Former President Trump is pushing to purge Republicans who support democracy and have them primaried. Trump endorses candidates who would support the big lie. Former National Guard official now calling two generals, Flynn and Piatt "absolute liars regarding the Pentagon`s delayed response to the Capital Riot. Ayman Mohyeldin reports on the story of how one woman was radicalized before dying at the capitol on January 6. From the day he`s tested positive until his hospitalization, former President Trump came in contact with more than 500 people.
JOY REID, MSNBC HOST: Your poor taste and poor judgment both of you. Both of you are tonight`s absolute, absolute worst. Have some compassion for a change. Happy holidays. And that`s tonight`s readout on them with Chris Hayes starts now.
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CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST (voiceover): Tonight on ALL IN.
DONALD TRUMP, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: So, what are we going to do here, folks? I only need 11,000 votes. Fellows, I need 11,000 votes. Give me a break.
HAYES: Donald Trump finds a new candidate in his quest to replace Republicans who held the line for democracy.
DAVID PERDUE, FORMER SENATOR, GEORGIA: Think about how different it would be today if Kemp have fought Abrams first, instead of fighting Trump.
HAYES: Tonight, the high stakes in Georgia and why the Department of Justice is now suing Texas.
Then, the former National Guard official now calling two generals "absolute liars regarding the Pentagon`s delayed response to the Capital Riot."
Plus, she was one of five people who died during the insurrection. Tonight, Rosanne Boyland`s six-month descent into conspiracy theories and how she became an American radical.
And new reporting on the number of people potentially exposed to COVID during Trump`s deception, and some really important news about why you need a booster shot when ALL IN starts right now.
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HAYES (on camera): Good evening from New York, I`m Chris Hayes. A big development today in Donald Trump`s ongoing quest to turn the Republican Party into a vehicle for his own authoritarian aspirations. Of course, the former president continues to exert this power over the Republican Party with a litmus test he created for Republican politicians after his ignominious defeat.
And the question, the single question they must answer is, did they support his attempted coup? And would they support a coup in the future? And if the answer is no to either question, they`re in trouble. We`re seeing this again today, how Donald Trump has set his sights with complete monomaniacal focus on this question above all other issues.
You`ll remember Trump`s now-legendary bullying of Georgia`s Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger. Trump called him in early January asking him to just find 11,000 votes to change the outcome of the race in Georgia.
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TRUMP: I just want to find 11,780 votes, which is one more than we have because we won the state. So, what are we going to do here, folks? I only need 11,000 votes. fellow, I need 11,000 votes. Give me a break.
As we all know, Raffensperger refuse to participate in the coup, not even clear what he could do if he wanted to, but he refused to find 11,000 votes. And so, Raffensperger now has a Trump-endorsed primary challenger.
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TRUMP: Your next secretary of state, a friend of mine, somebody has done a phenomenal job, Jody Hice. Jody, come here. And Jody is running against one of the worst secretary of states in America, RINO Brad Raffensperger who is trying to turn the tables on me because I`m fighting for election integrity.
To be honest, I was surprised. He`s a congressman who`s loved in his district, who`s got no problems, no election problems. He could be there forever. And he said I want to do this because what`s happened to the state of Georgia is a disgrace.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: So, Brad Raffensperger doesn`t support the coup despite repeated bullying by Trump. And Trump backs a primary challenger to get rid of Brad Raffensperger so there will be more coup-pliant replacement. It`s the single issue primary challenge. Raffensperger refused to cave to the demands he steal an election, he must now be removed.
And as you heard, Donald Trump imply there, it`s also fair to conclude that Jody Hice would pass the litmus test and participate in the coup. In fact, he was one of the 147 Republicans who voted to overturn the election results on January 6 just hours after the insurrectionists had been cleared out of the Capitol.
So, that`s the central issue here. It`s why Jody Hice is running. It`s why he`s been endorsed. He has essentially promised he will deliver an election for Trump. He will even steal it. He will be a good loyal foot soldier in the next coop.
Well, today Donald Trump has set his sights on another state-wide office holder in Georgia, Governor Brian Kemp. Now, Kemp, you might remember, used to have Brad Raffensperger`s job as the Secretary of State. And in that role, he made all sorts of changes, including closing polling places, purging voters from the roll, and putting 53,000 voter registration applications on hold just before the 2018 election when he was running for governor.
On election night, Kemp beat Democratic challenger Stacey Abrams by a margin of about 54,000 votes. She contends that margin was basically due to the changes he had made as Secretary State to suppress the vote. So, in Brian Kemp, we are not talking but a guy with a stalwart commitment to ballot access Democratic integrity. In fact, he has a reputation for just the opposite.
But like Brad Raffensperger, Brian Kemp refuse to actively foment a coup, despite the fact that like Brad Raffensperger, he also was on the receiving end of a call from Donald Trump asking him to do so. And ever since, Trump has been trying to get rid of him too.
In September, when Trump held a rally in Georgia, he hinted that Kemp would be primary and that he had a candidate in mind.
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TRUMP: Your RINO Governor Brian Kemp who`s been a complete disaster on election integrity, a complete and total -- and I`m not looking to say that. I`m not looking to say that. He`s been a complete and total disaster on election integrity.
With us tonight, a friend of mine and a great Senator. A man who -- I don`t know. Are you going to run for Governor David Perdue? Are you going to run for governor? Where`s David Perdue? Stand up David, David Perdue. Are you running for governor, David? Did I hear he`s running for governor? Thank you, David. He`s a great guy and he loves this state and he`s done a fantastic -- a fantastic job.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Of course, Purdue can run for governor because he lost that Senate race, quite infamously. Now, last week, Stacey Abrams announced she`s running for governor again, a rematch being set up 2018.
And in response, Donald Trump issued this deranged, unhinged statement, "Stacey the hoax Abrams has just announced she`s running for Governor of Georgia. I beat her single-handedly without much of a candidate in 2018. I`ll beat her again. But it`ll be hard to do with Brian Kemp, because the MAGA base will just not vote for him after what he did with respect to election integrity and to horribly run elections for president and then to Senate seats. But some good Republican will run and some good Republican will get my endorsement and some good Republican will win."
Well, you probably know where this is going. Lo and behold, some good Republican has raised his hand.
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PERDUE: I`m David Perdue. I`m running for governor to make sure Stacey Abrams is never governor of Georgia. To fight back, we simply have to be united. Unfortunately, today, we`re divided and Brian Kemp and Brad Raffensperger to blame.
Look, I like Brian. This isn`t personal. It`s simple. He has failed all of us and cannot win in November. Instead of protecting our elections, he caved to Abrams and cost us two Senate seats. The Senate Majority and gave Joe Biden free rein. Think about how different it would be today if Kim and font Abrams first, instead of fighting Trump.
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HAYES: What does that even mean? Just minutes ago as if it were coordinated, the official stamp for approval from Donald Trump came in, he released this statement, never missing a chance to knock the current governor "Kemp has been a very weak governor. The liberals and RINOs have run over him on election integrity and more. David Perdue has my complete and total endorsement. He will not let you down."
He will not let you down. That`s not about the people of Georgia, it`s about Donald Trump because it`s about one thing. David Perdue knows it. He can say his campaign is about whatever the heck he wants. It exists for one reason, to remove Brian Kemp and replace him with a Republican who will participate in Donald Trump`s next coup. That`s not hyperbole. That is just the plain facts as they appear before us.
Incumbent politicians, to be clear, rarely get primary unless they are in really disastrously dire straits. Incumbents generally run for reelection with the blessing of their party usually because they control the state party if they`re the governor, and because they have the name recognition and they have the notorious power of incumbency behind them.
You do not replace an incumbent if you can avoid it, normally. The exceptional problem happening with this incumbent, of course, isn`t anything did policy wise, it is the failure to pull off a coup for Donald Trump to alter the trajectory of American democracy away from election by the people and towards an authoritarian dictate from above of who gets to be the next president.
And so, David Perdue can make noise about election integrity all he wants, which is just a use of euphemism. That`s not what he`s running on. He is running on a platform of Brian Kemp didn`t pull off Donald Trump`s coup. He did not take the shot at American democracy, but I will. That`s it. End of story. That`s what this election is about.
Donald Trump`s monomaniacal focus on the pro-coup litmus test is working. We are seeing it state after state, office after office, part of the broad assault on the basic mechanics of democracy representation. As the Washington Post reported, Trump allies are working to install their supporters like David Perdue "in key election posts across the country, part of a wave of Republican contenders who have embraced the foreign president`s false assertions about the 2020 election."
Donald Trump is looking for collaborators. He wants collaborators for his next run at American representative government to destroy it and he`s getting them in droves.
Senator Sheldon Whitehouse is a Democrat from Rhode Island who serves in the Senate Judiciary Committee. He just wrote this opinion piece from the Boston Globe about the upcoming first-ever summit for democracy. The State Department will convene to help fortify democracies and fight against things like corruption and authoritarianism.
Senator, you are obviously a colleague of David Perdue before he lost that election in a free and fair election in which the people chose to kick him out of his office. It just strikes me as like, craven, shabby, and odious to sign up for a primary challenge under these conditions. But I wonder what you think of someone who knows the man.
SEN. SHELDON WHITEHOUSE (D-RI): I`m a little surprised myself. I did not see him as somebody who was going to be this allied with Trump for this particular reason.
HAYES: There`s no other real way to interpret it, right? I mean, this is what it`s about, right?
WHITEHOUSE: I can see it.
HAYES: You can`t -- you can`t say there`s some other agenda here.
WHITEHOUSE: No. And well, if you look at Georgia, you know, you see that Trump has got these candidates in his Trump slate that he`s trying to move into Georgia, and that`s one issue. You played the tape of his call to Secretary State Raffensperger. And that`s part of a scheme to try to influence the election, and in fact, to try to cheat in that election. That goes straight into Georgia, as well as David Perdue.
And then you got a third thread, which I`ll bring in, if you don`t mind, which is Jeffrey Clark, the guy we`re looking at in the Senate Judiciary Committee who was in the U.S. Department of Justice, nominally in charge of the environment division, which under Trump, you know, he wasn`t supposed to do anything in and he got himself all cooked up with a scheme to undo the election. Where? In Georgia.
WHITEHOUSE: He`s now pled the fifth. He`s not exactly a principal figure. He`s kind of dweeby. So, the likelihood that there were people behind him steering that letter at Georgia as part of that scheme operating within the Department of Justice and through the Department of Justice, is a pretty strong probability right now.
So, you know, Georgia could be the place Trump goes for redemption but Georgia could also be the place where justice comes for Trump.
HAYES: You mentioned Jeffrey Clark and he`s sort of evolved in the Department of Justice. He apparently has played the fifth now in terms of the subpoena from the committee. There are other layers here as well. I mean, what we`re seeing happen in real-time is the assembling of people that will be willing to do what Raffensperger was -- didn`t, right?
BUT even before we get to that, we have state governments that are controlled by Republican state legislators and governors, like in Texas, gerrymandering their maps at the state rep level. And at the congressional level today, an announcement from the Department of Justice, they will be suing Texas over its new map.
Of course, they couldn`t block it ahead of time, thanks to the Roberts Court, which has gutted the Voting Rights Act, and has given essentially carp launch in a later case to essentially pursue this kind of extreme gerrymandering, which sort of manages to rig the game before anyone has to count any votes or before you have to do any post-election jockeying of the Secretary of State.
WHITEHOUSE: Yes. Now, your end of the whole other question of how dark money packed the Supreme Court and captured it the way industries are accustomed to capturing regulatory agencies to do its bidding, and how extremely obediently the Roberts Court signaled by a whole armada of dark money funded Amicus groups from the right wing have done exactly that.
And again, it all aligns towards reduced democracy and more power for special interests, particularly for very rich special interests who could hide behind the anonymity that the court has provided them.
HAYES: There`s a growing sense -- I mean, I feel very pitch sense about the health of American democracy. I think sometimes there`s a frustration. There`s insufficient appreciation in your chamber of what the stakes are. There`s a filibuster that stands in the way of the Democratic majority passing structural democratic reform that might be able to sort of forestall some of the worst-case scenario, strengthen democracy. Do you agree with the critics who look at what the Senate is doing and say, you`re not doing enough?
WHITEHOUSE: We are totally not doing enough. On the other hand, you`ve got, you know, a local DA in Fulton County, Georgia who`s doing her job of doing a proper investigation. You`ve got this litigation by the Department of Justice which if they energetic and aggressive, particularly in the discovery phase, they could find out quite a lot. We`ve got our investigations going in the Judiciary Committee in the Senate.
So, there`s more to be done on the investigative side and more to be discovered, I think, through courts and through investigators. So, while we are kind of blocked up with trying to find a way procedurally forward around Republican obstruction and filibuster of these democracy reforms, there still are good proceedings that could yield very valuable information that could help turn this thing.
HAYES: Yes, I mean, the court -- the courts` role in this in this sort of like, back and forth between the courts jurisprudence on these sort of key democratic structural reforms, them sort of giving the green light to state legislators to sort of barricade themselves into power. You know, it has a kind of flywheel effect I think that we`re all watching, right?
I mean, this is the fear that you attenuate the ability to call people to account, that you attenuate the basic mechanisms of democratic accountability before you even get to this aversion question. How important do you think this summit is this week? Is it a real thing or is it -- is it show?
WHITEHOUSE: No, I think the summit is real. I think that there are two separate dark money, dark economy problems that America is facing. One is the dark money control that is packed to Supreme Court that has done climate denial, that is behind voter suppression, and that runs so much of Republican politics.
The other is on the international side kleptocrats and criminals are able to hide enormous amounts of stolen money, and they hide it in rule of law countries behind the secrecy that is used by the domestic schemers. So, the to relate in that sense and the shared solution for both is a lot more transparency to give to American citizens, voters. What James Madison called for which is knowledge because knowledge will forever govern ignorance. And you can`t allow the American people to be ignorant of what`s going on around them by letting politics be secret.
HAYES: Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, thank you so much for making time tonight.
An extraordinary accusation of lies and a cover-up by top Army officials trying to hide what actually happened with the National Guard on January 6. The jaw-dropping details next.
HAYES: Early in the afternoon, on the day of the Capitol insurrection, it had been clear to everyone who could see the scene from the Capitol Police battling the mob to literally anyone watching at home that more law enforcement was needed and quickly. By 2:30 p.m., the Trump-fueled mob had already breached the Capitol and we`re inside the building and members of Congress were cowering in their seats, reaching for their gas masks, and taking off their pins.
And at 2:30 p.m., there is a conference call between the Capitol Police and Pentagon officials about what to do about this urgent crisis. According to the commanding general of the D.C. National Guard, when the Capitol Police requested assistance from the National Guard on that call, they were denied.
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MAJ. GEN. WILLIAM WALKER, FORMER COMMANDER, D.C. NATIONAL GUARD: The Army senior leaders did not think that it looked good, it would be a good optic. They further stated that it could -- it could incite the crowd.
In written testimony, General Charles Flynn, then-Deputy Chief of Staff for operations who was on that call wrote, "I never expressed a concern about the visual, image, or public perception of sending the D.C. National Guard to the U.S. Capitol." While Lieutenant General Walter Piatt, the director of Army Staff was also on my call claimed, "At no point on January 6 did I tell anyone the D.C. National Guard should not deploy directly to the Capitol."
Well, Colonel Earl Matthews was serving as the top attorney to the D.C. National Guard on that day on January 6. He was also on that call. And he says those two generals are lying. And I don`t mean like suggest that. In a 36 page memo, Matthews calls both men "Absolute and unmitigated liars, criticize the Pentagon`s Inspector General for whitewashing the Army`s actions. Specifically, he says general pilots answered they never said the National Guard should not deploy as quote false and misleading. Calls General Charles Flynn`s claim he was not concerned with optics "outright perjury."
And as Politico reports, the Pentagon is participating in a secret attempt to rewrite the history of the military`s response to the Capitol riot. Betsy Woodruff Swan broke this story of Politico where she`s a national correspondent, and she joins me now.
Betsy, first, let`s set up the sort of point of controversy and contention in the timeline here and this call just to go back through -- go back through this. We`ve got the -- 2:36 requests the National Guard support by verbal request, Flynn and Piatt recommend for D.C. guards who stand by. They start drafting a plan for courses of action.
But the key point is that in that call where they`re saying, hey, we need people, the National Guard does not get sent. And from the beginning, there`s been a question of why not.
BETSY WOODRUFF SWAN, NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT, POLITICO: There`s been a question of why it took so long for National Guard troops to get to the Capitol Building and defend the Capitol. The Defense Department`s internal watchdog, its inspector general, released a port -- a report earlier this year that was basically exculpatory.
It essentially said that the Pentagon did everything that it could have done, that senior Pentagon leaders were doing their best, and that this day on the whole looks good for the U.S. military. What we have emerging now is a counter-narrative coming not from the Pentagon, but from the D.C. National Guard, the actual group of troops who were called to respond to the Capitol building.
Of course, we`ve had General Walker`s testimony. And now, in this new memo that I obtained, we have Colonel Matthews who was on that 2:30 call amplifying and adding detail to that testimony. One key point of dissension is what did these two generals Flynn and Piatt say on the call when the Capitol Police Chief was begging them to send in the National Guard as soon as possible?
Those two generals have told Congress that they did not oppose immediately sending in the National Guard while Matthews now says in this document that`s been delivered to the January 6 Select Committee that in fact they did. And very importantly, another key piece of detail that Matthews brings here is he describes how everyone in the D.C. National Guard at the Armory in D.C. where many of those guard forces were stationed was, he used the word stunned, to describe how long it took the National Guard to get to the Capitol building.
Matthews gives an insider perspective of the extent to which D.C. National Guard leadership felt ready to go. They felt they needed to be there. They felt they had the skills, the equipment, the personnel necessary to get there and make a difference. But they were stunned that it took senior Pentagon leadership so long to greenlight sending those troops over.
Now, to be clear, the Pentagon is defending these two generals. They gave us a statement saying that Piatt and Flynn were honest when they spoke to the committee. These are two diverging narratives, and it doesn`t seem possible for both of them to be true. The fact that there is this new emerging narrative coming out right now about why it took so long is a really significant development.
HAYES: Right. And I think -- I mean, we should just be clear, like this document is scorching. I mean, he says -- he says that the I.G. report, he says that he`s a revisionist tract worthy of the best Stalinist or North Korea propagandist. Of course, he says, these men are liars, that it`s unmitigated lying, that Flynn committed perjury.
And the big -- and the big issue it`s strikes me here is these men are both on the record and I believe under oath saying, we didn`t slow walk this because a concern about optics. We weren`t worried about how it would look if the National Guard was called up. That wasn`t the issue. And what you have for Matthews is saying that`s not true. That`s precisely at least in his telling, right, that`s precisely what they were worried about.
SWAN: Right. You have Matthew saying that`s a lie and using, to your point, unusually strong language to go after these two generals. An important piece of context for all this is that everything about the way the Pentagon or the D.C. National Guard prepared for January 6 was totally in reaction to the summer of 2020 when the U.S. military responded in a way that was deeply disturbing to protests in Washington D.C.
So, what everyone in the Pentagon was thinking is, how do we make sure the National Guard doesn`t go too far? How do we make sure the Pentagon doesn`t overreach? How do we make sure we don`t overreact? That was the number one concern. And well, congratulations to the Pentagon. They certainly didn`t overreact.
SWAN: The problem, of course, was that they underestimated the immense danger that a crowd of "Blue Lives Matter-type Trump supporters" pose to the law enforcement officers into America`s democratic process. It was -- it was a horrible underestimation with immense consequences.
HAYES: Betsy Woodruff Swan, as always, great reporting. Thank you very much.
SWAN: Thank you.
HAYES: Coming up, she was one of the five people who died 11 months ago at the Capitol tonight. We are finally learning just how Rosanne Boyland was radicalized. That exclusive MSNBC investigation next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AYMAN MOHYELDIN, MSNBC ANCHOR: Do you believe that Rosanne was radicalized?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. Yes.
MOHYELDIN: Her family tried to talk her out of attending the January six rally held in Washington, but she refused. She went to the rally with a friend Justin Winchell, who had been one of the last people to see her alive. Her family watched in horror is the events of that day unfolded.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So, we just watched the news and the second that they said the second person died, I hear somebody -- yes, there was more than one. I knew automatically that it was her.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: 11 months ago, after thousands of insurrection swarmed the Capitol in an attempt to violently overthrow free and fair election, five people lost their lives, and one of them was 34-year-old Rosanne Boyland from Kennesaw, Georgia. Court released footage from January 6 shows Boyland lying motionless on the ground as the crowd tried to breach police security and her friend frantically yelled for someone to help.
MSNBC`s own Ayman Mohyeldin grew up in the same Georgia town as Boyland. They both attended the same high school just a few years apart. Ayman has covered political extremism, radicalization, and other contexts in Middle East, for example, for more than a decade.
This radicalization happened in small-town America to a woman who was described as political by her family -- as apolitical by our family until last year. So, Ayman set out to investigate just how it was that Rosanne Boyland ended up at the Capitol on that fateful day.
It`s part of an incredible new podcast called American Radical. Throughout the series, Mohyeldin chronicles Boyland`s journey from political neophyte to "a foot soldier in a movement that threatened the very essence of American democracy." According to our family, it all began last year.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MOHYELDIN: Her family started to notice that something seemed a bit off.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She started like getting a little bit closed off and distant and, like on Christmas, she was here, but she was just on her phone the whole time. She wasn`t like participating in the opening and presents.
MOHYELDIN: Rosanne began to withdraw from family commitments and instead started going down a QAnon rabbit hole of child trafficking conspiracy theories.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She was like, hey, have you heard about this? And I was like, no. So, she researched it. So, I left there at probably 5:00 in the evening and she texted me at s7:00 in the morning. She had been up all night watching YouTube.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Ayman Mohyeldin spent the better part of a year talking with Rosanne Boyland`s friends and family, piecing together just what happened as part of his new podcast American Radical, and Amen joins me here tonight.
It`s great to have you here. It`s fantastic, fantastic series.
MOHYELDIN: Thank you.
HAYES: Absolutely check it out. First, just give a little context of this place that you went to high school in. What`s it like? What`s the -- what`s the vibe in Kennesaw, Georgia?
MOHYELDIN: I mean, listen, this isn`t the early 90s. It`s suburban -- America in the suburbs of Atlanta, strip malls, chain restaurants, everything you can imagine, not very diverse, which is different than it is now. Back then, it was a staunchly red district neighboring Newt Gingrich`s district when he was coming up as the speaker of the House.
And now it`s changed. It`s a little bit more diverse. There is a little bit more, you know, diversity economically as well as politically. And it is now a purple district and depending on any given year, depends on who wins.
But it`s also an area that has some economic hardships, and also at the center of it is quite a severe drug problem. And it`s something that Rosanne struggled with. It was part of her destitution is that she was struggling with drug addiction. And it was something that plagued her throughout her years and made her struggle throughout the course of her teenage and early adult life.
HAYES: Yes. So, this is someone, Rosanne Boyland, who does have some things she`s working on and struggling with, before she finds this kind of political awakening. Her family says she wasn`t -- she wasn`t a political person.
MOHYELDIN: Yes, absolutely. She had never voted in her life. She was not a person -- in fact, in the beginning of this transformation, she engaged in a lot of humor making fun of Donald Trump. She shared memes with the family where they poked fun of him and made fun of him, like a lot of people did, and certainly still do.
But then there was a transformation. And they were very interested in finding out what led to that transformation. And it began with QAnon. It began with this child trafficking conspiracy theory that gripped her and hooked her into it. And it morph from that into thinking that there was this secret ring of top Democrat and Hollywood elites that were engaged in pedophilia, and Donald Trump was going to be the one who stands up and breaks this thing up.
And so, she began to support Donald Trump, and then suddenly realized that if she could somehow participate in expressing her support for Trump, that it was going to give her this sense of purpose, a sense of community.
One of the last messages she shared on Parler, the social networking site was that she had found her true brothers and sisters in the January 6 rally and that she was going up there. And she even said her family thinks that she`s crazy for doing it, but she knew this is where she needed to be and that God had given her this clarity and given her this purpose to be there to decertify the -- or stop the certification of the election so that Donald Trump can stay in power and protect and save the children.
HAYES: Yes, it`s really -- those two aspects of it I found fascinating. One is that her way into this isn`t through politics, it`s through this -- it`s through the conspiracy theory of QAnon, which is -- which is political but the -- her front end of it isn`t.
HAYES: Right? It`s about this like secret cabal of evildoers that sort of independent from partisan politics. And then she moves from that into Donald Trump`s support.
MOHYELDIN: Yes. And the -- and the hook, if you will, is that she cared about children, she loved children. She was a great aunt. She couldn`t have children of her own. So, in some ways, she had a little bit of this vulnerability towards children. And when you look at what the core tenet of QAnon is, it`s about saving the children.
HAYES: Right, protecting children.
MOHYELDIN: Protecting children, saving the children. And so, that was the entry point into it. And as you look into it further and further, it goes from one to the other. She spent quite an evening, according to her sister, looking into the conspiracy theory of the Wayfair conspiracy theory, which was a bizarre and crazy theory that Wayfair, this e-commerce company, was somehow engaged in trafficking children through their online platform. It`s just completely --
HAYES: Totally false.
MOHYELDIN: Totally, totally -- like completely bonkers. But at the end of the day, it`s what hooked her into it. And she spent a lot of time looking into it, and then ultimately going to D.C.
HAYES: There`s also the contours of this when you -- you know, when her family talks about it, and in the podcast, like the religious aspect of it, the -- that she feels -- I mean, people call QAnon a cult. There`s this intense sort of spiritual belief in something in things unseen, right? This like intense form of radicalization that is a bit impervious to the normal means of persuasion.
HAYES: So, she feels like she`s like a sort of a soldier in God`s army by the time that she`s going.
MOHYELDIN: Well, first of all, this is a person who, by her own admission, finds God. So, she does find this community of people who believe the same way and this is the path to God. And what was interesting about and it`s something that I`ve seen overseas was that radicalism happens at this kind of intersection between destitution, disinformation, and demagoguery.
And America has had destitution and disinformation, no doubt about it. But what was kind of unique in this era is demagoguery. You had the presence of Donald Trump who was seen by people as a demagogue. He was able to channel --
HAYES: Channel it.
MOHYELDIN: -- to channel their destitution, take the disinformation and say, look, your societal ills, I alone can fix them. If you follow me, I can fix your problems in this society, whether it`s saving the children or whatever. And so, when he has that grip over people, people are willing to march for him and follow him all the way to the Capitol.
And in some ways, it does become like a cult. When we spoke to her sister, she described it as people who are in whether it`s the sobriety movement or what have you, were finding a sense of purpose and a community. And once they felt that they belong to something, the only way they could stay in it was to commit themselves more and more and more.
HAYES: Her family obviously is devastated by her loss. They wanted her not to go. And that moment where they said like we knew it was her, they`re also not sure about the cause of death AND That`s something that comes up in the podcast.
MOHYELDIN: Yes, they`re questioning it because there`s two components to this. There`s the final couple minutes of her life which is literally what happened in the five, 10 before she was taken over the police line. Was she hit by something that did she get trampled. The autopsy report that came out said she died of an amphetamine overdose or amphetamine intoxication.
And it`s not street drugs. She had a prescription for Adderall. But there are questions surrounding whether or not there was enough Adderall in her system to have killed her. And the family`s not convinced that a proper investigation was done. And so, they want to see a proper investigation being carried out.
They also believe that there`s body cam footage that is important to identifying what happened in those last five minutes. And they don`t believe those body cam footage or that material has been properly released yet, and they`re trying to pursue the release of that footage.
Now, when I asked the sister, she doesn`t say that she believes the police killed Rosanne, but there are still unanswered questions and they want to find out whether or not it is simply a drug overdose, or whether there was something else that happened and somebody should be held accountable.
HAYES: We should -- we should note that, you know, this is -- this is incredibly difficult material. It`s tragic and awful, and it`s very humanely done, and it`s great reporting. They reached out to you, right? I mean, you did not show up at the door knocking to say like --
MOHYELDIN: No, I mean, that`s the connection to the story. I went to high school in the same high school Rosanne went. I knew her brother-in-law, Justin. We played soccer together. And three days after the insurrection -- I didn`t even know who Rosanne was. I didn`t process the names yet. And three days after the insurrection, I got a message from Justin saying my sister-in-law was among those that died in the Capitol, we believe she was radicalized in under six months. Those were his words.
And so, when I heard the word radicalization, and knew that it was Justin, it made me -- I reached out to him immediately. And he asked -- and he asked me, do you want to hear her story? And I said, absolutely. Because again, it was something I had seen overseas. I had never expected to see that nexus happen in Kennesaw, Georgia. And that`s what led me to the story.
HAYES: Ayman Mohyeldin, thank you. The first episode of American Radical is out now available to stream wherever you get your podcasts. You should absolutely go right now and take a listen. It`s fantastic. Thanks, Ayman.
Coming up, it turns out Trump was the super spreader event. How the number of people he met after testing positive for COVID is now in the hundreds ahead.
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HAYES: We have some new COVID vaccination data in the U.S. showing that while the numbers keep going up, there`s one big glaring hole. Right now, according to NBC News, 71 percent of Americans are partially vaccinated, 60 percent are fully vaccinated, which are both pretty good numbers. We`re still actually behind a lot of pier countries, but pretty good.
Only about 24 percent have gotten the booster. Now, this is a pretty huge gap between people have gotten their vaccine and gotten their booster. And obviously, the booster just became available and recommended. I suspect there are many of you watching this program right now who are in that category, that is people who did get the initial vaccine, who believe in vaccines, but have not been boosted for whatever reason, haven`t gotten around to it, don`t know if you really need to.
And I just want to tell you, the more data we get, the more we learn about the profound positive effects of the booster in terms of protecting against the virus. And this has never been more important because we are facing winter and the new Omicron variant.
It`s still early in terms of getting data about the variant. There already concerns about rates of reinfection for people who already had the virus, that it`s evading the antibodies from previous viral infection. One study which has not yet been reviewed by scientific journal estimating Omicron could be twice as likely to cause a reinfection than earlier variants.
According to the WHO, Omicron is already in 38 countries. CDC Director Rochelle Walensky says it has been detected in at least 15 US states, and I think we should all assume they`ll get to all of them. Now, it`s still early to know for sure, but Dr. Anthony Fauci drawing on the data that is acquired and also the sort of basic biology at play here says that vaccine and booster is your best defense.
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DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, CHIEF MEDICAL ADVISER TO THE PRESIDENT: Although we haven`t proven it yet, there`s every reason to believe that if you get vaccinated and boosted, that you would have at least some degree of cross- protection, very likely against severe disease, even against the Omicron variant.
HAYES: That`s the whole name of the game here, protection against severe disease. When you consider that we know and we have seen Coronavirus cases go up in the winter, and that Omicron may be more transmissible than the Delta variant, which preliminary data suggests that maybe.
If all that`s true, we`re likely to see Omicron move quite rapidly and move quite rapidly particularly through those unvaccinated populations or populations with waning vaccine efficacy because they haven`t gotten boosted. We could end up in a situation with, unfortunately, a lot of people being hospitalized. Let`s hope that doesn`t happen.
But all that said, you want to do everything in your power, things you can control to not be one of those people. And there is a lot we can`t do about the variant right now. We just sort of wait for the data. One thing we can do, the thing we have control over, one tangible straightforward thing you could do tomorrow is please go get your booster shot.
HAYES: Donald Trump first tested positive for Coronavirus nearly a week before it was made public. We learned that last week from a leaked copy of a new book by his then-Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, a book that Trump blurbed, by the way. Since then, there`s been more reporting about Trump`s movement in those six days including this amazing piece from The Washington Post tracking just how many people came into close contact with the Coronavirus positive president.
On September 26, 2020, the day Trump first reportedly tested positive, he held an infamous Rose Garden event announcing Amy Coney Barrett`s nomination to the Supreme Court Justice, as well as an indoor reception afterwards. That day, the Washington Post estimates Trump came into contact with up to 150 people between that event and then his trip to a rally in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania that night.
The next day, he hosted an event for Gold Star Families whose loved ones died in combat. At the event was the then- Vice Commandant of the Coast Guard, who later tested positive for Coronavirus. In total that day, Trump was in contact with roughly 70 people. It`s also worth noting that after Trump was hospitalized, he went on Fox News and apply that those Gold Start families could have infected him despite testing positive the day before meeting them.
On that Monday, September 28, Trump held an event to showcase the administration`s plans to fight the virus. And it was a bizarre scene where the President was placed at a separate lectern far apart from the other speakers. That`s not what they normally did. That day, the Post found out he came into contact with about 30 people.
The following day, Tuesday morning, he spent hours with his debate prep team including Chris Christie, who would later test positive for Coronavirus himself and be admitted to the ICU. Trump then took part in the first Presidential Debate standing just feet away from his opponent Joe Biden and moderator Chris Wallace. That day, the Post estimates, he came into contact with about 20 people.
On September 30, and October 1, Trump was in contact with another 255 people as his schedule included fundraisers in Minnesota and New Jersey. On October 2, Donald Trump tweeted that he and his wife both tested positive for the virus. Hours later, he was flown from the White House to Walter Reed Medical Center six days after his first positive test and after coming into contact with more than 500 people, according to The Washington Post analysis.
Ashley Parker is a White House reporter for the Washington Post, one of the reporters who worked on that amazing analysis piece laying out the context Donald Trump had after testing positive for Coronavirus.
And, Ashley, it`s just really -- I mean, it`s a truly shocking timeline, I have to say, when you consider how scary this virus is, how much everyone has tried to tamp down contact. And if you heard this story about just a random person, it`s like the kind of thing that might pop up in early reporting on the virus. You know, you`d hear stories about super spreading events or this person who was infected and then went to a concert and did this. But in this case, it`s the President of the United States.
ASHLEY PARKER, WHITE HOUSE REPORTER, THE WASHINGTON POST: Well, it`s the President of the United States. And it`s the President of the United States who has received on September 26 a positive Coronavirus test. And so, what we set out to do was basically do our own version of contact tracing. And you laid it out pretty well, but I just want to point out two things that really jumped out to me as especially irresponsible in that timeline.
One is on the day the President has received this positive test, they rerun it, again, another rapid test, which is not what you`re supposed to do, you`re supposed to do a more thorough PCR. But at this point, the President has the knowledge that he has received one positive and one negative test. That`s hardly inclusive of anything other than just take serious mitigation steps until you find out if you actually -- if it`s a true positive or false positive.
And what the President in fact does is he walks back to the tiny enclosed press cabin on Air Force One on his way back from that rally, and unmask talks to a group of 13 reporters, one of whom publicly shares that he ends up coming down to COVID the exact same day that the President ends up going to the hospital.
HAYES: You`ve got that. And then you have also -- I mean, the other thing that your timeline lays out that snaps something into focus that I`ve always thought about, is how does this happen, right? Like, take away any sort of sense of moral obligation or the seriousness of what one takes COVID. You know, the job of White House security and Secret Service is to keep the president alive, right?
You`re trying to keep the president alive and safe in the context of a once-in-a-century pandemic. And you would think like the protocols and the amount of testing they were doing, like, how could it be the case you have this sort of cluster coming out of the White House. And the answer is this.
One former senior administration official speaking on the condition of anonymity to share a candid opinion remark, Everyone spent months trying to reconstruct the Rose Garden. It turns out was good old Patient Zero, the President, which is to say, all the testing protocol and everything is to protect the president from infection by others. But if he test positive, and you just let him loose, then this is what you`re going to get.
PARKER: Well, that`s exactly right, too. And there was a striking quote in our story from one of his former Chiefs of Staff, John Kelly, who basically said, if the President had tested positive, if I had found out about that positive test result, I would have absolutely canceled everything. And he says, I would have rushed him straight to Walter Reed, basically, as a precaution.
So, he`s captured exactly what you just raised, not just protecting the Cabinet Secretaries, the public, those rally goers, there`s both Star families from the president who very well could have been patient zero, but frankly, protecting the president from a very real crisis as well.
HAYES: There -- and, you know, the other aspect of this, I think, is just the fact that I remember the time, like, there was no contact tracing that was being done, the White House wasn`t -- Am I wrong? Like, the White House wasn`t calling Goldstar Families and like, no one`s getting notified.
I mean, you know, if a case pops up in like, your workplace or your school, I mean, there`s -- you know, there`s just standard protocols if there`s a case that your contact and that you get -- you get notified. And in this case, like as far as I can tell, basically, no one got notified.
PARKER: That`s right. As anyone who has kids can tell you, if there`s an exposure in your child`s class, just about everyone finds out when you have to begin a horrific quarantine that affects everyone`s lives. And that`s for safety, and understandable reasons. But in this case, Mark Meadows in his book claimed that he told the necessary people and said treat the President as if he has COVID.
But in fact, when we went back and reported that, that`s simply not the case. We talked to a number of top administration officials who said they were not alerted. For instance, Vice President Pence was there that first day, he was there on many subsequent days, he was never told. He continued to interact with the president. And even someone who flew with President Trump on Marine One after it was known that he had Coronavirus.
So, even if you believe that was a false positive for Trump, you now know he has been exposed regularly to someone who has come down with the virus. They were not told before they got on Marine One with a maskless Trump that he had it.
HAYES: Ashley Parker, great reporting. Thank you so much. That is ALL IN on this Monday night.
PARKER: Thank you.
HAYES: "THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW" starts right now. Good evening, Rachel.