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Transcript: All In with Chris Hayes, 1/22/21

Guest: Kate Bedingfield, Ezra Klein, Adam Serwer, Katie Benner, Diana DeGette, Peter Hotez, Matt Fuller

JOY REID, MSNBC HOST: Breaking 715th homerun in his home stadium in Atlanta

and received an 11-minute standing ovation. A black athlete who exhibited

incredible grace strength in the face of great hostility who`s now being

showered with adulation in the Deep South, cementing his place in baseball

and American history.

Hammering Hank Aaron was 86 years old.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST (voice-over): Tonight, on ALL IN, Joe Biden and the

fierce urgency of now.

JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We`re in a national emergency.

We need to act like we`re in a national emergency.

HAYES: Tonight, White House communications director Kate Bedingfield on the

president`s call for action and the push for Democrats to employ the

McConnell doctrine.

SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R-KY): Winners make policy and losers go home.

HAYES: Then breaking news on the start of impeachment as Capitol

insurrectionists attempt the "Trump made me do it" defense in court.

DONALD TRUMP, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: After this, we`re

going to walk down -- and I`ll be there with you.

HAYES: All that and the congressman caught trying to bring a gun onto the

floor of the House.

And ALL IN starts right now.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HAYES: Good evening from New York. I`m Chris Hayes. Happy Friday. One of

the biggest differences between the last administration and this new one is

the recognition at the very least of the depth of the crises we are in and

the urgency they say they want to bring to fixing them.

We`ve seen that just with the executive actions the new president has taken

in 2 1/2 days signing at least 28 executive orders, proclamations and memos

on everything from immigration, the climate crisis, the economy,

nutritional aid, response to the coronavirus. And now the basic facts of

where we are right now is that, well, one party won and one party lost.

But, of course, narrowly.

It`s a narrowly divided country. A deeply divided country and there are

constitutional structures give huge advantages to the minority coalition.

The party that lost which is, of course, the Republican Party. And that

party and that coalition can use those tools to do tremendous damage to the

country. I mean, we have seen them do it. We just made it through their

attempt.

Remember a majority of congressional Republicans and the leader of the

party, the former president, their attempt to use those tools at their

disposal to overthrow the results of a democratic election, to install the

loser over the winner against the will of the American people and therefore

spell the end of American democracy as we know it.

And all of those Republicans who were part of that plot are now just

sitting there as part of our federal government with no repercussions. And

we can assume they would do the same thing again if they had the chance

because basically none of them have apologized for their role in it. No one

has come forward to say that was -- we shouldn`t have done that. That was

bad. Joe Biden won. Bad thing we did.

And now we have these pressing crises bearing down on us. The most

immediate and threatening being the virus. We lost almost another 4,000

people to the virus today. This last wave has been by far the most deadly

and it has caused even more economic devastation. Economists and public

health experts from all over agree we need a huge rescue package. This is

not some left-wing fever dream.

The plan that Biden proposed is, and I keep saying this because it keeps

being remarkable, it is endorsed by the Chamber of Commerce. Now if you`ve

covered Washington, D.C., the Chamber of Commerce is very conservative.

They don`t like big Democratic spending proposals. They are normally a very

right-leaning group. And today, even the former Trump administration`s own

senior economic adviser came out in support of President Biden`s $1.9

trillion rescue package.

Kevin Hassett, of all people, telling CNN he is, quote, "absolutely" in

favor of the plan, quote, "There are so many businesses treading water,

barely hanging on. Now they`re getting hit by another shock. You could end

up in a negative spiral for the economy. We made it through last year

without a total utter collapse of GDP because of extremely aggressive

stimulus."

All of that`s true. Everyone knows it. President Joe Biden made his case to

the American people today.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BIDEN: We have to act now. It`s not just to meet the moral obligation to

treat our fellow Americans with the dignity and respect they deserve. This

is an economic imperative, a growing economic consensus that we must act

decisively and boldly to grow the economy for all Americans not just for

tomorrow but in the future.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HAYES: Republicans know that both President Biden and Donald Trump`s

economists are right on this one. I mean, they`ve already voted for rescue

packages twice under the previous administration, the first one being the

biggest when it was an election year and well, they wanted the economy to

do well. But, again, this faction that controls a minority of the

government, the same one that supported a leader who led an unsuccessful

attempt at outright sedition which we`re learning more about every day,

that party, that coalition and that faction is now trying to blockade the

economic rescue that we very obviously need.

Multiple congressional Republicans from Senator Pat Toomey to Congressman

Kevin Brady, top Republican in the House Ways and Means Committee, have

publicly penned Biden`s proposal as a nonstarter. And if that is the way

it`s going to be, look, there is no other option but to take all

constitutional legal means necessary including getting rid of the

filibuster if that`s what it comes to, to just allow the Democratic

majority to govern because in the absence of that, all of the problems, the

deep problems that brought us to this point will only get worse.

Joining me now from the White House North Lawn is Kate Bedingfield. She`s

communications director for President Biden.

Kate, it`s great to have you on. Thank you so much for joining us.

KATE BEDINGFIELD, WHITE HOUSE COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR: Thanks for having

me, Chris.

HAYES: So President Biden laid out the logic behind the $1.9 trillion

rescue package today and I do think in the beginning there was a little bit

of a question of, maybe you can get 10 Republican votes for this. Maybe

this can be a kind of -- look, we all realize this has to happen. Am I

wrong to feel like that sense is slipping away? What`s your read on it?

What`s the White House`s read on it?

BEDINGFIELD: Well, I do think you`re wrong, Chris. I think, as you said,

this is a package that has gotten support from the Chamber of Commerce, the

Business Roundtable, you know, these are -- as you said, these are

traditionally conservative groups who have been very supportive of this

package and, look, we are in the midst of a tragic crisis in this country.

We have 4,000 Americans dying every day from this virus.

They`re dying in blue states, they`re dying in red states. The virus

doesn`t see party. The virus doesn`t see partisan lines. And people all

across the country, Americans expect their leaders, including Republicans,

to move to support a package that`s going to help get this virus under

control, it`s going to get direct relief into the hands of people who need

it. It`s going to extend unemployment insurance.

It`s going to get money that we need for vaccines. I mean, look, Chris,

first and foremost, this is a package designed to fund a national

vaccination plan. This is a package that is going to help get shots into

the arms of the American people. This is critically badly needed help and

we have every reason to believe that Republicans are going to support it

because we`re in a crisis moment in this country.

HAYES: I mean, I`m just going to bracket that, whether there`s every reason

to believe that Republicans will support it based on recent and further

history, but there is a call that the White House is conducting this

weekend that I thought was interesting. There`s this sort of caucus that`s

formed, you know, bipartisan caucus has formed in the Senate and there`s

going to be seven Democrats and eight members of the Republican Party on

the call including people like Mitt Romney and Susan Collins and Lisa

Murkowski and I believe Joe Manchin will be on the call.

What`s the idea behind that call and what does that mean in terms of the

crucial tipping point of those members?

BEDINGFIELD: Sure, well, the idea is to talk about how this package is

going to help people in their states, is to walk through some of the key

provision that are going to make a difference in people`s lives, that are

going to help people who are struggling to put food on the table, who are

struggling to pay their rent. I mean, we have Americans across this country

in incredibly dire circumstances through no fault of their own because this

crisis has hammered them.

So the idea behind this meeting is to walk through how this package is

going to help people, how it`s going to help the communities not have to

make a decision between whether they keep firefighters or essential workers

on the job or fund the vaccinations. They`re going to talk through how this

money is going to make a difference in the lives of their constituents. So,

look, President Biden has said from the outset that he believes that we can

get Republican support for this package, that people demand it, people all

across the country.

And remember, President Biden ran on a message of unity and won a historic

number of votes, 81 million votes, based on the idea that leadership should

be about bringing people to the table, about finding consensus, about

getting things done. You know, it`s not just unity for unity`s sake. It`s

unity to get things done, to get relief into the hands of people who need

it. So he`s going to continue to work.

We, as the White House, are going to continue to work with members of both

parties to try to get this bill done and to move quickly because we need

the funding for the vaccine, we need people to be able to get vaccinated,

and people all across the country need the relief that this bill would

provide.

HAYES: So if this is true, what you`re saying, the sort of urgency of this,

which I`m persuaded of, of course I think you probably know that, right.

This is actually urgent. Then the question becomes like, is it urgent

enough that you just do whatever it takes procedurally if you have the

votes? I mean, this is from the new chair of the Budget Committee in the

Senate, Bernie Sanders, who says, when Republicans controlled the Senate,

they used the reconciliation process to provide huge tax breaks for the

rich and large corporations. We`re going to use reconciliation to protect

working families, the sick and the poor.

Will you do what it takes to pass this if you have 50 votes?

BEDINGFIELD: Well, look, again, our strong preference, the president`s

preference, what we`re working toward here is bipartisan support for this

bill. Absolutely no question about it. It is urgent and certainly if the

Senate and the House keep reconciliation on the table as an option, that`s

understandable. This is an urgent crisis and we -- at the end of the day

the thing that is most important is that we need to get this bill done.

We need to get this money into the hands of people all across the country

who need it. So, again, the president`s preference and the thing that he`s

working toward is getting Republican support for this bill. But there`s no

question this is an urgent, urgent crisis, and there may be multiple ways

to get to passage. But that does not mean that the president is not wholly

committed to working to get Republican votes.

HAYES: All right. Kate Bedingfield there from the White House. Thank you

for joining us. Come back whenever there`s a lot to talk about. Appreciate

it.

BEDINGFIELD: Absolutely. Thanks for having me, Chris. I appreciate it.

HAYES: For more on the urgency to get things done quickly, let`s turn to

Ezra Klein of the "New York Times" where he`ll host the new podcast, "The

Ezra Klein Show." He`s also an opinion columnist there, a little paper

called the "New York Times." You might have heard of it. His latest op-ed

is entitled, "Democrats, Here`s How to Lose in 2022 and Deserve It." Adam

Serwer, staff writer at the "Atlantic," his latest piece is titled "An

Incompetent Authoritarian is Still a Catastrophe." And they both join me

now.

Ezra, you wrote a column sort of calling on Democrats to move swiftly and

kind of clearly to help people and I thought -- I just want to read this

section because it jumps off of the point here about speed which is of the

essence.

"Three principles should guide their efforts," meaning the Democrats.

"First, they need to help people fast and visibly. Second, they need to

take politics seriously, recognizing the defeat in 2022 will result in

catastrophe. Finally, they need to do more to talk about the importance of

democracy, they need deepen American democracy."

Let`s talk about that first point which to me seems very pressing at this

moment.

EZRA KLEIN, THE NEW YOK TIMES OPINION COLUMNIST: So if you go back to 2009,

which is the last time Democrats had -- the last session in which they had

a governing trifecta, they make a couple of mistakes I think they look back

on with some regret. One is that they allow Republicans to filibuster

almost everything. So they have for a period of time there, 60 votes, they

can get things around a filibuster. But they get slowed down, they end up

in a billion gangs, they get a lot less done, everything they do get done

is much smaller than they should be.

Second, they make things very complex in part to get Republican votes,

things like the Affordable Care Act, built around private insurance, the

Mitt Romney model, because they thought they might get some Republicans. It

didn`t. And things often take a long time to come into play. Again, the

Affordable Care Act took about four years to begin delivering health

insurance. You don`t get reelected for things that (INAUDIBLE) when the

election happens.

In the stimulus, they had a tax cut in there that was literally built to be

invisible. It was designed so people didn`t notice it was happening under

the theory that it would get spent more effectively that way.

Democrats have no room for error. They have 50 seats in the Senate. If they

lose one in 2022, they have no more governing capacity or at least not

through the legislature. And I think most of them, your previous

conversation aside, recognize that bipartisan help here is going to be

quite unlikely. So there is a lot of pressure on the Democratic side to do

things that are big, do things people know are out there, know are helping

them and do them fast enough they can help them maintain seats in 2022.

HAYES: Yes. This is -- the big question here, Adam, I mean, the central

truth about American politics right now, to me at least, which is true

before the inauguration, after, is that like, there is a coalition, one of

the two big ones, empowered by constitutional structures, a faction of

which is essentially radicalizing against democracy and towards minority

rule, and that`s like the ground truth that everything revolves around. And

I wonder if the Biden White House understands that.

ADAM SERWER, THE ATLANTIC STAFF WRITER: I mean, I hope they do. I mean,

look, you go back to Franklin Roosevelt. When he took office in a period

where, you know, authoritarian governments were taking control all over the

earth. You know, democracy was supposed to be an outdated system. It didn`t

work anymore. It couldn`t meet the problems of modern life. And Franklin

Roosevelt came in and he made the government work for people and he was

very conscious of this.

He gave a radio address where he said democracy will save itself by proving

itself to the average man and woman that it is worth saving. And that is

basically Biden`s task right now. I mean, it`s more important for him to

make -- to show Americans that the government, that democracy can work

otherwise enough people will turn to someone who says, well, look, you

know, I don`t believe in democracy very much, but I can help you. Everybody

is corrupt. But at least I`m your corrupt guy.

And so it`s a dangerous moment. It`s imperative, not just in terms of

relief, but in terms of preserving our system of government that Biden not

allow the opposition party to prevent any aid from getting to the American

people who need it.

HAYES: Yes, I think the three of us agree on that point and it goes to what

you were writing, too, Ezra, like that delivering things for people at this

point, at this moment of real peril, like we just got out of the car wreck.

We`re still shaking ourselves off from what happened. We have a new story

tonight about how close things came. Right? We`re going to get to that in a

second. That actually delivering tangible results is actually an imperative

for reinvigorating the health of the system that has been badly shaken.

KLEIN: Yes, and it`s really important how you think about reinvigorating

the system. So there`s a book I talked about in there, "Presidents,

Populism and Crisis," the name I can`t remember, but their argument is that

internationally populists feed off of ineffective governments. And then one

thing that is very dangerous in the aftermath of a populist right figure

when the established party comes back into power, they often want to show

the populism that the populist is gone by restoring decorum. If the

populist broke boundaries, they want to reestablish it.

HAYES: Right.

KLEIN: If the populist went too far with executive authority, they want to

show they`re not going to do that. If the populist thew bipartisan

overboard, they don`t want to do that. They`ll be buried bipartisan. And

that feeds the exact dysfunction that got you the populist in the first

place. If government is not helping people, then people will not believe in

that government and that opens the window for someone like Donald Trump to

come in.

So one of the arguments I make in this piece, and I hope folks in the White

House are thinking about, is they cannot stop the next Donald Trump. And by

the way, there is a whole Congress, Republican conference in the Congress

of people willing to be the next Donald Trump. They cannot stop the next

Donald Trump by letting Republicans block everything for the next two

years.

The way to stop the next Donald Trump is to show that when Democrats are

governing, people`s lives are actually better, and by the way, not

incidentally, to ensure that people have the right to vote, D.C. statehood.

This should be a democracy. You want to not just restore that democracy

works, they also want to make it a democracy for those for whom it isn`t

and who are often voiceless when it comes to, say, a Senate election.

HAYES: Yes, and there`s also just the fact that, look, there`s going to be

a certain opposition to whatever -- you know, this is another lesson I

think Adam and Ezra and I, we all learned covering 2009, like they`re going

to implacably oppose you basically on almost everything. I mean, Marco

Rubio saying this is a radical leftist agenda in a divided country and will

not help unify it, it will only confirm 75 million Americans` biggest fears

about the new administration.

Like, Adam, like the Chamber of Commerce endorsed this. Kevin Hassett

today, who was serving the White House, were amongst who endorsed it.

SERWER: Well, look, Republicans know that the deeper the hole that is left

over from this in 2022, they know that the deeper the hole, the bigger the

gains for Republicans in Congress.

HAYES: Yes.

SERWER: People are going to punish the governing party if the governing

party can`t govern. We`ve learned that in 2010. And if the Democrats

haven`t learned that lesson to a fault, like complete -- like, if they have

not internalized it, then they will be in very big trouble in 2022 and they

won`t be the only ones who are in trouble. Our system of government, our

democracy will be in trouble.

HAYES: Yes, this is a -- this is really, really important. I`m glad you

guys made time for us tonight. Ezra Klein, Adam Serwer, great to talk to

you both.

Right as we were going to air, the "New York Times" broke a bananas story

about Donald Trump attempting to sort of stage a coup at the Department of

Justice to get rid of the attorney general, to put in a dude who was

willing to try to use the Department of Justice to overturn the election in

Georgia.

The "New York Times" reporter who broke that story joins me next. Don`t go

anywhere.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAYES: With all that we know about Donald Trump`s attempts to overturn the

election, there are still stories to be told about his behavior that have

the ability to shock, to make you pick your jaw off the floor. Katie Benner

of the "New York Times" has this unbelievable scoop tonight published just

20 minutes ago.

"The Justice Department`s top leaders listened in stunned silence this

month, one of their peers they were told had devised a plan with President

Donald J. Trump to oust Geoffrey A. Rosen as the acting attorney general

and wield the department`s power to force Georgia state lawmakers to

overturn its presidential election results. The unassuming lawyer who

worked on the plan, Jeffrey Clark, had been devising ways to cast doubts on

the election results and bolster Mr. Trump`s continuing legal battles and

the pressure on Georgia politicians. Because Mr. Rosen had refused the

president`s entreaties to carry out those plans, Mr. Trump was about to

decide whether to fire Mr. Rosen and replace him with Mr. Clark."

The reporter who got that amazing scoop, "New York Times" Justice

Department reporter, Katie Benner, joins me now.

First of all, incredible, incredible reporting here. I had to read the

story three times to make sure I was understanding it. But walk us through

the story. What did you find?

KATIE BENNER, THE NEW YORK TIMES JUSTICE DEPARTMENT REPORTER: Sure, I mean,

it`s very much like what you said in your introduction. It precipitated

this crisis within the Justice Department when you saw one of the top

leaders of the department basically working with president Trump to see if

there`s something that could be done at the department in order to overturn

the results of the election.

Now, this person, Jeffrey Clark, had been rebuffed many times by the acting

attorney general Jeff Rosen and his deputy Rich Donoghue. They said this

cannot continue. On New Year`s Eve they had a pretty stern conversation

with him on New Year`s Eve, a stern conversation with him which they really

tried to understand why he refused to use the department`s line that nobody

had seen fraud. It had been investigated.

It was something that Bill Barr had said privately to the president and

publicly to the president. And yet Jeffrey Clark having told them he reads

a lot of things on the Internet, you know, said that he just politely

disagreed with them and he continued.

HAYES: So this -- OK, you`ve got -- Rosen is the acting AG after Barr

leaves. Clark is the head of the Civil Rights Division, which is in

department leadership. It`s like it`s definitely up there, right?

BENNER: Head of (INAUDIBLE) --

HAYES: I`m sorry, the Civil Division. My bad. The Civil Division.

BENNER: Yes. Which is important. It defends the administration in court.

HAYES: Yes, that`s a very -- that`s a big part of the Department of

Justice. Like that is up near the top of the leadership. And he apparently

was like introduced to Trump by a Pennsylvania politician and they start

interacting for Clark to be Trump`s guy in the Department of Justice to

oust Rosen so that they could ride into Georgia with the DOJ to, like,

write some letter on DOJ letterhead to say, you, Georgia, must overturn

your results?

BENNER: Yes, well, first Mr. Clark asked Mr. Rosen to do it as the acting

attorney general. And when that didn`t work, he had a conversation with Mr.

Trump in which he came away from that conversation thinking that Trump

would replace Rosen with himself and then he offered Mr. Rosen the

opportunity to remain at the department as his deputy.

(LAUGHTER)

HAYES: He hatches a Department of Justice coup with the president and

offers him -- the boss is going to make me the head of the Department of

Justice so we can -- this is my words, not yours. So I`m just

characterizing. The boss is going to make me the head of the Justice

Department and the acting AG so we can pull off this coup. You can stick

around as my deputy, but this is what`s going to happen. And then there`s a

meeting in the White House with Clark and Rosen and the president?

BENNER: Yes. And this is sort of unusual timing because it happened on

January 3rd which is the exact same day that Georgia secretary of State

released, you know -- leaked the audio of his phone call the prior day with

Mr. Trump. So you have the entire world listening to the audio of Trump and

the secretary of State in Georgia having this bizarre conversation which

Trump makes so clear that he wants Georgia to change its mind, change its

mind to find votes that would make him the winner.

And then at the same time you have a split screen with this meeting taking

place on Sunday evening where the president has set up an interesting

situation where he has both Mr. Clark and Mr. Rosen there before him to

present their competing visions for what the department should be doing. It

was described by two different officials, former administration officials,

as almost a bizarre version of "The Apprentice" in which they were -- which

one had a better plan.

HAYES: So what -- it sounds to me from reading your article that enough

people at DOJ get read into this plan that they essentially rebel en masse

and threaten to all quit if it`s pulled off? Is that right?

BENNER: Yes. So Sunday -- we`ll just go through the chronology. Midday

Sunday, Jeff Clark says to the attorney general -- acting Attorney General

Rosen, I believe that the president is going to remove you and put me in

your spot. And then a few hours later, Mr. Rosen`s deputy, the deputy

attorney general, calls an emergency conference call with the remaining top

leaders of the department.

He reads them into what`s going on. He explains what Mr. Clark has been up

to and they discuss what they`re going to do if in the coming hours the

president fires Jeffrey Rosen and replaces him with Mr. Clark. They decide

that the only option is to leave and so that was really powerful

information because in this meeting with the president that happened a

couple of hours later, other officials including the head of OLC, Steven

Engel, was there, they were able to tell the president, listen, if you do

this plan, it`s going to blow up this way. It will cause this kind of chaos

at the Justice Department.

If nothing else, nobody is going to pay attention to the Jeff Clark letter

to Georgia, they will be paying attention to the fact that you have created

a Saturday massacre and that was one of the compelling arguments to Mr.

Trump.

HAYES: OK. One last part of this, a little bit more of the puzzle. One of

the -- there`s this crazy thing that happens, right, which is that the U.S.

attorney in Atlanta abruptly resigns amidst all of this. And everybody

thinks, well, that`s weird. It looks like there`s something afoot here. And

we`ve been getting more and more reporting on that. It seems that that

resignation which we`ve now learned was essentially because he refused to -

- you know, prosecute some nonexistent voter fraud, that was sort of

connected to this entire undertaking.

BENNER: Well, I mean, I think that what we saw was that the president was

obviously very, very obsessed with Georgia in particular the counties that

included the city of Atlanta which is where that U.S. attorney`s office was

and where that U.S. attorney served. And so it was -- he was informed not

as part of any knowledge of what was going on with Jeff Clark or this

strange plan to get rid of the attorney general.

HAYES: Right.

BENNER: But he had been told separately that, you know, former President

Trump was very obsessed with his district and that it was not going to be

tenable for him to stay on. He could stay at the U.S. attorney`s office,

but he wouldn`t be able to be the head of the office just because of all

the heat. And I think also he did not feel that he wanted to be in a

position where he was constantly scrutinized by the president.

HAYES: So just for the final -- to put the point on this because I want to

make sure I understand the plot here. The idea was that the president was

going to fire the acting attorney general, a guy who was just serving for a

very small amount of time after Barr resigned, replace him with the head of

the Civil Division, this individual named Jeffrey Clark who was amenable

and sympathetic to the president`s conspiracy theory, completely fraudulent

conspiracy theory, and then use the Department of Justice to essentially

like structure Georgia legislatures on behalf of the department that they

had to overturn their election?

BENNER: Well, no, to instruct Georgia legislators that the department was

investigating serious allegations of voter fraud that were so serious that

it made it pretty likely that the electoral results in their state would

not stand.

HAYES: Gotcha.

BENNER: And you know, advised them that they should act accordingly.

HAYES: I see. I see. So this would be -- this would give them -- it would

give them some sort of evidence that they he could point to so that

sympathetic lawmakers in that legislature could say, oh, look, the

Department of Justice is here and now we`re going to have to go and, you

know, not seat these electors or uncertify the results.

BENNER: Correct. And keep in mind that such a letter to Georgia legislators

would be completely opposite of what the former attorney general, Bill

Barr, had said at a press conference, that he didn`t see the kind of fraud

that would change the results of an election. It would -- you know, it

would be in opposition to things that Attorney General Barr had told the

president privately, it would be opposition to things that Jeffrey Rosen

had told the president for weeks privately.

You know, acting Attorney General Rosen was in constant conversation with

Trump about this issue even before this -- the idea of the Georgia letter

come up. You know, Bill Barr announced that he would be leaving the

department on a Monday and that he`d be there for another week. Jeff

Rosen`s people thought he`d have a little bit of a reprieve because Bill

would be in the building for another week and it would be OK.

But in fact the president hauled Jeff Rosen into the Oval Office the very

next day to start a pressure campaign asking him to do, you know, to

appoint a special counsel to look into Dominion, the voting machine

company, to appoint a special counsel to look into voter fraud in general

and, you know, to file -- have the department file legal briefs that

supported the things that his team was doing in court.

So that pressure campaign started not after Jeffrey Rosen became the acting

attorney general, but it started the day after Jeffrey Rosen was announced

to soon become the acting attorney general.

HAYES: The whole article is up on the "New York Times," NewYorkTimes.com.

Katie Benner, what a remarkable bit of reporting. Just a truly incredible

scoop and a shocking set of facts that you have unearthed and presented to

the world. So thank you for taking time with us.

BENNER: Yes. And thanks so much for paying attention to the very strange

end of the Trump era.

HAYES: Of course, the president`s efforts there to overturn the election

which he tried in a million different ways and we`re learning more about

it, it ends up culminating, right, on January 6th. He`s failed to get the

Department of Justice to help him. He`s failed in his lawsuits. He`s failed

to bully Brad Raffensperger in Georgia, and ultimately the last ditch

attempt is to go tell a crowd to march down to the Capitol with the hope

that they will intimidate the people in the Capitol including his vice

president Mike Pence into overturning the election and stealing it for him.

That results, of course, in the Capitol riot and siege, five people are

dead, including a police officer, hundreds now have been arrested. And the

president is then impeached for his incitement of that insurrection, of

that riot. Now one of the House impeachment managers who will help make the

case against Trump when that case starts February 8th, the date announced

today, is Congresswoman Diana DeGette. She`s a Democrat from Colorado, and

she joins me now.

And, Congresswoman, I know that "The Times" reporting obviously is outside

the purview of the specific charge. But it is of a piece with the pattern

of behavior that begins before the election, into election night, after the

election and up until the incitement of the riot. Just your reaction to

this new revelation.

REP. DIANA DEGETTE (D-CO): Chris, thanks for having me. And I will tell

you, this is just part and parcel of what Donald Trump was desperately

trying to do, which was find any way he could to overturn the results of a

fair and legal election in this country. And when I just saw this "New York

Times" story, it`s just part of the whole conspiracy that he had to try to

stop the counting of the ballots, to try to stop the certification, which

as you say culminated in him -- inviting the crowd to Washington, inciting

the crowd to come to the Capitol and then doing nothing after they got

here.

So it was very, very dangerous. And the more -- the more facts that come

out like this, it just shows how desperate he was.

HAYES: We got clearer timing today on the trial itself. My understanding is

that those -- the article, the single article, will be walked over to the

Senate on Monday. It will be read into the record on Tuesday. And then

there will be a pause and the trial will start on February 8th. That`s a

deal that was struck by Senator Schumer and I think McConnell, to start it

there.

What is your and the impeachment manager`s preparation look like right now?

DEGETTE: Well, so, we were all appointed by Speaker Pelosi on the day the

House passed the impeachment article. We`ve been working every day since

then as a team. So we`re ready to go to trial. We were ready to go to trial

last week. And so it looks like now Senator Schumer is going to accept the

articles and then give a couple of weeks. Even more evidence, like this

"New York Times" article, will probably come out. So we`re ready to go.

We think we have a strong case that is -- I mean, here it all unfolded

right there on TV and social media. And we really have to convict Donald

Trump and we have to make sure he can never run for office again. Somebody

trying to manipulate the Department of Justice which is supposed to be the

independent legal watchdog for our country is just appalling.

HAYES: There are sort of buckets of evidence that we`ve been sort of

collecting, right, since the actual thing unfolded. And I wanted to ask you

about two of them. So one of them is, I don`t know if it`s evidence so

much, but there are multiple people who have now been arrested who have

said, as part of their official defense like Donald Trump told me I could

do this. Donald Trump invited me. We thought we were there at the

president.

We have recordings of people in the Capitol of people saying to Capitol

Police we`re here from the president. The president invited us. I wonder,

is that evidence to you? Is that the kind of thing that you want to present

to the jury to make this case?

DEGETTE: Sure, it`s part of the evidence of the conspiracy. And, I mean,

again, these people are just confirming what we already knew which is

Donald Trump told them in advance, come to Washington on January 6th. Stop

the counting of the certified election results by the states. Then he

invited them to the White House and at the White House he said to them,

we`re going to march up to the Capitol and we`re going to stop the counting

of the results.

It`s just -- it`s so -- it`s in such plain evidence that you almost forget

that it`s just incitement of the riot that happened and an attempt to stop

the Democratic counting of this certified results.

HAYES: Final question, there`s other evidence that I think we have an

incomplete picture of that I think I would like to see which is, his

resistance to calling it off. I mean, there`s reporting saying he`s

watching it, desperate calls from various lawmakers saying you have to do

something, you have to make a statement, you have to let the National Guard

get over there, and I wonder how much that evidence plays as well?

DEGETTE: Well, we do have evidence already that he did nothing while the

riot was happening in the Capitol, while people like me and most of the

senators were all running for our lives. And we have evidence that he was

just sitting there watching it happily. So, again, more evidence is coming

out. In a way, the impeachment managers without going into how we`re

structuring our case, we have an abundance of evidence.

And frankly, Chris, the American people have seen all of this evidence on

TV and on social media.

HAYES: Yes. Yes, it was a crime committed in plain daylight on national

television.

Congresswoman Diana DeGette --

DEGETTE: It was on TV.

HAYES: Thank you so much for making time tonight.

DEGETTE: Thank you for having me.

HAYES: All right. Lots more to get to this evening. Don`t go anywhere.

We`ll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAYES: Yesterday President Joe Biden unveiled his administration`s plan to

ramp up the fight against coronavirus, signing new executive orders to lay

that groundwork for a federalized response. The quote of the day came from

a source who told CNN the new administration had to start, quote, "from

scratch" in building a vaccine distribution plan.

Now that`s not strictly true insofar as just yesterday, the United States

did administer 1.3 million vaccine doses and another 1.4 million today. But

it`s true in a sense that everything we`ve done up until now has been

completely distributed down to the states and totally insufficient. So when

it comes to building a sufficient federal centralized response creating the

infrastructure to sustain that, well, yes, the Biden administration is

basically building that from scratch.

But what that can and should look like, I want to bring in Dr. Peter Hotez,

dean from National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of

Medicine, co-director of the Texas Children`s Hospital Center for Vaccine

Development and who is also working on a coronavirus vaccine.

Let`s start, Doctor, with the scale of the problem and what the timeline

should be. As President-elect Biden had pledged 100 million doses in the

first 100 days. Well, right now we`re doing 1.3 million, 1.4 million a day.

My sense from the people I`m talking to is that`s not ambitious enough.

What should the number be? What should we be targeting?

DR. PETER HOTEZ, CO-DIRECTOR, TEXAS CHILDREN`S HOSPITAL CENTER FOR VACCINE

DEVELOPMENT: Yes, Chris, I mean, here are what the numbers look like. We

have to vaccinate we think three-quarters of the U.S. population in order

to have any hope of interrupting virus transmission. We know those who get

vaccinated, it will save their lives in terms of keeping them out of the

hospital and the ICU because of the virus neutralizing antibodies but to do

the second part to interrupt transmission, we have to vaccinate three-

quarters of the U.S. population.

That`s roughly 240 million people. Many of those vaccines are two doses.

You`re looking at half a billion immunizations. And if you want to do that

by the summer, we`re talking five or six months. So that 100 million over

100 days, if you divide 500 million by five or six months, it`s really 100

million a month. So we really have to get to around three million

immunizations a day.

Look, I think it`s great that they set some targets. It`s good to throw a

number out there and it`s good to have goals. But the real numbers are

actually far higher and I know the Biden administration gets it. They`re

really working aggressively to put that infrastructure in place.

HAYES: Right. So that -- I mean, that`s very useful for me as a benchmark.

Right? Like if we`re hitting three million a day, we`re on track, and if

we`re short of that, we`re not. And we need to get up to that. What -- I

know you looked at the Biden plan, there`s money in this COVID relief bill

if it gets passed. And there`s a more proactive look at it, like, what`s

the difference between where we are now and three million a days in terms

of what has to happen?

HOTEZ: Well, you know, if you look at the five -- the 0.5 billion is the

aspirational goal, the target that we really have to reach, remember, we

have to do that in a hurry now because we have new virus variants coming

along and we want to immunize before they continue to accumulate. And we`ve

only administered around 20 million doses or so, 20 million divided by five

billion, Chris, you know, that`s a rounding error. We basically haven`t

done anything.

HAYES: Yes.

HOTEZ: We`re starting from zero more or less. So we`re going from zero to

half a billion. So it is one of the most daunting tasks ever faced by an

incoming presidential administration. There`s a good team in place. It`s

going to require going beyond the pharmacy hubs and the hospitals, we`re

going to have to get in some high throughput immunization centers and I

know that`s being worked on in collaboration with some of the cities and

the federal government, and, and we`re going to need additional vaccines.

We`re not going to have enough of the MRNA vaccines to make this happen. We

have to get the other vaccines released through Emergency Use

Authorization. The Adenovirus vaccines, particle vaccine, we have a

vaccine. And that`s got to happen pretty quickly as well.

HAYES: Right. So we`ve got the two right now, Moderna and Pfizer. There`s a

Johnson & Johnson vaccine which is a single shot. I mean, it seems key here

both from just a supply and also availability that as we`re moving into the

spring to have three or four or five vaccines that people can get?

HOTEZ: Yes, that`s exactly right. And I think we can get there. I think the

J&J vaccine will get up soon. Hopefully the AstraZeneca-Oxford. You know,

we`re -- we`d like some more help getting our recombinant protein vaccine

into the U.S. We`re scaling it up to make 1.2 billion doses in

collaboration with Biological E in India. And if we can get some help from

the U.S. government on that, that would be great. The particle vaccine from

Novavax.

So it`s all possible. A lot of stars are going to have to align. We`re also

going to need an unprecedented level of communication that`s simply not

there right now and that`s got to ramp up and probably streamline some of

the restrictive guidelines because that`s creating a lot of confusion.

Remember, think high, high throughput, and getting a lot of people through

as quickly as possible.

HAYES: Yes, and the messaging, I mean, that`s -- it`s a great point. Like

we just don`t -- there is no blanketing the airwaves of vaccine talk. It

just seems like it should be a huge thing that the government is doing,

telling people like the vaccines are available, here`s how you can get

them, they`re safe and effective.

HOTEZ: Yes, we have to change the culture. Remember, Operation Warp Speed

was a good program from the development point of view, but it never had a

communication plan. The communications were left to the pharma CEOs who are

not strong communicators. So you`re absolutely right.

HAYES: No.

HOTEZ: We should be hearing those pretty regularly. And also, you know,

every elected official right now, every public official should be able to

answer the following question. What are you doing when you wake up in the

morning to help the American people get vaccinated? This has gone beyond a

public health concern. This is a full-on homeland security crisis. People

are scared. They`re angry. They`re calling Sam`s Club and Walmart and Rite

Aid and CVS, how do I get my mom vaccinated, how do I get my brother

vaccinated, how do I get vaccinated?

The phones either are not being answered often or that they`re saying,

well, why are you calling us? We don`t have any vaccine. And they referred

to some outdated list that has no relevance. This is not a good situation.

And so we`re going to have to fix this very quickly.

HAYES: Dr. Peter Hotez, as always, thank you for sharing your expertise

with us.

Still to come, as House Republicans object to metal detectors in the wake

of the Capitol riot one of them is caught trying to carry a gun to the

House floor. Matt Fuller of HuffPost broke that story and he joins me next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HAYES: Even after the Capitol was attacked by a violent mob seeking to stop

the peaceful transfer of power, a majority of House Republicans, 139 of

them, along with eight Senate Republicans voted to do what that mob wanted

which was to block the seating of the electors that made Joe Biden

president. None of them have expressed remorse or regret.

And in the House a battle has been ratcheting up over whether some of those

Republican who sided with the mob can bring guns on to the House floor. It

started when metal detectors were stationed near the House chamber after

the riot. Some Republicans refused to go through them or to be checked with

wands if they set them off.

Members are not allowed to carry guns on the House floor. And then came a

culminating moment yesterday. Republican Congressman Andy Harris was caught

trying to carry a gun on to the floor and barred from entry. U.S. Capitol

Police tell NBC News they are now investigating.

It`s worth noting that Harris almost got in a fistfight with other members

on the night of the riot when Democrat Conor Lamb criticized Republican

members for their election. And the reporter who saw all this go down is

Matt Fuller, who covers Congress for HuffPo and he joins me now.

So before we get to this moment, just describe it -- it`s very clear, and

I`ve gotten this largely from your reporting along with others, you know,

it was a new thing to put these metal detectors on to the House floor. It

was in the wake of this very traumatic event where people were scared. It`s

become this point of contention, right? Where Republicans hate it and they

try to walk around it. Like what built up to this moment?

MATT FULLER, HUFFPOST CONGRESSIONAL REPORTER: Yes. So the first move after

the January 6th riots they installed these new metal detectors and frankly

I`d say about half of the Republican caucus just ignored it. Side-stepped

it. Walked through quickly. I saw, like, 10 of them at one point just sort

of bum rush the thing and just kind of walk through, and the cops are kind

of this impossible position where they don`t really know if they have

authority to stop the members and make them go through the metal detector.

There`s apparently some constitutional questions about, you know, arresting

a member of Congress on the way to a vote. So there`s all sorts of issues

here.

They`ve slowly -- this has been escalating now for two weeks but they`ve

put some desks on the sides, some velvet ropes and they made it a lot more

difficult for members to sort of bypass the security. And, you know,

yesterday I think was the hardest I`ve seen it and there was really only --

I only saw three people gelt through the security without being wanted

down. And there are steep fines coming. Eventually there`s going to be

$5,000 fine for the first time and $10,000 fine thereafter.

But basically it`s very difficult for them to get through and Harris has

been one of those members who has been just sort of rushing through, not

stopping for the police, and yesterday with, you know, the new measures in

place a cop sort of stood in front of him, blocked him and he was just sort

of forced to be wanted down. And at that point they found a gun on his

side.

So this is certainly a concerning thing, particularly as you noted, because

he`s, you know, a member who almost got into a fight two weeks ago.

HAYES: So he gets wanted down. They find a gun. There is a detail you had

that he just like went and tried to give it to a colleague? It was like, I

don`t want your gun?

FULLER: Yes. So I mean I think a normal person going into the House chamber

if they were trying to bring a gun, they`d be tackled to the ground,

arrested. With the member of Congress, it was sort of a quick conversation

where he`s very close to the cop. The cop sort of signals to another

officer, he`s got a gun on him, and Harris just sort of walks away and he`s

in this sort of vestibule area where there`s elevators, and he`s kind of

just like milling around.

I kind of followed him in and I saw him have a conversation with Republican

John Katko, who`s a former U.S. attorney, and he was basically having none

of it. Basically Harris asked him to take his gun for him and Katko said, I

don`t have a license for that, I`m not going to do it, and Harris kind of,

you know, he milled around a little bit more and then he made a couple of

comments about he reminded his staff to tell him to take off his gun or

something and then he got in an elevator and he left.

And seven minutes later he was back and I don`t know where he put the gown.

I don`t know if he put it back in his office. But he got back on the House

floor, he went through the metal detectors with no problem.

HAYES: Yes. I mean, House rules are that you can`t bring a gun on the

floor. There are places in American life where you can`t bring guns. And

Republican Matt Gaetz saying they`re trying to disarm Lauren Boebert on the

floor of the House of Representatives because ultimately they`re coming to

disarm many, many more.

I think the House floor seems a good place not to have a gun. That`s just

me.

Matt Fuller, who is our great set of eyes and ears on that House floor,

thank you so much for being with us tonight.

FULLER: Right. Appreciate it.

HAYES: That is ALL IN for this week. "THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW" starts right

now.

Good evening, Rachel.

RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC HOST: Good evening, Chris. Thank you, my friend. Much

appreciated.

And thanks to you at home for joining us this hour. Super happy to have you

here on this Friday night.

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY

BE UPDATED.

END

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