Former President Trump forgets who he endorsed in the Ohio Senate Race. Tim Miller and Trip Gabriel join Hayes to discuss how the Ohio primary will test the power of Trumpism. January 6 rioter, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran and retired NYPD officer named Thomas Webster was found guilty on all charges including five felonies. The January 6 Committee is seeking testimony from three GOP lawmakers for their role on the Capitol riot. Over the weekend, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, led a congressional delegation to Ukraine. Politico has obtained an initial draft majority opinion written by Justice Alito showing the Supreme Court striking down Roe versus Wade.
JOY REID, MSNBC HOST: But here`s the thing, Vance has proved to be so unremarkable that even Trump forgot his name.
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DONALD TRUMP, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We`ve endorsed JP, right? JD Mandel and he`s doing great. They`re all doing good.
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REID: So, tomorrow we`ll find out whether in Ohio at least Trump`s political bite is as big as his rather confused bark. And that is tonight`s REIDOUT. ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES" starts now.
CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST: Tonight on all in.
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SEN. TED CRUZ (R-TX) I love Donald Trump. No, no, no, I love Donald Trump more. No, no, no, I love have Donald Trump tattooed on my rear end.
HAYES: The unofficial kickoff for the Midterms is upon us. And does a primary endorsement count if you don`t know the person`s name?
TRUMP: We`ve endorsed JP, right? JD Mandel and he`s doing great.
HAYES: Then, a former member of the NYPD found guilty of assaulting a police officer at the Capitol riot.
Plus, what we`re learning from new invitations from the January 6 Committee to Republican Congressmen, including members reportedly seeking pardons from Trump in the wake of the coup.
And the Pelosi delegation touches down in a war-torn Kyiv to support Ukraine.
REP. NANCY PELOSI (D-CA): Do not be bullied by bullies. If they`re making threats, you cannot back down.
HAYES: Congressman Gregory Meeks was in that delegation and he joins me live when ALL IN starts right now.
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HAYES (on camera): Good evening from New York. I`m Chris Hayes. The first marquee primary race of the year takes place tomorrow. The unofficial start of the midterm season kicking off in the state of Ohio with the race to replace retiring Republican Senator Rob Portman.
He was first elected in 2010 after he worked in the George W. Bush administration. He`s cut from an older Republican cloth. He`s often described as a moderate though I think that`s a little contestable, but he does sometimes break with the party line. Most notably and for our purposes here, he did not support Donald Trump`s attempt of a coup to overturn the results of the 2020 election.
But the men vying to take Portman`s place are a very different story. Hillbilly Elegy author JD Vance, former State Treasurer Josh Mandel, and businessman Mike Gibbons have been trying to out-MAGA each other for months. They have clearly been performing for an audience of one doing everything in their power to suck up to the ex-president in really extremely cringe-inducing fashion.
For example, there was a time that Josh Mandel was apparently so moved by seeing a Trump side sign amid his fury about President Biden`s vaccine requirement that he felt compelled to pull over on the side of the road and film this video.
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JOSH MANDEL (R-OH), SENATE CANDIDATE: I`m driving through Western Ohio. We`re driving through a cornfield here at a town called Logansville, Ohio. My blood is boiling in rage that what I`ve seen from the White House today trampling on our freedom, trampling on our liberty, trampling on what I took an oath to defend when I joined the Marine Corps.
Joe Biden -- I`m not even gonna call him President Biden. He`s not. Joe Biden is creating a constitutional crisis. As I was driving through this cornfield, I literally came across a sign. It was a Trump sign he is my president.
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HAYES: Yes, moving and powerful stuff. One of the most memorably humiliating incidents came when Josh Mandel and Gibbons had to be separated during a campaign forum in March.
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MANDEL: My opponent, Mr. Gibbons, was making billions of dollars by shipping Ohio businesses to China. He took Perfect Fit LLC -- and, Mike, why don`t you explain everyone why you sold it to a company called Shanghai Chanda. That was in 2015 while President Trump was campaigning against China.
MIKE GIBBONS (R-OH), SENATE CANDIDATE: You may not understand this because you`ve never been on --
MANDEL: I understand fully.
GIBBONS: No, you don`t.
MANDEL: I do.
GIBBONS: You`ve never been an investor in your life.
MANDEL: I understand it.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All right, gentlemen.
MANDEL: I`ve worked --
MANDEL: Don`t tell me I haven`t worked. Don`t tell me I haven`t worked.
GIBBONS: You don`t know a squat. You don`t know a squat.
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HAYES: You`re adorable. But it was JD Vance and his embarrassing slew of public reversals, even scrubbing his Twitter feed apologizing for the many times he previously criticized Donald Trump, who actually ended up landing the ex-presidents endorsement. And he was rewarded with this instantly iconic legendary flub from over the weekend.
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TRUMP: By the way, 33 and O in Texas. I was three on endorsements, 33 and O. And you know, if I lost one race, they`ll say Trump was humiliated. That`s what they`re waiting for. They`re waiting for one race. You know, we`ve endorsed Dr. Oz. We`ve endorsed JP, right? JD Mandel and he`s doing great.
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HAYES: Of course, it is as we said, JD Vance and Josh Mandel. He mashed them together. It brought us right back to this other truly classic Trump gaff from the 2018 State of the Union.
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TRUMP: Here tonight is one leader in the effort to defend our country. Homeland Security Investigation Special Agent Celestino Martinez. He goes by DJ and CJ he said call me either one. So we`ll call you CJ.
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HAYES: Call me either one. Special Agent Celestino Martinez with the C does not have never did go by DJ. That would make no sense whatsoever just to close the loop on that. But the way things are going in Ohio, honestly, JD Vance will probably be getting JP Mandel tattooed on his face. If that what Trump wants to call him, that`s who he`s going to be. Maybe that`ll be the name of him as a senator.
Now, there is one candidate in Ohio who has decided whether out of conviction or opportunism to run in a kind of non-MAGA lane, State Senator Matt Dolan has refused to bow down the ex-president. He`s even accused him of quote, perpetuating lies about the outcome of the election, and was the only candidate in a recent debate to agree that Trump should move on.
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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you think as some high-level Republicans have suggested that for the betterment of the Republican Party, it`s time for Donald Trump to stop talking about the 2020 election and move on? If yes, if you think you should move on, raise your hand.
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HAYES: Now, that actually seems to be working for Matt Dolan. He`s showing a late surge coming in just second just behind Vance in this last-minute poll conducted over the past few days. See, it`s a tight race. So, it`s going to be a really interesting story to watch tomorrow night and watch Matt Dolan. That would be a really, really striking story.
Now, the bigger context here is that while Ohio is a red state that has definitely been trending for more Republican, it`s not Mississippi or Alabama or Wyoming. Donald Trump won Ohio comfortably. He won by eight points in 2020, 53 to 45 percent. Not particularly close, but not a blowout.
Also, Ohio has a Democratic senator named Sherrod Brown, frequent guest on the program, who was just reelected to his third term and 2018. Whoever wins this open seat this year will be serving with him. So, to be clear, what everyone`s his primary tomorrow, they`re absolutely the favorite to win the general election in the fall. There`s no question about that.
But nothing is guaranteed. I mean, you do not have to go back very far to find examples of Republican primary voters, elevating candidates who completely collapsed in the general election. In 2010, it was Christine O`Donnell of I`m not a witch fame, who came out of nowhere in the Republican senator primary in Delaware.
O`Donnell, the Tea Party favorite, beat out former governor and longtime Congressman Mike Castle who almost certainly would have won in the general easily. Instead, Democrat Chris Coons easily beat O`Donnell for that Senate seat. He will likely hold on to it for as long as he likes.
And that wasn`t a one-off occurrence. Republicans probably lost four or five seats this way in the Obama years. And so, these primaries, they matter for a bunch of reasons. They matter of course, in terms of shaping the texture and agenda of one of just two coalition`s major parties in American life, the Republican Party, especially their views on democracy.
A lot of the primary races we are seeing this year are essentially between big lie promoters and big lie skeptics, or at least less vociferous big liars. The outcome in those contested races, Georgia comes to mind, will help determine how much the party continues to just frankly pledge itself to enable Donald Trump`s authoritarianism and to be on board with future coups should the opportunity arise.
There are also the broader political ramifications that we will see November. Of course, we know that when a party controls both houses of Congress and the presidency, they tend to lose seats and have a hard time in the midterms, especially when you get a situation like now when inflation is at eight percent.
But to quote a sports cliche, that`s why they play the game. Things happen, there are external factors and candidate quality and messaging matter. And the way the world looks in May is not necessarily what will look like in November. I mean, Lord knows, right? We should have internalized this by now. We have seen that happen in the last few years, a pandemic, now a land war on the European continent. Who knows what is in store over the next six months?
I mean, abortion rights in this country, Roe v Wade, 50 years of it, may be gutted, decimated thrown out in Supreme Court ruling expected next month. We have no idea what the state of pandemic will be. A million different things could happen with the economy. We already have evidence that the world of today is not necessarily the same world of just a month ago.
A new polling out today shows Democrats have caught up on generic congressional ballot. 46 percent of voters saying they would vote for Democratic candidate in their district if the election were held today. President Biden`s approval rating has gone up gaining five points since February in this same Washington Post and ABC News polling.
Now again, that`s one poll. A poll tomorrow might say something different, but it is true that oil prices have come down considerably since their peak in March. Some economists believe that inflation which clearly has been a kind of a thorn in the side for the Democrats has peaked. That could start coming down.
So, again who runs in these races, in Senate races, in congressional races, in statewide races and secretary of state elections that are going to oversee elections, what messages they use, how they speak to voters, what they campaigned on. All that really matters. And these primaries, amidst the maelstrom whatever comes, are going to determine an extremely crucial outcome, because nothing is yet written in stone.
Tim Miller is a writer at large for the Bulwark, works communications director for Jeb Bush in his 2016 presidential bid. Trip Gabriel is the national correspondent in the New York Times, has been covering the upcoming Ohio primary, and they both join me now.
Trip, let me start with you on just Ohio, and then Tim, I want to sort of zoom out for a second. But there`s two things that are interesting to me in Ohio. I mean, it does seem clear that the MAGA faction has completely won this race at a certain level just in terms of how much it`s dominated the race. And it`s also the case that Dolan`s attempt to distinguish himself by running in his own lane has borne him some, you know, some success and that`ll be an interesting thing to watch.
TRIP GABRIEL, NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT, THE NEW YORK TIMES: Yes, I think that`s absolutely right. And one of the things that`s working for Dolan, and there really no other Republican candidates like that in some of the upcoming primaries, if you look ahead toward Pennsylvania, and North Carolina, for example.
But you know, the MAGA dominance of the Republican Party is so strong that you`ve got three candidates in Ohio who`ve all been fighting hard, maybe four, to win those voters and they may end up, you know, sort of cancelling each other out to a certain degree that there is an opportunity for a dark horse coming up on the outside lane to perhaps, perhaps win a plurality. That`d be Matt Dolan.
There are a lot of college-educated suburban voters in Ohio, outside of Columbus, outside of Cincinnati, who in 2018, and 2020 have had been traditional Republican voters, but defected from the party under Donald Trump. And we don`t know exactly what they`re going to do. Trump is not running, of course, right now. But it is created an unusual and interesting dynamic there.
HAYES: Tim, the sort of broader question here that I`m been puzzling around, right. If you look at 2010, 2012, and 2014, I think probably four or five seats that that by all rights Republicans were, you know, favored to win that they didn`t because of candidate quality, because of, you know, their candidate saying, you know, wildly offensive things like the woman`s body has a way of shutting down pregnancy if it`s caused by rape.
I guess I wonder, do you think the structural impediments are so overdetermined these days that candidate quality essentially doesn`t matter anymore and you could just nominate whoever in a state like Ohio? Or is there still like some dynamism there in terms of what someone like Josh Mandel, if he were the candidate, or Herschel Walker down in Georgia actually looks like as a candidate?
TIM MILLER, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Yes, I`m not too far off from your assessment in the intro there, Chris. I think Herschel Walker, for example, is a big risk for Republicans in Georgia. That would obviously a state that Biden won, which is different than Ohio, where Biden lost by eight points.
You know, I think if you look at Alabama, for example, there`s a similar primary going on to Ohio, where there are three candidates trying to out -- you know, out -- who is, you know, more enthusiastic about the coup than the other. And I think that probably will not, you know, go down to the Democrats favor, unfortunately, because it`s still Alabama, despite the Doug Jones, you know, win there not too far ago.
Ohio is a tougher call. And, you know, eight points is a big bridge to overcome. Bad environments is tough to overcome. Tim Ryan, I think, he`s running a really good campaign, kind of an old school Bill Clinton working class, you know, type of Democratic campaign. He hasn`t gone too far off to -- off to the left. And, you know, I think he`s been focused on the kitchen table issues like the economy. And I think there`s a potential opportunity.
If you get Vance, who by the way, if Trump being brings bands from fourth to first -- and Ohio has one candidate who is a Senator who is going to be beholden to the former president that tried to coup into a Silicon Valley oligarch who`s funding his campaign, and you know, who said that Ukraine -- he doesn`t care that much about what happens to the Ukrainians, you know, those aren`t that popular things.
And those certainly not the types of things that you say if you`re trying to deal with the gas prices and inflation crisis. So, I think that there`s a potential opening for Ryan there. I do think Ohio is a tough, tough nut to crack. But I don`t think it`s totally hopeless.
HAYES: You know, Tim makes a point here, Trip, that`s important which is, you know, the map means a lot. And again, the map means more and more, because what ends up happening, right, is that we have seen this sorting over -- you`ve just the time -- I`ve been covering politics, right? People used to switch. You know, they`d vote for Republican in the gubernatorial and a Democrat in the congressional, and it`s all gotten sort of sorted, right?
So three of the states where you`ve got, you know, competitive races. You`ve got Georgia, Arizona, and Nevada, all of which are places that Biden won. You`ve also got that -- you`ve also got that Georgia seat. So, the map here is not the worst map Democrats can envision even if the Midterm environment is pretty tough.
GABRIEL: No, that`s true. I think they`ll -- we`ll have this conversation in 2024. And the map really looks bad for Democrats then.
GABRIEL: Bu you know, this year, you know, Democrats are going to be defending, you know, a couple of seats that they won, particularly Georgia, Arizona, and Nevada. Maybe even New Hampshire, throw it in there. It wasn`t that long ago that Barack Obama won Ohio 2012. But speaking of the map, and map of that state, and it`s really more typical of a place like Iowa. It has just become such a red voting state.
I mean, there -- it used to be that -- and Tim Ryan is a pretty good example of what`s happened. The reason -- one of the reasons he`s running for Senate is that his stronghold in the Mahoning Valley has become -- used to be -- it`s a white working class, you know, post-industrial part of the Midwest, and it used to be a pretty good Democratic region. And those voters have all gone to Donald Trump.
HAYES: You know, Tim, I -- you know, politics is a dynamic undertaking, right? And people try different things, they find what works. If someone finds something that works, other people ape it. It`s sort of this almost kind of, you know, this sort of evolutionary process.
And one thing that struck me in just watching Dolan -- and I don`t think he represents the Republican base at all, but it does strike me that, you know, if you go back to 2015, when Trump comes down the escalator, right, and you were there working that race. It`s like, whatever you said about Donald Trump, he didn`t sound like everyone else in the race, right?
And it is now the case that like, everyone just sounds the same. They all sound the same. All of them sound like Trump, Trump even sounds like he`s doing a Trump impression. He doesn`t sound novel in any way. And I do wonder like, what that does. What opportunities that creates to in Republican politics, that there is such a kind of crushing sort of sameness to everyone these days.
MILLER: Yes. Well, look, just -- on the one hand, I think there are two sides to this, right? On the one hand, in this primary, you know, MAGA pro coup vote -- candidates are going to get 75 percent of the vote, right? So, it`s not that encouraging. If Dolan does surprisingly well, I guess it`s good. 25 percent better than five or 10.
But I think to your point, you know, this is something that`s frustrated with me, me for a long time when I talked to my former friends, you know, who were working in campaigns. You know, I think that Rob Portman, for example, he was in a safe Senate seat there in Ohio. He wasn`t really that threatened by a right wing primary. He`d come out early for gay marriage, you had to remember.
It`s like this idea that he had to stick with Trump on everything in order to stay as a senator never made sense to me. And I did think that there was a way for people to zag in a way that`s not Liz Cheney that`s more winnable. And we just haven`t seen people try it.
HAYES: That is a great point. Tim Miller, Trip Gabriel, thank you both. I appreciate that. Still to come, the January 6 Committee wants to hear from three more Republican Congress members in its investigation. From an alleged effort to get pardoned by the President to Oath Keepers coordinating to protect Ronny Jackson while the attack was unfolding. We`ll go over the new information we`re learning from those letters just ahead.
HAYES: On January 6, 2021, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran and retired NYPD officer named Thomas Webster showed up to storm the Capitol. He was wearing a red and white jacket and carried a middle flagpole and he approached officers from the Metropolitan Police Department, that`s DC local police, who were behind the barricade yelling at them using very graphic language calling the officers pieces of crap and commies and telling them to take off their protective gear.
I`m going to show you a body cam video of the entire interaction in a moment, but first I want to walk you through what happened because it all moves pretty quickly. According to a complaint for the Department of Justice, Webster then shoved an officer with the metal gate and swung that metal flagpole he has there into the barricade in front of the officer. Webster then struck the officer with the flagpole several times. After the officer took the pole from him Webster, charged the officer with his bare hands. He knocked him to the ground and then tried to rip his gas mask off his face. This is what that whole interaction looked like in real time.
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HAYES: It`s pretty harrowing to watch especially from that first-person perspective. Other images in the complaint show Webster on top of the officer trying to, again, rip the gas masks from his face, the one they told him to take off. The officer told investigators he was being choked by his chin strap and was unable to breathe during this portion of the assault.
Now, if you think maybe Webster had regrets after he attacks that police officer, he was caught on video later that day. Again Webster is the guy in the red coat. You will see him as the man the blue coat and the Yankee -- as a man the blue coat and the Yankee hat turns.
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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They put a six o`clock curfew into effect into DC for today or tomorrow. I mean, right now, anything could happen. It is pretty unpredictable.
THOMAS WEBSTER, JANUARY 6 RIOTER: We need help. Send more patriots. We need help.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don`t know when these people are intending on leaving.
HAYES: We need help. Send more patriots. Webster was pleading for more insurrections to come and storm the capitol. Well, today, nearly 16 months after that man, Thomas Webster, attacked a police officer to help keep Donald Trump in power against the will of the American people, a jury found Webster guilty on all charges including five felonies.
Webster is the fourth January 6 rioter to face a jury trial and the fourth to be convicted on all charges. So far, every single time one of these January 6 attackers has gotten before a jury, they have been found guilty. Well, at the time, Webster was the first to be charged with and found guilty of assault.
But again, what about the people above him? People in Congress who plotted to help Donald from steal the election. We got the latest on those plotters next.
HAYES: As the bipartisan committee investigating the January 6 insurrection continues to make progress and is fast approaching live public hearings just next month, today, they released a long-awaited series of letters. The letters request testimony from three sitting Republican members of Congress.
The Committee wants to talk to Congressman Mo Brooks of Alabama, who you, of course, may remember spoke at January 6 -- Trump`s January 6 rally while wearing body armor.
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REP. MO BROOKS (R-AL): We are not going to let them continue to corrupt our elections and steal from us our God-given right to control our nation`s destiny. Today is the day American patriots start taking down names and kicking ass.
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HAYES: The committee wants to talk to him about conversations he claims to have had with the ex-president during which Trump allegedly asked Brooks to overturn the results of the election. The committee cites a recent press release from Brooks where he says, "President Trump asked me to rescind the 2020 elections, immediately remove Joe Biden from the White House, immediately put President Trump back in the White House and holding new special elections and presidency.
Again, according to Brooks, this was recent. In response to the letter, Congressman Brooks wrote, "I wouldn`t help Nancy Pelosi and Liz Cheney across the street. I`m certainly not going to help them in their witch hunt committee. If they want to talk, they can send me a subpoena."
The committee also wants to talk to Congressman Andy Biggs of Arizona about his relationship with the far-right Stop the Steal organizer Ali Alexander and what role if any of the Congressman may have played in plotting the instruction.
"We are aware that Ali Alexander has stated publicly that he along with you and two other House members came up with the idea of bringing protesters to Washington on January 6 for the count of electoral votes. Ali Alexander is an early and aggressive proponent of the Stop the Steal movement who called for violence before January 6. We would like to understand precisely what you knew before the violence on January 6 about the purposes, planning, and expectations for the March in the Capitol.
Today, Congressman Biggs said in the statement, I will not be participating in the illegitimate and Democrat sympathizing House six -- January 6 Committee panel. Then there`s former White House Doctor, really one of the stranger characters in American political life for last few years, who is now a congressman, Ronny Jackson of Texas, a major proponent of the big lie.
According to the letter requesting his testimony, the far-right gang known as the Oath Keepers who brought weapons to the D.C. area on the sixth discussed Jackson in an encrypted group message where they appeared to describe him is relevant to their plans to overturn the election.
One Oath Keeper wrote, "Ronny Jackson (TX), office inside Capitol, he needs Oath Keeper help. Anyone inside?"A second Oath Keeper replied, "Hopefully they can help Dr. Jackson." That first Oath Keeper then send a picture of Jackson with a caption "Dr. Ronny Jackson on the move needs protection. If anyone inside, cover him. He has critical data to protect.
The group`s leader, you might remember, Elmer Stewart Rhodes III currently faces charges of seditious conspiracy for his role in the insurrection. He responded, "Help with what? Give him my cell. Congressman Jackson also said he will not cooperate with the committee. "I will not participate in the illegitimate committee`s ruthless crusade against President Trump and his allies."
Kyle Cheney is a Senior Legal Affairs reporter for Politico where he covers the fallout from January 6. He recently published an article on the seditious conspiracy charges brought against some members of the Oath Keepers for their role in plotting the insurrection.
And let`s start, Kyle, with the Ronny Jackson stuff. I mean, I don`t have much context and I haven`t seen some other context other than what`s quoted in the letter. But it is sort of a strange set of facts to introduce into the record about what the Oath Keeper`s thought Ronnie Jackson might have.
KYLE CHENEY, SENIOR LEGAL AFFAIRS REPORTER, POLITICO: It is. These messages actually first appeared in the court case against the Oath Keepers where one of them posted a whole slew of hundreds of text messages. And this Ronnie Jackson one is just sort of buried in the middle. So, to Jackson was asked -- I actually asked him about it last week, and he said, I`ve never met Stuart Rhodes, I never even heard of the Oath Keepers before January 6. I`ve had nothing to do with these people. Why my name was in their mouth or in their text messages, I couldn`t tell you.And that`s sort of the position he`s maintained.
And there may be some truth to that in the sense that the Oath Keepers -- you know, these are not people who are tethered to reality in many cases, and they may have thought they saw someone running around the Capitol who looked like Ronny Jackson. I mean, we do know some of these people who were on the text chain were inside the Capitol while this was going on. So, that fact they mentioned seeing Ronny Jackson is pretty notable.
HAYES: Well, you`ve been covering -- I mean just to sort of dive into that, right? So, the Oath Keepers we know there`s these seditious conspiracy charges. They`re a big deal and they came out because it`s a rarely used crime or rarely prosecuted crime at the federal government.
There`s a second Oath Keeper who`s now pleaded guilty to seditious conspiracy. Brian Ulrich, one of the 11 Oath Keepers, facing the gravest charges. He follows Joshua James an Oath Keeper who pleaded guilty to seditious conspiracy last month. Cooperation from Ulrich and James could arm prosecutors with substantial evidence as they work to secure the conviction of the remaining defendants including Oath Keepers` founders Stewart Rhodes. It does seem like the government is making progress on that aspect of their case.
CHENEY: They are. And I think some of the people who are involved in this more serious conspiracy case realize they`re going to jail for a long time if they`re convicted. Even if they plead guilty, they`re going to jail for a long time. So, some of them you`re starting to see, are looking more likely to plead. What`s interesting about the Oath Keepers, though, is that they have a nexus sort of between the people who stormed the Capitol and some of the people in the upper, you know, the higher echelons of the planners here.
They -- some of these members, and Joshua James himself who pleaded guilty was guarding Roger Stone on January 5, January 6. And so, there`s actually a connection between that higher level that`s getting some scrutiny now from federal prosecutors, from the Select Committee, and the rioters themselves and the people who breached the building.
HAYES: In terms of these members of Congress. I mean, these are not the first members of Congress to be requested by the committee -- not subpoenaed, requested to come. One of the -- you know, one of the points -- I mean, I think we all expect now, right, knowing what we know, that all three gentleman`s statements were precisely what you would imagine they would be.
But one of the points that others have made both congressional historians and members of the committee, that members of Congress being called before committees is not some new crazy thing and, you know, 99 times out of 100 in the past, they just come. And they -- because like, well, we`re all on Congress, I`ll -- you know -- I`ll tell you. That has not been the case for anyone requested on the Republican side.
CHENEY: No, they seem to have pretty uniformly decided that there`s no value to them, you know, politically or otherwise in helping the January 6 Select Committee gather information. And the committee, they don`t really want to go down the road, it seems, of issuing subpoenas to members of Congress. That itself would be not unprecedented, but would set -- it is sort of a rarely trodden path. And I think they`re reluctant to go down it at the moment.
So, they want to just leave it out there and say, look, we`ve never had an attack like this on our democracy and, you know, in in history. If you want to be part of trying to stand in our way and impede our learning the truth about that, that`s on you, and we`re going to let it hang out there and let you live with that rather than sort of go through these illegal fights that they may have with these members.
HAYES: All right, Kyle Cheney, thanks so much for your time. When we return, a show of support from the U.S. as Speaker Pelosi leads a congressional delegation to Kyiv to meet with President Zelenskyy. Congressman Gregory Meeks just returned from that trip. He`s here to fill us in on how it went right after this.
HAYES: Over the weekend, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, second in line to the presidency, led a congressional delegation to a warzone. Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy released this video of his meeting with Pelosi and four other House Democrats in Kyiv on Sunday. Pelosi, of course, is the highest-ranking U.S. official to visit Ukraine just a week after the Secretary of State and Secretary defense met with Zelenskyy.
After visiting Ukraine, the delegation went to Poland where Pelosi offered this about the U.S. rationale for backing Ukraine, urging Congress to pass Biden`s request for $33 billion of military and humanitarian aid.
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PELOSI: Do not be bullied by bullies. If they`re making threats, you cannot back down. That`s my view of it. That you -- we`re there for the fight. And you cannot -- you cannot fold to a boy.
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HAYES: One of the members who traveled to Kyiv with Speaker Pelosi is Congressman Gregory Meeks, Democrat of New York, and the chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. And he joins me now. Congressman, good to have you. First, I`m just curious about what your experience of Kyiv was like, your impressions of President Zelenskyy?
REP. GREGORY MEEKS (D-NY): Well, number one, thank you for having me. And let me tell you that President Zelenskyy was absolutely marvelous. You could see and tell that he was prepared for war zone, but you could also tell that they deterred Russia and push them back. But they`re staying ever-alert.
But being in the room, sitting right across from President Zelenskyy was very inspiring. I saw a real leader, a man who was focused on the hour of which his country is in the spotlight because of the aggression of Vladimir Putin. And he was there determined to make sure that he wins, and that he does not lose any sovereign property.
You know, I was in Ukraine about two weeks before the incursion, basically there to talk to him and tell him that we thought that Russia would invade. And he said to me in the delegation that I led at that particular time that if Russia did in fact invade, that the people of Ukraine would fight. They would fight for their sovereignty, they would fight for their freedom. He said, the only thing that he asked was that we provide him with what he -- the weapons that he needed, and as much unity as we could get around the world. But we did not need -- he did not need any soldiers on the ground.
And guess what we`re now to over -- two months into this war. And one of the things that I think that nobody predicted, because all predictions before was that they would not be able to withstand the armed assault of this evil man. Two months later, they could not get into Kyiv, they are regaining ground, and they are fighting like never before for their sovereignty.
And we was there to stand right by him. And he is just as focused today as he was preparing for -- if this invasion would have taken place when I first was there. He`s planning, he`s thinking, and he knows that the will of his fighters will bring them to victory. He needs us to give him the tools that he needs. He needs us to be united. And this is something that the President has done excellently, keeping all 30 nations of NATO united. Just looking at the reflection of the vote at the U.N. 141 to five condemning Putin`s invasion into Ukraine.
HAYES: On the -- on the question of support for Zelenskyy, there`s a proposal for $33 billion in both humanitarian and military aid to Ukraine. Obviously, I think anyone who`s watched this play out understands why Ukraine needs money. They`ve been devastated. You could look at you know, Irpin outside of Kyiv or Kharkiv or -- but what do you say to people say that`s a lot of money. $30 billion in a supplemental is quite a bit of money. Obviously, there are lots of needs in the United States. In fact, it`s been hard to pass some of the agenda items and the President`s agenda largely due to the U.S. Senate. What do you say to people who say wait a second, what about other parts of -- other things that need to be funded?
MEEKS: We`re going to take care of the other things that have been funded. We know how to do that. But time is of the essence. We have to pass this $33 billion immediately. Look, as President Zelenskyy said, he`s not only fighting for the sovereignty of Ukraine, we know and we can see, that is the intent of Putin to move on to the Baltic states, to Moldova, to Georgia, and not to stop there. And others are watching what takes place.
And let me tell you something else that`s critical and this is why it`s important to all of us around the world. People will starve. The House Foreign Affairs Committee, which you say, I chair, we`re going to do a briefing soon on because of this war. Why are people in starvation that may be on the line? What Putin is doing is blocking the Black Sea. Ukraine exports over 50 percent of the world`s sea oil. They produce wheat, corn --
MEEKS: -- that people around the world are dependent upon. They cannot harvest their crops and get it out. And so, you see already prices have gone up all over the world, almost 14 percent in the last month alone, 20 percent from the beginning of the year. And folks will starve. You`re going to have David Beasley from the World Food Organization for the U.N. come test -- come to brief us on what`s at stake.
We talked about here at home, that prices are going up and inflation. There is a direct -- you can talk to almost any economist, a direct connection between Putin, this war, and this blockade that can have people starving in Africa, and Central and South America, and indeed, even right here in the United States of America.
HAYES: Congressman Gregory Meeks just back from Ukraine, thank you, sir. I appreciate it. Still, the come, as the defining issue in American politics about to be turned on its head, I don`t think anyone is ready for the kind of change ahead. I`ll explain next.
HAYES: We have huge breaking news tonight. And I can`t even believe I`m going to tell you what I`m about to tell you. But in a highly indeed, as far as I can tell, utterly unprecedented leak from the Supreme Court, Politico has obtained what they say is an initial draft majority opinion written by Justice Alito showing the Supreme Court striking down Roe versus Wade.
"Roe was egregiously wrong from the start," Alito writes. We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled. He writes in the document labeled as the opinion of the court. Again, I`m reading from the Politico article. It is time to head the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people`s elected representatives.
Now, Politico mentions this in the piece. This has never happened before, as far as I know, a draft opinion of the court leaking, A. B, this would be if true the most seismic court ruling in 50 years most likely, earthquake in the lives of America`s women, in our legal culture, in our political culture.
Irin Carmon is a senior correspondent at New York Magazine where she covers gender law and politics among other topics. She joins me now. Irin, we booked you tonight for a block that was going to be about how it seemed likely Roe was going to be overturned, that it seemed like maybe there was a little like, failure to price in that reality in the political class. And then this literally crossed two minutes before you came on air. What is your reaction?
IRIN CARMON, SENIOR CORRESPONDENT, NEW YORK MAGAZINE: Chris, I`m gobsmacked for the same reasons that you are in the sense that Politico has posted a 98-page opinion and it is a draft. We do not know if it will change between now and when we expect the court to hand down its opinion in June. But nonetheless, it is a detailed, seemingly authenticated draft written by Samuel Alito that would make abortion illegal in at least half the country the day that it goes into effect.
What`s shocking is that we have it. What`s shocking is the impact that it will have on real people`s lives. Unfortunately, anybody who listened to the justice`s deliberate in December is not going to be shocked by this outcome. What does seem still to be up in the air is what will Chief Justice Roberts do? Because according to Politico is reporting at least, his vote is still up for grabs.
We heard him in December clearly say that he was interested in undoing the viability line, which is a way of overturning Roe without actually saying we are overturning Roe. What`s striking about what I`ve been able to read from Justice Alito`s opinion is that he says very clearly, we are overturning Roe, we are overturning Casey which strengthened Roe.
And the impact of that would be absolutely devastating on millions of people who can become pregnant who live in hostile jurisdictions. And it would certainly open the door to what we were originally going to talk about today, which is a proposed national ban passed by Republicans.
So, this would enormously change people`s lives, again, if this opinion can get to a majority. So, we know that people often will leave deliberations by the court after the fact. We don`t usually hear or get to read the details. It is still possible. I don`t know how likely it is. It is still possible that between now and the end of June, there will be some haggling, some like, change in the opinion. But we do know that the votes are apparently there from conference for Justice Alito to have gotten at least an initial sign-off to write a majority opinion that cleanly, unmistakably overturns Roe v. Wade.
HAYES: Yes. Just to be clear, the reporting from Politico is that there are five votes for this majority opinion. So, whether, you know, there`s five votes there, then there are the three liberals, and then -- and then Roberts in opposition, or am I wrong on that, Irin?
CARMON: You know, I think he was assigned to a majority, which means that when they took their votes on Friday, after the oral argument, there would have been votes for at least this outcome.
CARMON: But when justices then circulate the opinion, they still need to get the other justices to fully sign on. So, there have been times that in the process of writing, justices changed their mind. The case Planned Parenthood versus Caseywas actually an example of this in which in the court -- in the course of writing, there was negotiations.
So, I would say that the fact that somebody is leaking this, is telling us that that person hopes that they can sway perhaps Chief Justice John Roberts to split the difference a little bit. Again, I`m totally speculating, but this extraordinary leak I think needs to be read on its own as somebody is really trying to draw attention to what the court is about to do to the lives of the American people.
HAYES: Yes, I mean, that`s part of what`s so shocking about it is that it seems like a signal flare, right? I mean, a complete moment of break glass desperation, right? 50 year -- 50 years that has built up to this moment in which a sustained attack on reproductive rights in this country by the -- by the political forces that lost in Roe and then again in Casey, to gut it, to whittle it away, to try to like, you know sort of eviscerate it, everything but overturned that this is -- the moment is here. The wolf is out the door and they`re going to overturn Roe.
CARMON: The sky has fallen.
HAYES: That`s the message of this. And again, whoever leaked this and I have no -- zero inside. I`m just responding in real-time to this. Irin, to your point, and again, this is going to drive on news I think quite a bit in the aftermath of it, but it doesn`t -- this is the beginning of something and not the end in a million different ways both. Not that this opinion is law, we don`t know that, but there`s a lot to wrestle with in the aftermath of this and hopefully, you can come back as we wrestle with it.
Irin Carmona, thank you so much for joining us. I`m so glad that we had you.
CARMON: Thank you, Chris.
HAYES: All right, again, I`m just sort of composing myself here as I process this. This is -- that is ALL IN for this evening. "THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW" starts right now. Good evening, Rachel.