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Transcript: The ReidOut, 11/4/21

Guests: Madeleine Dean, Kurt Bardella, Michael Eric Dyson, Paul Butler, Pramila Jayapal


Trump attorneys try to block release of 1/6 records. 1/6 committee to issue as many as 20 new subpoenas. Trump allies organize legal fund for subpoenaed aides. At least ten republicans who attended 1/6 Stop the Steal rally won elections Tuesday.


ARI MELBER, MSNBC HOST: Thanks for watching THE BEAT. THE REIDOUT with Joy Reid is up next.

Hi, Joy.

JOY REID, MSNBC HOST: How are you doing, Ari? Wishing you a wonderful evening and thank you so much.

MELBER: You too.

REID: Cheers. All right, good evening, everyone. Happy Friday Jr.

We begin THE REIDOUT tonight with a Republican Party that is all in on insurrectionist politics. A cover-up is unfolding before our very eyes, with the unprecedented stonewalling that we`re seeing from the Republicans` dear leader, Donald Trump. In an attempt to withhold documents from the committee investigating January 6, Trump`s attorneys today defended his farfetched claims of executive privilege in federal court.

But the judge in the case seemed rightfully skeptical. When Trump`s lawyer questioned the committee`s authorities, she asked are you really saying the president`s note, talking points and records of telephone conversations on January 6 have no bearing on the investigation? These are about who the president was talking to as people were breaking windows and climbing into the Capitol.

Meanwhile, we`re still awaiting the subpoena that the select committee is expected to issue this week for John Eastman, the architect of Trump`s attempted coup. In fact, Chairman Bennie Thompson now says that a batch of 20 new subpoenas will soon be issued. And we`re also learning many more witnesses have already cooperated.

Vice Chair Liz Cheney confirmed to NBC News that they`ve interviewed or deposed more than 450 people in connection with January 6. And she emphasized the huge amount of work under way, which she said is leading to real progress.

It comes as Republican operatives are organizing a legal defense fund to support Trump`s former aides and allies who have been subpoenaed. That`s according to RollingStone which reports veteran Republican operatives Matt and Mercedes Schlapp are leading the effort. However, their fund will not help hundreds of Trump supporters who have been charged with actually storming the building. So, basically, they`re raising money to keep witnesses quiet. But they`re not throwing a bone to the hundreds of insurrectionists who did the dirty work for Trump in the name of the big lie.

Then there is the damning reality that some Trump supporters who participated in the events of January 6 are now being rewarded by Republican voters. As the Huffington Post was first to report, there were at least ten Republican candidates elected or re-elected Tuesday night who attended the so-called Stop the Steal rally that the precipitated the insurrection on January 6. Among them, three won or retained seats in Virginia`s state legislature seven won election to local offices across the country while nearly all are on the record claiming they did not breach the Capitol themselves.

It`s the latest evidence that belief in the big lie is far from disqualifying among today`s Republican electorate. In fact, it seems to be becoming a badge of honor.

With me now, Congresswoman Madeleine Dean of Pennsylvania, she was an impeachment manager earlier this year, and Kurt Bardella, Adviser to the DCCC and the DNC. Thank you both for being here.

And, Congresswoman, I want to start with you to get your reaction to the idea that Republican voters are now electing people who participated in the pre-siege, quote/unquote, Stop the Steal rally. They`re rewarding them with office, both statewide and local.

REP. MADELEINE DEAN (D-PA): It tells you how dangerous it is that the big lie not only took place in the days leading up to the 2020 election, the days after the 2020 election leading up to the insurrection but the big lie continues. It`s very dangerous. It`s very harmful to our democracy. That is why I am so proud of the January 6 committee and the work they are doing.

I had the chance to talk with Jamie Raskin, as we were voting on the floor tonight, knowing I was going to be joining you, Joy, and got my usual daily or weekly update from him on the extraordinary good work of this committee. And what he told me is the quiet story is the number, the tremendous number of people who are cooperating with the committee, who recognize that January the 6th was an insurrection, where Americans attacked Americans, where Americans attacked and maimed and killed police officers, Capitol police officers here. And so the 1/6 committee`s work continues. The quieter story is the extraordinary work of the committee and Americans who are coming forward to tell the truth so that we never have this happen again.

REID: You know, and I`m going to skip past for Mike Pence. I want to talk to Mike Pence in a minute. But I want to come back and talk about norm core -- what would be norm core Republicans, Kurt. And, by the way, if I said 450, I meant 150 people have been deposed. I just want to make sure that I get that right. It was 150 people that have been deposed.

Norm core type Republicans even struggle to distance themselves from January 6th. They struggle to not downplay it.


Let me play -- this is Condoleezza Rice. I`m going start with Condoleezza Rice when she was on The View talking about the insurrection. Here she is.


CONDOLEEZZA RICE, FORMER U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: I think what Senator McConnell may be referencing is, yes, it`s time to move on in a lot of ways. I`m one who believes that the American people are now concerned about their what we call kitchen table issues.

I live in California, not Washington, D.C. And the American people do have other concerns that we ought to be thinking about.


REID: Yes, as if they don`t care about democracy in California as well. But here she is now kind of rolling it back. She was at the Aspen Security Forum, maybe not the audience where you want to be kind of like just move on from that little insurrection. Here`s what she said there.


RICE: Well, let me be very clear. I didn`t mean move on from January 6th. I did mean, however, that we need to think about moving on to a new generation of leaders.

Let me tell you what I think about January 6th. I`ll just tell you flat- out. First of all, my worst day since September 11th, I cried watching it. And people ought to go testify. I don`t think there is an argument for not testifying. I testified before the 9/11 commission despite the fact that we could have claimed executive privilege. We did not.


REID: So just -- she rewinds back to what one would have expected her to say the first time. You talk about the struggle that these sort of previously like national security Republicans are having wanting to stay Republicans but having to figure out how to talk about the insurrection. Kurt?

KURT BARDELLA, ADVISOR, DNC AND DCCC: I mean, this is the great litmus test now for the Republican party, right? It`s no longer about public policy issues, about so-called conservative issues. It`s about what you think about the conspiracy theory, about Stop the Steal and January 6. The Republican Party -- and this is bigger than Donald Trump at this point, Joy. It`s not just about one man anymore. The entire Republican Party apparatus has decided to wrap their arms around domestic terrorists and try to paint them and re-label them as heroes, as patriots, as defenders of liberty and freedom.

We`re going to be hearing a lot of words over the next year-and-a-half when we talk about January 6 for the Republican Party. And there are people who are going to have to make some very tough decisions. This is not one of those times where you can kind of straddle the line, have one foot in, one foot out. You are either for democracy or you are against it. You either recognize that what happened on January 6th was an act of domestic terrorism, or you don`t. That`s it. There is no gray area here.

And I think it`s going to be incumbent upon the select committee that`s been formed to tell that story. I don`t think this is something that as Condoleezza Rice said earlier, we can just move on from. Let me tell you something. The Republican architects of January 6th, they`re hoping we move on. They`re hoping we forget. They`re hoping that we create distance from it because it will make it all that much easier for them to do it again the next time. What we saw on January 6th, that was a dress rehearsal for what they`re going to want to do next time. They`re not going to be taking any time off. They`re not going to be backing away from it. They have put their entire party apparatus, wrapped their arms around it and gave it a bear hug, and they continue to do so every single day.

And I`ll to tell you, one of the most consequential things for all the talk of Virginia and the election on Tuesday, do not underestimate the impact of what this committee`s work will have. Do not underestimate the impact of the hearings they will ultimately have will produce because we`ve seen before how impactful hearings can be when they are done the right way. Just one word for you, Benghazi. Imagine how different 2016 would have been if Benghazi had not been a thing.

REID: And I would argue, Congresswoman Dean, and I should note that the NBC News is a media partner for Aspen Institute, I should say that. I think both impeachment hearings were actually consequential, because I think we learned what the former president was capable of and we learned what his party was capable of. The fact that they heard that evidence, that searing evidence, especially in that second impeachment, and still let him off, kind of told you who the party is and that what they`re willing to accept in exchange for power.

I want to play Mike Pence. So Mike Pence is someone who has struggled mightily to kind of reconcile the high and important position he had and the democracy it`s supposed to hold with what he did or didn`t do on January 6. Here he is. He was speaking to students. Mike Pence confirmed that Eastman and Trump sought to confirm the election was unconstitutional and here is him doing that.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: On the night of the 5th or the morning of the 6th, someone in White House convinced you that it would destroy your hopes of becoming president if you sent it back to the states. My question is, what is the name of the person who told you to buck President Trump`s plan and certify the votes?




REID: Congresswoman, he is getting a lot of applause for that answer, but I would note that he had to go and ask a former vice president. He had to ask Dan Quayle what to do on the day. In the moment, he wasn`t straightening his back and saying, James Madison. He was saying, can I do this? Your thoughts.

DEAN: Well, a couple of things. Condoleezza Rice, I have great respect for her, but national security is exactly what is at the heart of January the 6th, and, of course, everything thereafter.

Mike Pence, my goodness, what a nodding vice president he has been. You would have thought January the 6th when they came in chanting, hang Mike Pence, and hung a noose outside of Congress that he might have seen the light of day. Apparently he did for a couple of hours, and now he wants us all to just move on from January 6th, nothing to see her, it was just a single day in January.

But let me tell you something what both of those folks just seem to miss entirely, and that we have an obligation here as members of Congress to do two things, to govern. Governing is oversight around January the 6th to protect our democracy from such people as Mike Pence who couldn`t get clarity in his own mind constitutionally as to what to do in terms of certifying elections. He knew he had a ministerial role, but desperately seeking power and trying to retain it, he wondered if maybe he could hang on and had to call Dan Quayle, phone a friend, to figure out whether or not to do the right thing.

But after that, look what we`re doing here this week. We are governing at the same time as the committee is doing oversight. We are on the precipice of passing two bills, bipartisan infrastructure bill, more than $1 trillion worth of investments in our hard-built infrastructure, and $1.75 trillion in the Build Back Better plan. This is an investment in our children, in our future, in our seniors, prescription drug negotiation and annual caps on expenditures for seniors and, ultimately, protection of our planet with more than $555 billion worth of investments in sustainable energy, in our infrastructure in terms of green infrastructure.

We are doing both here. You`re watching Democrats. And as much as people like to say, gosh, you`re so dysfunctional, what a family, I`d like to say this is what it looks like to govern. We oversee constitutionally what goes on here and hold people accountable, and number two, we make sure that we`re building for the future for our children and for this planet.

REID: You know, I think it`s a fair point, Kurt, that as messy as the Democrats are, at least they`re trying to govern. We`re literally watching Democrats fight Democrats over how to do good while Republicans are absent. And the media, I think, doesn`t spend enough time saying why aren`t there any Republicans in that room? They were there to get the infrastructure stuff for their own client. They probably have people who give them money that have got contracting for us, maybe they think they`ll get something there.

But also it struck me today, Kurt. I`ll give you the final word on this. The difference kind of fundamentally is that Democrats look at their base and try to figure out how to please all of these different kinds of people because the Democratic base is varied. It`s very multicultural, multiracial, multireligious. They have got to figure out how to make all of those people work together. Republicans say to their base. What do you want? Oh, I`m sorry, you`re okay with white nationalism? We can work with that. What else do you want? Oh, you don`t like the fact that Donald Trump lost? You want to go ahead and break into the Capitol and do an insurrection? Okay. We`ll figure out how to work with that. You want to like maybe not be so anti-neo-Nazism, you want to play with neo-Nazism? Let`s see, how can we work with that. You know what? We can work with that. Like it doesn`t matter what their base does.

I just want to point you to Mr. Sean Parnell. He is the frontrunner to be the Republican nominee for the United States Senate, the great United States Senate in the great state of Pennsylvania. Per the Philly Inquirer, his wife testified that he choked her and hit their children to leave welts. He is a fiction thriller featuring graphic violence against women. He has a perfectly could and clear shot at becoming a Republican politician because it doesn`t matter. Nothing matters. Your thoughts.

BARDELLA: Yes. I mean, this is the inherent disadvantage, right? Democrats have a broad coalition. They have communities of color. They have working families, middle class families. They are trying to do so much to help so many people. And the Republicans, all they have to do is say, no.

Let`s be very clear here. Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema would be completely irrelevant if any Republican in Congress had a backbone and listened to what the people actually want and said, we`re going vote for these things. It wouldn`t matter what those two senators wanted if people like Mitt Romney came out and said, you know what, I`m with the Democrats on this. Let`s get this done. And so the inherent challenge for Democrats is going to be passing something, defining it, making sure the American people understand that they are the ones that are helping them, they are the ones interested in getting stuff done to make your life better.


I see poll after poll that always says that, Republicans are perceived to be better on the economy than the Democrats. What a bunch of nonsense. Maybe if you`re a billionaire, that`s true. But unless you`re that, they are not for you, and we have got to do a better job of telling that story.

REID: Yes. And only one party is in favor of insurrection. I wish we had more time, Congresswoman. I`m going to invite you back.

DEAN: Joy?

REID: Yes, I`m going to invite you back. I`m sorry, go ahead, quickly.

DEAN: It does matter in Pennsylvania. Decency, integrity, character matter in Pennsylvania. So, I`d love to come back.

REID: It matters to Pennsylvania. Oh, no, thank you for saying that. I meant it doesn`t matter to Republicans. They`re fine with electing that. They elected Donald Trump. I mean, look at all of the people accused of sexual harassment and worse. Congresswoman Madeleine Dean, thank you for that final note. It was important to say that. Kurt Bardella, thank you both.

Up next on THE REIDOUT, Tuckums now says he hasn`t figured out what critical race theory even is but he keeps lying about it any way. And after Virginia, stoking racial fear with make-believe CRT is the Republican political playbook, period, and Democrats need to figure out how to deal with it. Michael Eric Dyson joins me.

Also, what the Ahmaud Arbery case and the Kyle Rittenhouse trial tell us about two major problems, how juries and judges are selected in this country. Too bad we don`t have a critical theory on the intersection of race and criminal justice to help us understand that.

Plus, Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal joins me on the votes that could be coming very soon, possibly even tonight on President Biden`s spending plan.

And tonight`s absolute worst, an ugly new round of vaccine disinformation now that children are eligible.

THE REIDOUT continues after this.



REID: We have some breaking news tonight.

The U.S. Justice Department is taking aim at voter restrictions, filing a lawsuit today against Texas over certain restrictive voting procedures imposed by Texas Senate Bill 1, which was signed into law in September.

The federal lawsuit contends that the law violates the Voting Rights Act. Meanwhile, perhaps you have heard a Republican was elected Tuesday night for vowing to banish African-American author Toni Morrison from Virginia classrooms, a GOP victory that didn`t stop Tucker Carlson from fuming over Critical Race Theory, whatever that is.


BRIT HUME, FOX NEWS: You could say technically, Tucker, it`s not being taught, in the sense of volumes have been written on Critical Race Theory, and it`s not been handed out as a textbook. But its influence and its tenets are in those schools.

TUCKER CARLSON, FOX NEWS: I have never figured out what Critical Race Theory is, to be totally honest, after a year of talking about it.



REID: Of course, you don`t know, Tuckums.

Well, Republicans nationwide are apparently getting high on Virginia royal, rolling out their latest can`t call it racist card in the form of the newly elected black lieutenant governor, former -- the former national chair of Black Americans to Reelect Trump.

It`s the latest version of the right`s tried and tired look at that black person -- you see them standing right there, right, they`re black -- that they deployed when Trump`s soon-to-be Chief of Staff Mark Meadows physically displayed a silent black woman to prove that Trump was not a racist back when he was a congressman.

And now this AR-15-wielding L.G. will be their new get-out-of-racism-free card, while Republicans nationwide make ban all history that shows any white person doing anything wrong to black people ever their 2022 mantra.

Joining me now, Michael Eric Dyson, distinguished professor of African- American and diaspora studies at Vanderbilt University and the author of the great new book "Entertaining Race: Performing Blackness in America."

And, first, I want to start -- before we get to this new gambit that the Republicans are going to lean all the way into on ban any history that makes white people feel comfortable -- uncomfortable, I want to get you to comment on the Justice Department finally leaning in and filing a lawsuit against Texas. What do you think?


We have to use the bully pulpit of the Justice Department to do what it`s supposed to do. We lost sight of this under William Barr and the Trump administration, when they were the exclusive preserve of the private, if you will, firm of the president of the United States of America.

Finally, the Justice Department is returning to the work it should be doing. And it should be doing it on behalf of American citizens who are facing unjust restrictions imposed upon them by the arbitrary, capricious decision of state municipal -- state governments that seek to prevent the flourishing of American democracy.

So, daggum, thank you very much for showing up. And may this be a token of what is to come.

REID: Yes, indeed.

And let me move on now to this gambit, because what Republicans are now doing is, they basically demand credit any time any of them ever voted for anybody black or if there`s a black guy on the Supreme Court that`s conservative. Any black conservative is supposedly -- or the black president having ever been elected, right, the fact that he was elected period means there`s no racism.

And even if they`re literally trying to ban books about black people and say, you cannot talk about black -- the black experience, we`re going to cut that out of schools because white people don`t like it, they still want credit, they still want to be able to say it`s not racist.

And, in this case, I just want to get your comment on this, because the two choices that voters had in Virginia were a black woman who shares my daughter`s name and Jamaican heritage...

DYSON: Right.

REID: ... and a black -- and an Afro-Latina who`s part Lebanese?

So, you had a choice of two brown/black people, and you picked one of them. Do you get credit? Do you get special credit? It`s like I had ice cream or cake as two options, but I want credit for lowering my calorie count because I picked ice cream. You had two choices, and they were both black.

Your thoughts?



DYSON: I have eaten the cake and the ice cream, clearly.


DYSON: But what is interesting -- what is interesting is that you`re absolutely right. They want credit for breathing.


DYSON: They want credit for having -- they want credit for having hair in the morning or getting up and brushing their teeth: Look, I have made an achievement that should be noteworthy.


No, you are doing what all political figures must do, make choices. The problem is, here, they want -- they want white supremacy by ventriloquist effect. There is a black mouth moving, but a white idea through the -- running on the runway of the tongue of a figure who justifies and legitimates of the white supremacist practices.

We know that we can internalize in our own minds, in our own subconscious, and in our own bodies the very principles that are undoing us. So, to have a black face speaking in behalf of a white supremacist legacy is nothing new.

And it is to the chagrin of those of us who study race that the white folk on the other side and the right-wingers on the other side don`t understand, this is politics 101, and this is race, not even 101. What`s beneath 101? It`s the it`s the pre-K of race.

You should understand the fact that if you tell black people, look, I support a Negro, look, there is a person of color that I am in favor of, and that person of color happens to undermine and undercut and subvert the very principles about which we are concerned, you do yourself no service by pointing to them as an example of your racial progressivism.

So, in that sense, they need to have a lesson in Critical Race Theory, so that they can understand what Critical Race Theory is.

And, Joy, we know this. First of all, they ain`t critical. They ain`t run a race in a long time that`s meaningful in terms of our people. And they ain`t got no theory.


DYSON: Critical Race Theory, we know, comes from critical theory.

The word critical and theory means let`s be on the side of those who need to be emancipated for things that are imposed upon them that enslaved them. That`s all it means. And they have invented an entire world, a universe of meaning out of that one word.

REID: So let`s talk about the Democrats for a minute, because here`s the thing, is, I said the other day that I think the challenge for Democrats is that they don`t -- they also lack the vocabulary to aggressively defend black people...

DYSON: Right.

REID: ... even though black Americans give 90 percent and black women give 95, 96 percent of their votes to Democrats.

And yet, when it comes time to defend black folks -- this guy who came up - - who`s one of the people who came up with this strategy said that the goal of pretending that Critical Race Theory is this boogeyman is to have the public read something crazy in the newspaper that makes them uncomfortable, and immediately think, Critical Race Theory.

DYSON: Right.

REID: And that is what they have implemented. He said, we have decodified the term and we will recodify it to annex the entire range of cultural constructions that are unpopular with, he just said Americans, but he really means with white Americans.

Democrats don`t seem to know what to do about this. Can you give -- can you...

DYSON: Well, yes.

REID: And I don`t care about this, by the way, as a Democrat. I`m just going to be real right now.

DYSON: Right.

REID: Because the Democrats can be really irritating.

DYSON: Right.

REID: I care about it because they`re the only party left that cares about democracy. And since they`re the democracy party, that`s why I`m saying this, not as a Democrat.

But go on. What -- how could they -- how could they answer this?

DYSON: Well, absolutely.

They got to answer. First of all, Christopher Rufo is doing a kind of rhetorical sleight of hand and blackface. He`s affixing -- he`s taking a black term or a term generated out of African-American and progressive legal theory and using it as the bete noire, the whipping boy and whipping girl of the right wing against the progressives.

And they don`t even realize that it is a black eye literally and a black guy metaphorically, all of it which is to say this. The Democrats got to understand, as they say in Tennessee, dance with the one that brung you. Dance with the one that brung you.

And if black people have been loyal to no end, if black people have been supportive of this party, the Democrats have got to find a spine, have got to find a spirit, and have got to find the space to articulate some valuable lessons here.

And here`s the one thing we should learn from the right wing. Have game. Have manipulation. Have -- this is the game we`re in. If this is the game we`re in, learn to describe what you`re about, learn to describe what you`re meaning, learn to describe what your goals are in ways that don`t immediately alienate the people that you`re trying to support, number one, and, number two, that don`t play easily into the game of the right wing.

Should we have to do that? No. But do we have to? Absolutely right. Do you want the commercial or do you want the product? If we want the product, let`s be concerned then about how to describe it, package it in a way that will be appealing to the broadest audience possible.

REID: Yes, and maybe pass the bills that will help your voting base and voting rights. Just saying.

Michael Eric Dyson.

It`s just advice that -- you don`t have to take it.

Thank you very much, Michael. Really appreciate you, my friend.

DYSON: Thank you so very much.

REID: Coming up next on THE REIDOUT: Juries have been seated in the murder trials of Kyle Rittenhouse in Wisconsin and the three men accused of murdering Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia.

And, in a surprise to exactly no one, both juries are almost entirely white. Critical Race Theory would be helpful to describe this.


More after this.


REID: Roughly six months after Derek Chauvin was convicted of murdering George Floyd, two major cases will show us whether anything actually changed based on that verdict, or whether we`re doomed to repeat this nation`s ugly past over and over and over again, which, unfortunately, appears to be the case.

In Georgia, three white men, father and son Gregory and Travis McMichael and their friend William "Roddie" Bryan, are on trial accused of murdering black jogger Ahmaud Arbery. Last year, in a case that many have described as a lynching, Arbery was chased by the three men, cornered and shot to death while they filmed it.

The men are facing a total of nine charges, including murder, aggravated assault and false imprisonment. Yesterday, after two weeks of back-and- forth, lawyers narrowed the pool of jurors to 12, with four alternatives. Of the 12 seated jurors, 11 are white, and just one is black.

Now, for context, the county hosting the trial is 27 percent African- American. Defense lawyers were able to remove the majority of potential black jurors, prompting the state prosecutor to accuse the defense of bias and ask the judge to reinstate some of them.


LINDA DUNIKOSKI, COBB COUNTY, GEORGIA, ASSISTANT DISTRICT ATTORNEY: The defense struck these jurors -- and, in this case, we`re talking about the 11 African-American jurors -- because of racial bias.



REID: Defense lawyers rejected the accusations.


LAURA HOGUE, ATTORNEY FOR GREGORY MCMICHAEL: We struck 13 white people to this 11 -- the number of 11 African-Americans. And those were based on the same reasons, Your Honor, the same strong-rooted bias.


REID: Now, while the judge agreed that there was intentional discrimination, he ultimately declined to reseat the excluded jurors.


JUDGE TIMOTHY WALMSLEY, EASTERN CIRCUIT SUPERIOR COURT: Quite a few African-American jurors were excused through preemptory strikes exercised by the defense.

But that doesn`t mean that the court has the authority to reseat.


REID: Meanwhile, in Kenosha, Wisconsin, a similar, almost completely white jury is hearing the testimony in the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse, a wannabe militia member from Illinois who traveled to Wisconsin amid protests over the police shooting of Jacob Blake.

Rittenhouse is accused of murdering two unarmed Black Lives Matter protesters and wounding a third, all of whom, in fact, happened to be white. One of the jurors was removed after making a vile joke about Blake`s shooting.

Joining me now is Paul Butler, former federal prosecutor and Georgetown law professor.

My friend, Paul, I don`t have a good feeling about this case. I`m always cynical. I always assume that it`s very difficult to -- police almost never get convicted. And it`s very hard to convict, unfortunately, when a black person is the one who is killed, and they are killed by somebody who is white. I just assume the person`s going to get off.

And so I came into this very cynically. But when you look at these -- these -- the composition of these jurors, in the Ahmaud Arbery case, it`s four white men, one black man, 11 white women for 16 total in the jury pool.

When it comes to the Kyle Rittenhouse trial, it`s 11 white men -- seven white men, black -- one black man, and then -- one person was let go because they made a really bad joke.

It says to me that, because groupthink happens on juries -- and I have talked enough to lawyers like yourself about what happens when there`s only one person of color -- I think of the Zimmerman trial, where there was one woman of color, and she was on the side of conviction, but she was up against these other people, all of whom were white and who were clearly on the side of the shooter.

And so what do you -- what happens? What do you think?

PAUL BUTLER, FORMER FEDERAL PROSECUTOR: Joy, we know that, when a jury is all white or just has one or two people of color, defendants may end up being found not guilty, even if they are guilty, and the verdict will not be seen as legitimate by many.

The reality is that race matters. In George Zimmerman`s trial for killing Trayvon martin, five of the six jurors were white. Zimmerman was acquitted. In Derek Chauvin`s trial for murdering George Floyd, the jury was racially diverse...

REID: Right.

BUTLER: ... four black people, two multirace people. Chauvin was convicted.

This is typical. Black jurors are discriminated against, denied their equal protection right under the Constitution. Black people accused of crimes can be tried with no black people in their jury. And that jeopardizes their constitutional right to equal justice under the law.

REID: And we can`t exclude the fact that voting restrictions also keep you off the jury pool.

So, if you are barred from being able to register to vote, you also can`t get on a jury. So all of these things work together to -- this is why Critical Race Theory exists, you all. This is actually what they study under Critical Race Theory in law school, because there are systems in place.

And when I think about these trials, especially the Arbery trial, all I can think about is the Emmett Till trial. All I can think about is the Milam trial, the trial of these two fiends who lynched a 14-year-old boy, and an all-white jury was like, spit, spot, this -- they`re fine. Let them go home.

That`s all I can think about, unfortunately. What about you?

BUTLER: And now it`s 2021, and we`re still talking about virtually all- white juries in a case in Georgia involving white men who lynched a black person?

Joy, the Georgia judge found that 12 African-Americans were qualified to sit on that jury. They could be fair and objective. The defense then removed 11 of those 12 black jurors. The defense claimed it`s based on how they answered questions, but some white jurors said the same kinds of things. They didn`t get struck.

One white juror said she thought that Mr. Arbery had been racially profiled. Another white juror said she had long conversations with her husband about this case. Another white juror said that she thinks that race matters in criminal justice. All those white folks are still on the jury.

But the defense used answers like that from black prospective jurors to get rid of them.

REID: Yes.

And I -- and, listen, we don`t want to presume that white Americans cannot clearly judge this case. I mean, in Walter Scott, I`m not sure what the makeup of that jury was. I completely did not expect that police officer to be convicted, but, in the federal trial, he was. And I don`t know what the composition of that jury was. So, we don`t want to presume anything about how anyone will decide.


But the -- it`s a compounding effect, because, in the Rittenhouse case -- let`s go to the Rittenhouse case. It ain`t just the composition of the jury. It`s the judge, the judge. Bruce Schroeder`s history, in 1987, he made headlines requiring AIDS tests for sex workers. Told he`d be challenged for violating civil liberties, he just said: "I hope so."

In 2006, Schroeder had such a bad reputation for his outrageous style and stiff sentences that hundreds of defendants requested a different judge, causing a massive backlog in Kenosha County.

In 2000 -- in 2021, the appeals court overturned him for publicly shaming a 28-year-old woman convicted of retail theft. He made her enter a store -- any time she entered a store, she would have to tell management that she`s a thief.

This guy is outrageous. He`s trying to make himself part of the -- he`s not like a quiet judge in the background. He`s very, very public. And he seems, at least at this point, to have made rulings that sound like he`s like a part of the defense.

What do you make of that?

BUTLER: And, Joy, today, the judge went off on the media, claiming their criticism of the way he`s conducting the case is undermining public confidence.

You know what is undermining public confidence? The way the judge is conducting the case. There are legitimate concerns. Remember, last week, he allowed the three men who Rittenhouse killed to be described as criminals, but, at the same time, the prosecutors aren`t allowed to call them victims.

REID: It`s a frightening situation.

We`re going to be watching this trial. And we`re going to call on you many, many times. Don`t make too many plans, my friend. Appreciate you, Paul Butler.

Coming up next: Congressional Democrats are inching closer, closer and closer to finalizing the latest version of their social spending and infrastructure bill. Could we see votes this week?

The chair of the Progressive Caucus, Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal, joins us next.



REID: Following this week`s election defeats, Democrats are feeling the pressure to produce results and move forward on the president`s sweeping agenda.

But exactly when that will happen remains up in the air. But a source familiar with the matter tells NBC News that Speaker Pelosi told House Democrats this morning that she was hopeful that votes on both the Build Back Better and infrastructure bills would happen before the end of the week.

In an effort to make sure they have the votes necessary when Pelosi brings them to the floor, NBC News has learned that President Biden himself is calling House Democrats to rally support.

Yesterday, the House added four weeks of paid family leave back into the social spending bill. Of course, that`s something Senator Joe Manchin says he would not support. And even after a months-long process of watching the sausage being made, Manchin says it`s all still moving too fast for him.


SEN. JOE MANCHIN (D-WV): The only thing I would say is, the rush to this - - and I have said this long before. I truly believe that we need to slow down. I truly believe that we need to wait and see if inflation is transitory, see how much worse it may get. Hopefully, it doesn`t.


REID: Joining me now is Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal of Washington state, chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.

Thank you, Congresswoman, for being here.

I guess my first question should be, have you gotten a call from the president on whether or not a vote will take place?

REP. PRAMILA JAYAPAL (D-WA): I have not, Joy. I have not gotten it. And, frankly, I would really appreciate that he continues to call anybody who`s not certain about whether or not they`re going to vote for the Build Back Better Act

We are now down to really just a handful of people. And I have every hope that we will quickly finish this and we will be able to pass both bills out of the House and send them over to the Senate.

REID: And here`s the -- here`s the rub.

Let`s say that you all are able to get to a bill -- to a vote, and both bills pass. We already know that the -- there are enough Republicans to pass the infrastructure bill. Do you have any guarantees that there are enough votes to pass the Build Back Better bill in the Senate?

JAYAPAL: Well, look, I mean, we have said for some time that this was a deal that was negotiated by the president himself and Senator Manchin and Senator Sinema, and that we would trust the president that he was confident that he could get 51 votes.

That`s what he told us in the caucus. That`s what he`s told me directly. And we believe him. He`s going to get 51 votes.

Now, I hear what some people are saying on the other side. But I do believe that this is too important to people across this country, to the Democratic Party, to the president for anyone to vote against this once it goes to the Senate.

So, no, we don`t have a full and complete assurance. We are taking a bit of a leap of faith. But we`re trusting President Biden, who I believe has done a lot of work to assure himself that he`s going to get 51 votes in the Senate.

REID: Well, here`s the -- here`s the question. Do those 51 votes include Joe Manchin?

Because here is Joe Manchin just today, and he`s talking about the country. And this doesn`t sound like the guy who`s ready to vote for paid family leave being back in the Build Back Better bill. Take a listen.


MANCHIN: We can`t go too far left. This is not a center-left or a left country. We are a center, if anything, a little center-right country.

And it`s being -- that`s being shown. And we ought to be able to recognize that.


REID: He sounds like somebody, if you put together the two sound bites that we have played in the segment so far, as somebody who would very much like to push off the Build Back Better bill, keep talking about it, maybe infinitely, until it dies.

What do you think?

JAYAPAL: Well, Joy, that was why we insisted that we had to move both bills together, and we had to get to the end of negotiation on the Build Back Better Act.

And I do think that Senator Manchin has been negotiating with the White House in good faith. I will say that the paid leave provision, he`s been very clear for quite some time that he does not support that in the reconciliation bill.

We are, of course, very happy that the speaker decided to put it in anyway. But we have to recognize that is -- that was something he was quite clear that he didn`t support.


And it`s really frustrating to millions of women and families across this country, who desperately need child care. We`re -- excuse me -- paid leave. We`re one of only six countries that doesn`t offer that. The richest country in the world, and we don`t offer paid leave.

So, it is incredibly frustrating. But, look, this situation is frustrating because we have very slim margins. We only have 50 votes. And we only have 50 votes because we also have Senator Joe Manchin. If we didn`t have Senator Joe Manchin, we would have 49 votes.

So I think -- and we wouldn`t have control of the Senate. So that`s the reality of the situation we`re in. We worked very hard. And the Progressive Caucus endorsed the president`s framework last Thursday, a week ago, and because we believe that this is now the best bill that we can get.

Now, we have continued to push for more. And just two days ago, there was a deal announced on pharmaceutical drug pricing, which is not everything we wanted, by any stretch of the imagination, but it is a significant movement forward. And it is something that we need to show big pharma that we are ready to take them on. So, that was a really great addition. Maybe that can happen with paid leave as well.

But we are ready now, Joy, to pass these two bills and, at the end of the day, to change the -- sort of the economic circumstance of families across this country, who -- for whom, if they got universal child care -- can you imagine, Joy, what that would mean to women and families across the country who have been pushed out of the workplace during the pandemic, and want to go back to work, but don`t have any child care or can`t afford it, that they would only have to pay 7 percent of their income on child care, instead of paying, like in my state, $24,000 a year on child care?

It`s crazy. So...

REID: Yes. Oh, yes, absolutely.


REID: No, as somebody who, when I had my third child, even though my husband had a great job, we couldn`t afford -- and I literally became a freelancer because child care was so expensive. I couldn`t afford $1, 200 a month child -- it just was too much money.

But let me add one more question, because this argument about paid family leave and child care, these things that really, as you said, fundamentally, would help women, typically women of color, but all women, the arguments against them, some of them are just hard economic, I don`t like the idea of spending this money, like Manchin.

Here`s one that`s ridiculous. Here`s Lauren Boebert. I never like playing her, but I`m going to play her today.


REP. LAUREN BOEBERT (R-CO): Listen, I`m a mother of four. I delivered one of my children in the front seat of my truck, because, as a mom of four, we got things to do.

Ain`t nobody got time for 2.5 months of maternity leave. We have a world to save here.


REID: I hope she hit the brakes, at least, and put her guns down after popping a baby out apparently in the -- in her truck.

Your thoughts?

JAYAPAL: I mean, it`s just crazy.

REID: Or not even on that, if you just want -- yes, go on.


JAYAPAL: OK. OK. I won`t even touch that.

I mean, look, we are the party of parents. Republicans try to say, oh, we`re for parents. How can you be for parents when you don`t even what to give parents child care, paid leave, the child tax credit?

REID: Yes.

JAYAPAL: Not a single Republican voted for the American Rescue Plan.

REID: Not one.

JAYAPAL: Let`s not forget that, Joy.

So, let`s get these done. Let`s protect parents, working families, poor people across this country. They`re waiting for us. And we are ready to deliver.

REID: Oh, Congresswoman, women can just push the babies out on the front - - in the front of their trucks. That`s how they do it. That`s how the real women do it.


REID: Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal.

Just push it out and keep driving. Maybe hit the brake a little bit eventually.

Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal, thank you. Thank you very much.

And don`t go anywhere. Whew. Tonight`s "Absolute Worst" is up next, as the CDC`s approval of the COVID vaccine for kids opens the door to yet another wave of harmful disinformation, of course.

We will be right back.



REID: We have seen time and again the reach of disinformation and lies about COVID and the vaccine.

This week, a Newsmax reporter was taken off the air and suspended from Twitter for vaccine conspiracy nonsense. And it was revealed that newly COVID-positive Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers reportedly wanted homeopathic treatment from his doctor to count as vaccination, which the NFL rejected. And then Rodgers misled the public, saying he was immunized.

Now the fight over vaccine misinformation moves on to children, as kids ages 5 to 11 are rolling up their little sleeves. NBC News reports that doctors, public health experts and disinformation researchers are already anticipating a flood of anti-vax propaganda featuring younger children.

Now, vaccine hesitancy is already prevalent among parents, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation poll. A third aren`t ready yet. And 30 percent say their children definitely will not get the vaccine.

Now, it is totally understandable that parents would have questions about their kids` health, which is why the White House is encouraging parents to reach out to their own family doctors and pediatricians, if they have them, and to step away from social media, where kids are just as vulnerable to fake information designed to persuade and mislead them as their parents are.

In fact, a British study last month found that anti-vaccine conspiracy theories on TikTok could reach kids within minutes of signing up, some as young as 9, although, for once, Facebook, or Meta, or whatever, is trying to get ahead of it, rolling out stricter policies for disinformation targeting kids.

And, again, if you have questions, talk to your doctor. But don`t listen to just any old body who has doctor in their title.

Cue former HUD Secretary, the once-revered Dr. Ben Carson.


BEN CARSON, FORMER U.S. HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT SECRETARY: This is really sort of a giant experiment. Do we want to put our children at risk?

Why would we do a thing like? It makes no sense whatsoever.


REID: Hard to believe he was a pediatric neurosurgeon. Remember "Gifted Hands"?

Actually, it does kind of make sense, given that he also went ballistic against Obamacare and became a Trumper.

But sowing the seeds of doubt is just another example of the onslaught of anti-vaccine propaganda barreling toward our families and toward our health. Be safe out there.

That`s tonight`s REIDOUT. I mean, that`s tonight`s "Absolute Worst." And that`s also tonight`s REIDOUT.