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tv   Way Too Early With Jonathan Lemire  MSNBC  April 25, 2022 2:00am-3:00am PDT

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"meet the press." literally, every day as we speak, this is aid. if you're here in a few hours, this won't be here. it will be on a plane, on its way to some other means, on its way to ukraine. >> we're going to push as hard as we can, as quickly as we can to get them what they need. >> we want to see russian weakened to the degree that it can't do the kinding of things that it has done in the greater ukraine. >> the nation's top diplomat, and top military chief, with the highest level of visit to ukraine since the russian invasion began. meet with president zelenskyy.
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and bringing new promises of support. more on this extraordinary war-time visit, and the latest developments from the battlefield. plus, republican house leader kevin mccarthy does damage control, in the wake of the leaked audio of him expressing just how disgusted he was with donald trump in the wake of january 6th. how the i had north, did how the minority leader is trying to explain away those comments. >> and new talks from the cnbc that twitter may be more susceptible to an elon musk takeover than first thought. good morning. and welcome to "way too early." on this monday, april 25th. i'm jonathan lemire. new overnight, two top u.s. officials make an extraordinary and secretive war-time visit to ukraine. secretary of state antony blinken and defense secretary
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lloyd austin met with president zelenskyy in kyiv yesterday. it was the first high level visit by an american delegation since the start of the russian invasion. details of the trip were kept under wraps until it was well under way. the u.s. government declined to even confirm the meeting had happened until late last night, when the u.s. delegation was safely out of ukraine. this morning, blinken and osteo written back in poland where they discussed the visit, including new promises of military and diplomatic support. >> we had an opportunity to demonstrate directly our strong support, our strong ongoing support, for the ukrainian government, and for the ukrainian people. part of our commitment, going forward, involves a number of things that i was able to share with president zelenskyy yesterday. including the return of american diplomats to ukraine starting next week, including president biden's intent to nominate a new ambassador to ukraine. >> our focus in the meeting was to talk about those things that
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would enable us to win the currents fight, and also build for tomorrow. in terms of our, their ability to win, the first step in winning is believing that you can win. >> the bottom line is this. we don't know how the rest of this war will unfold. but we do know that a sovereign, independent ukraine will be around a lot longer than vladimir putin's on the scene, and our support for ukraine going forward will continue, it will continue until we see final success. >> russian forces have intensified attacks on the steel plant in mariupol, where thousands of ukrainian fighters and civilians have been holed up. speaking to "the new york times" yesterday, the deputy commander of the azov battalion, an ultra-nationalist far right part of the ukrainian national guard, that's defending the factory, said despite continuous russian assault, the plant remains under their control. ut be said his fighters and
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civilians are short on time and they're willing to leave the city if they're guaranteed safe passage. he added, quote, there's nothing left to defend. he also said ukrainian fighters have been inside the sprawling plant since march 1st, noting their stock of ammunition is dwind lin and they are running dangerously low on food and water. the commander appealed to ukrainian leaders to save the lives of his fighters and civilians, saying quote, we can't get out ourselves. not without help. meanwhile, new video released by the battalion shows that the deplorable conditions civilians inside the factory are facing. a toddler is seen wearing diapers made of sell feign. where some women tearfully pleaded quote, please help us, we are tired of these bombings. at least eight people were killed, including a 3-month-old baby, when russian missiles hit an apartment block in the southern port city of odesa. according to a ukrainian news agency, the infant's mother and
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grandmother were also killed in the attack, and 18 others were injured. president zelenskyy condemned the strike and promised to find and punish those responsible. quote, the war started when this baby was one month old, can you imagine what has happened? meanwhile, the city's regional prosecutor's office said it has started a criminal proceeding against russia for quote, a violation of the laws and customs of war, combined with pre-meditated murder. joining us now, live from lviv ukraine, nbc news foreign correspondent raf sanchez. raf, good morning. really glad you're here with us again today. this trip that austin and blinken today, conducted in secret, was rumored for weeks, and my colleagues and i look forward that u.s. officials were considering it, tell us a little bit more about what we learned about, what blinken and austin discussed and the possibility that president biden may follow in their footsteps and visit
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kyiv as well. >> good morning. basically a trip planned in secret, and carried out in secret, the secretary of state, the secretary of defense traveling by train, from poland, without a press pool, into kyiv, a city that just a few weeks ago was surrounded by russian forces, and they spent about three hours with president zelenskyy, in his bunker, inside the presidential palace, and there was one small issue, this top secret trip had in fact been made public by zelenskyy a day before, and a u.s. official essentially saying no hard feelings, that his public announcement did not derail this trip, and this was a trip about symbolism and about substance, and the symbolism is clear, two very senior members of president biden's cabinet going to this war-torn country, this is a gesture of solidarity, not just to the ukrainian government, but also to the ukrainian people, but substance also, secretary blinken says in the next couple of hours, president biden will nominate a new u.s. ambassador
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to ukraine, that will be bridget brink, she is a career diplomat, she's currently the u.s. ambassador to slovakia. and this is significant, jonathan, there has not been a full u.s. ambassador to ukraine since 2019, when marie yovanoch was forced out of her post, and american diplomats will continue to return to ukraine and baby steps and in the relative safety of lviv and to reopen the em dacy in kyiv. and president zelenskyy has wanted this for a long time. . the u.s. is quite far behind the europeans on. >> this the british are reopening their embassy this week but that will be a big moment when the american flag is back up at the embassy in kyiv. finally the secretary is announcing $700 million in military financing. the vast majority of that is going to ukraine. but some of it is also going to
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neighboring eastern european countries that could be under threat from russia, this money is to finance this new fight in the east, in the donbas, it is to pay for advanced anti-aircraft systems and that soviet era weaponry that ukrainian forces are using every day, in the east, as they fight off this russian invasion, secretary blinken said the bottom line here is russia is failing, ukraine is succeeding, and he said a sovereign and independent ukraine will be around a lot longer than vladimir putin. jonathan? >> striking rhetoric about ukraine winning this war. so different than 50 odd days ago when the invasion began. raf, obviously attention there in kyiv but we just saw some horrible disturbing video out of mariupol and that steel plant. give us an update about the ongoing onslaught in eastern ukraine in the donbas. >> yes, jonathan, that situation in mariupol is almost beyond
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imagination. that video you showed, this labyrinth of tunnels underneath what remains of that steel plant, where women and children are sheltering, as vladimir putin's bombs continue to rain down on that facility, and yet, it remains in ukrainian hands, it remains a thorn in the side of russian forces, who really wanted to declare victory in mariupol, and then deploy to that fight in the east, it is not clear how much longer those ukrainian forces can hold out, but jonathan, you and i have said that every day, for weeks now, there are some unconfirmed reports by ukrainian officials that they have been able to drop some supplies to those fighters by helicopter. that would be an audacious feat, if it's true, it does seem ukrainian forces have managed to stockpile an enormous amount of food and ammunition down in the tunnels underneath that factory. the ukrainian government has pleaded with moscow over the weekend, it is orthodox easter here, they pleaded for an easter
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truce, in mariupol, and for some kind of humanitarian corridor to take those troops and civilians out. there seems to be absolutely no appetite for that from the russian perspective. but they still are unable to wrench that steel factory out of the hands of ukrainian forces. and whatever ultimately happens there, those fighters from the azov battalion, from the ukrainian marine unit, they have held up, and an enormous number of russian troops, for a much longer time period than i think any of us would have expected, and those are troops who have not been able to fight in the east where ukrainian lines appear to be holding. jonathan? >> an extraordinary bravery and resistance there. with also some real tactical advantage, as you say. nbc's raf sanchez, thank you very much. still ahead, french president emanuel macron has won an historic second term, but it came amidst surprising far right support of his challenger.
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what it means for the future of europe. plus florida governor ron desantis makes his fight with disney official by signing a new law. those stories and a check of the weather when we come back. i'm mark and i live in vero beach, florida. my wife and i have three children. ruthann and i like to hike. we eat healthy. we exercise. i noticed i wasn't as sharp as i used to be. my wife introduced me to prevagen and so i said "yeah, i'll try it out."
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amid the turmoil of war in europe and for president biden, one less thing to worry about. biden and macron see the world in similar ways. marine le pen supporters devastated. it was an unprecedented showing, for a far right candidate, underscoring deep frustrations across france, over domestic issues like inflation, but they booed the results. and police in paris clashing with protesters angry over the outcome. le pen's path praised by putin weakening her appeal and macron linked a victory for her would be for president trump and brexit. and she vowed not to abandon the french people but the third time they have dismissed her populist parties and choosing a leader whose election slogan was all
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together. florida governor ron desantis has signed a bill that will strip disney of its special self-gorn governing status in the area around the orlando theme parks and it could lead to large property hikes in orange county where the theme parks are located. and it come as disney spoke out about a state law, about gender identity and sexual orientation in some third grade class roorjs the law is set to take effect next year. nbc news has reached out to disney for comment. the alleged fraud of the previous election dominated last night's republican gubernatorial primary debate in georgia. former senator david perdue made his intentions clear right from his opening statement. >> first off, folks, let me be very clear tonight. the election in 2020 was rigged and stolen. all the madness we see from the biden administration, too many
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illegals, rising gas prices, unbelievable inflation, and the brink of war, all of that started right here in georgia, when our governor caved and allowed red cal democrats to -- allowed radical democrats to steal our election. because of that, he has divided our party and cannot win. and what you're going to see tonight unfortunately is an embattled governor, a career politician, 20-year career politician, who is going to parrot his political handlers to distract you away from the fact that he sold us out and cost us the majority in the united states senate. i'm proud to have president trump's endorsement. >> the big lie is part of the campaign platform. the issue took up nearly half of the entire debate between perdue and governor brian kemp. kemp, who fell out of favor with former president trump, when he insisted that 2020 election victory for president biden in the state was fair, he attempted to brand perdue as damaged goods from his loss in the last election to democratic senator
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jon ossoff which gave democrats control of the u.s. senate. georgia's primary election will take place may 24th. kemp is up in the polls. still ahead in sports, an ugly showing by yankee fans, a batter goes berserk in philadelphia, and the highlights from a packed sunday across the nba playoffs. "way too early" is coming right back. is coming right back people with plaque psoriasis, or psoriatic arthritis, are rethinking the choices they make. like the splash they create. the way they exaggerate. or the surprises they initiate. otezla. it's a choice you can make. otezla is not an injection or a cream. it's a pill that treats differently. for psoriasis, you can achieve clearer skin with otezla. for psoriatic arthritis, otezla is proven to reduce joint swelling, tenderness, and pain. and the otezla prescribing information has no requirement for routine lab monitoring. don't use if you're allergic to otezla. otezla can cause serious allergic reactions. it may cause severe diarrhea, nausea, or vomiting.
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the less they'll miss. but even if your teen was vaccinated against meningitis in the past they may be missing vaccination for meningitis b. although uncommon, up to 1 in 5 survivors of meningitis will have long term consequences. now as you're thinking about all the vaccines your teen might need make sure you ask your doctor if your teen is missing meningitis b vaccination. we got him. we got them. >> jose alvarado, with chris paul, as new orleans pelicans likely becoming the surprise of the nba playoffs. the eighth seed out west has tied the series at two, with the top-seeded phoenix suns. phoenix of course without the top scorer devon booker who is
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out indefinitely with a strained hamstring. the pelicans played tough defense in the fourth quarter leading to the win. and upset on the horizon, forcing the suns to go much deeper in the series that they would like. the denver nuggets kept their season alive with a win at home over the golden state warriors. this one was tied down the stretch but the nuggets made the buckets when it mattered. the miami heat meanwhile are just one win away from advancing to the second round of the eastern conference. the heat were led by 36 points, and 10 rebounds, in a blowout win over the atlanta hawks. the milwaukee bucks, they're also one win away from closing out their own series, following yesterday's easy win in chicago. this one, not close. the bucks beat the bulls by 24. tonight, the celtics have a chance to sweep the nets in brooklyn. the, in yankees had extra --
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the new york yankees had extra security in the stands yesterday after an ugly incident in the aftermath of a walk-off win over the cleveland guardians the day before on saturday. the yankees had just tied the game up in the bottom of the ninth when the outfielder miles straw climbed the chain link fence and had some word for yankees fans who guardians say were cheering injury to one of their teammates. new york won the game, next at bat, you just saw it and the yankees fans immediately started throwing beer cans and cups and baseballs and other trash on to the field. it is a dangerous scene there. yankees stars aaron judge and gee giancarlos ran out to the field to ask them to stop. a complete meltdown at the plate, kyle schwarber, that pitch not a strike, he thought
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it was a ball four, and he was right. he slammed down his bat and threw his helmet and tore into the umpire who promptly tossed him from the game. a very, very animated schwarber expressed his frustrations about fernandez's large strike zone making it clear he thought it was bad for both teams. the brewers had complaints all night. i was watching some of this game in the early innings. there were pitches that weren't even close that were being called strike. hernandez has a reputation for being one of the least accurate umpires in the league. he only burnished that yesterday. time for the weather and let's go to michelle grossman for the forecast. how is it looking out there? >> looking pretty good. quiet this week. good morning, jonathan. we are looking at some unsettled weather today in the middle of the country. much better than we have been in the beginning part of april. we are looking at some flood warnings, some flood threats in the middle of the country, where you see the threat, the flood warning, early rain heavy this
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morning, the red, and oranges and yellows indicating where we're seeing the heavier rain and some lightning and thunder early this morning. as we widen out here, you can clearly see where the cold front is stretching from the great lakes to parts of the southern plains, and that's what we're going to be dealing with today. so your rainfall forecast, mostly in the southern plains, that's where we're going to see the highest amounts, up to two inches in some spot, the soil is already so saturated so that's why we're seeing the flood warnings. as we go throughout the rest of the afternoon, isolated winds gusting up to 60 miles an hour, and very low risk for tornadoes, so much quieter this week, and we're going to see that cold front move to the east, that's going to bring that rain from buffalo, new york, all the way to houston, texas, heaviest rain in texas and louisiana, and then by tomorrow, the northeast, the mid atlantic, in on the action, isolated strong storms, in the mid atlantic and we are watching the season, spring very warm, in the southeast, and temperatures in the 80s, and 90s, and 89 degrees in albany, georgia and
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the record is 92. so we're warmer there and cold nert upper midwest. jonathan? >> michelle grossman, hopefully your forecast is more accurate than that umpire. >> thanks for being here and thanks to bill karins, i wasn't here for his last day of the morning shift. he is sleeping in, he won't see this but miss you bill and glad to catch you later on in the day cross the msnbc and nbc networks. still ahead on "way too early," house minority leader ketch mccarthy tries to contain the fallout over leaked audio in the wake of the january 6th capitol attack but he seems to only be muddying the waters more. we will talk about that and the state of the republican party when we come back. k. especially when you have metastatic breast cancer. when your time is threatened, it's hard to invest in your future. until now. kisqali is helping women live longer than ever before when taken with an aromatase inhibitor or fulvestrant... in hr+, her2- metastatic breast cancer.
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welcome back to "way too early," it's monday morning, 5:30 a.m., on the east coast, and 2:30 out west, i'm jonathan lemire. republican house leader kevin mccarthy muddied the waters as he sought to defend himself against allegations of lying about his remarks regarding donald trump. for the new book, "this will not pass," alex burns and jonathan martin "new york times" reporters reported and provided audio of mccarthy saying we urge trump to resign after the january 6th, 2021 capitol ariot. mccarthy called the original -- capitol attack. mccarthy called the original report false but then said this
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after the audio. >> i never asked president trump to resign, we talked about that. let me be very clear. i have never asked the president to resign. so what the book said was not true. i never asked the president to resign. >> there's a phone call, i got asked a question, being asked a question that time period, about the 25th amendment, all i did was walk through, like anybody would, what are the different scenarios that would laem and all we did is put out the different options. >> unsurprisingly that answer mischaracterizes the article. it did not say that he told colleagues he asked trump to resign but he was considering doing so. the reporting confirms that. here is more of that january 10th, 2021 corporation, between mccarthy and, did conversation, between mccarthy and republican leaders as mccarthy expressed disgust about president trump. >> let me be very clear to all of you and i have been very clear to the president, he bears responsibilities for his words
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and actions, no ifs, ands and buts, and i asked him personally, today, does he hold responsibility for what happened? does he feel bad about what happened? and he told me he does have some responsibility for what happened. and he needed to acknowledge that. >> i've had it with this guy. what he's done is sun able. nobody can defend that, and nobody should defend it. >> despite those words, trump told "the wall street journal" on friday that his relationship with mccarthy remains indact because mccarthy changed his stance and he went to mar-a-lago a week or so after trump left office and trump called it quote a big compliment that republicans who criticized him after january 6th would still back him and trump denied he told mccarthy he accepted some responsibility for what happened. mccarthy said he spoke to the public after the audio made public and a person close to the president tells nbc news that mccarthy called trump to
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apologize. the person said this. trump isn't really mad. he's got other things on his mind. he accepts kevin for who he is. it's not like he really trusts him. we should also note trump has not yet endorsed mccarthy's bid to be speaker of the house, if republicans take control of that body this fall. joining us now, white house reporter from the "washington post," our friend tyler pager, tyler, good morning, great to see you. let's start there and get your reaction to the latest in this ongoing saga with kevin mccarthy and donald trump. and certainly seems to be just the latest example of how tight trump's hold is over the republican party. and even as poll numbers show his support waning just slightly. >> absolutely. it's great to be with you this morning, jonathan and you're absolutely right. this is exactly what we're seeing. the president, the former president, continues to be the undisputed leader of the republican party, and his ironclad grip on the leadership of the party, remains intact, and i think this episode with
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kevin mccarthy is further proof that the most important endorsement for members of congress is donald trump. and he can continue to make or break republican candidates and that's why we're seeing this stance with kevin mccarthy and the most important thing for him and his bid for speakership is to ensure that donald trump is going to support him. and i think what's important to note here is that while it seems that the waters have remained calm between mccarthy and trump, it is a long way from now until the midterms, and then if the republicans back the house, a lot can happen, this relationship is not as solid as it projects to be, as you just read, and from a trump spokesman, that the former president understands who mccarthy is, and so this is not a relationship that is rock solid. and i think there are a lot of moments and opportunities in the coming months where we could see more fissures in that relationship and i think
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mccarthy knows that the most important thing is to keep trump satisfied and that's a hard task and there's no guarantee that they will continue to be on solid ground as mccarthy looks for his support ahead of probable speaker elections for the republican party after the midterms. >> republicans see favorable conditions this fall but some so frustrated that they're being forced to relitigate the 2020 election. we saw the david perdue clip. and michelle, you wrote in the last couple of days, about the real life event that the republicans could take over, and at least the house, and perhaps the senate, this fall, and how the white house is getting ready for a potential gop takeover. tell us what is going on. >> this is something that is under way, at the white house, like these preparations to ensure that the white house is prepared to deal with the barrage of gop-led investigations should the house or senate flip into republican control. and i think these are standard preparations that any white house might take given the makeup of congress and the
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reality that republicans are likely to take back the house, if not the senate as well. and i think it reflects the concerns within the white house about how much pressure, an oversight they would be under, should republicans take back the house on pretty sensitive issues, that clus hunter bidens and his business dealings in china and other foreign country, the origins of the covid pandemic, and we have seen republicans try to start to investigate that with an eye toward blaming china and another big topic is the withdrawal from afghanistan and the death of 13 service members there. so inside the white house, they have begun to think about how they would need to restructure various departments, particularly the white house counsel's office, to deal with just the requests and the demands from house investigators, documents, subpoenas, other interviews that republicans might want it. is going to take up a lot of bandwidth inside the white house to deal with the flood of requests, obviously right now, they don't have those same sort of oversight demands giving democrats control, both the
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house and the senate, and so these are conversations that are ongoing at the white house. >> and an important story to be sure. the "washington post" tyler pager, thank you so much for being with us again this morning. still ahead, we're live with cnbc for an early look at what is going to drive the trading day on wall street. plus, twitter is taking another close look at elon musk's takeover bid. "way too early" will be right back with all of that. hat. (vo) verizon is going ultra!
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immigration experience and what life must have been like for them. and as i pass it on to my daughter, it's an important part of understanding who we are. time now for business. and for that, let's bring in cnbc's rosanna lockwood who joins us live from london. great to see you. good morning. wall street is bracing for another tacked week of earnings reports including those from major tech companies, like apple and amazon. give us a quick sense as to what investors should expect. >> yes, i wouldn't be too
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optimistic, unfortunately, happy monday, john, you remember netflix earnings last week were pretty disappointing. it is going to be a bumper week, over 100 companies will be reporting this week, and key to think about is forward guidance, what the companies think will happen to the economy heading forward from here, with the ongoing issues of supply chain disruptions and run-away inflation as well, are they imparting those cost increases on to the consumer? what does it do to their margins? and really when we think about the market today, we're thinking about a lot of red and what was a tough end to the market last week is turning out to be a very tough start today, john. >> obviously, we've all been watching the economic implications of the covid situation in china and now mass testing is under way in beijing as well as the capital city reported a huge spike in covid cases over the weekend. is it possible that beijing could see a similar strict lockdown to the one we saw in
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shanghai? >> that is certainly the theory, as you mentioned, they're testing 3.5 million people in the main business district in beijing at the moment. i've been speaking to a journalist friend who is based in shanghai and he is saying he is not surprised to see people stripping the shelves of food in beijing because when people warned people in shanghai that the lockdown was four days, it is now 25 days and they said no food shortages and there have been, so people in beijing keeping precautions and colleagues in our beijing bureau looking at anecdotal evidence of food coming off the shelves as people prepare for what could be a long lockdown. >> lastly, there's there. we've been talking a lot about elon musk and twitter and yesterday, the social media company and the board of directors reportedly convened to discuss musk's financing plans to potentially buy the social media platform after all. and now we've got reporting from "the new york times" over the last few minutes that say the sale might be close. what's the latest you're
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hearing? >> yes, it's all down to the wire here, and this all came true in about two weeks, a few days ago, or a few weeks ago, musk saying i just want to buy twitter, and $43 billion offer, and we have this back and forth with the twitter board, and the poison pill, saying they would flood the market with shares to try to put him off and musk came back and said i secured $46.5 billion in financing for a tender offer, a stock offer and now the twitter board is considering his offer. they see all of the money there on the table. and this is all according to sources speaking to cnbc. speaking to "the wall street journal." but as you mentioned, it does sound with more reports that something could happen and twitter reporting thursday, and they may be bought before then. >> cnbc, rosanna lockwood, thank you. will humiliation keep vladimir putin away from the negotiating table? new reporting he is just about done in trying to find a
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as the war in ukraine enters its third month, russian president vladimir putin has reportedly lost all interest in diplomatic efforts to end the violence. three people briefed on conversations with putin tell the financial times that after seriously considering peace talks to end the war earlier this month, after a series of military setbacks, the russian president has now given up on those discussions. one person tells the times, quote, putin sincerely believes the nonsense he hears on russian television and wants to win big. the turning point for putin was the sinking of the russia largest war ship in the black sea which reportedly left him humiliated. michael weiss joins us now. let's start there about the idea
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with peace talks, referred with a lot of skepticism all along and we heard from third party reports of other countries and ukrainians and there might have been something there a while ago and we stopped hearing about it. >> in the first week, putin and em saerss were looking for a -- em sarries were looking for a dim diplomatic off-ramp and they could not sack the capital, as had been anticipated, and all of that is now kind of dissipated. in fact, i mean forget about the sinking of the m oskva, today, last night, there was a huge explosion in russia 60 miles from the ukrainian border and all of the analysts i'm talking to, a ukrainian missile struck a fuel depot, inside russian federation territory, two strikes, and this is not the first act of sabotage the ukrainians have conducted allegedly behind enemy lines. this is a guy, he started an
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unprovoked war, he could not achieve his objectives, and re-set the strategy irobjectives and let's take the donbas and more land, connecting russia. and people gung-ho about russian's campaign to annihilate the ukrainian military are basically arguing they don't have enough troop, that the troops they have do not have the military capability to achieve these objectives. so i'm very curious to know what putin thinks he can achieve. and reading that piece, what i took from it is, yes, he believes his own propaganda. he thinks he's winning when he's losing. >> right. >> if you're in the west, you're thinking that is quite beneficial because if we keep arming ukraine, if they press this fight, i mean i think lloyd austin, the defense secretary said, we want to help them win and help them degrade the russian military to such an ex tent they cannot conduct an operation like this again. >> to weaken russia. and there are fights beyond the
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board ners recent weeks. and a look at the next phase, the sense that the donbas is going to be the target now and increased the shelling, and the land invasion really hasn't begun just yet. i reported over the weekend that that may 9th victory day, that the u.s. officials officials doe there's going to be any significant escalation around then. though they think putin might claim a hollow victory, or hollow progress report. how do you see the couple weeks playing out? >> look, the big story here is what ukraine has been pursuing for a long, long time, which is to become a nato-capable military, they're now getting that. they're meeting that objective. the united states, france, italy, for christ's sakes, are sending long-range artillery systems. they're upgrading. used to be the soviet era shells. bulgaria has them, but few
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countries do. now, they're getting 155 millimeter shells, which is the nato standard. they're becoming an almost nato peer army in the midst of this. this is bad news for russia. russia is not just suffering from a manpower shortage. they're also suffering from a firepower shortage. i spoke to the deputy defense minister of ukraine last week. interesting statistic. he said of all the things that have been shot into the air that we have taken down, cruise missiles, aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles, 90% of the guts of these munitions, the electronics, are manufactured in two places. guess where. the united states and europe, right? dual-use electronics. sanctions are going to have a big impact on russia's ability to restock. again, i don't see how they do what they want to do. might have minimal gains, tactical victories here or there, take a settlement. but mariupol has not fallen. the size of the facility is
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actually quite big. it is 4 square miles. i saw somebody do a comparison analysis of all the cities in the world, superimposing this facility on top of it. it is almost the size of a city. if they can't take mariupol, how do they do the land bridge connecting crimea? >> as much as the iranians reinforce the donbas, so will the ukrainians. michael weiss, one of the leading voices on the war. we appreciate you being with us. coming up next on "morning joe," the visit to ukraine, as secretary of state tony blinken and defense secretary lloyd austin visit kyiv and president zelenskyy. we'll discuss the wartime visit with admiral stavridis and barry mccaffrey. plus, the headlines dominating back home. house minority leader mccarthy goes out of his way to make sure he and donald trump are still pals after leaked audio showed
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joining us now to look at axios a.m., congressional reporter for axios, alayna treene. good morning. great to see you again. what is the axios 1 big thing today? >> good morning, jonathan. the 1 big thing today is about secretary blinken and secretary lloyd austin's trip to ukraine, landing in kyiv. they're the first high-level u.s. officials to meet with president zelenskyy in kyiv since the war began. a lot of big announcements out of this meeting which, of course, their visit was cloaked in such secrecy that really no administration officials would even confirm it or discuss it until they landed. but a lot of big announcements out of that meeting. we'll see a return to u.s. diplomacy in ukraine. secretary blinken announced they're going to reopen some
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facilities which, of course, a lot of diplomats in ukraine were evacuated prior to the russian invasion. then also a new u.s. ambassador. if confirmed, it'll be the first u.s. ambassador to ukraine since yovanovitch was ousted in 2019 during the trump administration. a lot of huge news for the u.s. and its efforts in ukraine this week. >> axios also reporting, i believe, that secretary blinken is going to spend some time on capitol hill this week. his first testimony since the war began. what should we expect there? >> yes. so i spoke with a bunch of committee aides and some folks in the administration, and secretary blinken will be testifying publicly on capitol hill tuesday, wednesday, and thursday of this week. yes, you're totally right, as you said, it's his first public appearance on capitol hill since russia invaded ukraine. a lot of members on different committees very eager to grill him on the administration's
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response to ukraine, including the level of assistance, the timing of weapons being sent to ukraine, and the type of weapons that they've been able to share with the country. two of those committee meetings, one on tuesday, will be with senate foreign relations committee, and then on thursday, the house foreign relations committee. of course, those members have been very, very eager to be able to talk to him publicly and hear him answer a lot of their pressing questions. i'm also told that, of course, it is going to go beyond ukraine, given that this is blinken's first time on capitol hill in a while. they're expected to talk about the withdrawal from afghanistan, as well as ask him about taiwan and potential chinese invasion there. so a lot of people on capitol hill very, very eager to have him up there this week. >> this comes as the administration expects to ask congress for more money to send to ukraine and help the efforts there. shifting home, members of the progressive squad as they're
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known, of democratic congresswomen, they think they're going to make some gains among their group in november, during the midterms, despite democrats likely losing the house. tell us more about that. why do they think the more liberal parts of the party will do well in november? >> right. well, it is very difficult. as you see the midterms, of course, they're expected to not keep the house come the fall. a lot of this is because the moderates, of course, are vulnerable. but the progressive wing is definitely potentially seeing a lot of gains. you see a lot of the candidates like in san antonio and austin, texas, very deeply blue district, and you have the democratic nominee. expected gain there. jessica sisner, she forced a more moderate democrat in texas into a primary runoff. we're also seeing this in pennsylvania and tons of states
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across the country, tons of districts, where progressive candidates are looking like they'll have a great chance, regardless of what happens to the majority. so, yeah, looks like the squad could be adding to its ranks. >> yeah, we're seeing it in both parties right now, growing distances between sort of more moderates and those on the extremes. fascinating to watch. alayna treene, thank you for your reporting this morning and for being with us today. thanks to all of you for getting up "way too early" with us on this monday morning. "morning joe" starts right now. literally every day as we speak, this is aid. if you were here in a few hours, this won't be here. it'll be on a plane, on its way to some other means, on its way to ukraine. >> we're going to push as hard as we can, as quickly as we can, to get them what they need. we want to see russia weakened to the degree that it can't do the kinds of things that it has done in


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