be, quote, guaranteed life, safety, and medical treatment. the russian defense ministry says it offered the new deadline after no ukrainian soldiers responded to its previous
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ultimatum. thousands of civilians and troops are holed up at a sprawling steel faciity believed to be the lack pocket of resistance inside mariupol. david ignatius mentioned video from the commander of the forces in mariupol, describing the conditions his troops and civilians are facing inside that steel plant. speaking to the "washington post" yesterday, he said the situation is, quote, tragic and critical. saying there are at least 500 injured people in the factory, including civilians. he appealed to the biden administration to help save those who had, quote, fallen into this trap. describing the situation inside the plant, he said, the fighters and civilians were sheltered in an underground system of tunnels. quote, it's in the basement where people just rot. there's no medication. the commander reiterated that
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ukrainian forces will not surrender. willie. >> let's go over to the big board for more on this with national security analyst for nbc news and msnbc, clint watts. good morning. sergey lavrov, the foreign minister for russia, said yesterday, quote, another phase of this operation is starting now, talking about the invasion now on the eastern front. that's a long stretch of the border, isn't it, about 300 miles from kharkiv down to mariupol. what do these early hours look like so far? >> willie, so what we're seeing here in the east is the buildup of combat power, but it's at a pretty slow pace. i know president zelenskyy and others in ukraine have said the offensive started. that is true, but it is the easier part of the offensive. dropping in massive amounts of artillery, missile strikes. this is occurring all across the eastern area. i think what i want to really zoom in on is this is where the fight is going to be. the question is, how will the russians go about it? what is key in most russian strategy is for them to try to
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penetrate through small areas here, or will they try to move and essentially connect their forces in this corridor here, encircling ukrainian forces that are still left here in the defense. remember, president zelenskyy talked just over this last weekend about how there are about 40,000 ukrainian military in this area. many of them in the pockets here. the strategy of the russians usually is to encircle forces. once they do, once they have them cut off, similar to mariupol, they'd then try to close in on them and essentially suffocate them in terms of supplies. the bigger issue is, in each of the advances you're seeing, the russians are trying to pull off, they move but they don't get too far. each of the advances tend to be met by ukrainian military who are putting up a very stiff defense. when you zoom out and look at what's going on, kharkiv, this is another area where the ukrainian military is again pushed back. in this area, the russians have a couple supply lines they're trying to connect through this
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izyum corridor. you see the ukrainians pushing in kharkiv, another area down in here, and they try to push in at the command and control lines. if the ukrainians would be successful, it'd be a major blow to the russians. you'd have a race across ukraine right now. the russians trying to resupply into the accesses here in the east. for the ukrainian military, how quickly can they move supplies to the east to protect the troops that are putting up a stiff defense? i strongly doubt, at least at this point, the original strategy from donetsk, connecting up here to izyum, that the russians can pull it off. the ukrainian military has fought a very stiff defense there. with forces in mariupol, that ukrainian major we were talking about, still holding out and still fighting, they're tying up a lot of russian combat power they'd otherwise be deploying north now. >> the ukrainians need heavy equipment. they need heavy equipment, heavy
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defense to get the job done in the east. president biden signed off on $800 million of aid last month, and another package is on the way. >> a matter of days, that will be the case. the president said this package is coming, and already hinting there will be another one down the road, another week or two, when the ukrainians need it. it is heavier equipment. it is bigger artillery. they are going to need it for the fight that's to come in the donbas. yes, defensive gear like the javelins and so on to try to shoot down russian planes, but also heavier equipment to try to take out tanks and so on, for the looming fight. clint, i spoke to a pentagon senior official late last night who the u.s. believes that the assault in the donbas has not fully started yet. you sort of hinted at this. some shelling has begun. as this official put it to me, if you're the ukrainians, it sure feels like the assault has come because the shells are falling on you. but the russians haven't really moved the ground forces in yet. they believe this could be a battle that stretches for months. certainly, the ukrainians have far more fighting spirit than
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russians have mormorale. but when the heavy stuff begins, a matter of days or weeks, what would that look like? >> very key to understand about russia formations, essentially how they fight, is they use massive amounts of artillery. the u.s. uses artillery at a more precise format. we'd go and really pick out targets, try to lace targets with precision-guided munitions. most of what the russians do is overwhelming saturation of indirect fire. massive artillery prep. in this region here, essentially from izyum to slovyansk to crimea, you'll see massive deployment across the board. hopefully i can get it up here. massive deployment across the board of artillery in each of these towns along this area here. they'll do this for days or weeks. this will go on for a significant amount of time. they do that for what is a good reason from their perspective. they want to open up space for
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maneuver with armored forces that will essentially advance on each of these towns. the problem for the russians is, in each of the towns they're trying to advance right now, it is a muddy, wet ground they're on. so you see them stuck, essentially, on roads and highways. this makes it easier for the ukrainian military to target, particularly those that have been using essentially drones, the turkish drones we've seen footage of, flying forward over the convoys, dropping artillery in a precise way. this creates shock, fear, and chaos in many ukrainian towns. they've been under bombardment now for at least six weeks in many parts of this. i think the big question is, do the russians really try and go for this very audacious plan of cutting off the ukrainians, or will they try to advance on small fronts, doing smaller encirclements to try to cut off the ukrainian military in
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pockets? the big unknown, and i think the thing the pentagon was talking about yesterday and you saw from the british military assessment, is will the russian ground troops fight? will the armor formations be able to fight? remember, this is spare parts essentially at this point. you have some battalion tactical groups fighting for a while and are essentially put together, but a lot have been whittled down, are coming back from kyiv, have not fought together, have a new chain of command and a new commander. will they make advances against a motivated ukrainian military. >> david ignatius, can you give us some perspective on the acceleration of the weapons? not just heavier weapons, more powerful weapons, but also the shipment of the weapons, even from the time you were there several weeks ago when you saw this just flow. this river of weapons going across the border. talk about the acceleration from the united states and nato
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countries and the impact of that not only on the war but also the impact on that balancing act that joe biden and nato countries are trying to strike. >> joe, a senior defense official told me that the u.s. and its allies are in a race against time. to ship in as much weaponry and ammunition. the ukrainians are in danger of running short of ammunition. they've been firing so much ordinance. to rush that in across what is, thankfully, a very wide western border, bordered by four nato countries, and get that equipment in in a hurry. people feel that they're, you know, doing that as effectively as possible. planes are landing from the u.s. and other countries multiple times a day. with great stocks of weapons. i think the decision really has focused on artillery fires, as
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the military says. this is going to be a war of heavy bombardment of either side. it is going to look more like a traditional world war ii battle, with tanks, artillery, armored formations, than something more modern, according to the people i talk to. the big question, joe, that you and i have talked about, the whole country is puzzled about, is there more we can and should do to help ukraine without running unacceptable risks of escalation that would provoke the united states into a direct war with russia? i think there's a lot of thought being given to them. certainly, the u.s. is doing more now than it did a month ago. i think the feeling is that the balance is now sufficient to give the ukrainians a fighting chance in this next month that will be crucial in seeing whether the russians roll through the donbas and have a
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victory there or can be delayed. >> yeah. ukrainian president volodymyr zelenskyy is still criticizing his country's allies for not sending more weapons. in a video posted to social media yesterday, zelenskyy said, in part, quote, if we had access to all the weapons we need, we would have already ended this war. he added, it is unfair that ukraine is still forced to ask for what its partners have been storing somewhere for years. in response, german chancellor olaf scholz defended his country's efforts yesterday, saying his military has nearly maxed out the number of weapons it can send from its own stockpile. this comes after he pledged to increase germany's military budget by more than $100 billion following the start of the war in february. katty, i keep coming back to the people holed up in the steel plant in mariupol, and it's just -- it's all too frustrating and gut wrenching.
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i mean, there are civilians in there. seen video of small children, babies, and nothing? nothing, nothing can be done? >> you know, that video, mika, and i'm sure you spotted it, too, it was that baby grow hanging on a drainage pipe to dry. these were parents, mothers, trying to look after their kids as best they can. they've appealed to the international community. the commander there through media sites said, "please, can you do something to get us out, get the civilians out?" it seems that is unlikely to happen, that that would be seen as too provocative, to provide some kind of air cover from the west to try to get these people out. i mean, i think david is right, there is a big debate going on a the moment amongst allies about what is too provocative. we've shifted, even weeks ago sending javelins and stringers was a source of debate.
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now, we're sending heavier weaponry. the germans are saying, look, we can't send tanks because it'd mean we, ourselves, would become targets. the germans are holdouts. when zelenskyy is talking, as he is, and criticizing the west, a lot of his words are aimed at the germans and the french for not doing more. they could be sending more weaponry. they could be sending more to defend ukrainian civilians. the west is trying to get it all there, but in some ways, we have a limit on supplies. some of the weapons we send don't match up with what the ukrainians are using. we've got shells in nato artillery shells that are 3 millimeters too big. seems crazy, right? 3 millimeters too big for what the ukrainians are using. i think the west, if we're going to think about those people's holed up there in mariupol, we're going to have to do more. there is a debate about how much more we can do. maybe some states are being too conservative in their estimate of what would prompt a
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retaliation. once mariupol falls, to what clint was saying, and it looks like it is going to fall, the civilians are in a very, very bad situation. of course, that frees up those russian soldiers to take part in that fight that clint was talking about. >> david ignatius, let me ask you a provocative question, i guess, because it is outside the mainstream of american foreign policy and what would be accepted western foreign policy. but we look back on wars. if you ask bill clinton and the administration what they regret the most, they'd probably talk about rwanda, feeling like they abandoned the rwandan people during the genocide. you can go all the way back to world war ii. abandonment of the jews. fdr not doing enough for the jews when they knew the holocaust was taking place and a final solution was taking place by hitler. i'm wondering, you have this ukrainian commander asking for joe biden's help. saying, "joe biden, you're the only person that can help us
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here." i do wonder, what would ronald reagan do? what would somebody in that position do? to say, we are going to use our force, we are going to use our might to do nothing more than supply a safe zone to get the women and children out of mariupol. you can work with us and you can work with the red cross and you can allow this to happen, or else we'll get them out by force. what would your response be to people who say that's what we should do in mariupol so we don't abandon these people? >> joe, i think the first thing we need to say is that we're not abandoning the ukrainian people. i've rarely seen a focus on supplying weapons as quickly and in the same volumes as we're seeing now. they need to do more. they need to coordinate better what's coming from other nato allies that have got soviet-era
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equipment that is easier for the ukrainians to use. again, that seems to be almost a 24/7 preoccupation for the pentagon. on the question of a safe zone, how you'd enforce it, that has been an issue from the beginning. if that has nato plans in the air over ukraine, it means that nato planes, u.s. planes, are likely to be in air combat with russian planes and shooting russian planes out of the sky. i think in reasonable person would ask whether that is necessary in the process of aiding these brave ukrainians who are fighting. it's something that, obviously, would make the situation easier, but it'd come at a very high risk. i'm struck by how much we're doing. i'm struck by how much more we could do if people decided that these were not unreasonable
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risks. i note that russian foreign minister sergey lavrov said yesterday on indian television that russia shares with the united states a belief, as ek expressed in a joint communique last year, that nuclear war can never happen. if he means that, that the russians underlie that they don't intend to take this into a nuclear space, that takes it easier, i think, for the u.s. to do additional things for the ukrainians. >> david, you followed lavlavro career closely through the years. why do you think he said that yesterday? why on indian tv? it is certainly a change from putin, from tv talking heads, from others who have been threatening nuclear war from the start. why would lavrov send that message on indian tv? >> again, joe, with the russians these days, you don't know what is specifically a message, who it represents. lavrov is seen to be somewhat distant from the inner circle
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around putin. the russians did send a diplomatic note to the united states last week that sounded ominous, warned of unpredictable consequences if the u.s. kept sending or sent the most sophisticated weapons to ukraine. the state department seems to be taking that in stride. they don't see that as anything unusual, threatening. more a confirmation that the u.s. is making russia nervous with the weapons it is sending. it goes to your question of whether we're getting anything done. the russians wouldn't have sent the note if they weren't somewhat concerned. the feeling for now at the state department is this is not qualitatively different. it is not a new kind of threat. we'll have to see. this is as close, i think, as we've seen in my lifetime to a situation where nuclear weapons could get used. i think it is even closer than the cuban missile crisis of 1962, which i remember as a boy.
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we can't minimize the dangers. given that, we'll probably be doing more two weeks from now than we are today. >> david ignatius, thank you so much for coming on this morning. ahead on "morning joe," russian forces appear poised to capture the besieged city of mariupol. plus, ukrainian pilots make an appeal to some of the richest people in the world. their new slogan? buy me a fighter jet. and this, how a stolen pair of apple airpods reveal the movements of russian troops. also, long-time democratic strategist james carville weighs in on the state of the republican party in a colorful way that is vintage carville. >> got called out for being crazy. >> a little more than that. we'll play that ahead. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. >> really beautiful, look at your condo. wow.
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that's a beautiful live picture of the united states capitol at 6:35 in the morning. wimbledon officials are expected to announce a ban on russian and belarusian players from this year's tournament because of the war in ukraine. the ban at the all england club would be the grand slam season's first tennis event to restrict individual athletes from competing. four russian men are ranked in the top 30 on the atp tour, including reigning u.s. open champion medvedev. the wta rankings include five russians in the top 40. wimbledon is scheduled to begin, as always, in late june. katty kay, what's the feeling in the uk about this edition? we've seen others like it in other sporting events. we've seen strange decisions,
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where, for example, a russian pianist is banned from performing at a concert hall somewhere in europe. does this add up for you? >> look, i think it should all be done on a case-by-case basis myself. there is a risk that if you start just banning russians wholesale, russian businesses and russian players and russian cultural people wholesale, some of whom, by the way, have been critical of putin and of the invasion of ukraine, then you play into a narrative that this is a western war against russia. this is actually -- and we've heard putin say this. we've heard him say recently that russia is the victim. russia is under attack by the west. it is all just a plot by the west to try to undermine, you know, russian supremacy around the world. so you have to be weary of that. if these players are still living in russia and still based in russia, the chances are, because we've seen the poll numbers and because of the situation in russia, chances are they're still supportive of putin and of the regime and
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what's happening in ukraine. so on those cases, think you can make the case that if you're going to have sanctions against russia, you want to hit the russian public where it hurts, and this is a point of pride for russians, that they have these cultural ambassadors and sporting ambassadors around the world, then you have an impact by saying, listen, if you still support putin and still support the invasion, you cannot play on the international circuit. you can't play at wimbledon. >> jonathan, i agree with katty. it is a case-by-case basis. after the invasion began, you had a top russian player at the dubai tournament, and he wrote on the camera, like, "just say no to war." if you have russian ambassadors that are coming to wimbledon, there's a possibility for them to actually speak out against the war. again, as we saw in dubai, don't you think it should be a case-by-case basis, or else you're just feeding into vladimir putin's propaganda
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about the west taking on anti-russian stances everywhere. >> couldn't agree more it needs to be a case-by-case basis. here in the united states, of course, we're home to several russian-born hockey players, superstar players in the nhl. ovechkin is arguaby one of the top stars in the league, and he is russian. until recently, a personal friend of vladimir putin's. when the invasion began, he said he certainly didn't support any war. has kept his mouth shut about the topic since. most of the other russian players in the league who look up to ovechkin followed his lead. the other fact we need to consider about why some of the russians who are maybe now based here in the states, at least part of the year if not all of it, might be -- or else are in europe -- might be reluctant to speak out too much, some of them have family back home. there is a fear that if they were to really speak out and condemn the russian invasion, something bad could happen to their family back in russia. >> it's complicated. coming up, is governor ron desantis taxing not only mickey
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mouse but also millions of voters in florida? his fight with disney may be heading to the florida state legislature. we'll have that story and much more. "morning joe" is coming right back. before nexium 24hr, anna could only imagine a comfortable night's sleep without frequent heartburn waking her up. now, that dream... . her reality. nexium 24hr stops acid before it starts, for all-day, all-night protection. can you imagine 24 hours without heartburn? it's an important time to save. with priceline, you can get up to 60% off amazing hotels. and when you get a big deal... you feel like a big deal. ♪♪ priceline. every trip is a big deal.
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as the world watches the tragedy in ukraine, oil and gas ceos see an opportunity to get richer. hiking gas prices here at home and profiting off of putin's war. this will continue to happen - as long as we're dependent on oil. americans have had enough. right now, congress can accelerate the transition to clean energy. energy that won't run out. energy that's cheaper for all of us. energy that's made in america to stay in america. congress - let's get it done.
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look, your jet ski on pensacola beach. >> yeah, no. >> central time zone. a lot of people don't remember that, especially on election nights, that the panhandle is in the central time zone. beautiful, beautiful morning there on the beautiful beach. whitest beaches in the world, mika, they say. >> beautiful shot of pensacola. thank you. >> are you ready to go? >> that's good. you can stop talking. >> i can talk. >> republicans -- oh, my god. >> it is a little intense.
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what's going on here? >> it just keeps going. >> it's tough, i know. she'll tell me to put a mask on next. >> why do i want you to wear the mask? >> i know. florida's republican governor ron desantis is escalating his battle with disney. the company was vocal in its opposition to florida's new controversial parental rights in education law, which says teachers cannot hold classroom instruction about sexual orientation or gender identity in kindergarten through third grade. >> never did that anyway but whatever. >> wondering which classes were doing that. >> if you got them, smoke em, i guess. >> good way to poke the democrats. in response to disney's criticism of the law, desantis has now asked florida lawmakers to strip the company of its self-governing power. disney has had special status since 1968, essentially giving the company the legal right to operate under its own government
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at walt disney world in central florida. the move could leave disney on the hook for millions of dollars a year in local taxes, and with less autonomy over its property. senate democrats in florida say the bill to strip disney of those powers would actually come at a massive cost to taxpayers who live near the park. florida senate minority leader gary farmer says two counties would have to pick up nearly $1 billion in debt. >> a billion dollars? >> that tax bill could amount to thousands of dollars per household. >> let's bring in national reporter for nbc news. mark, i'm not sure what's going on with the florida politicians, but rick scott, he proposes a bill that's going to raise taxes on working and middle class americans. now you have ron desantis. first of all, for you and me, who followed florida politics a long time, it's bizarre for politicians to be going after
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disney. also, he is doing it in a way that could end up costing taxpayers millions of dollars. >> i think, first of all, i should start off by saying i was wrong. i think the last time i was on the show and we were talking about this, i was like, oh, they're not going to go after disney's special district. well, they are. i got off the plane in tallahassee, and i looked at the expanded call for the legislate session. they're talking about redistricting on the maps. lo and behold, there it is. i don't know who to believe here. the reality is, disney has got a lot of property that does not get taxed because they're essentially their own government. so that is kind of a fat cash cow for local governments. but to your point, to senator farmer's point, to disney's point, they do have a lot of bond debt. if you wind up dissolving that, taxpayers wind up assuming that, how does that get paid for? this is part of the problem of
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deciding legislation on the fly and legislation in revenge. i do think that desantis and company know that, however. understand that built into the bill that will probably be voted out of the legislature in record time tomorrow, is the fact that the special taxing district, if it goes away, it is called the reading creek improvement district, actually, if it goes away would go away in june of 2023. that gives an entire year for them to kind of make amends or decide, you know what, we don't want to do this, or for disney to grovel or whatever. understand, in the past, democrats didn't like the creek improvement district. they thought it was a boon dock. karl highson, the florida humorist and novelist, the original florida man, he'd written an entire book trashing disney about it, called "team rodent." i talked to him yesterday. he said, you know, one of the problems with this -- i don't know if i can say what he was saying -- one of the problems with this dispute, i'll say he said that, one of the problems
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with the dispute between desantis and disney is you don't know who to root against more. desantis or disney. that's kind of his position. >> sure. >> it is a complicated one. again, it's probably not one that you'd want to decide very quickly in two days. that's why legislators are kind of going through the performative aspect of it, saying we're going to take this away. in reality, there is a year's time to reconsider it, sober up maybe. >> it is performative. everything is so performative. it's crazy. so what i guess i don't understand, mark, the fact that here we have desantis. it is performative politics. like donald trump majored in performative politics. but in this case, in the state of florida at least, disney has been at the center not just politically but culturally and just about every other way. this massive economic engine for 50 years now.
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and i understand there is a pitched twitter battle. i understand the extremes on both sides are, like, fighting this out. but i can tell you, like, for -- and you know this, for people in my neighborhood, more kids that go to my children's school, for millions and millions of floridians, disney is still disney. the magic kingdom is still the magic kingdom. >> right. >> does ron desantis really want to do this to gain a couple of cheap political points on twitter? that's not a rhetorical question. it doesn't really make good political sense. i can tell you, even in the most conservative areas of florida, kids and parents still love disney. >> well, so far, desantis has shown a knack for turning lots of fights into lots of small dollar donations. maybe it's not worth the twitter
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fight, but it is probably worth the money. you know, he's raised more than $100 million for his re-election. he might not even be able to spend all of that money in his re-election in november. so on the performative stuff, yeah, it seems to be profitable for him from a campaign perspective. how long is this going to last? i don't know. as i just said, like, this is going to possibly last for another year. where this goes from here, considering i was already drastically wrong about them not ever taking on the improvement district, i'm not going to predict what will happen in the future. >> thank you so much for your reporting. willie? >> thanks. governor desantis also going after twitter, saying he'll go after the board for meddling with elon musk's attempted takeover there. >> oh, my gosh. let's turn to the midterm elections. how should democrats be taking on republicans there? long-time democratic strategist and wise man james carville had some ideas on how to frame
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republicans. >> the problem is they are a weird political party. they need to be branded as such. these 26 qanon people, all right, that's not necessarily the extreme. i mean, these are people that talk about testicle tanning. these are people that, like, go to hungary for conferences. these are not normal, by and large, a large part of the republican party is just out and out weird. when you have moscow mitch saying we need more sane people, that means you've got a lot of really crazy people. look at the clip when they were liking at peter navarro. he was a serious person in the white house. you're telling me that he is a normal human being? no. and he's not even among the worst. >> joe, james always with the subtle, polite touch on describing the opponent. what do you make of his
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argument, about how to talk about republicans? for democrats, they have headwinds we'll talk about with steve rattner in a second here. in terms of messaging, where should they be? >> the republican party, and james points it out, the republican party, the conservative movement, crazy. absolutely crazy, what they've been allowing extremes to do since donald trump came there. >> really nasty. >> if you don't speak out against it and you're a republican, then you're endorsing it, for the most part. if you have people saying really extreme, really dangerous things, as they've been saying over the past five, six years. yeah, just absolutely bizarre things going on. again, we're going to have a state senator from michigan who is going to come on, who had a bizarre attack against her. somebody like ron desantis deciding to create an issue and try to make money off of it.
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mallory just said no, no more of it, and called the craziness out. called the lunacy out. called the phony, performative christianity out. i think that's what democrats have to do. they should see what she did on the state floor. >> we'll show it. >> in michigan, we'll show it later on, and they should all take that to heart. they need to start calling out the absolute, sheer lunacy of it all. and it is just absolutely crazy. >> on top of that, there aren't many republicans still who give you a straight answer about whether joe biden actually won the 2020 election. let's tour former treasury official and "morning joe" economic analyst, as advertised, steve rattner, with some charts on the democratic headwinds for the midterms. steve, good morning. so we've talked a lot about inflation as a big problem for joe biden and for democrats here. what else are you looking at in your charts? >> well, you know, in listening to what you guys were just
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talking about and the democratic messages, the democrats have a problem. let's take a look at how big a problem it might be based on polling and other statistical data. this is a generic ballot, basically asking people do they prefer the democrats or the republicans. in the blue line, joe biden got off to a reasonably good start. he actually bumped up in june to 55% when they passed the american rescue plan. but since then, it's essentially been a straight down decline and a flip over toward the republican side back in last november. so it is a very, very large swing. it leaves the democrats about 4 points behind, when you look at where people -- what people are saying now. but what makes it even a little scarier is the fact that it is traditional for the party in power to actually lose seats during the run up to the election. if you look at the next chart, what you see there is a very close correlation between the --
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how the polls are done, the generic polls, and how much vote share the president's party loses. the more popular the president's party, the more they lose, not surprisingly. they're starting from a higher level. the red dot right there is where the democrats and joe biden would be at this moment, which would be possibly losing another 2.4 percentage points, beyond what they're polling behind at the moment, by the time you get to election day. so if you then take that and you turn it into what is likely to be the outcome, you can take a look at the last chart. what you'll see there is that the shortfall is likely to be very, very substantial. the red circle shows you roughly the potential outcomes for the democrats relative to the numbers we've been looking at. and all of that points to a loss of somewhere between 30 and 50 house seats. that's pretty consistent with what the prognosticators are
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saying. in obama law 63 seats famously in 2010. >> shellacking. >> shellacking. trump lost 41, both in the first midterms. even in their second midterms, bush and obama both lost 30 and 11. it is traditional, but these numbers, obviously, point you to a pretty ugly result in the house. then on the senate side, if you assume that because of the shift in the sentiment, that a democrat in a state where biden lost by less than 9% is endangered, there are at least four senate seats that are very much on the endangered list, plus others where anything could happen. >> we know history is working against democrats, as you laid out. what specifically now is working against them? what are some of the elements? as you say, the white house says we've dug ourselves out. we've begun to almost dig ourselves out of this covid hole financially with all the res pew packages. unemployment, 3.6%. more jobs than we could possibly fill.
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obviously, inflation is at the top of the list of the problems. what are you looking at as those specific headwinds? >> a poll was done a month ago, interestingly, in which the democrats in congress are stunningly underwater. they were asked how -- people asked, which party would you trust to handle an issue more in congress? on inflation, it was the republicans. 46 to 32, spread of 14 points. national security, of all things, 48 to 35. spread of 13 points. on the economy, it was 47 to 36, spread of 11 points. there's simply not a belief among the american people that the democrats are well equipped to handle pretty much any problem at the moment, unfortunately. so, to joe's point, at the very least, there is a messaging problem that the democrats need to address between now and november. >> all that is reflected in joe biden's personal polls, as well. steve rattner with his world-famous charts, thanks so much. we appreciate it. still ahead, we're moments
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away from russia's stated deadline for the remaining ukrainian troops in mariupol to surrender. we'll get a live report from ukraine with the latest on the city's impending fall, perhaps, as well as moscow's new offensive in the eastern part of the country. plus, expert military analyst from retired u.s. army colonel peter mansoor. also ahead -- >> i didn't expect to wake up yesterday to the news the senator from the 22nd district had, overnight, accused me by name of grooming and sexualizing children in an email, fundraising for herself. so i sat on it for a while, wondering why me? then i realized, because i am the biggest threat to your hollow, hateful scheme. >> democratic state senator mallory mcmarrow of michigan takes on a republican colleague who accused her of grooming children. her speech has been viewed online more than 7 million
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times. she joins us straight ahead on "morning joe." we're back in one minute. ♪simply irresistible♪ ♪ ♪ ♪simply irresistible♪ applebee's irresist-a-bowls are back. now starting at $8.99. now that's eatin' good in the neighborhood. this is elodia. she's a recording artist. now starting at $8.99. 1 of 10 million people that comcast has connected to affordable internet in the last 10 years. and this is emmanuel, a future recording artist, and one of the millions of students we're connecting throughout the next 10. through projectup, comcast is committing $1 billion so millions more students, past...
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and present, can continue to get the tools they need to build a future of unlimited possibilities. it is the top of the hour. live look at the white house as the sun comes up over washington. a lot on the table today as russia presses forward with its new campaign to take ukraine's
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eastern donbas region. and puts new pressure on the last pocket of resistance in mariupol. we're going to break down where things stand this hour on the battlefield. plus, the latest in the fight over mask mandates. the biden administration signals it likely be appeal the ruling that lifted the mandate on planes and other public transportation for masks. welcome back to "morning joe." it is wednesday, april 20th. jonathan lemire and katty kay are still with us. msnbc contributor mike barnicle joins the table. >> glad you're here. mike, yesterday, we're on this plane, and most people are wearing masks. i'm not wearing a mask in the airport. i get on the plane, when they tell you to put it on when people are coming in and congregating, i put it on. then when i'm in my seat, mika keeps telling me, "put on the mask." i keep thinking she's worried about my health. so she gets me to put on the
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mask. i find out this morning that she put on the mask because she knows that when i have the mask on, i talk less. >> awe. >> really hurts me. i thought it was about my health. >> no, it is just i need a little down time. >> very, very hurtful. >> it is hurtful. >> i am hurt for you, joe. but it is very, very true, too. [ laughter ] >> hurtful and true. >> yeah. >> also, mika, i got to show another picture. >> okay. >> mika, tell us what's going on in this picture right here. i was taking a picture of you. i thought you were going to try to jump over the fence. >> this is weird. >> well, it is a little -- >> i almost jumped the fence. >> you almost. if you had, we would have showing that picture. you showed restraint for some reason, which i don't know why. >> no idea why we're doing this. >> what are you taking a picture of? >> the james mitchell track. >> to do a shoutout for coach mitchell. >> i love coach mitchell. my girls ran under mitchell. mitchell is a legend. they named the track after him. >> yeah. >> he's still an amazing coach.
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he's got a legacy in bronxville. i was sending that to my daughters. did not mean for it to be my back side on -- >> to the right is the joe scarborough garbage can. >> what are you doing? what's happened to our show? >> that's for me. i'm proud of that. my kids will take their kids. put their hands on the garbage can. >> what is going on? >> mika, just talking. people talk. >> okay. you need a mask. speaking of talking, on friday, willie, i guess there was this conversation about elon musk. mika had said that -- he just -- she asked the question, which is a legitimate question to ask. are there guardrails twitter could put up to stop the hostile bid? >> is he allowed to fully buy it? can it be stopped? are there guardrails? >> right. of course, 2, 3 hours later,
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there was breaking news that, in fact, twitter did put up guardrails to dilute the stock. willie, people just freaked out. they dug up, like, a five-year-old video. do you know about this? >> yeah. >> i'm on twitter rarely, so i may have missed this one. >> good. i agree with you on that. >> lemire, i just told mika, twitter, when people are lying, i say, just nevermind. just let it go. but then we find out that it was so widespread, the lying, that they took this video from five years ago that was taken out of context five years ago even, but it was trending. then we find out the "associated press" has done a fact-check on it. because elon musk -- >> oh, my god. >> -- joins in, which tells you what is a sewer twitter would be if he ran it. >> yeah. >> he jumps in and, like,
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retweets something that spreads this lie with smiley faces. give us the "ap" fact check on this. >> sure. so this certainly made a lot of -- this made the rounds. these guys, i'm ready. mike and willie are perplexed here. i'm ready. >> get off twitter. >> yeah, so, basically, this clip from 2017 made the rounds on the right, seized on the right after the comments on friday. elon musk and others then amplified it further. my former colleagues at the "associated press" ran this earlier this week about the clip from mika, noting correctly that it had nothing to do with elon musk, nor was it current. if you watch the clip, you'll see it is the old "morning joe". mika wasn't talking about elon musk at the time. it was the former president. but this goes to show, and the "ap" correctly notes, puts it in context and says it is not true. to your point, joe, it goes to show how quickly
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disinformation -- >> damage had been done. >> it underscores the challenges that all of us face in the media and the social media companies face as we head into yet another election season, where blatantly false claims can be amplified on twitter. >> again, the importance of this is not that it is about mika, it is about the fact that elon musk got involved in misinformation, churning up a five-year-old video on twitter, which shows, again, mika, what a sewage dump twitter would be if elon musk took it over. >> there you go. okay. >> by the way, the original quote from five years ago has been misquoted for five years. >> well, i had to clarify that five years ago. >> which you clarified that morning. enough of elon musk. let's get straight to the news, though that was an interesting one. we have a lot going on this hour. russia's new deadline to ukrainian fighters holding out in a steel factory in mariupol,
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telling them to surrender, just passed. ukraine's forces have made it clear they will not lay down their arms. this is incredible. there are people holed up in a steel plant. civilians, as well. the commander of the ukrainian forces in mariupol is describing the conditions his troops and civilians are facing in that steel plant. speaking to the "washington post" yesterday, he said the situation is, quote, tragic and critical. saying there are at least 500 injured people in the factory. we've got pictures from inside the makeshift bomb shelter in the plant. children, women. the last remaining civilians in mariupol. describing the situation inside the plant, he said, the fighters and civilians were sheltered in an underground system of tunnels. quote, it's in the basement where people just rot. there is no medication. he also warned that his forces
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are outnumbered and may only have hours to live. he appealed to the biden administration to help save those who had, quote, fallen into this trap. the commander reiterated that ukrainian forces will not surrender. willie. >> holding out with the civilians. joining us now, retired army colonel peter mansoor. he served 26 years in the armed services, including as an executive officer to general david petraeus during the iraq war. colonel, thank you for being with us this morning. your initial impressions of this new invasion, a new front in the war as russia is calling it, into the donbas, the eastern part of the country. they've had time to pull back, regroup, rearm, resupply. what does it look like so far? >> well, i'm not sure the russians have entirely regrouped. they took a beating in their initial invasion, and they're going to need more time than this to reconstitute their forces. so they've begun with a giant artillery and air bombardment,
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but the ukrainians are dug in pretty deep. they've been in this area since 2014 fighting the russians. it's unclear whether the russians are beginning to be making headway, because they have the same forces they used and failed in the battle for kyiv. so this is going to take a while to sort out on the ground. there's not many observers there, but my money is on the ukrainians. >> but, colonel, as you know, i'm sure you're well aware, that the russian idea of waging war is to prep the field with humongous numbers of artillery shots. they will level mariupol more than they've leveled it now. do you have any idea of how we could go about a humanitarian effort to rescue the people, some of whom we just saw on our tv screens, who are literally on death row in that steel plant in mariupol? are we going to leave them there as captives, just waiting to
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die? is there any way that your imagination or your professional career can give us some counsel, some advice, some direction on how a humanitarian efforts can be made to help these people escape where they are now? >> i'm afraid the steel plant has become the alamo of the ukraine war. the ukrainians do not want to give it up. they don't want to surrender because that would be surrendering mariupol. this is the last bastion of their defense in that city. were they to give it up, they might be able to arrange for humanitarian corridor to get civilians out. but that would be giving up their objective, as well. this is all up to the russians, whether they want to declare a cease-fire temporarily to get the woupd edwounded and the civ out. i doubt they'll don't, given they've attacked many ukrainian cities and deliberately killed
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women and children to inflict pain on the ukrainians. i don't see the russians allowing the wounded and the civilians out of this battle. >> my god. >> the united states is reportedly among the countries sending spare aircraft parts to the ukrainian military. in a pentagon briefing yesterday, secretary john kirby revealed the latest assistance from the u.s. and announced other countries were providing ukraine with entire fighter aircraft. >> they have received additional aircraft and aircraft parts to help them, you know, get more aircraft in the air. we certainly have helped with the trans-shipment of additional spare parts that helped with their aircraft needs, but we have not transported whole aircraft. the proof is in the pudding. they now have more fixed wing fighter aircraft than they did two weeks ago. >> kirby insisted the u.s. has
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not provided ukraine with fighter aircraft, though last week, the pentagon did announce it was sending 11 helicopters to aid ukraine's efforts in the war. ukraine's president has been asking nato countries to send his forces fighter jets since the war began. now, a group of ukrainians are appealing directly to the world's wealthiest people. >> whoever you are, a businessman, a specialist, actor or a singer, whatever nationality you are or country you live in, you can help us to stop the terror. buy me a fighter jet. >> this video is being shared across social media with the hashtag buy me a fighter jet. many twitter users have been tagging some of the world's richest people, including elon musk, jeff bezos, and bill gates. the group behind this effort estimates each plane costs about
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$25 million. >> colonel, i wanted to go back to what john kirby said, what admiral kirby said. i remember after the pols had posted up their offer, the suggestion, the migs would be sent, the united states obviously had to say no. but i figured it'd be a matter of time before migs found their way into ukraine, was way or the other. i just didn't want to hear about it. i know you probably didn't want to hear about it. it sounds, if you listen to what kirby says, read between the lines, they're figuring out a way to get migs. they're figuring out a way -- they being nato countries -- figuring out how to get fixed wing aircraft into the country. john said they have more fixed wing aircraft in ukraine today than they did two weeks ago is a
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tell, is it not? >> they're sending spare parts to fix the planes already there. they didn't send planes. the mig-29s in poland, that poland wanted to send, that is 1980s technology. what ukraine needs are f-16s and more advanced fighter jets to take on the russians. i think there is an increasing realization in the biden administration and in nato that they're going to have to provide air defense systems, mid to high level planes, tanks, artillery, if they're going to see this war through to a successful conclusion. look, we have to win this war. vladimir putin cannot be allowed to use his nuclear shield to take over a neighbor. that would be disastrous for the world as a whole. so i think what we're going to see is an increasing flow of weapons into ukraine. but they're starting with spare parts to fix the stuff that's already there.
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>> colonel, there seems to be also a kind of worldwide scramble to try and find the weapons that ukrainians can use fast, that they don't have to be trained on, which they would have to be trained on the f-16s, with the americans talking to the indians. they're even going to afghanistan. of course, there is a stock of soviet-era weaponry and artillery in afghanistan, as well. i mean, what kind of position does this put the united states in, that they're having to go to other countries to say, listen, can you give us your old soviet weaponry stock, then we'll backfill with american stock. is that a complicated diplomatic, military bargain going on, that the united states is getting involved in, and can they source enough of them? >> it is not a complicated military bargain. our equipment is better than the russian equipment. i'm sure plenty of countries would be willing to make the swap. it is a complicated maneuver. india, for one, hasn't backed the sanctions against russia. for it to give now some of his
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weapons to ukraine would put it on the wrong side of moscow. so this is going to be a complicated maneuver. but, you know, we need to give the ukrainians equipment that they can actually use and this they can actually maintain. that tends to be the russian equipment that their military is armed with. >> all right. thank you so much, colonel. it is great to have you with us, as always. we really appreciate it. retired u.s. army colonel peter mansoor, thank you so much. mike barnicle, you asked a question that i know so many americans and, actually, europeans, people across the globe are asking, as they see those women and children, see the men, the elderly trapped underground in mariupol. what can we do? there has to be something we can do, to go in and provide aid, help these people get out. that's really -- >> they're dying in there.
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>> that's really been one of the great frustrations from the beginning of this war. we can get the images on screen, but many nato governments can't go in and do things specifically to help in dire situations like this. without possibly starting world war iii. yet, the images are so compelling, they demand we do something. >> you know, joe, there's no doubt that the biggest lead in this story is the war itself. the fighting of the ukrainian people and the ukrainian army against a relatively better financed and certainly larger russian army. but a close second, as always in war, is the humanity involved. the pictures we're looking at now, women and children captured, literally as i said earlier, on death row in the steel plant in mariupol.
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the question to us as not only just a country, we're not alone in this, but as a western civilization is, do we allow these people to die, to sit there and die? is there nothing we can't do collectively, in concert with nato, with the united nations, with all of the western your european countries and actually global countries, to get these people out, especially the women and children. if we can't do that, then there's something wrong with the way we approach not just war, which is horrendous, but civilization and life itself. here we are, the most wealthy country in the world, and we have a president of the united states, joseph r. biden, who has done remarkable work in pulling this group together, this nato group together. received very little credit for it. a host of criticisms. now, we are at the edge of getting these people to safety, and we can't do it.
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there's just something wrong with this picture. are we that inadequate? >> yeah. you know, willie, there have been two stories that have been running concurrently, that have been running parallel with each other from the beginning of this war. both of them are extraordinarily compelling. one is the complete collapse of the russian army as an effective fighting force. running parallel with that story, which speaks to the pride and the bravery and extraordinary character of the ukrainian people, but running parallel to that are the massive war crimes. the extraordinary humanitarian suffering that those same ukrainian people, the civilians, have been enduring throughout this conflict. >> there's no telling what we'll find someday, eventually, in mariupol. frankly, we haven't even been able to go in there. the media certainly hasn't been able to go in there to the extent it'd like to and see what
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russia has wrought there. president biden vowed at the beginning of this a couple months ago, no american troops would be on the ground in that country, in ukraine. john kirby, admiral kirby, was on our show a few weeks ago reiteraing that, saying no american troops would be on the ground. mike can tell you, and you've heard this, joe, from veterans, special operators, active duty, boy, they'd like the shot at this pathetic russian army right now. let's go into the ground in lviv with foreign correspondent raf sanchez. good morning. what does it look like in ukraine as the offensive begins in the east, and as we get these reports out of mariupol where the regimen is making its last stand and protecting civilians, as well? >> reporter: willie, the russians gave the ukrainian defenders in mariupol until 2:00 p.m. moscow time to surrender. that was about 20 minutes ago. as far as we know, there is no sign of the white flag of
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surrender over that steel plant in mariupol. the commander of one of the marine units inside released a video last night. he said his forces are outnumbered 10 to 1. he said there are hundreds of civilians sheltering in the tunnels there with them. he said he has an enormous number of wounded, but they will fight on. they will not surrender to the russian forces. he did plead with the international community to try to get the russians to agree to some kind of extraction for his troops and the civilians, in which they would go to safety in a third-party country. there is no sign that the russians have any appetite for agreeing to that. they, of course, have those fighters surrounded by concentric rings of their own troops. they're allegedly using bunker-buster bombs against that factory in an effort to flush them out. so it is not clear how much longer they can hold on. but all along this enormous 300-mile front in the east of ukraine, ukraiian forces do
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appear to be holding the line. they say the russians have only broken through in a very small number of areas. the pentagon assesses that despite russia's enormous advantage in numbers, they have now lost a quarter of their overall combat power. in other words, a quarter of their aircraft, their tanks, their artillery, their helicopters, and their ground troops are no longer available for the fight. that is very heartening news for the ukrainian troops trying to hold the line there. they are in desperate need of many things, willie, including artillery, which president biden has promised he will try to get to them. the question is will that artillery arrive in time? will the training arrive in time to actually make a difference on the eastern fronts there? back in mariupol, there is a sliver of good news. the ukrainian government says the russians have agreed to a humanitarian corridor today, which may be an opportunity to get at least some of those women and children out of the remains
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of that city. as we've seen time and time again, the russians agree to these corridors, they renege at the last minute, and the civilians remain trapped inside. willie? >> continuing to choke off the city of food, water, medicine, electricity, and just about everything else. nbc foreign correspondent raf sanchez in lviv, ukraine, again for us this morning. raf, thanks so much. mika? ahead on "morning joe," some russian soldiers have been stealing whatever they can get their hands on. it's helping a ukrainian man track their every move. we'll explain how. plus, the mask mandate for travel is over for now, but the justice department says it could still take action. nbc's tom costello brings us the latest on that. as we go to break, check out this video. we'll tell you off the bat that this woman is okay. the woman in argentina fell off -- >> this sounds like "america's funniest home videos." >> it is so scary. >> oh! >> what is going on? >> she's okay!
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>> what, did she pass out? what was that? >> she was -- as the train was coming, a security camera captured the terrifying moments. you can see the woman faint and fall into the gap between the train and the platform. >> dear lord. >> workers rushed to rescue her and get her to the hospital. this week, see told the tv station, i don't know how i'm still alive. i'm still trying to make sense of it all. >> wow. >> is that her in the wheelchair? >> bad time to faint. >> we'll be right back. >> my god. >> wow. >> there she goes. is here land!♪ ♪i've been everywhere, man.♪ ♪i've been everywhere, man.♪ ♪of travel i've had my share, man.♪ ♪i've been everywhere.♪ ♪♪ ♪ ♪ bonnie boon i'm calling you out. everybody be cool, alright? we've got bonnie right here on a video call.
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it's 7:29. that is an osprey in oxford, massachusetts. >> beautiful. >> yeah. >> trains in argentina. osprey in oxford. why not? the department of justice says it will appeal the court ruling that ended the cdc's
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transportation mask mandate if the cdc says it is still necessary. nbc news correspondent tom costello joins us from outside the union train station in washington. tom, good morning. >> reporter: yeah, you know it well. good morning to you. listen, we see most cities across the country are dropping the mask mandate. washington, d.c., included. new york city, notably, still keeping the mask mandate in place in public transportation areas. we've talked to people in bus stations, train stations, and airports nationwide, and many are saying this mask has kept them healthy for the last two years. they don't want to drop it yet. for better or worse, after 14 months of the federal transportation mask order -- >> feel free to exercise your freedom this morning. >> reporter: the country is at a pandemic turning point. >> prefer not to wear the mask if i don't have to. i'm glad it's dropped. >> reporter: for millions of travelers, it's reason to celebrate. >> i think it's great, yeah. i think everyone is ready.
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it's about time. >> reporter: but others are worried about a new covid variant spreading fast, with 2,600 deaths just last week. >> coronavirus is really spreading, and i just feel safer around people with masks. >> reporter: in houston, transit crews removed their mask up to side sides, while new york remains the largest city holdout, still requiring facial coverings on trains, buses, and taxis. >> we continue to encourage new yorkers to wear a mask if they're in an environment where it is unknown, the status of the persons or individuals they are around. >> reporter: nationally, uber and lyft are dropping the mask. >> i might still wear mine. you know, but if the passengers don't want to wear it, i'm not -- you know, i'm okay with it. >> reporter: the patchwork of changing rules is still causing confusion in some places. in philadelphia, for example, you can fly on a plane unmasked, but in the airport terminal, mask goes back on. take the subway or an uber, mask can come off. grab dinner or do some shopping
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in the city, mask up again. a trump-appointed federal judge struck down the federal mandate ruling it exceeded the cdc's authority. the white house covid response coordinator, dr. ashish jha tweeting that scientists asked for days to make a more data-driven decision. experts remain worried about children under 5 who aren't vx vaccinated. >> is this the precedent we want to set, the cdc can be undermined by a federal judge in florida? is that the precedence here? it is terrible precedence. >> reporter: that's the issue. that's why justice may appeal if the cdc believes the mask mandate is still important. however, justice will likely not go for a stay. the issue here, joe, as you know better than i, being an attorney, they are concerned about precedent. a federal judge in florida could keep the cdc from, in the
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future, enacting public health initiatives in the event of another health emergency or pandemic, joe. >> tom, that is a great point. i want to ask you about the people you talked to in a fasci and what i saw flying into a red state yesterday. you're so right. the thing is, the cdc, if they don't have the authority to do this during a pandemic, when do they have the authority to do it? just the cause, i guess, because i am a lawyer, i think justice should appeal it, despite the fact that, at the end of the day, they may go ahead and continue to waive the mask mandate. but you certainly don't want a single federal judge in florida making that decision for you. i think the appeal makes sense. that said, again, going back to what i saw yesterday, i was shocked by how many masks i saw. i thought a lot of people were going to tear them off and run through the airport free. i will tell you, in a red state,
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i mean, i would say 75% of the people were wearing masks in the airport. about 80% on the plane. it was really surprising. what about you? >> reporter: exactly. now, listen, you know, washington, d.c., of course, is a more mask-friendly city to begin with. you go into any restaurant here, you go into whatever, the mall, the airport, people are more likely to be masked up anyway. yesterday at the airport, i would say only 25%, 30% of the people were without masks. i had a lot of people saying, i haven't even had a cold for the last two years, thanks to the mask. why would i now take a chance when you've still got a covid variant? >> right. >> reporter: if i am going to fly, especially long distances, going to europe, for example, and i'm talking about myself, i'm definitely going to wear the mask. i don't think there is any reason not to. so often, i've gotten off of one of those long haul flights and within a couple of days, i've got the sniffles, a cold, something is going on. i think i'm going to mask up from now on. >> i think, again, it is
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situational. there have been a lot of -- you've done great pieces. i've read a lot of great articles that talk about good time to do it is when you're getting on and off the plane. good time to do it is at the gate when there are crowded people there. it is situational. i agree with you. i had my first flu in two years about a week ago, and i was like, man, i forgot how much i hate that. you know, when you're in confined spaces, and i think you're right, especially if you're flying overseas, the mask makes a ton of sense. nbc's tom costello, as always, thank you so much. really appreciate it. coming up, has social media made america dumb? well, that is a rhetorical question, isn't it? our next guest says it's helped make the last decade of american life, quote, uniquely stupid. that's like someone once called me stunningly superficial. that conversation straight ahead on "morning joe."
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you're it. >> you're it. >> you're it. >> quit-sies. >> you didn't do that. >> can too. >> cannot. >> no erases. >> cannot. >> triple, no erase. >> you can't triple stamp and double stamp, lloyd. you can't triple stamp and double stamp. lloyd, lloyd! >> guys, enough! >> we are all lloyd christmas, my friends. social media made us all lloyd christmas. willie, you know, i got this problem here, like, when it comes to pop culture with mika. i told you, she had not seen the "godfather" movies until recently. is willie there? >> i'm here. >> we've not seen the godfather. after -- >> it's the background. >> i like that.
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it's kind of nice. >> i asked for this. i want to be grayed out today. >> very handsome. i think it is nice. >> what is t.j. doing? >> you lookt.j. is an artist. >> oh. >> wow, i like that. >> wait a minute, i like it a lot. >> there we go. >> oh! >> i like the gray better. >> i like this combination better. >> as i was saying before t.j. did his magical tricks, which i still don't know how he was messing up our show, even when working at cbs, but he was. >> found a way. >> he had a remote over there. anyway, mika, when it comes to social media, she's not "godfather." i played "bohemian rhapsody". >> i do love queen. >> oh, this is a good song. what is this song. >> sweetheart -- >> the unforgivable sin, i
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gasped when she didn't know the difference between "star wars" and "star trek." >> still doesn't. >> mika. >> you guys can't get the time back you've spent doing whatever you both are, okay? >> my boys and i will be watching the "mandalorian. "she'll come and go, oh, oh, is captain kirk coming on? i said, please, can you just leave us? >> talk about an assault on the senses, "dumb and dumber." that was like grating from beginning to end. >> this is my point. >> awful. >> two of the greatest movies of all tame. "casa blanca." you have "citizen kane." you have "wedding crashes" and "dumb and dumber." >> fingernail on a chalkboard from beginning to end. >> i tried to get her to watch both of those. i think i've told you, "wedding crashers," i had an usher say, with the nunchuckses, if you
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can't stop laughing, we have to ask you to leave the theater. i couldn't breathe. mika said she walked out. "dumb and dumber," you'll love this. >> will farrell in the kimono, one of the greatest moments in the history of cinema. if you don't believe that, i can't hear anything else you say. >> you can draw a direct line to -- >> speaking of stupidity. >> i'm serious. >> speaking of all this stupidity right here, our next guest says the country has only gotten worse. jonathan joins us now, a social psychologist at new york university's stern school of business. i apologize for the stupidity of the conversation we just had. >> jonathan, we're helping you out on your thesis. >> this is a sweeping new piece for the "atlantic" entitled "why the last 10 years of american life have been uniquely stupid."
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also with us for this discussion is professor at princeton university, eddie glaude jr. mike barnicle, katty kay still with us, as well. professor, i first want to talk about the impact of social media on this issue that you're talking about. how much has social media and the internet played into the dumbing down of society? >> so it's great you opened with "dumb and dumber," not just because i agree with joe that it is one of the four greatest movies ever made, but because it's about stupid people. it is about individual stupidity. that's not what i'm talking about. if anything, americans are getting smarter, better educated. it is not about stupid people. i'm a social psychologist. i study morality politics and how we are so good at confirming whatever you want to believe in, and it is only our institutions that correct that. it is universities, journalism with good standards. we're smart not because our iq is high but our institutions
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evolved over time and got much better at leading us to truth. until the early 2010s, when something went haywire. first, we saw it on campus around 2014/2015. then it spread into many other domains of life. and it is, i believe, what i argue in the article, is that social media changed between 2009 and 2012. it became not about sharing photos of your kids but about attacking others with chap shots and no context. when that happens, it's as though everybody in the world is issued a dart gun to shoot whoever they want. they mostly shoot the leaders, people in power, people they want to take down. when that happens, people stop dissenting. people stop bringing contrary voices. the organization or institution gets stupid. the point of the essay is social media made us structurally stupid, not individually. >> you actually got an endorsement yesterday, a tweet from jeff bezos. >> i was thrilled about that, yes. >> tweeted your piece. he said this piece is thoughtful, beautifully written, and important. very worth the long read.
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it is. it is going to start a lot of conversation. it already has. it is an extraordinary piece. we were talking about those dart guns and the people who wield the dart guns. how it is a small, loud, often extreme group who spends its time on social media, who picks up on the, you know, easiest way for them to hit at somebody. by the way, sometimes the people they go after deserve to be criticized. they deserve everything they have often times, they don't. how did we get a small group of people wielding power online? >> it is not one small group of people. it is four groups. mark zuckerberg often says, how could it be wrong to give more people more voice? sounds good if you're going to elevate everyone, especially elevate those who don't have voice. back in the early 2010s, we thought social media was going to do that. there was period we thought, this is the best thing for democracy. autocracy can't possibly withstand connected citizens. that reached a pinnacle in
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2011/2012. what happened after that, after social media got much more hyper viralized. it wasn't like that in the early days. once it become more like you can shoot darts, things go viral, once that happened, four groups picked up the guns. four groups used them powerfully. it is the far right, the far left, trolls who are always men, not women, they're always men who enjoy harassing people and get prestige from it or some sort of thrill, and russian agents who have been expert at this. they really kicked in their campaign in 2014. so not that it is mostly their fault at all, i'm just saying, four groups went crazy, shotting us, intimidating people. that's when our institutions got structurally stupid. wasn't like this in 2012. if you talk to students now, it is like they self-censor and are afraid of being ripped to shreds. that's where we are now. >> the piece, "the 10 years of
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american life has been uniquely stupid." can i suggest, the last 10 years of american life have been uniquely dangerous. you mention three components we used to have, that we used to share as a culture, that have been incinerated by what's happened in the last ten years. >> yes. that's right. so if you look at the history of democracy, it's pretty poor. the founding fathers knew that. they designed, they gave us a complicated system, which is a republicdemocratic features. madison designed restraints to slow things down. there is not a big margin for error. to keep a large, diverse, secular country together, because traditional societies use shared gods, shared blood, shared enemies to hold them together, that's easy, but a large, diverse, secular democracy relies on things like high trust, high social capital, shared stories, and strong institutions. those three things are crucial.
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if you go through them, social media is like an acid eating away at all three. shared trust, we can't trust each other, can't trust the institutions. we're afraid to speak. it eats away at shared trust. it eats away at shared institutions. it makes them structurally stupid, as i said. and shared stories. it used to be possible for us to mostly agree that something happened. now, people can construct these micro bubbles of meaning on any crazy conspiracy thing. we can all see it on the other side of the aisle. you can't see that there are people on your side also doing it. >> eddie, first of all, great to see you. it's been too long. i'll let you take it to john in a moment, but, obviously, some of these conspiracy theories, some of these what look like small groups of people cooking things up online can be elevated to the white house, for example. they can be covid conspiracy theories, conspiracy theories about the 2020 election, and can be pushed into the mainstream. >> well, absolutely.
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i think this is an important piece for a number of reasons, willie. and great to see everyone. it's been too long, as you said. >> yeah. >> but i think it is important that we make this a little -- we make the argument a little more nuanced, right? i think there's always been thi this worry about democracies, going back to edmond burke, that, you know, mass will double down, that somehow there will be a danger, that mass democracy, itself, would generate this kind of stupidity in some ways, that every day ordinary folk can't cover themselves, this is a longstanding word. i think jonathan makes a good point about the structural activity about the party and the structural consequences. i am worried about the moral panic around what might be called the digital jack of bits and the work that they are doing. i wanted to press a lit more about what's happening here. this is a question i want to pose to jonathan. that is, who are these far left folk, that shorthand seems to be doing a lot of work.
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are these the people who are arguing for a living wage? are these the folks pushing for criminal justice reform? are these the people who are arguing against, jeff bezos and the billionaires? who are these far left folk who are throwing darts in the way you are suggesting they are throwing from so i love the phrase digital jack of bits. i think that is right. so let's try to be more nuanced about this. we easily think of a single dimention of plik politics, talking the far left, the moderate left, if the far left wants economic moment and equality, is that jack of bit-ism? no, not at all. it's not a straight line. america is composed mostly of fairly moderate people on the left and the right. then they're always in extremists, there have been people who are radicals who want to tear things down. america and the american revolution was a much more pragmatic revolution, unlike the french revolution, very violent.
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so it's the sort of the authortarians on the far right who are attracted to even the neo-nazi-ism and millibars. those are an incredible danger to our country. on the far left, it's not people based on their policies, it's people who think they're so shore they're right, they don't care about due process. they will not listen to counter-evidence. if your group destroys the centers, you usually will be wrong in whatever policy you want. if you are aggressive about enforcing it, that's what makes the left-leaning institution like a university stupid. we start doing things we know don't work. we have to do them we feel because of the public praeb. it's not the positions and any degree of intimidation, harassment and huh milltation of people publicly is justified because you are in the right. >> yeah. let's talk about jonathan,
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because mika and i have heard. i am sure you have, so many of us have heard not only students at universities, but students in high schools, we've heard parents of kids who go into youths, that they just can't speak up in class anymore. we talked about this a good bit on the show. you look at polls and the self censorship of moderates, liberals on college universities is extremely high. the sort of things that we could say when we were in college that may have been dumb, may have been off kilter, we would have that debate. you would leave the class smarter than you entered the class. that, there is just a feeling now because of social media again from most of the students
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we are talking about come from families that voted for joe biden and would, you know, they will be voting for democrats, most likely when they graduate from college but even they say, not just in the lead institution and every institution, that they sit back and they're quit in the class. let me just say, it's a guy that went to two southern state schools, this is not new, it's amplified. there were times i would say conservative things. i'd cite conservative judicial rulings and be booed in my class and i would say, hey, this is supreme court precedent. but i was fine with that. the professors would say, you are right. now on social media, you say something in class that the digital, whether it's on the right or the left, that they oppose, suddenly, these students say my social life's over. >> that's right. so i think the way that i think about it, so, you know, i have been a professor since 1995. i love being a professor.
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i love universities and you know we trace our heritage back to plato's academy and police officers sitting around in a circle drink and talking. that's the way it was until 2014? obviously, i am making it seem more bowl. there are all these problems. but it was a feeling like in the classroom, we are doing classroom things. we are learning together. there was a sense that there were institutions and places that were separate from other places and i believe what social media did when it got hyperviralized is it dissolved all the walls between everything. so now everything is twitter. everything is the same and some of the, most of the students are lovely. most of the students want to learn. but they're in class. and some students. a lot are on phones, they're so connected to their social media circles, they're not present. and so if you don't have everybody at least on same page in class now, talking about ideas and some people are doing their politics, their activism, their social reputation maintenance, you total
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incoherence. that's what it felt like. things dissolved. >> wow. >> that's why when i was looking for metaphor for this essay, i re-read the tower of babel story, a short story in genesis. it has this key line. it nailed it perfectly. god sees the humans building the city and this tower and there is hum humer is. he says let us go down an confound their language so they will not understand each other. that's when i felt you're iraq eureka. i was writing about binary and what is new since 2014, it's not left versus right. it's everyone against everyone and especially within groups. you have 11 billion analysts at the american business institute said the culture is no longer the left and right shooting at
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each other. each retreating to their own spaces where they fight over things about the other side that the other side doesn't know are real. like this whole grooming thing. inside has its issues about what the other side is doing. they're also all yelling at each other. it's the feeling if you arebabeg is going great, the next day everything is rubble and you can't even talk to your neighbors. that's what i think has happened to us. >> okay. jonathan. can i. >> reporter: go ahead. >> can i get the solution, can i get what we get out of this? >> sure. so, there are, so, first there are three sort of baskets of reforms that we have to do. if we have this asset eating away at our institutions, there's three things we have to do. someone we have to strengthen our institutions so each one is a huge amount of polarization and political violence they can still function. so i think it's crazy we have
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closed partisan primaries. that's the worst part of our system, so our legislators are responding not to the constituents but the extremists who vote in the primary a. voter of things like that to insulate our legislators, our judges from political pressures. that's one basket. the second basket is reforms to social media, to make it less toxic. facebook is able to reduce polarization, the "wall street journal" reported on this they are able to reduce the degree which they are polarizing. they can adjust it. everything focuses on content moderation. everythinger everyone says you needlessregulation, it's the content. that post going to million% of people in a day. that itself problem. so there is all kind of changes we need to make to the ake architecture that's not so flammable and explosive. that's what's doing us in. the third bask of reforms is our
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kids are messed up by this. they were the canaries in the coal mine. they started getting depressed, anxious, suicidal and self harming. they go up around 2013. we have to take care of them. we have been denying them the chance to play, have conflicts. they get phones around 4th, 5th grade. those are basically experience blockers. they need all this experience, once they're on the phone with social media, that's it. they're gone. that will be most of their experience the rest of their life. we have to change with we do to kids. >> you know, i think part of what we have to do is take seriously the in fact that we are struggling with who we will be as a country. from 2014 and before we were struggling we are not a white sex gepderred men are the only people that matter. there has been an argument, a fight on the ground, politically, that has been happening over the course of the
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2014, over the course and media has accelerated, has played a role, social media, but we have to deal with the concrete material fact that we are trying to figure out who we are as a diverse nation in this country. i think we need to grapple with that a little more directly. >> eddie, can't we do that if we can have the conversations back and forth without people being run out of college classes or all college campuses? i know you and i differ. i will say, we agree on so many things. but the second we bring this up, it's like you and i are from different planets. why can't we have a discussion about the fact that social media is actually stopping a fair and open debate inside classrooms like yours and inside classrooms like the ones i went to, at the university of alabama and florida, students are afraid to speak their mind. they think their social life will be destroyed. can you not admit that happens?
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>> it happens. i can admit that. i am trying to think about, to temper the way in which it's being mobilized. joe. i don't think the classroom that jonathan just described has not been my classroom since 1996. i have been teaching at princeton for 20 years and the classroom he just described not my classroom. maybe because i teach average-american studies. part of what i suggest here is the kind of moral panic generated around the so-called -- it's exaggerated in interesting sorts of ways given the other factors that are happening in the country. let me just be very, very clear. i agree that there is a problem with the way in which we engage each other in this country. i believe there is a serious problem with our sense of connectedness, our relation to each other. but i don't know if this particular aspect is the problem. that's where we disagree.
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>> thanks so i completely agree with eddie, we need that conversation. we have long been having that conversation. i was born in 1963. i was always on the left. my perception is that that conversation was actually going quite well, decade by decade, things were getting better, more inclusive, less racist, there was incredible progress, by so many groups until around 2014. now i think things are getting worse. the reason i think is he's right, we need to have that conversation. where are we going to have it? in our homes, our schools in our companies by the water cooler, where are we going to have it, there or have it in the center of the german coliseum and demanding blood. that's what happened after 2014, now twitter and facebook are a ub lick square. these conversations take place in the center of the coliseum. we won't have a productive
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conversation. >> this has been a productive conversation. the new piece from the atlantic is entitled why the past ten years of american life have been uniquely stupid. jonathan, thank you. eddie, thank you as well. so good to see you. >> eddie come back again. soon. >> we got different types of stories to cover right now, including the new developments now out of ukraine. russia's latest deadline for ukrainian troops holding out in mariupol to given has expired. still no sign of surrender. we have video of the last remainingcismians in mar poll. women and children inside a steel plant sheltering in an underground system of tunnels. next to ukrainian soldiers. a commander in the plant says his forces are outnumbered and they may only have hours to live. there may be some encouraging news to report soon out of mar poll, word of a possible
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humanitarian corridor. joining us nbc news correspondent erin mclaughlin live from bucha, ukraine. erin, what can you tell us? >> reporter: hey, mika, they're surveying the damage of the results of intense fighting here between ukrainian and russians forces, they're still burying the dead, seven fresh graves today, an ominous warning to many here, what could possibly be unfolding there in mariupol? >> in the battered ports, a last stand at the old steel plant. the military saying hundreds of civilians remain trapped inside. the ukrainian commander pleading with the international community for help. meanwhile, outside the plant, more desperation. cut off by russian forces for weeks. people here say, they use the bakes to survive. how can we live without water, this woman says?
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it's horrible. the day after his 7th birthday, he insisted the family visit the bombed out home for his annual family portrait. this is my house, thanks to the dangers in russia for doing this, he says, sar castically. how do you make sense of this to a 7-year-old? >> i told him, don't worry, we will have a house better than this one, his mom says. in the east the battle for donbas rains on, this as more help is on the way for ukraine. president biden is expected to send more military aid, similar to the $800 million package announced last week, including heavy artillery according to two u.s. officials. ukrainians insist that military support is needed to stop atrocities like the horror in bucha. a 33-year-old marina was buried today. her husband says she died from stress and starvation sheltering in their basement. the only place they can hide
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from the russian assault. every day her six-year-old son vlad chris itted her make-shift grave in the back yard. today he mourned at home. the reality of his mom's final resting spot too much for him to bear. he tells us he remembers what happened to her and how ukrainian soldiers saved them from the russians. he says ukraine is strong. you are very strong. this week russian president vladimir putin awarded honorary titles to the russian brigade operating here in bucha, praising them for their courage. ukrainian officials and members of the international community accuse that same brigade of war crimes. crimes that are still being investigated. mika. >> nbc news correspondent erin mclaughlin in bucha.
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thank you very much for that report. a ukrainian man is tracking the movements of russian sentence through his stolen am interpod. he says the air pods were taken from his home near kiev when russian forces were trying to take the capital since then, he has followed the redeployment through apple's find my feature. he saw they were in belarus. last week they were back in russia where a city where troops were gathering ahead an assault on donbas. the richest 10% in russia i don't know 87% of the country's wealth. it's one of the most unequal of all the world's major commission. that's one reason why russian troops in ukraine are stealing everything from work machines to laptops, to ear pods. we'll look at the impoverished conditions in much of russia and the lives the kremlin tells to cover it up.
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but first to give more details, the ukrainian defense ministry said in one instance, russian troops opened a market in belarus to sell these goods, arranging a specialized bizarre. the ministry says the troops have tried to transport truck loads of stolen goods back to russia. russian president vladimir putin's former chief economic adviser said in a recent interview, the number of russians living in poverty will probably double or triple in the wake of the war and that putin's territorial and imperial ambitions are more important than anything else to him, including the livelihoods of the russian people. the institute of finance predicts russia's economy will shrink 15% this year, wiping out 15 years of growth. let's bring in founding partner
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and washington correspondent for the media venture julia, jofee. between looting goods and getting a sense of the realities of some of these sanctions they may be settling in. are russians getting more information of what's been on by virtue of their life styles and the difference what we are seeing and hearing about in ukraine? >> reporter: you know, mika, i worry that they're not. i worry they're getting less and less and less information. and that they're you know their only source of information is what the government tells them. unless they continue to take the extra steps necessary to find information by turning on vpns on their phones and computers, again, that will generally be younger people already more computer savvy who want to seek out information because they
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don't believe what they are seeing on tv. but what they are going to be hearing from the television is what they have been hearing is that the sanctions aren't russia's fault, they're the west's fault. that's who they should blame for their worsening lifestyle. that this is just another way the west is trying to ruin russia, bring it to its knees and force it to collapse. so that's what i they lot of people will come to believe unfortunately. >> yeah, julia. when i was in college, a professor went to the soviet union, it was sort of a big deal, oh, when the professor came back, we said, what was it like? because it was the height of the cold war and the professor said, my god, it was a third world country with nuclear weapons. it was so depression and there was no geno-ism there.
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he said it was miserable compared to american standards and then fast forward we're hearing these reports of russian soldiers going into ukrainian households and being shocked by what they find. you know, we got used to hearing the story from soviet days. but i would never think that ukraine would play west berlin in 2022. that just seems extraordinarily depressing. perhaps the worst indictment of vladimir putin's 20-year reign. >> yeah. this is for all of the economic growth that russia has seen under clad clad as mika mentioned, the redistribution of that wealth has been incredibly equal. in some ways russia looks like a third world community before the war in a sense you have
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fabulously rich people who live, you know, who are wealthy because they are in control of the extraction economy. oil bar renz or diamond bar renz or nickel barrens and people who live off the government, off the state and extractive. they kind of work like an extortion racket. but it's the government. the rest of the pyeongchanglation lives on nothing. you are having, there are reports coming out of russia that, for example, the ethnic enclave. it is heavily dominated by an ethnic indigenous minority. they are seeing the most casualties in this war. there was a mother of a fallen soldier who wanted to be a teacher and a coach in a local school, where he was making 7,000 rubles a month, that's less than $100 a month. he joined the military and got
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50,000 rubles a month. so honestly, this is a familiar dynamic we saw in the u.s., for example, the wars in iraq and afghanistan they were not largely by ethnic minorities and people who had no other economic opportunities and, therefore, joined the military because it was one of the few available social ladders or social elevators available to them. that's what's happening in russia as well. >> it appears more american help is on the way, the biden administration is preparing another 8 million aid package for ukraine this week the package is expected to be similar in size to the $800 million one announced last week. but this new package is expected to include more weapons and tens of thousands more artillery rounds, which will be critical to the fighting if you crane's east. >> will you be sending more artillery to ukraine?
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>> yes. >> we're doing the best we can to focus on, a, the kind of capabilities we know they need and they say they want and are using. b, secondary to that, to try to get them systems that they don't need a lot of start-up time for, that they can put in the field almost immediately. >> joining us now the u.s. under secretary for political affairs ambassador victoria newland, madam, ambassador, thanks for being with us. the aid package is not your turf, i will ask you about diplomacy. is there anything going on behind the scenes? how can russia, vladimir putin be trusted in the least to actually negotiate some kind of an end to this war? >> well, good to be with you this morning. both russia and ukraines are remaining at the negotiating table. now not in person but by video. but by all accounts, it is highly cynical on putin's side. he is insisting on virtual
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capitulation by ukraine. the ukrainians made clear they are going to fight for every inch of their country as that i are fighting for all of our freedom in the face of this brutal dictator. but the talks are continuing. they're just not getting very far. >> from the american's side what more pressure can be placed upon putin's regime, obviously, the sanctions have had an impact. mika was telling us about the craitor of the economy there. it doesn't steam to deter vladimir putin who has a larger fantasy dream at mind here. so what else is on the table at stake? >> you are absolutely right. putin doesn't care about his people. he has been in power in 20 years, the countryside has gotten poorer and poorer. one of your reports made clear these russian soldiers who largely come from the hinterlands of russia, the rust belt, are showing up in ukrainian villages and finding you know full grocery stores and
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full pharmacies. they can't believe the quality of life is so much better in ukraine. this is the result of the fact that putin doesn't care about his own people. that said, there are two things we will continue to do, first, to provide the kind of weapons that the ukrainians need for this fight as you heard kirby say as the fight changes, the types of weapons we need to get them along with our allies have to change. we are making those adjustments as they speak to us about what they need. but we also have to continue to up the pressure on putin and on russia and on the richest russians so that they will pressure putin and you know i do believe that the sanctions are beginning to be better understood by the russian people. none of the difficulties that they have been having, whether it's getting flights out of the country, whether it's getting mortgage rates and interest rates anybody can afford, whether it's profiting western products or technology on the shelves of their stores were a problem before the war in
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ukraine. not to mention the thousands and thousands of russian body bags that will start coming home. >> to your point that 2nd newland raised that vladimir putin cares very little about the russian people. vladimir putin sitting isolated, paranoid, insecure in moscow, what would lead us to believe, julia, that he would negotiate anything short of a peace agreement right now? is he thinking this is his world he has created around himself? >> i think ambassador newland has, yes. >> how are you? will. >> hi. >> reporter: go ahead, julia. >> i think ambassador newland has it exactly right. you know russia under putin has been in the kind of the old russian soviet tradition, where
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the state doesn't exist to serve the people. the people exist to serve the state. and they are basically just bodies that are at the service of the government. the government can do what they want with him. as we see in ukraine, they are becoming cannon fodder for putin's imperialistic aims. i do think that you know from putin's perspective, it's really only been less than eight weeks into the war. and he has set out very extreme aims that he wants to achieve in ukraine and you have people on state media and very publicly pushing him to say that, you know, do not back down from these ace. we want nothing short of total victory over ukraine. we want to dismantle ukraine and the idea of a separate ukrainian nationality from people's minds and just from reality. so, it's hard to imagine that he
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stops just at donbas or he wants to goempblt i think it's still unfortunately too soon for him to feel like he's lost this war, that he needs to negotiate or cede anything. >> ambassador newland, a final question for you. will there be a high-level visit, u.s. visit to ukraine and also i can't stop thinking about the people in the steel factory in mar poll and what will become of them. is there no hope? >> well, first on a visit, we are continuing to look at what makes sense. i don't have anything to announce today. you can understand that the ukrainians are fighting a very, very hot war and it's important that our support been directly in response to what they need to fight that war. that said, we are talking to ukrainian leaders at every level every day to assess what they need.
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listen, with regard to the situation in mariupol, it is just speaks to the incredible brutality of this war that putin is prosecuting, to the fact that he does not care about human life. she turning ukraine into rubble and he is turning russia into a prison. and this is all about his imperial ambition. i will say to julia's point, though, that he's already had to scale back his war aims. he told his commanders to be in kiev in five days and they failed in kiev, so, you know, ukrainian bravery, ukrainian courage, on display in mariupol. but also on display all over ukraine's east with the support of u.s. and our allies. they are standing tall for their own freedom but also for all of our freedom. >> under secretary, ambassador victorian newland, thank you,
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julia ioffe. still ahead, national security analyst is back at the big board. he'll break down russia's latest wave of attacks in eastern ukraine as fighters in mariupol refuse to surrender. also ahead an unprecedented move from wimbledon. we'll tell you the about who won't be allowed at the all england club this summer and why. plus ron desantis takes his fight with diz in toy the florida legislature. democrats say the battle will hurt taxpayers more than the company. also ahead. >> i want every child in this state to feel seen, heard and supported, not marginalized and targeted because they are not straight, white and christian. we cannot let hateful people tell you otherwise to scapegoat and deflect from the fact that they are not doing anything to fix the real issues that impact people's lives. >> and by the way, for those of
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you that didn't see the entire speech, she gave her background how she was a straight, white, christian mom and wife and that her christianity, her faith in jesus christ required her to show compassion to people who may not be just like her, straight, white and christian. >> the whole thing -- >> it's incredible, michigan state senator, she will join us on the heels of that firing response to a fiery e-mail from one of her colleagues. i will say, we had some discussion about russians that are being made to fight, poor russians made to fight and there is a suggestion during the iraq war that we put minorities in harm's way, disproportionately.
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the number as i found through the philadelphia enquirer and others say that black americans accounted for just 9% of fatalities. i say just, that's lower than the 15% or so that were enlisted in combat regimens and also, of course, lower than the percentage that black americans make up in america, which is 13, 14%. you are watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. u are watch. we'll be right back. ery road in♪ ♪ i've been everywhere, man. ♪ ♪ i've been everywhere, man. ♪ ♪ crossed the desert's bare, man. ♪ ♪ i've breathed the mountain air, man. ♪ ♪ of travel i've had my share, man. ♪ ♪ i've been everywhere. ♪ ♪ i've been to: pittsburgh, parkersburg, ♪ ♪ gravelbourg, colorado, ♪ ♪ ellensburg, cedar city, dodge city, what a pity. ♪ ♪ i've been everywhere, man. ♪ ♪ i've been everywhere, man. ♪
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. wimbledon officials are banning russian players because of the war if you crane. the ban of the all england club would make the third grand slam of the season, the first tennis event to restrict individual
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athletes from competing. four russian men are ranked in the top 30 on the atp to you, including medvedev. they include five russian women in the top 40. wimbledon is scheduled to begin, as always, in late june. katty kay, what's the feeling in the uk about the decision? we seen others like it in sporting events. we seen strange decisions where a russian pianist is banned from performing in a concert hall in europe. does that add up for you? >> reporter: look, i think it should be done on a case-py-case basis. there is a risk if you banning russians wholesale, russian businesses and russian cultural people wholesale, some of whom by the way have been critical of putin and the invasion of ukraine, then you pla i into a narrative this is a western war against russia and this is actually and we've heard putin say this, recently, that russia
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is the victim. russia is under attack by the west. it's all just a plot by the west to try and undermine russian stream e supremacy around world. so you have to be wary of that. if these players are still living in russia and still based in russia, the chances, are we seen the poll numbers or the situation in russia, they're still supportive of putin and the regime and what's happening in ukraine. on those cases you can make the case if you are gentleman to have sanctions against russia and you want to hit the russian public where it hurt, this is a point of pride for russians they have these cultural ambassadors and sporting ambassadors around the world. then have you an impact by saying, listen, if you still support putin and the invasion, you can not play on the international circuits you can't play at wimbledon. >> jonathan, i agree with catty, it's a case-by case invasion. you saw you had a top russian
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player in a dubai tournament and he wrote on the camera something like just say no to war. so if you have russian ambassadors coming to wimbledon and there is a possibility for them to actually speak out against the war as again we saw if dubai, don't you think it should be a case-by-case basis or you are feeding into vladimir putin's propaganda taking anti-russian stances everywhere? >> i couldn't agree more it need to be a case-by-cases, we are showing players, super star players, ovechkin, he's russian and at least until recently, a personal friend of vladimir putin's. he was when the invasion began said he certainly didn't support any sort of war has kept his mouth shut about the topic since. most of the other russian players in the leak have
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followed his lead. the other factor about why some russians are maybe based here in the states. part of the year, not all of it, might will or elsewhere in europe might be reluctant to speak out too much. some still have family back home. there is a fear if they were to speak out against the russian invasion, something could happen to the family in russia. >> coming up, ron desantis takes his fight with disney to the florida legislature. what it could mean for millions of voters in florida. next on "morning joe." florida next on "morning joe." ♪ limu emu ♪ and doug. ♪ harp plays ♪ only two things are forever: love and liberty mutual customizing your car insurance, so you only pay for what you need. (emu squawks) if anyone objects to this marriage, speak now or forever hold your peace. (emu squawks) (the crowd gasps) no, kevin, no! not today.
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. florida's republican governor ron desantis is escalating his battle with disney. the company was vocal in its opposition to florida's new controversial parental rights in
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education law. which says teachers cannot hold the classroom destruction about sexual orientation or gender identity into kindergarten through 3rd grade. >> wondering, which classes were doing that. >> if you got him spoke. >> that's a good way to oppose democrats in response to disney's criticism of the law, desantis asked law makers to strip the company of self governing power. disney has had special status since 1968, essentially giving the company the legal right to operate under its own government if central florida. the move could leave disney on the hook for millions a year in local taxes and with life autonomy over its property. senate democrats in florida say the bill to strip disney of those powers would actually come at a massive cost to taxpayers
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near the park. florida leader said two counties would have to peck up nearly a billion dollar in debt. >> a billion dollars. >> that tax bill could amount to thousands of dollars her household. >> for nbc news, mark, i'm not exactly sure what's going on with these florida politician. rick scott, he proposes a bill that's going to raise taxes on working and middle class americans and now you got ron desantis, he, first of all for you and me, you followed florida politics a long time. it's bizarre for politicians to be going after disney, also, he is doing it in a way that can end up costing taxpayers millions of dollars. >> reporter: i think first of all i should start off saying i was wrong, oh, i said, they're not going over disney's special district that i are, i flew town tallahassee. i got off the plane, when i got
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off the plane, i looked at the expanded call for the legislative session they're calling redistricting on se san tis' maps. i don't know who to believe here. the reality is disney's got a lot of property that does not get taxed because they're essentially their own government so that is kind of a fat cash cow for local governments in orange and osceola to tax. but to your point, to senator gary farmer's point, to disney's point, they do have a lot of bond debt. if you dissolve that and taxpayers wind up assuming that, how does that get paid for? this is a part of the problem of deciding legislation on the fly and legislation in revenge. i do think that desantis and company know that, however, understand that built into the bill that will probably be voted out of the legislature in a record time tomorrow is the fact that this special taxing district, if it goes away, it's the reading creek improvement,
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actually, it goes away in june of 2023, so that gives an entire year for them to make amends or decide, you know what, we don't want to do this or for disney to grovel or whatever. understand in the past, democrats didn't like the reedy creek district. they thought it was a boondoggle. a lot of people criticize, carl hiason the novelist, the original florida man, he had written an entire book crashing disney. i talked to carl yesterday, i don't know if i can say what he was saying. one of the problems with this dispute between desantis and disney is you don't know who to root against more, desantis or disney. so that's his position. and it's a complicated one and again it's probably not one that you'd want to decide very quickly in two days. that's why legislators are going through the performance aspect of it, we will take this away,
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the reality is there is a year to consider it, sober up. >> it's so informative. everything is so informative. it's crazy. so, what i guess i don't understand, here is desantis. it's performative politics, it's like donald trump majored in performative politics. but in this case, in the state of florida, at least, you know, dez my has been at the center not just politically but culturally and just about every other pay, there is this massive economic enjoy for 50 years now and i understand that there is a pitched twitter battle. i understand the extremes on both sides are like fighting this out. but i can tell you, like for me, and you know this, people in my neighborhood, for kids that go to my children's school, for
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millions and millions of floridians, disney is still disney. the magic kingdom is still the magic kingdom. does ron desantis really want to do this, to gain a couple of cheap political points on twitter? that's not a rhetorical question. it doesn't really make good political sense. because i can tell you even in the most conservative areas of florida, kids and parents still love disney. >> well, so far, desantis has shown a knack for turning lots of fights into lots of small dollar donations. maybe it's not worth the twitter fight. it's worth money. he's raised more than $100 million for his re-election. he may not be able to spend all that money in december. on the performative stuff, it seems profitable for him from a campaign perspective. how long is this going to last in i don't know, as i said, this
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is going to possibly last for another year. where this goes from here, considering i was drastically wrong about him, i'm not going to predict what's going to happen in the future. >> nbc news' mark kaput to, thank you very much. coming up, netflix needs to you stop shearing your password, the streaming giant saw a huge drop on wall street matching its drop in subscribers. what it means for the platform and all the others ahead in business. plus, remember governor greg abbott's truck inspect plan. >> it wasn't really good. >> it was criticized by other republicans for causing long delays and more importantly economic harm. he backed down. but now says he might do it again. >> he protects his economy again. >> morning papers are ahead on "morning joe." >> morning papers are ahead on "morning joe." claire could onle enjoying chocolate cake. now, she can have her cake and eat it too. nexium 24hr stops acid
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welcome back. our next guest lit up social media. a michigan law maker took to the floor of the state senator to defend herself against a completely unfound allegation from another legislator she wants to groom and sexualize kindergartners. >> good lord. >> misinterpreted issues of critical race theories surrounding the lbgtq community. well, she had heard enough and not back. we'll talk to her live in just a few minutes. but first, her remarks yesterday. >> thank you, mr. president. i didn't expect to wake up yesterday to the news that the senator from the 22nd district had overnight accused me by name
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of grooming and sexualizing children in an e-mail fundraising for herself. so i sat on it for a while wondering, why me? and then i realized, because i am the biggest threat to your hollow, hateful scheme. because you can't claim that you were targeting marginalized kids in the name of quote parental rights if another parent is standing up to say no so then what? then you dehumanize and marginalize me. you say i am one of them up you say she's a groomer. she supports ped fellia. she wants children to believe they were responsible for slavery and feel bad about themselves because they're white. well, here's a little background who i really am. growing up, my family was very ac it. iive in our church. i sang in the choir. my mom taught ccd. one day the priest said she was not living up to the church's
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expectations and she was disappointed. she was told it was because she was divorced and the priest didn't see her at mass every sunday. so where was my mom on sundays? she was at the soup kitchen with me, my mom taught me at a very young age that visionity and faith was about being a part of a community, recognizing our privilege and blessings and doing service to others especially people marginalized targeted and who had less often unfairly. i learned that service was far more important than performative nonsense be pentagon seen in the same pew or writing christian in your twitter bioand using that as a shield to target already marginalized people. i stand on the shoulders of father ted hesburg, the long-time president of notre dame active in the civil rights movement. who recognized his power and privilege as a faith leader and
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head of a well-respected institution and saw black people in this country being targeted and discriminated against and beat everyone and reached out with martin luther king, jr., when he was risky got you. to offer protection and service and alliship to try to right the wrongs and fix injustice in the world. so who am i? i am a straight white christian married suburban mom who knows that the very notion that learning about slavery or red lining or systemic racism somehow means that children are being taught to feel bad or hate themselves because they are white is absolute nonsense. no child alive today is responsible for slavery. no one in this room is responsible for slavery. but each and every single one of us bears responsibility for righting the next chapter of history. each and every single one of us
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decides what happens next and how we respond to history and the world around us. we are not responsible for the past. we also cannot change the past. we can't pretend that it didn't happen or deny people their very right to exist. i am a straight white christian married suburban mom. i want my daughter to know that she is loved, supported and seen for whoever she becomes. i want her to be curious, empathetic and kind. people who are different are not the reason that our roads are in bad shape after decades of disinvestment or that health care costs are too high or that teachers are leaving the profession. i want every child in this state to feel seen, heard, and supported, not marginalized and targeted because they are not straight, white, and christian. we cannot let hateful people tell you otherwise to scapegoat and deflect from the fact that they are not doing anything to
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fix the real issues that impact people's lives. and i know that hate will only win if people like me stand by and let it happen. so i want to be very clear right now, call me whatever you want, i hope you brought in a few dollars. i hope it made you sleep good last night. i know who i am. i know what faith and service means and what it calls for in this moment. we will not let hate win. >> that's michigan state senator mallory mcmorrow yesterday morning, and she joins us live after a quick break. "morning joe" is coming right back. ng joe" is coming right back before nexium 24hr, anna could only imagine a comfortable night's sleep
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and i'm able to balance better. - encour contains pure german creatine for strength, energy and focus. available for just $35.99 a month at i am the biggest threat to your hollow, hateful scheme because you can't claim that you are targeting marginalized kids in the name of quote parental rights if another parent is
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standing up to say no. so then what? then you dehumanize and marginalize me. you say that i'm one of them. you say she's a groomer. she supported pedophilia. she wants children to believe that they were responsible for slavery and to feel bad about themselves because they're white. people who are different are not the reason that our roads are in bad shape after decades of disinvestment or that health care costs are too high or that teachers are leaving the profession. we cannot let hateful people tell you otherwise to scapegoat and deflect from the fact that they are not doing anything to fix the real issues that impact people's lives. and i know that hate will only win if people like me stand by and let it happen. >> michigan state senator mallory mcmorrow responding to a smear by a republican colleague
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in a wild fundraising e-mail. senator mcmorrow was accused of being quote outraged that she can't groom and sexualize kindergartners or teach that 8-year-olds are responsible for slavery. and the michigan state senator mcmorrow joins us now. it's great to have you. >> senator, thank you so much for being with us. >> good morning. >> you know, i've had democrats ask me for years as a former republican what do we do when they say these outrageous things to us. there's no way to respond because the lies are so outrageous. i heard a lot of democrats last night saying, well, the senator just showed us how to respond. talk about that moment leading up to that moment, and whether you had second thoughts before getting before that microphone. >> i didn't have any second thoughts. i mean, we have seen this rising trend of hatred and target of
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gay kids and trans kids and black people, and then they came for me. and it is disgusting and vile. it is a hateful thing for a mother to say about another mother. i am to a 1-year-old, and we have to push back against hateful garbage. >> you know what's so interesting, senator, is that people as you brought up in your speech yesterday, republicans always try to make every opponent "the other." you're the other, oh, you must be this or that, and you so effectively, the speech said that i'm a white christian suburban mom who just happens to believe in compassion, who just happens to believe in all of the things that you said you believe, and it's so funny that
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when i have people coming up to me because oppose donald trump, they'll go, oh, i liked you when you used to be conservative. oh, wait, you mean when i supported nato, and i supported balanced budgets, when i supported gun rights. i just go down the long list, and what's so extraordinary is not only are they performtive in their ideology that it's all about stupid tribalism, they're performative in their christianity. some of the most hateful things i have gotten, i would love you to talk about this, i read a tweet, oh, my god, what poor soul wrote this, and then you'll read their bio, christian, living for the lord, for 47 years. i'm not so sure that's the jesus i read about in the gospels. you see it every day, don't you? >> i do. so i flipped a district when i ran for the first


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