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Transcript: The ReidOut, 3/9/2021

Guest: Ashish Jha, Jerry Abraham, Christina Greer, David Frum, Adrienne Elrod, LaTosha Brown>


CDC offers new guidance for vaccinated Americans. CDC says

vaccinated people can gather indoors without masks. Hospitalizations

decline as vaccinations ramp up. Conservatives are ready to move on from

ongoing pandemic. Poll shows, Republicans are less likely than Democrats to

get vaccinated. Poll shows majority of black Americans plan to get

vaccinated. Poll shows reasons for not getting vaccinated include concern

about side effects and speed of vaccine development. Segments of U.S.

population are reluctant to get vaccinated. Trump and RNC clash over

fundraising. After a brief delay, the Derek Chauvin murder trial began in

earnest today in Minnesota. Lawyers from both the prosecution and defense

questioned potential jurors about their answers to a lengthy and detailed

questionnaire and they selected the first three jurors they intend to seat

for the trial.


ARI MELBER, MSNBC HOST: Thanks for watching THE BEAT. "THE "REIDOUT" starts


JOY REID, MSNBC HOST: Good evening, everyone. OK, I`m just going to warn

you. It`s one of those nights. We`ve got a lot of news to get to. One of

the country`s two major political parties has been swallowed hole by a

Florida retiree who keeps finding ways to take money from his supporters

and from the party itself.

Plus, the all-out assault on your voting rights is under way ahead of the

2022 midterms and, seriously, why is Donald Trump Jr. opening his mouth

about Meghan Markle and Prince Harry? His thoughts are almost too bizarre

to believe.

But we begin THE REIDOUT tonight with the question that we`ve been asking

that I`m sure you`ve been asking for an entire year now, when will we

return to normal life? This week, we`ve got the first sign real sign that

some aspects of the pre-pandemic lives are on the horizon with the CDC

giving the green light for fully vaccinated people to gather with other

fully vaccinated people without wearing masks or social distancing. Getting

to see our loved ones again to share a meal indoors with grandparents,

parents and friends is perhaps the best thing that we`ve heard in a very

long time.

We`re also seeing reversely the grim numbers that have haunted us all year

with newly reported coronavirus cases and hospitalizations on the decline.

Now, the reason for this progress boils down to science in the form of

three vaccines. And the problem is there`s a segment of the U.S. population

that insists on rejecting science while clamoring that their so-called

personal freedom means more than the 530,000 Americans who are no longer



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It was pretty natural to have a sensitivity to freedom-

loving Americans that say we`ll do the right thing. We know what to do,

just give us our freedom back and lift some of these mandates.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We can`t protect everyone all the time.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s time for us to break free from the cycle of

failed experts and, frankly, unconstitutional orders.

A year later it`s time to retire or just ignore the control freaks. It`s

time to declare victory and move on.


REID: Those people are not doctors, by the way. According to a new poll,

23 percent of Americans say that they have suffered the death of a close

friend or family member because of COVID-19. And as we know, the deadliest

year in U.S. history did not have to be so deadly. And those lies that you

just heard are now feeding a staunch resistance to the vaccine among the

folks who watch and trust right-wing outlets like Fox News. According to a

pew research poll, Republicans are now 27 percent less likely to get or to

have already received a vaccine compared to Democrats.

Joining me now is Dr. Ashish Jha, Dean of the Brown University School of

Public Health, Dr. Jerry Abraham, Director of the Vaccines Program at

Kedren Health in Los Angeles, and Christina Greer, Associate Professor of

Political Science at Fordham University. Thank you all for being here.

Dr. Jha, the idea that -- the idea of masks and vaccines becoming a purely

political thing, is it hyperbole to say that we have half a million

Americans or at least that`s part of the reason why we have half a million

Americans dead?


First of all, thanks for having me on.

It is crazy, right, like we have not politicized drinking and driving. We

don`t say, well, it`s freedom. We have not politicized largely like wearing

seatbelts. Like there is a set of public health things we do that are good

for us and are also good for people around us and the fact that we have

turned these things into a political issue, vaccines, masks and basic

social distancing is not just baffling, but you are absolutely right, and

it is contributing to so many unnecessary deaths and suffering in this


REID: And so, Dr. Abraham, you testified today about all of these

realities. Let`s just look at some of the reasons -- there`s a Pew research

poll that talks about why Americans say that they are not getting

vaccinated. There`s a concern about side effects which is a pretty big part

of it. Vaccines are developed and tested too quickly say 85 percent of

people. They want to know more about the vaccines, I`ve heard that from

family and friends and distrust the system entirely. Say they don`t need

it, which is weird. And just don`t get vaccine in general. And they don`t

get the flu shot, et cetera.

But one thing we hove notice is that`s less true, less and less true among

African-Americans, and this also at Pew poll, majority of black Americans

61 percent, say they do now plan to get a COVID vaccine or have already

gotten one. How do you get around those kinds of objections?


I`ll just say, first and foremost, I mean, what was missing on that list is

where are my vaccines? I haven`t been offered a vaccine and that is what my

community says every day in South Los Angeles, and I did not see that as a

response in that Pew study. Where do I park? I don`t have paid time off. I

don`t have child care for my children. Those are real reason, but that`s

not to be confused for hesitancy, and that`s the truth.

There are real questions we all have about these vaccines, whether you are

black or brown, white or yellow, these are new technologies. It is scary.

We need to meet people where they are. We need to answer that medical

health literacy, health literacy question. We need to make sure that

Americans understand basic science. But aside from that there are real

issues. And as Dr. Jha has today mentioned, supply may soon outpace demand.

And so we will have to find those arms and we need to meet them where they

are, engage them, answer their questions and gets them vaccinated if there

are no contraindications.

REID: You know, and, Christina, there is -- while we see resistance among

African-Americans declining, you do still hear, like, for instance, a lot

of sort of chatter about the Johnson & Johnson, the J&J vaccine. People

feel that`s the vaccine being pushed on black people, that`s being pushed

on, you know, sort of the working class and that the elite vaccines are the

Moderna and the Pfizer, like that kind of thing. We had in Detroit, even a

situation where initially the mayor was like, don`t send us the Johnson &

Johnson, send us the good ones, which the science says that isn`t true,

that they`re not -- one is not better than the other, but there is some

hesitancy, right? The hesitancy is not all gone.


UNIVERSITY: Right. And I think that`s where we need to have multipronged

approach, and we needs to have as many PSAs, as many -- you know, we call

them thought leaders or people who are leaders in their various communities

to really articulate the fact, right? And the facts are this, Pfizer and

Moderna aren`t the fancy vaccine and Johnson & Johnson isn`t the ghetto

vaccine, as we`ve heard people talk about.

The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is one shot. So for a certain population, it

might be a better vaccine for, say, homeless populations, people who don`t

necessarily have the ability to follow up and come back in three weeks for

the second vaccine.

But I think, you know, having doctors like the two who are here tonight and

several other doctors, especially doctors of color who can be leaders in

their community, who can talk to deacons at churches, janitors at schools,

who can get that message out. It doesn`t just have to be celebrities. It

doesn`t have to be politicians. It can be regular folks who have the

reputation and respect in their communities.

You know, if you belong to a church home or some sort of synagogue or a

temple, whatever it is, you know, sometimes that`s just a regular -- it

could be a teacher, it could be a housekeeper who someone that the

community respects. And if they believe that this is something for their

community, they are probably the best advocates for this.

But I think it`s all about -- Joy, you`ve been saying this from day one,

it`s all about listening to the science and the facts so that people can

make the best decisions for themselves and their families.

REID: Indeed. You think vaccines are scary? Try COVID. COVID is


Dr. Jha, you know -- and, by the way. Rachel Maddow last night talked about

the fact that her mother-in-law got the J&J. The J&J is fine. Rachel

Maddow`s mother-in-law got it and she`s fine. Dr. Jha, the other thing that

I hear more than anything else now, among people, even in my circle that

was initially reluctant, is now, I can`t figure how to get it, that I can

can`t get at it, that there`s none left. That, you know, I heard Dr.

Abraham say supply will going to exceed demand, but right now demand feels

like it`s really exceeding supply.

JHA: Yes, absolutely. And, by the way, just a quick shout out to Dr.

Abraham on that testimony today. He was unbelievable. So, Dr. Abraham,

thank you for that. I was inspired by you.

But let`s get to your question, Joy. Look, it`s so frustrating. States have

made this so incredibly complicated for people. People are spending hours

trying to navigate complex websites. It`s unnecessary. We can make this

simple and straightforward.

I do think that we are going to have a point probably late March, early

April when we will have plenty of vaccines, but we`ve got to make it easy

for people. And one of the ways you build inequity in this system is by

making it complex, by making it hard, and that`s what a lot of states are

doing and I think that`s a huge problem.

REID: And, Dr. Abraham, per your testimony, can you talk a little bit

about -- and you did testify in person. I think it`s important to note, as

well. What are people feeling like they can get back? Because I think

that`s what you kind of have to sell, what people is -- here is what you

can have back. Is that message working when you`re talking to people about

getting vaccinated, that these parts in your life can come back?

ABRAHAM: Yes, I think it was very important that I went to Congress in

person. This was essential, work-related travel and getting vaccinated,

doubly vaccinated like myself means we get back to work. We get back to

school. We get back to loving our loved ones, hugging and kissing them,

doing all of those wonderful things that we missed since before this

pandemic began.

I think there`s a lot still we have to do. We still need to get everyone

vaccinated. But I really appreciate what Dr. Jha and all of the other

members of today`s Senate panel mentioned. There`s still plenty to do right

now and every one of those barriers must not stand in the way between

people and their vaccines. Not having an appointment, not having internet,

not having an email address or a phone or a home address, those are not

barriers that not getting a vaccine. And we must figure out why those

systems are in place and we must break those barriers down. And that`s

exactly what we`re doing in South L.A. And that`s why we`re so effective,

52,000 doses into arms as of tonight.

REID: Yes, congratulations on that. And, Christina, can you talk a little

bit about it on the other side? Because while we`re having this

conversation that`s very positive and it`s making people feel hopeful, in

the other universe, on Earth Two, they`re telling, people like Laura

Ingraham, who have absolutely no credibility, she is not a doctor, who is

she to tell people that? They`re putting people on T.V. who are not doctors

who are saying, forget everything, don`t -- you know, burn your masks,

don`t do social distancing, just do what you want.

And you`ve got playing out all over the country, governors also saying

dismantle all of the restrictions, forget the CDC, just go wild which feels

like it just going to kill more people and set us way back and I don`t know

how -- if you have thoughts about how people can break through the

information sort of bubble.

GREER: Yes. I mean, Joy, sadly, it`s the politics and the partisan

politics aren`t following the science and so many Republican governors are

putting the citizens of their state in severe danger. We`re seeing Texas is

open for business. What does that mean for people who will sadly follow a

politician with zero medical credibility and not wear a mask, not social

distance and go back to business as usual without having been vaccinated?

And so, sadly, we might see some spikes in particular areas even though

vaccinations are getting into the arms of particular people, we are so far

from herd immunity. We know that there are going to be certain stakes where

we`re going to see spikes.

And sadly, also, because the coronavirus is so odd, for some people, it

takes them out quickly, for others they have, you know, sort of flu-like

symptoms, and for some people, they didn`t even know they had COVID.

So you have Republicans who are saying it`s not that serious. I mean, you

know, not that many people have died. We have over a half a million

Americans who have died. And so, politically, when you`re trying to

politicize something that should be based in medical science, it`s really

hard to combat that because we have so many levels of government that are

competing against one another for information and for the reality of this

virus, where, for some people, it is serious.

And so, no, it doesn`t kill everyone, but it could take out your parents or

your grandparents or someone you love and we`ve seen that time and time

again. We`ve also seen many Republicans saying, well, I`ve lost loved ones

but you know, it`s not that bad, it`s just a pigment of the Democrats`

imagination to try and work against us. So, sadly, we`re still in the DJT

era of that.

REID: Yes. And a lot of these people who are saying lot of these numbers,

they have gotten vaccinated, Trump got vaccinated. So they`re talking a lot

of stuff, but they got their vaccines.

Dr. Ashish Jha, Dr. Jerry Abraham, Christina Greer, thank you all very


And up next on THE REIDOUT, the former president tightens his grip on the

GOP urging Republicans to start sending him their campaign contributions

instead of sending the money to the RNC, like a ratchet crime boss.

And then there`s Republican Congressman Paul Gosar tweeting out an image of

a sex worker along with a white nationalist motto. America first is

inevitable. It`s all very weird and creepy.

But believe it or not, Gosar is not even tonight`s absolute worse. We`ve

found people even worse. I give you a hint that involves the royal scandal.

The big reveal is coming up. THE REIDOUT continues after this.



SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC): There`s something about Trump. There`s a dark

side and there`s some magic there. What I`m trying to do is just harness

the magic.

To me, Donald Trump is sort of a cross between a Jesse Helms, Ronald Reagan

and P.T. Barnum. I mean, it`s just this bigger than life deal. He could

make the Republican Party something that nobody else I know who could make

it bigger, he can make it stronger, he can make it more diverse and he also

could destroy it.


REID: For once, Senator Lindsey Graham is not entirely wrong. I mean Trump

is a lot like Jesse Helms and P.T. Barnum like that, not exactly untrue.

There is a dark side to the former president. But whatever magic that he

sees it`s really just open, goofy racism and corruption. And while not

making the Republican Party stronger, Donald Trump is definitely making it

more like a family, though it`s the kind where he might as well be

considered the Don.

How else can you describe it when the Florida retiree is threatening to sue

his own party for using his name to fundraise? And last night and, again,

an hour ago, Trump sent word to his MAGA devotees, that`s a nice party

you`ve got there. If you want to see it succeed, send your money directly

to me.

Looking at the fine print, none of the money goes to any organization

directly affiliated with the Republican Party. By the end of last year,

Trump`s Save American PAC was able to pocket more than $31 million from

supporters, which Trump can pretty much do whatever he wants to with.

You might think that that would anger the Republican Party, taking money

from their coffers and setting them up to have to beg Trump for cash, but

no, no, no, it appears they don`t think it`s a big enough tribute to the

head of the family. In fact, Republicans are adding money to Trump`s

pockets by moving part of their upcoming spring retreat to Mar-a-Lago, so

that Trump will speak. And, of course, they will be paying him for using

his club. And something tells me he won`t be giving them a friends-and-

family discount.

And remember this. While one major political party is on the cusp of

delivering lifesaving relief for millions of Americans, the other is

focused on kissing the ring of the Florida Don.

Joining me now is Adrienne Elrod, former senior aide on the Biden/Harris

and Hillary Clinton campaigns, and David Frum, staff writer at "The

Atlantic" and former speechwriter for George W. Bush.

David, thank you for being here.

I want to start with you, because it does -- we were talking about this

when we were prepping for the show today. It feels like Donald Trump, he

isn`t fleecing the Republican Party, so it`s not a con them. He`s actually

gotten them to essentially become a mafia of sorts, where they have got to

pay him, where they can`t use his likeness for free.

At least they at least they say they can`t. But he says, no, you can`t. He

has another statement out tonight. You`re wasting your money. They`re

RINOs. Another statement out tonight. If you really want to help the

American people, you need to send the money to me, send me the money, and

then I will save the country.

And where essentially he`s eaten the Republican Party up and in a sense

made it like the mafia. Is that hyperbole to say?

DAVID FRUM, SENIOR EDITOR, "THE ATLANTIC": Well, I was talking just this

afternoon to someone who is in regular contact with the post-presidential


And, according to my friend, here are some things that are true. Trump

desperately wants to be president again. He never understood how much he

liked the job while he had it. But now that he doesn`t have it, he wishes

he had it again. And the one bit of criticism you can give him that he will

hear is that he wasn`t focused enough on what matters.

And, clearly, since the impeachment and the trial and the new

administration, he has been very focused on one thing, which is just what

you said, making sure that the streams of money in the party flow to him.

REID: Right.

And, so, Adrienne, if you have got these two things working together, you

have got Trump saying, I will help you with this one thing, voter

suppression, you need to pass -- you need to not let H.R.1 path. So you

need to make sure that you suppress enough votes and pass enough bills to

make it so that it`s almost impossible for me not to win, right? And that`s

being done. Check.

And then on top of it saying, send all the money to me. It is a

stranglehold. And it`s what`s odd to me is, it`s one Republicans don`t have

to be in. They`re choosing to be in it.

ADRIENNE ELROD, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Yes, you`re exactly right, Joy.

And, look, I mean, this is the problem the Republican Party has had since

Trump became the nominee in 2016. They leaned into him. They sort of fought

him off before they weren`t quite sure what to do with him. And then once

he became the nominee, they just went for it and leaned straight in.

And we knew this would come back to bite them. We knew that they were going

to have a series of challenges in the long term, maybe some good short-term

gains, but a series of challenges in the long run. And now you`re seeing

that come to fruition. He is the Republican Party`s cash cow.

If the RNC and NRCC cannot raise money off of Donald Trump, how are they

going to raise money? It`s not like Mitch McConnell or Kevin McCarthy have

anywhere near the fund-raising prowess that Donald Trump has.

So, if he tells his donors, hey, listen here, you got to give to me and not

to these party committees, they`re going to be in some real trouble.

REID: Well, I think that is clearly true.

I mean, David Frum, it`s both sad that, right, just as stimulus ticks are

going to be going out, Donald Trump has got his eyes on them to have these

people send their money to him. Just when they`re getting their stimmies,

they`re going to probably be sending him to him.

And then you have got like five Republicans who are the old-school-type

Republican retiring. And Adrienne`s point, you`re probably going to have

five mini-Trumps running. You have got one guy who may be running in

Missouri. His name is Eric Greitens.

He actually used to be the governor, but he resigned after sexual

misconduct allegations came out. He`s an ardent Trumper. He`s thinking

about running again. The allegations include that he tried to blackmail a

woman who was having an extramarital affair with using a naked photo he

took her without our consent.

But that guy probably has a shot. And so what you do is, you replace the

sort of old-fashioned Republicans with that. And then what is the party?

Are we really looking at -- Jelani Cobb wrote, the Whigs used to exist.

They`re gone. The Federalists used to exist.

Is this a death spiral?

FRUM: Well, the Greitens story is such a terrible human tragedy.

This is a guy -- I know him a little bit -- who one would have thought was

once the future, a former Navy SEAL, a former Rhodes Scholar, a person of

education, someone who was interested in Greek philosophy, someone who

wrote books on the importance of supremacy of character, and who won a race

to be governor of Missouri at a young age, I think the first Jewish

governor of Missouri.

And that he would -- that this remarkable person would succumb to scandal

in the way that he did, which is so offensive and upsetting and tragic, and

then say the solution for me, who once studied the Greek philosophers, is

to become the Trump of Missouri.

REID: It`s amazing, Adrienne, but, also, that describes Josh Hawley, who

has got an Ivy League education and all of this sort of highfalutin

education that he now pretends that he`s the working man`s guy, but he`s a

very highly educated guy.

But they all become Trump, right? In the end, they think that the only way

to do it is they all try to be him. I mean, even people like Ted Cruz, who

he has belittled and mocked his own -- he can`t even defend his own wife.

It`s more important to defend Trump. Lindsey Graham. I mean, they`re all

just going to turn into him.

And then I ask again, is there another party on the other side of the

Democrats, if this is the performative sort of role, and this is what they

want to be?

ELROD: Well, Joy, over the past however many years, we have always seen

times where we thought, well, maybe this is really the time where you could

see a third party make a big stand. Of course, in `92, with Ross Perot

garnering 20 percent of the vote, that was an area where we thought, well,

maybe we will see a third party take shape.

We have never seen anything quite like this, where you have got the

combination of social media, different forms of communication, and then

somebody like Trump, who, frankly, is so different than what the Republican

looked like -- looked like about 20 years ago.

So this could actually be the time. And, look, if he amasses a fortune with

his PAC, which -- especially if he won`t let the RNC use his name, I see no

reason why he wouldn`t -- he will be able to substantially fund some of

these challenges. That`s why you`re seeing moderates like Richard Burr, Pat

Toomey, even to an extent Richard Shelby -- I can`t believe I`m kind of

calling him a moderate, but compared to some of these other guys you have

got in the Senate, he is certainly more of a mainstream Republican.

You`re going to start to see some of these challenges. And if these guys

start winning who Trump is endorsing in a Republican primary, that`s going

to spell huge trouble for the Republican Party as we know it.

REID: You know, David, I have been thinking a lot in the last several

weeks about the John Birch Society, and how long it took for Republicans to

finally dismiss them and get rid of them, because they realized they were

making them lose elections.

Donald Trump has a losing streak like none other. He not only lost the

presidency. He caused them to lose the United States Senate. He hasn`t

grown the party. At some point, is there a John Birch Society exclusion

moment do you see in the future?

Or does a section of the current Republican Party just break off and maybe

form its own thing?

FRUM: No, I think, in politics, you learn through pain.

And so what is going to happen is 2022 should be a good Republican year.

They`re the party not of the president. And the normal ballot question in

the second year of the president`s term is, is everyone happy or does

anyone have any complaints? And people say, yes, I got some complaints.

REID: Yes.

FRUM: The catering isn`t all it could be. Yes, we got complaints.

Donald Trump is going to insist, never mind your complaints about this guy.

Does anyone have any complaints about me? Let`s talk about me. That`s

always the Donald Trump input. So let`s talk about me.

REID: Yes.

FRUM: And when it`s smart not to talk about me, he still insists you talk

about me.

And so if Donald Trump -- if he makes 2022 a referendum on Trump, the

Republicans are sunk. If he makes it a referendum on Biden, they could pick

up yards. And every Republican knows this, but doesn`t dare say it.

REID: That`s the problem, is that they`re too cowardly to go after a

retiree who can`t hurt them in any way. It is bizarre.

Adrienne Elrod, David Frum, thank you both. Really appreciate you.

FRUM: Thanks.

REID: It`s weird.

Up next: Georgia Republicans are making an aggressive push, as we were

just talking about, to suppress black voters, a direct response to

Republican losses there in November and January. And they`re doing it in

the same week civil rights icon Vernon Jordan is remembered. Ah, the


We will be right back.


REID: Today, civil rights icon Vernon Jordan was remembered in a memorial

service in Washington.

Former President Bill Clinton spoke and Vice President Kamala Harris was

among the dignitaries and civil rights leaders in attendance for the

service at Howard University for Jordan, who passed away this week at age


The service came one day after Georgia, the state where Jordan fought to

register voters as field director for the NAACP, passed yet -- passed yet

another draconian voter disenfranchisement bill. The Georgia bill

eliminates no-excuse absentee voting and requires I.D. for those permitted

to vote absentee. It comes just a week after the Georgia House steamrolled

through an equally suppressive bill, restricting ballot drop boxes,

requiring more I.D. for absentee voting and limiting weekend early voting


As "Mother Jones" notes, these laws are Georgia`s most restrictive voting

laws since the Jim Crow era.

Former President and former Georgia Governor Jimmy Carter weighed in today,

saying in a statement -- quote -- "As our state legislators seek to turn

back the clock through legislation that will restrict access to voting for

many Georgians, I am disheartened, saddened and angry."

Of course, it`s not just Georgia racing to disenfranchise Americans. On

Monday, Iowa`s Republican governor signed into law a Republican-backed bill

slashing early voting there.

Meanwhile, less than a week ago, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a

voting rights bill, H.R.1, to expand access to the ballot. But, naturally,

sore loser that he is, the disgraced, twice-impeached Florida man, whose

big lie is being weaponized by these statehouses to push suppression, has a

plan to undermine it and is making voter suppression his brand.

The Daily Beast reports the former president has made it clear that he

wants election crackdowns to emerge as one of the defining legacy of his


And from his home base in Florida, he`s told advisers he wants to help

rally support for state GOP voting restrictions, because, of course.

Joining me now is LaTosha Brown, co-founder of Black Voters Matter.

And, LaTosha, just -- Donald Trump, the former president, appears to want

his legacy to look a lot more like George Wallace, before George Wallace

had a change of heart. Like, he wants to be Jesse Helms in the American

memory, not Jimmy Carter, who is like known for building houses for the


What does it mean to have a former president say that he wants his post-

presidency brand to be voter suppression?


indicative of who he is.

He built his entire presidential career on being a divider, of being a

liar, of being someone who actually aligned himself with white supremacists

and was a racist. And so I think that he has told us who he is. As my

grandmother would say, if someone tells you they are, believe them.

And so I think he has been very consistent with that. What is really

disheartening is that here we are, 56 years after the voting rights

movement. The week, the very week that we celebrating Bloody Sunday, when

black people were actually beaten on the Edmund Pettus Bridge, and here we

are literally facing these draconian bills that actually look like a

snapshot of the Jim Crow era in 1965.

REID: You know, I watched the Vernon Jordan memorial today. It was a

beautiful memorial. I mean, President Clinton spoke.

And you think about he did the expansions of Motor Voter. Presidents

normally want to enhance democracy. We`re seeing the opposite now. But what

does it mean for Georgia, the state that has -- the state you worked so

hard in, that Stacey Abrams worked so hard in, that just had an historic

election, its first black senator, its first Jewish American senator, after

all that history, for the response of the state legislature to be, let`s

make sure that they can never do it again?

To you, as an activist and an organizer, what does that do to you? Does it

make you angry, more determined? What does that do to you and your


BROWN: You know, I`m angry, I`m frustrated, I`m upset, but I am certainly


I think that part of what we know historically in this country, whenever

there has been black progress, there`s always been this group of -- there`s

been a white backlash and this group of people who sought to actually stop

the progress that`s been happening.

I think what we saw in 2020 was actually a response to the voter

suppression that happened in 2018. Part of what I think racists often do is

they underestimate the power and the determination of black voters.

And so it makes me extremely upset, more so than just looking at the

legislature and what happened in Georgia. The lieutenant governor hid out

in his office. Five of the Republican senators kind of excused themselves

and didn`t have the courage to stand up for it.

But then it`s very upsetting also that Georgia, that it tries to pride

itself as being, in Atlanta, the city to busy to hate, it`s not too busy to

suppress. And so you have got a multinational company like Coca-Cola there

that has a brand, a $74 billion brand value, that did not use its power to

the extent to be able to bring this to -- on one hand, say that they`re for

racial equity, and not leverage their -- leverage their political power to

put pressure to make sure that that didn`t happen.

So they had the opportunity, but they still do have an opportunity to stop


REID: Do you think that is what it`s going to take?

Are there going to have to be discussion of boycotts? I mean, Tyler Perry

Studios is down there raking in hundreds and hundreds of billions of

dollars for the state of Georgia. Coca-Cola is down there. Delta Airlines

is down there.

Are we going to start talking about boycotts directed at states and

directed at companies who don`t stand in the way of this or who perpetrate


BROWN: You know, I think that companies have the opportunity. I think this

is a prime opportunity for those companies that have said that they are

committed to racial equity and justice, that this is the time to affirm

that, to stand with the community.

I don`t believe that the protection of democracy should solely fall on the

backs of black people, that constantly it is not our burden to bear, that

we all know that democracy is good for business. And so I think that we

have got to put pressure on all kinds of levels.

We have to -- literally, those who seek to undermine democratic efforts in

the state, we have got to hold them accountable, just -- not just in the

legislature, but also their businesses, the whole ecosystem. This is not

the burden for black people to bear, although we have been attacked and

we`re targeted, that this actually restricts.

What`s really ironic, Joy, is that the expansion of the voting rights -- of

the absentee ballot voting was actually by Republicans. Republicans

targeted and created this bill...

REID: Right.

BROWN: ... for rural white people that they felt like could vote.

And when black people turned out in record numbers, that was not

necessarily the outcome they expected. And so now they`re saying, oh...

REID: Right.

BROWN: ... we don`t need this anymore.

REID: Yes, and going after the black church in such a direct way, saying,

oh, we will just get rid of Sunday voting, as if no one can see what

they`re doing.

LaTosha Brown, you`re doing so much. And I know that you have got other

stuff that we could have gone on about. There`s things happening in Alabama

when it comes to black judges being targeted that you raised to me today,

and we`re going to be following up on that.

So, thank you always for keeping us up to date on what`s going on regarding

what`s happening in this country. Really appreciate you.

And up next: Jury selection is now under way, as former Minneapolis police

officer Derek Chauvin goes to trial for the murder of George Floyd. And

that`s not the only big legal story.

Stay right there.


REID: After a brief delay, the Derek Chauvin murder trial began in earnest

today in Minnesota. Lawyers from both the prosecution and defense

questioned potential jurors about their answers to a lengthy and detailed

questionnaire and they selected the first three jurors they intend to seat

for the trial.

First is a white male who says the criminal justice system is biased

against racial minorities statistically. But he added that, quote, in my

opinion, all lives matter equally and that should include police, unquote.

The second juror said her uncle is a police officer, but that she can be

fair. Pool reporters described her as, quote, a person of color.

And the third is another white male who says he has no personal opinion

because he hasn`t examined the viewpoint of the law. This comes as a former

federal prosecutor Paul Butler made the case in a "Washington Post" op-ed

that the jury must include African-Americans if its verdict just to have

any legitimacy.

Jury selection remains ongoing despite a looming appellate court decision

over whether a third degree murder charge will be reinstated which could

delay the trial.

And Paul Butler joins me now, former federal prosecutor and Georgetown law

professor and my friend.

Paul, does it annoy you as much as when these pool -- no offense to the

journalist, but refused to tell you, they say person of color and they just

blanket that out there and do not tell you whether there is a black juror

which visually people should be able to figure out or maybe they need more

diversity so they can visually figure it out.

But you wrote that there needs to be a plaque black person on the jury, an

African-American juror for it to be legitimate, we still don`t know if

that`s the case.

PAUL BUTLER, MSNBC CONTRIBUTOR: That`s absolutely right. The people have a

right to a jury that reflects the diversity of the community. Minneapolis

is about 20 percent African-American.

The jury pool is about 12 percent black and, Joy, I`m very concerned that

when prospective black jurors honestly answer that they`ve had bad

experiences with cops or that they know that the cops in Minneapolis use

excessive force against black people, that they will be struck from the

jury, even though acknowledging bias and the criminal legal system. It`s

not an opinion. It`s a fact.

REID: And isn`t it true that these cases are won in voir dire, that the

cases basically won based on who gets excluded and who gets let on, right?

So, when these questioners go through, and here`s some of the questions. Do

you believe our criminal justice system works? Why and why not? Have you

helped support or advocated in favor of the police? Have you participated

in protest about police use of force and brutality? How favorable,

unfavorable are you about Black Lives Matter or Blue Lives Matter?

Those things, the last question especially is really relevant, when those

questionnaires go through, what happens to those questionnaires?

BUTLER: So, Joy, under the law, jurors are supposed to use their life

experiences and their common sense when they evaluate evidence and the fact

is many African-Americans have different experiences with the police than

white folks, for example, but the experiences of African-Americans are just

as valid as the experiences of any other Americans.

It`s not a basis to exclude them from the jury. Two of the white jurors who

were selected today said that they had concerns about whether the police

treat black people fairly, but it`s actually common for lawyers to accept

an answer from white jurors and when a prospective black juror says the

same thing for the lawyer to strike that juror.

REID: And I think it`s important for the media for that reason to just

tell us if the juror is black. Sorry, find enough diversity in your press

pool to be able to look at that person and tell us if the person is black

because telling a person of color does not tell us if there are black

jurors, and you could end up with no black jurors, and we would know,

because we just -- that happened during the George Zimmerman trial and it

was maddening.

Let`s talk about the likelihood of conviction. I`m very cynical about these

cases as you know, Paul. We`ve talked about this before.

We looked at 2014 to 2020, a bunch of really high-profile cases from

Michael Brown to Eric Gardner, some of which happened on tape. Eric Gardner

was killed on tape saying "I can`t breathe," Tamir Rice, little boy, killed

on tape. You saw it. Freddie Gray, you saw him dragged like a rag doll and

thrown in the back of a truck. Walter Scott, you saw him like murdered. He

was the only one convicted, but he`s only convicted in a federal trial. The

jury hung in South Carolina despite the evidence, both when you see a

national conviction.

It`s so rare. What does it actually take to convict a police officer in

killing -- for killing -- particularly killing a black person when people

don`t sympathize with the dead and they sympathize with a cop?

BUTLER: It takes jurors who are willing to listen to the evidence that`s

presented in court, and especially not to give police officers a break.

Sometimes jurors say, well, I think the cop did it, but he`s just trying to

do his job so I don`t want to punish him. And then there they`re

sympathetic to defense like what we`re hearing from Chauvin.

We know his defense will be to put George Floyd on trial and make it sound

like he`s responsible for his own death so they`re going to claim that

Chauvin didn`t actually kill George Floyd, but that Floyd died from natural

causes and illegal drugs in his system and they`ll say that Chauvin that

Mr. Floyd resisted arrest and that Chauvin used reasonable force in


So, Joy, that`s character assassination, but it`s a typical defense

strategy when officers are charged with using excessive force. They put the

victim on trial and too often that works.

REID: And it works because the use of force, the Google use of force

guidelines and find out how broad they are and the American people have

given police broad power to use force and that`s why it`s hard to convict


Let`s go to another suspect. You`ve got this pipe bomb suspect in the case

of a whole different level and whether they`ll face justice. We`ll see.

Videos taken blocks from the Capitol included an alleyway near the RNC

where you now can see this pipe bomber walking through.

What are the chances of -- is this -- how useful is this information to

catching this person?

BUTLER: It`s extremely useful for all of its flaws and its inability to

communicate with the D.C. police and Capitol police what was going down on

January 6th. Despite all those flaws, the FBI remains the world`s

preeminent law enforcement investigation. It`s quite good at tracking down

bad guys. It`s already tracked down about 200 of the 800 people who were

involved in the insurrection.

And so, catching this guy won`t be the difficult part. Charging him,

prosecuting him, and getting him convicted, that will be the challenge.

REID: That`s the thing that`s so crazy. It`s harder to convict somebody

for leaving a pipe bomb than it is to convict a police officer for killing

someone on TV.

Last one, this QAnon shaman who`s staying in jail, is that a good sign that

he might actually be facing justice for real?

BUTLER: I think so. Look, the judge -- Judge Lambert, I`ve appeared before

him many times. He`s a no-nonsense guy who does not come to the courtroom

to play.

So, he looked at this Jacob Chansley guy. Remember, Joy, this is a man who

demanded organic food and went on a hunger strike until he got it. This is

the same guy --

REID: Yes.

BUTLER: -- though, who wrote a note in Mike Pence`s chair in the Senate

that said is justice is coming, it`s only a matter of time.

On social media, he posted about hanging government workers who he called


REID: Yep.

BUTLER: And now he says he shouldn`t be held in jail because of his

bizarre QAnon beliefs. The judge let him have it, joy. He said that that

request was so frivolous as to insult the court`s intelligence. I would

have said, it`s white privilege on steroids.

REID: Yeah, then he got a "60 Minutes" interview. What was that about?

Paul Butler, thank you. Really appreciate you. All right. Thank you.

And still ahead, moment you`ve all been waiting for! It`s almost time to

crown tonight`s absolute worst.


REID: Oprah`s interview with Meghan and Harry had not even aired yet in

the U.K., and British chat host and former "Apprentice" contestant Piers

Morgan was already shocked and outraged that Meghan was dare to accuse the

royal family of racism.

Thankfully, one of his guests reminded him how ludicrous that was.


DR. SHOLA MOS-SHOGBAMIMU, AUTHOR: The royal family as an institution is

rooted in colonialism, white supremacy and racism. The legacy`s right

there. So, you`re now surprised that a comment will not be made by several

members of the royal family about how dark --

PIERS MORGAN, TV HOST: It`s not several members, actually. No, no, you

can`t spew lies --


MORGAN: Are we allowed to engage in any of this?

MOS-SHOGBAMIMU: Let me finish.

MORGAN: Well, you`re not stopping.

MOS-SHOGBAMIMU: You are now outraged that Harry and Meghan have the

audacity to speak their truth, then you should be at the actual outrage of



REID: Well, this morning, Morgan walked off the set of "Good Morning

Britain" after his co-presenter, Alex, dragged him to the foot of the


ALEX BERESFORD, TV PRESENTEER: I understand that you don`t like Meghan

Markle. You`ve made it so clear a number of times on this program, a number

of times. And I understand that you`ve got a personal relationship with

Meghan Markle, or had one, and she cut you off.

She`s entitled to cut you off if she wants to. Has she said anything about

you since she cut you off? I don`t think she has, but yet, you continue to

trash her.

MORGAN: Okay, I`m done with this.

BERESFORD: No, no, no --

MORGAN: Sorry.

BERESFORD: Oh, do you know what, that`s --


MORGAN: Not mine, see you later.

BERESFORD: I`ve been --

MORGAN: Sorry, can`t do this.

BERESFORD: This is absolutely diabolical behavior.


REID: Epic!

He has since quit the show. And while Piers was busy throwing a fit before

he quit, the all-white teeny bobber Trump fan club was getting equally

historical about the interview.

Let`s start with Charlie Kirk, the right wing provocateur called Prince

Harry who spent time in the British army with two tours in Afghanistan a,

quote, beta male, because he dared to -- wait for it -- support his wife.

Perhaps he would like him to be more like Ted Cruz.

But then there is spray on hair aficionado and migrant child capturer

Stephen Miller, who tweeted: It`s not about you, but about your country.

A reminder, his media past boss was Donald Trump.

Then there is racial irony YouTuber Ben Shapiro who called Harry spoiled

before moaning about how challenging it must be for ailing Prince Philip to

watch his grandson called the institution a repository of bigotry. I guess

Ben wasn`t watching attention when Prince Philip asked aboriginal

Australian if they were still throwing spears.

Apparently, Don Jr. noticed that all the MAGA kids were doing it and felt

left out. So, he decided he absolutely had to jump in, because let`s be

real, what else does he have to do except hope that his daddy with one day

pay attention to him?


DONALD TRUMP, JR., SON OF DONALD TRUMP: Why was there no questioning?

Again, didn`t seem like she was hiding from the press, didn`t seem like she

wasn`t buying with full disclosure, meaning if you`re marrying into the

British royal family, you probably understand that there is some stuff that

comes along with that that isn`t always going to be awesome.


REID: Is it possible for a person`s chin to actually go in?

By the way, failed so never even watched the interview. Perfect.

And to Bethenny Frankel, the lady from one of the "Real Housewives" shows,

who make skinny wine or something, she hasn`t even seen the interview but

felt necessary to share with her followers in advance that she had zero

sympathy for the duchess. She later apologized for her opinion.

And there`s another like super-rich media lady waxing about it, too, but I

can`t remember who this is.

But all these folks and their ignorance make them the absolute worst. And

you know how I know they`re the worst? Because the queen, herself, issued a

statement acknowledging the full extent of how challenging the last few

years have been for Harry and Meghan, saying the issues raised,

particularly of race, are concerning. Oops!

Let`s call it the queen`s gambit.

And that`s tonight`s REIDOUT.





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