The House of Representatives voted to strip Republican Congresswoman
Marjorie Taylor Greene of her committee assignments. Interview with Rep.
Jahana Hayes (D-CT) on the removal of Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene from her
committee assignments. Impeachment managers invite Former President Trump
to provide testimony under oath either before or during the Senate
impeachment trial concerning his conduct on January 6, 2021. The House held
its first hearing on violent extremism since the attack on the Capitol.
Interview with Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-MI) about the House`s first hearing
on violent extremism. Interview with Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) on
President Biden`s agenda.
JOY REID, MSNBC HOST: And fighting against racial segregation when she
refused to give up her seat near the front of the bus to a white man. But
her activism went far beyond that. For more than 30 years, Parks worked to
reform our judicial system so that black women who were assaulted could
have confidence that they would be fairly heard, a fight that continues
That is tonight`s REIDOUT. "ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES" starts right now.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST (voice-over): Tonight, on ALL IN.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I urge my colleagues to look at that image and tell me
what message you think it sends.
HAYES: History in the House of Representatives.
REP. ILHAN OMAR (D-MN): This is about whether it is OK to encourage the
murder of the Speaker of the House.
HAYES: Tonight, the bipartisan vote to sanction a Republican member for
extremist remarks and espousing violence, and what it means for the country
going forward. Then, House managers called Donald Trump to testify, but
will be impeached ex-president`s attorneys cancel his testimony?
Plus, what we learned at the first hearing on domestic terror in the wake
of the Capitol attack, and my exclusive interview with Senator Elizabeth
Warren on the fast start from the Biden administration and her push to keep
it going, when ALL IN starts right now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES (on camera): Good evening from New York. I`m Chris Hayes. Just over
an hour ago, the House of Representatives voted to strip Republican
Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene of her committee assignments. Now,
this is an extremely rare occurrence. In fact, it might be unprecedented in
history, we can`t quite tell, but it looks like we can`t find an actual
precedent for this.
In all the recent instances when all this has happened, when members were
removed from committees by their own parties, it happened because the party
removed them instead of the entire House. But the threat of removal from
the whole House did not stop Congresswoman Greene from the racist and
violent conspiracy theories that got her into this situation in the first
Just yesterday, she was throwing around conspiracy theories like Democratic
members marry their own brothers. Today, Greene came forward to do what I
would characterize as the minimal amount of performance necessary to give
fellow Republicans the excuse to vote on her behalf.
She put forth a rambling diatribe of lies and false equivalencies and half-
truths that included the incredible bit of rhetoric from the well of the
House. And I quote her here. "I also want to tell you, that 9/11 absolutely
happened." Thank you for that, Congresswoman. I`m so glad we could confirm
She lied about the things she said and supported and when she said them
during that rambling diatribe. She did not address or apologize for the
most problematic stuff, her violent rhetoric, including saying multiple
times on video, that speaker Nancy Pelosi could be executed for treason.
All but 11 Republicans voted to support Greene which is more defections
than I think anyone expected, but still pretty good example of the one
thing that unifies the other 199 members of the House Republican Party. All
they have is being against the libs. When you get past that, there are all
sorts of divisions inside that party, as seen, for instance, by 61 people
in a secret ballot trying to unseat a member of leadership for the audacity
of voting to impeach a president who summoned an insurrectionist mob to
attack where they all were.
You have a caucus where the majority, you remember, voted to overturn a
democratic election. There are all sorts of divisions inside the party with
the Marjorie Taylor anti-democracy wing. The one thing that can unify them
is opposition to liberalism, the Democratic Party. That is what it`s all
about for them. The problem is, that`s all built on a foundation of sand.
What does the Republican Party stand for, besides making sure the libs
don`t control things?
On the other hand, just a few months ago, in the wake of the election, it
was the Democratic Party that looks like a very fractured coalition. Do you
remember that? They were expecting big pickups in the House and they lost a
bunch of seats. There were immediate recriminations, internal debates about
the source of those losses, with frontline members in swing districts
blaming progressive members for defund the police rhetoric in the wake of
the George Floyd protests. There was frustration that some Senate
candidates who raised a ton of money did not perform better.
Three months later, Democrats have a House majority, actually managed to
win the Senate with those improbable runoff wins in Georgia, and they have
everyone for the most progressive members of the most conservative member
united around an agenda of the big first item of the Biden presidency, a
COVID relief package that has a price tag more than twice Obama`s Recovery
Act and has buy in from everyone from Joe Manchin to Bernie Sanders.
It is really quite a turnabout from where things look like they were headed
just a few months ago. And today, House Democrats spoke out in unity to
condemn a woman who`s past views are so delusional and so dangerous.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. JIM MCGOVERN (D-MA): I did not hear an apology or denouncement for the
claims, the insinuation that political opponents should be violently dealt
with. I didn`t hear anybody apologize or retract the anti-Semitic and
Islamophobic remarks that have been made, that have been posted over and
over and over again.
REP. RASHIDA TLAIB (D-MI): Today`s Republican Party, Marjorie Taylor
Greene`s worldviews are violent, anti-Black, racist, Islamophobic, anti-
Semitic, and they`re condoned. Every single day that goes by without
outright condemnation from every single one of her Republican colleagues,
without consequences for her extremist views, is an outright endorsement of
OMAR: This is not about one member. This is about who we are as a body and
what we are as a democracy. This is about whether it is acceptable to chew
on and encourage an insurrection against our basic democratic process.
This is about whether it is OK to demand members to swear in on a Bible of
religion they do not practice. This is about whether it is OK to hold an
assault rifle next to members heads in a campaign ad and incite death
threats against them.
REP. CORI BUSH (D-MO): I cannot sit idly by and allow white supremacy and
hatred to have decision making power over our students` futures. To my
Republican colleagues, let history remember what you did in this moment, a
prerequisite for appointment to these committees and for all that we do
must be that you love and represent all people, meaning all people.
REP. JOYCE BEATTY (D-OH): I stands here to tell you I will stand up to
bullies, bullies who threaten students and threaten and celebrate the
violence towards our speaker and our colleagues. Today, and yes, as a
conscience of the Congress, it is important that we take this step to
affirm that conspiracy theories and outrageous lies have no place in the
Congress, no place in the people`s house. No place, no place.
REP. JAHANA HAYES (D-CT): No parent should ever have to invite a member of
Congress to visit their child`s grave or touch the bullet written clothing
that their child wore to prove that their death actually happened. Mr.
Speaker, the speaker of this House always tell members to vote our
district. Today, I vote as an act of conscience in defense of my district.
I vote for the babies who left for school eight years ago and never
returned home and the teachers who died trying to protect them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer closed the Democrats` remarks in
an impassioned speech appealing to the decency of his Republican
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. STENY HOYER (D-MD): The conduct we are judging today continued to
occur even after Representative Greene became a candidate, and even after
she was elected. Mrs. Speaker, I urge my colleagues to look at this image.
They`re not The Squad. They`re Ilhan, they`re Alexandria, and they`re
Rashida. They are people. There are colleagues.
The Squad`s worst nightmare. Yes, some people are having nightmares and
fear. And some people who wanted to give other people nightmare, committed
sedition, and broke into the House of Representatives and tried to stop us
while electing a president of the United States.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: That woman there holding the gun is the woman 199 House Republicans
voted to support and the unified Democratic Party along with 11 Republicans
stripped her of her power. I`m joined now by one of the Democrats who you
heard there on the House floor, Democratic Congresswoman Jahana Hayes of
Connecticut who serves on the House Education Labor Committee and
represents the Newtown community where the Sandy Hook Elementary School
mass shooting took place.
Congresswoman, it seemed extremely emotionally fraught and intense in that
house chamber day. What was it like in there?
J. HAYES: It was incredibly emotional for me. I was thinking about my
constituents and the people back at home because as you can imagine, this
is deeply personal for the people in Connecticut, for the people in
Newtown. And just to hear my Republican colleagues come up with a string of
what aboutisms (ph) and excuses for why, never saying she should be placed
on a committee, but deflecting to so many different arguments was
incredibly emotional on the floor today.
HAYES: You know, it struck me as I watched this today that part of what was
happening, and I`d like to hear your response to this, is that the House
hasn`t grappled with what happened on January 6th in any formal way. The
fact that a majority of Republicans voted to overturn a democratic
election, the fact that a mob of violent insurrectionists invaded the place
that you work, threatening the lives of people that you work with.
There was there`s there hasn`t been any institutional processing of that.
And it felt to me today, like this vote on Marjorie Taylor Greene was
standing in as a kind of proxy for that.
J. HAYES: I would say I agree with you. You`re absolutely right, because I
myself am still processing the events of January 6th, and this wound is
reopened over and over and over again. While I heard people talk about the
merits of the election or the events of January 6th, the fact that violent
words incited the actions of January 6th, all of this really is playing in
the back of members minds as we attempt to legislate. And you saw,
rightfully so the impacts of that play out on the floor.
I do not know if the turnout today would have been different had members
not had in their recent memory just the final result of insightful words.
HAYES: Final question for you is the precedent that this sets. It is true
that this is -- we don`t know if it`s been done before, but as far as we
can tell, this is new and unprecedented. It is also true that when
Republicans say, you know, you`re setting a precedent here and watch out in
the future, what is your response to that?
J. HAYES: I think it`s a more dangerous precedent to let members` violent
rhetoric and their hateful words go unchecked. I think that`s the dangerous
precedent that was set. I don`t think that this has happened before. But I
led a letter and within a couple hours, I had 130 of my colleagues who
signed on to say that she should not be seated on committees.
I think the fact that the Republican leader placed her on the committee of
education and labor was just an insult to many of my colleagues. I can tell
you, there were Democrats who had issue with this, who struggled, who did
not want to disrupt proper procedure or protocol.
And but for the fact that the Republicans refuse to act and placed her on
the Committee of Education and Labor, every parent, every teacher, every
community member, every person who is still reeling from the fact that we
have we have a problem with mass shootings in our country, specifically on
school grounds, and we need to address those problems, I think was the
impetus that led many of my colleagues, both Republican and Democrat, to
HAYES: Congresswoman Jahana Hayes, representative from Connecticut, thank
you so much for your time tonight.
J. HAYES: Thanks so much, Chris.
HAYES: Now, for more of the state of the GOP, I want to bring in Matthew
Dowd, who was chief strategist for the Bush-Cheney 2004 presidential
campaign. I, Matthew, I think my over-under on Republican votes today was
probably about five. I was actually sort of surprised that there were 11
votes. What was your reaction?
MATTHEW DOWD, FORMER CHIEF STRATEGIST, BUSH-CHENEY PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN: I
wasn`t that surprised. I thought it would be somewhere in the neighborhood
of seven to 10 and ended up at 11. I mean, obviously, the story isn`t the
10 or 11, or the 11 that stood for principle. It`s the 199 that didn`t and
who basically welcomed a 21st century political Typhoid Mary into their
midst spreading -- being a carrier of disease that`s infected the entire
Republican Party for a lengthy period of time.
It`s not just -- I think one of the things, Chris, we don`t focus on enough
is what`s behind all this and what is the original sin of all of this that
has led us here. It`s not a denial of the school shootings. It`s not a
denial that Joe Biden won. It`s not a denial that 9/11 happened. It`s a
denial of words in our original document which that self-evident truth at
all men are created equal. That`s what`s led us here because we`ve never
dealt with that disease in our country.
HAYES: You know, there was a vote today that was a public vote, right, in
which you have 199 members of the Republican Party voting to keep Marjorie
Taylor Greene in her committees, 11 dissenting. Yesterday, you had another
vote about sort of exile, right? It was about Liz Cheney, I think, who`s
number three in leadership, whether she`d be kicked off of leadership. That
was a secret ballot.
You had 61 Republicans that wanted to kick her off for the sin of voting to
impeach the president. And what I found striking about that is, so much of
the interpretation of House Republicans and Republicans, in general, is
about the political calculations they`re making. They don`t want to get
crosswise with Donald Trump, etcetera. This is a secret ballot.
I think people need to take seriously the real beliefs of the members of
the Republican Party and caucus as driving much of this.
DOWD: This is not about Donald Trump. Everybody -- I mean, so many people
talk about the fear of Donald Trump. The Republican leaders and the
Republican elected officials aren`t -- Donald Trump is a proxy. And Donald
Trump`s a proxy for the 80 percent or 85 percent of the Republican Party
that believes, by and large, which -- what Marjorie Taylor Greene believes.
They believe that.
And so, the fear is a republican primary voter who`s much more aligned with
Marjorie Taylor Greene than they are with Liz Cheney, that`s the fear. And
I think that`s the problem in America today. We have a major party that is
supported by millions of Americans, millions of Americans -- not a
majority, but millions of Americans who have the same set of beliefs.
So, you can get rid of Donald Trump, cast him out as a pariah, put him down
in Florida, it doesn`t solve the fundamental problem in America today
because a smarter, more competent version of Donald Trump will arise and be
more dangerous, that`s hard to believe, be more dangerous to the country.
HAYES: I guess what the question is what does solve it, right? I mean, some
kind of gatekeeping, some kind of -- have the factional fight out, have it
out, is the only solution, I think. I mean, again, I`m looking at this for
an outsider, but that`s what it looks like to me.
DOWD: I mean, I think there`s many different small things we can do. But I
think ultimately, we have to deal with what`s really behind this, which is
we never held the people who wanted slavery accountable and responsible,
and we never told the truth in the aftermath. And when reconstruction
failed, by and large, because Abraham Lincoln was killed, when
reconstruction failed, that led to more than 100 years where we finally got
to civil rights and voting rights, and you can draw a straight line -- as
I`ve said before, you can draw a straight line between the failure of
reconstruction and the inability to tell the truth about our country, all
the way through Emmett Till and Medgar Evers and Martin Luther King, all
the way up to Heather Heyer, and all the way up to police shootings that
And so that to me is the truth Americans finally have to face. That`s going
to resolve our problems. When we finally face the truth, there is a segment
of the population that does not believe all men and women in America are
created equal. That`s the fundamental problem.
HAYES: All right, Matthew Dowd speaking my language with the reconstruction
rift. Thank you very much. I appreciate it.
DOWD: You`re welcome.
HAYES: Impeachment managers publicly call their first witness, Donald J.
Trump. But will we see the impeached former president testify at his own
trial? That`s next.
HAYES: The second impeachment trial of Donald Trump starts early next week.
And so far, the only witness that has been called publicly is Donald Trump
himself, and he is not complying. Earlier today, lead impeachment manager
Jamie Raskin sent Trump a letter formally requesting Trump`s testimony.
"Two days ago, you filed an answer in which you denied many factual
allegations set forth in the article of impeachment. You have thus
attempted to put critical facts at issue notwithstanding the clear and
overwhelming evidence of your constitutional offense. In light of your
disputing these factual allegations, I write to invite you to provide
testimony under oath either before or during the Senate impeachment trial
concerning your conduct on January 6, 2021."
Trump has denied that he lied when he repeatedly attacked the legitimacy of
the election and also asserted that he did not attempt to subvert the
certification of the election results. And the House did not call any
witnesses when it quickly impeached Trump for inspiring the insurrection,
but the impeachment engineers do want the defendant to testify in the
trial. Just hours after this -- they made that request, Trump`s lawyer
Bruce Castor told NBC News Trump will not testify and called the request a
I`m joined now by Dan Goldman who served as lead counsel in the first House
Impeachment Inquiry into Trump. Dan, were you -- what`s your reaction to
DAN GOLDMAN, FORMER LEAD COUNSEL, HOUSE IMPEACHMENT INQUIRY INTO DONALD
TRUMP: I think it`s a very smart, strategic move by the House managers and
I`ll tell you why. I don`t think Donald Trump will be subpoenaed. He would
not have been subpoenaed at all. No president has ever been subpoenaed
while acting as President. And I think the same issues, the separation of
powers issues would probably still apply to someone who was so recently in
So, I don`t think that would happen. I think it also would be litigated
forever. So, I do not believe the managers of the Senate will vote to
subpoena Donald Trump. But what this does is it gives him an opportunity to
say his side of the story under oath as any witness would. And the biggest
issue is for the defense and for Trump is it`s going to kind of hamstring
his lawyers from arguing what Trump`s state of mind was, what his intent
was, what he knew about because Trump himself was given the opportunity to
testify, and he did not take it.
His lawyers can then not just cherry-pick whatever they want to say about
what Trump felt at the time. That is the ultimate hearsay. It`s not
permissible in any court in any land. And so, it`s a very smart strategic
move, given that I do not think they will subpoena him and ultimately, he
won`t testify This is really to hem in the Trump Trump`s lawyers and what
their arguments can be.
HAYES: I hadn`t thought of that, but that`s a great point. Right, I mean,
so much of this, right, will revolve around -- I mean, there`s the
President`s actions and then there are words and then there`s some of the
state of mind. I mean, when he`s sitting there at the TV watching an
unprecedented assault by Americans on their seat of government to violently
prevent the transfer of power, and he is desperately being reached out to
by Republicans and Democrats alike to call it off, like, what`s going
through your head there, dude, you like it? You`re just watching it? That`s
very much an issue with respect to the article of impeachment, right?
GOLDMAN: Yes. And the better example, I think, would be for his lawyers to
get up and say Donald Trump had no idea that this violent attack was
planned. He never expected it. When he said peacefully, that`s what he
thought was going to happen. He had no idea.
That`s not permissible for a lawyer to just argue about their client.
That`s not evidence. The evidence would have to come from the client. And
so by giving him the opportunity to do that, they can`t argue, as they
would be able to, well, you didn`t give us a chance to make a presentation
in the House before you impeached unlike every other former president. And
then you didn`t give us a chance here, so this is the only way we have to
HAYES: Trump`s lawyers basically said that the President won`t testify,
that the focus will be on the claim that the trial itself is
unconstitutional, right. So, it`ll be a sort of constitutional argument
that you can`t even do this, that they`re not going to litigate the
election fraud. There had been reporting earlier that Trump wanted that.
What do you think about the broader issue of witnesses and the duration of
GOLDMAN: Well, I`ve been saying that I think even though, in the ordinary
circumstance, you would -- the House impeachment managers would want
witnesses, the Democratic senators certainly want witnesses. I think under
the circumstances where Donald Trump is not in office and there are many,
many things that President Biden wants to do, witnesses would significantly
prolong this trial.
And you have a lot of compelling evidence from the public record, from
video of the scene itself of the rally of social media, parlor videos of
the protesters marching. So, in many respects, you don`t really need
witnesses. I was struck by the reporting by NBC News tonight and how
unprepared Donald Trump`s lawyers seem to be.
The only defense they have is the one that the Republican senators have
already teed up for them with that 55-45 vote last week. And there seems to
be no other substantive defense. They don`t seem to know who`s making
presentations. There -- someone apparently is gathering a list of potential
witnesses together. They have a brief response to the House`s 80-page brief
due Monday. They are then going to have to make a presentation.
They don`t seem well prepared to me. But if -- but they`re smart in the
sense that they`re just picking up on where the Republican senators were.
And they`ll try to ride that, I think, incorrect legal argument, but
cognizable legal argument all the way to an acquittal.
HAYES: Yes. Dan Goldman, it`s always like -- the old joke about the Supreme
Court, can you count to five, like, it just a question whether they can
count enough Republican no votes and they probably can, though we`ll see.
Dan Goldman, thanks for being with me tonight.
GOLDMAN: Thank you.
HAYES: Coming up, Congresswoman Elissa Slotkin on what she learned in the
first hearing on domestic terrorist since the attack on the Capitol. She
joins me next.
HAYES: Some news today that far-right extremist groups are joining forces.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that the leader of a private
paramilitary group that he has formed alliances with other far-right groups
to push for Georgia secession. And the Department of Justice seem to
underscore the danger these extremist groups pose when they indicted two
members of the Proud Boys yesterday on conspiracy charges. This is
interesting. Conspiracy to obstruct Congress on January 6th because they
traveled to Washington "in order to stop, delay, and hinder the
certification of Joe Biden`s election."
There`s a lot of discussion about how to respond to this kind of violence.
Many groups from across the ideological spectrum have warned against
importing the framework of counterterrorism to these challenges. In a House
hearing today, Congresswoman Elissa Slotkin, former CIA analyst, talked
about shifting our mental models to confront the threat of domestic
violence, extremism, and insurrection.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. ELISSA SLOTKIN (D-MI): For me, as someone who worked on preventing
terrorist attacks on the United States for the first 20 years of my career,
I believe the post 9/11 era is over. I think January 6th was the cap of the
of one era and the beginning of another that makes clear that the most
dangerous threat right now to us as Americans, physical threat, is the
division between us and the way that some are exploiting those divisions.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: And Congresswoman Elissa Slotkin, Democrat of Michigan, Chair of the
House Intelligence and Counterterrorism Subcommittee joins me now. What --
I want you to explore further a little bit of what you said in that
statement there because I have to say that as someone who reported a lot on
the war on terror and counterterrorism and what came out of 9/11, there was
a lot of that that was really bad in terms of civil liberties, in terms of
our foreign policy, in terms of, you know, the people still sitting in
Guantanamo 20 years later, still without trial.
And I see a lot of people, and I`m one of them, sort of, the hair on their
neck stands up when we start to think about 9/11 and what came after it.
So, I want to -- just how you think through these sort of different threats
and what we`re confronting now.
SLOTKIN: Sure. And I think it`s a really important point because when we`re
talking about domestic terrorism, I mean, I think it`s foundational. It`s
about our fellow Americans. And for someone like me who lives in Michigan,
it`s my neighbors. It`s the people in my town. It`s my community. And it`s
very, very important that we don`t just overlay particularly some of the
worst lessons from sort of the war on terror on to our fellow Americans.
But there are some things that we -- you know, lessons learned that we
should bring forward. Just as you said, we shouldn`t overreact. I mean,
January 6th was a monumental event. It was a symbolic event. It was a
generational event. But you know, after 9/11, we did a lot of things out of
emotion. You know, we moved very quickly. We allowed certain things that we
And I think it`s important, we don`t overreact. I think it`s important that
we also realize just though -- similarly to 9/11, we don`t have the
intelligence community appropriately looking at the threat, right. We --
January 6th was an intelligence failure of some kind. Either we knew about
it and we didn`t prepare enough, or we just weren`t paying attention enough
to the threat of violence.
So, I think we need to get our intelligence community and our authorities
aligned. But that doesn`t mean necessarily that we do it without an eye
towards civil liberties and civil rights. So, it`s making sure we learn the
right lessons from the last 20 years and don`t just overlay that
counterterrorism, foreign sort of overlay on to Americans in our
HAYES: Yes. I mean, I have two thoughts come to mind. One is that of
course, there were Americans also who were caught up in the first -- in
post 9/11 era, often sort of unfairly. But second of all, that it when you
talk about sort of the tools available, I mean, I think about what happened
in your state of Michigan, right?
I mean, you had individuals plotting to kidnap and possibly execute the
governor of your state. And essentially good police work by the FBI, you
know, in accordance with the Constitution, pursuant to warrants and four
judges, was able to find them and apprehend them and charge them before
they could do it. That seems to me like exactly the sort of thing that we
want to see happen here.
SLOTKIN: Yes. And I think, you know, we did excellent work in that. And
that was actually -- a lot of those raids took place in my district. But it
also is very clear that some of the laws that are on the books aren`t being
used, you know. And I think 29 states, we have anti militia laws, but most
attorneys general haven`t been using and exercising that authority for
many, many years.
We have -- we have a whole sort of network of laws and authorities that we
just aren`t exercising. So, some of this may just be a clear voice from the
Department of Justice, from the FBI that we`re going to focus on these
threats appropriately. But it was clear today in our hearing that there is
going to be this debate about whether we need a domestic terrorism law. And
it`s a -- it is going to be a you know, a sporty debate.
HAYES: Where are you leaning?
SLOTKIN: I mean, for me, I`ve been doing a ton of learning and briefing
about this. And as you said, it does seem that there are a lot of
overlapping authorities. I mean, even today, we heard people thinking about
using RICO, right? The stuff that we helped sort of exploit and use to get
that at the mob.
There`s lots of different ways that we can skin this cat. And for me, you
know, a new domestic terrorism law should be an item of last resort. If we
can use top-down guidance, I`d prefer that.
HAYES: What -- I`m curious of what this is like in your district, right.
We`ve talked about like, you`re in a swing district. There`s -- some of
those raids happened in your district. You`re now chairing this
subcommittee. This notion among some people, and it`s being cultivated, I
think, of like you are trying to essentially, you know, use the state
against my politics because you don`t like them.
SLOTKIN: Yes. I mean, listen, we`ve been dealing with this kind of thing
for almost a year in Michigan. You know, we had armed protesters push their
way into our Capitol back in April. So, what we saw on the six was not new,
certainly, in mid-Michigan, in my district and the whole state. I think --
I think we have to be really careful.
And I think there`s a lot of groups who will say both on the right and the
left that we don`t want to use the new authorities or look at new
authorities if it`s going to mean targeting our fellow Americans. I have
heard from a lot of civil liberties groups who say, right now you`re going
after one group. It`s just a hop, skip, and a jump until you come for me.
So, we have to be like, very thoughtful about how we do this, which is I
think more than what we did in the very beginning on the war on terror. We
have to be more thoughtful.
HAYES: Congresswoman Elissa Slotkin who is in that hearing today, thank you
so much for making time tonight.
SLOTKIN: Thank you.
HAYES: Don`t go anywhere. My interview with Senator Elizabeth Warren on
some of those progressive pushes in the new Biden administration. We`ll
talk taxing the rich ahead.
HAYES: In the post Trump era, the Republican Party is trying to find
itself, even redefine itself. One of the outfits they`re trying to on is
being the party of the working class. Now, substantively, in terms of the
agenda, this is ludicrous on its face. Republicans supported the enormous
Trump tax cut for billionaires and big businesses. They`re arguing against
more unemployment benefits and higher stimulus checks in the middle of the
But it is true. The Republican Party`s voters are more working-class than
they once were. And so, we get this onslaught of very disingenuous working-
class hero dress up. Jim Jordan of Ohio tweeted this just yesterday. "The
Republican Party is no longer the wine and cheese party. It`s the beer and
blue jeans party."
Missouri Senator Josh Hawley argued just before the election, Republicans
should continue the work of Donald Trump in transforming the party for the
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JOSH HAWLEY (R-MO): The president really tried to make the Republican
Party a working-class party, the party of normal, everyday voters, those
who don`t have a job on Wall Street, those who don`t want to go start a
tech company, maybe those who don`t have a four-year college degree which
by the way is 70 percent of Americans.
I`ve got a big battle in front of us, Republicans do, to try and make this
party truly the party of working-class America.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: The next day, Hawley prep school grad who went to Stanford and Yale
apparently decided the big battle was already over declaring on Twitter,
"We are working-class party now. That`s the future."
And then there`s Ted Cruz, also trying to realign his party with working
people in unions, also a dual Ivy graduate, by arguing that Democrats don`t
actually care about them.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. TED CRUZ (R-TX): The first week in office, what is Joe Biden done? He
signed an executive order ending the Keystone pipeline, destroying 11,000
jobs, 8,000 union jobs with a stroke of a pen.
The Democratic elites have decided that blue-collar workers, that union
members, that men and women with calluses on their hands, they`ve made the
wrong choices in John Kerry`s words.
If you`re actually a working person in this country, if you`re a union
member, if you`re blue-collar, if you`ve got calluses on your hands, if
you`re a cop, or a firefighter or a waiter, or waitress, or construction
worker, this Democratic Party doesn`t care about you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: I will note that Ted Cruz`s blue-collar stick is the funniest of the
three. We should note that Senator Cruz`s support for unions seems to
depend on whether or not it`s politically convenient for him. He`s less
happy with the "union bosses exploiting the pandemic and barring students
from attending public schools."
But here`s the thing. If Ted Cruz, Josh Hawley, and Jim Jordan, and maybe
Marco Rubio, whoever, if they really do care about working people, and they
hate big, bad corporate America, particularly big tech, here`s a great
test. There is a unionization drive happening right now at Amazon, just
about the epitome of big business in America, big tech, corporate power.
Workers at a warehouse in Alabama are doing something incredible and brave
and difficult. They will begin voting next week on whether to join the
retail wholesale and department store union. It will be the first union
election at an Amazon warehouse since 2014. So, here`s a question to Cruz,
Hawley, and Jordan support those working Americans, because of the
Republican Party really wants to be the party of the working class and of
unions, well, that`s great, OK. But it has to actually mean something.
So, here`s a simple test, gentlemen. Go on the record with your support for
the workers fighting for their rights against Amazon right now. Otherwise,
we`ll go back to assuming this is all an insulting act.
Don`t go anywhere in my interview with Senator Elizabeth Warren on our
fight to help working Americans after this.
HAYES: Joe Biden did not run to the left of the Democratic Party in the
primary, I think it`s safe to say. In fact, it was the opposite. I mean, he
ran as the centrist in the race, the electable candidate who Republicans
would never be able to tag as a socialist. And there was a question about
what that would mean when it came time to govern.
Well, just over two weeks into his presidency, Biden`s presidential
approach thus far already shows just how much the ideological center of the
Democratic coalition has shifted. Biden has kept his promise on things like
rejoining the Paris Climate Accords, canceling the Keystone Pipeline. He`s
gone out of his way to making pro-labor staffing changes at the NLRB and
ordered a partial deportation moratorium.
Just today comes news the administration is ending support for the
disastrous and cruel Saudi-led war in Yemen, and that there`ll be
increasing the number of refugees the U.S. takes up to 125,000. And then
the biggest legislative push, COVID relief, Biden`s approach has been
bigger and less constrained by self-imposed concerns about austerity and
debt than the Biden -- Obama-Biden administration was just 12 years
While President Biden talks very much like a centrist, his actions so far
reflect a new emerging consensus within Democratic Party politics.
Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, one of the most
significant progressive voices in Congress, now has a seat on the Senate
Finance Committee, and she joins me now.
And, Senator, first, I`d like to get your grade, your assessment and
reaction to these first few weeks of the Biden presidency.
SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D-MA): Well, keep in mind, Joe Biden ran on the most
progressive agenda ever. And now, he is meeting the moment. And we need to
continue to hold everyone accountable to the promises that have been made.
It`s a good time.
HAYES: You`re on the Finance Committee. And my understanding is that it`s
new and you`re very excited about that. And for people that are not
familiar with the terrain of Senate Committees, what is -- why did you want
to be on that committee?
WARREN: Wealth tax, Social Security, the money that we need in order to
have child care, Medicare, it`s all right there in the Finance Committee.
You know, we talk a lot in this country, we talk a lot on your program,
about inequality in our nation.
And much of that inequality has gone forward through things that come
through the Finance Committee like the huge tax cuts that went through at
the beginning of the Trump administration, but also much of how we combat
inequality goes through that committee as well, Medicare, the Affordable
Care Act, as I said, Social Security. So I just think it`s an important
crossroads of how we build a future.
You know, for me, taxes are ultimately about our values. It`s about who we
say in this country needs to pay to help us build a future and what that
looks like. And Finance Committee, a good place to do that. I`m happy.
HAYES: So, I have a question about that on the wealth tax. So, I think
there`s a lot of really interesting literature behind the wealth tax, the
one that you proposed during the primary. You`ve talked about introducing
it as legislation. Here`s my question for you. Do you think of it as a
means of raising revenue or a means of attacking inequality and getting rid
of certain perverse incentives, which is to say the following, if the
deficit were totally balanced, if the government didn`t need any more
revenue, or if taxes weren`t even necessary to fund the government in some
alternate universe, would you still want the wealth tax?
WARREN: Yes. Let me explain why. The wealth tax is important in both parts.
It`s critical for raising revenue, and that revenue is critical for raising
opportunity. Because that`s what this is really about. Right now, we live
in an America that is so tilted toward the rich and the powerful. The top
one 10th of one percent are paying, last year, about 3.2 percent of their
total wealth in taxes. The 99 percent paid about 7.2 percent of their total
wealth. In other words, more than half.
And when the top is not paying a fair share, that`s how we end up is a
nation that`s not making an investment in universal childcare and universal
pre-K, and America that`s not making an investment in our young people who
are trying to get an education K12, and post-high school in technical
school, and two-year college and four-year college.
It`s about making sure that we`re a country, that doesn`t just work for a
tiny little thin slice at the top, but a country that genuinely is
investing in opportunity so that all of our kids have a chance to build a
strong future. That`s what it`s about.
HAYES: One of the other big issues during the primary was student loan
debt. And both sort of prospectively and retroactively right. So, creating
conditions under which people can go to college and not pay through the
nose and not be in sort of debt servitude, but also canceling debt that is
weighing people down.
I know you`ve been advocating for that and think that there is the legal
mechanism and the senator, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer as well, to cancel
a large amount of student debt through executive action. The arguments
against it are legal and political, so I`ll give them to you both and you
can -- you can respond. One that this would be an overstep of executive
power, and the second that this create a kind of class-based backlash,
right? They would enshrine the Democratic Party as people that care most
about folks with college degrees at the expense of everyone else. What are
your responses to those two arguments?
WARREN: Well, let`s do the legal argument first. Keep in mind that the
Obama administration cancel student loan debt, the Trump administration
cancel student loan debt, and nobody said they don`t have the power to do
that. All Leader Schumer and I are asking for is now let`s have the Biden
administration step up. And we think they should cancel more, but he
clearly has the legal authority to do this.
Now, you want to talk about who`s going to get helped. Keep in mind 40
percent of the people who are dealing right now with student loan debt do
not have a college diploma. These are people who did what we wanted them to
do, they tried. But for one reason or another, they couldn`t make it. Maybe
because they were working three jobs, maybe because another baby was born,
but for whatever reason, they didn`t make it all the way through to their
diploma. And that means these are people right now, who are earning what a
high school grad can earn, but who are struggling with student loan debt.
We cancel $50,000 worth of student loan debt, and what that will mean is
that 85 percent of those who are struggling with student loan debt right
now, about 40 million people, will see their student loan debt completely
wiped out. And the rest will see a big chunk of that cut away.
And here`s the thing. That`s not only good for the people who have student
loan debt. In fact, it`s life transformative for them. But it`s good for
everybody else who doesn`t have student loan debt. And the reason for that
is it helps boost the whole economy. We get more people buying homes. We
get more people starting small businesses.
That student loan debt is holding back our economy. This was true long
before the pandemic came along. We get people shaken free from that student
loan debt and we have an economy that has stronger, more robust.
The number one thing that President Biden can do right now for this
economy, cancel $50,000 worth of student loan debt. The number one thing
you could do for young people cancel student loan debt. The number one
thing he could do to help close the black-white wealth gap is cancel
$50,000 worth of student loan debt. It would be transformative for families
and transformative for this nation.
HAYES: Senator Elizabeth Warren of the state of Massachusetts, thank you so
much for making time tonight.
WARREN: Thank you for having me.
HAYES: That is ALL IN on this Thursday night. "THE RACHEL MADDOW SHOW"
starts right now. Good evening, Rachel.
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