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tv   The 11th Hour  MSNBC  January 19, 2022 8:00pm-9:00pm PST

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tonight's "last word" is yes. "the 11th hour" starts now. good evening once again. i'm ali velshi. it's day 365 of the biden administration. just moments ago an attempt by democrats to change filibuster rules to pass voting rights legislation failed in the united states senate. both senators joe manchin and kyrsten sinema joined all 50 republicans to block the move, and we will have much more on that in just a moment. but first with the president's first year in office at an end, he heads into year two highlighting his successes with an eye toward turning his outstanding goals into successes. this afternoon joe biden held his second solo news conference of his presidency in the east room of the white house taking questions from reporters for nearly two hours. he defended his handling of the pandemic and the economy while
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acknowledging the stalemate that some of his top priorities and offering a warning about russian president putin's next moves. >> it's been a year of challenges, but it's also been a year of enormous progress. we went from 2 million people being vaccinated at the moment i was sworn in to 210 million americans being fully vaccinated today. we created 6 million new jobs. for all this progress i know there's a lot of frustration and fatigue in this country. >> did you overpromise to the american public what you could achieve in your first year in office? >> i didn't overpromise, but i have probably outperformed anybody thought would happen. i did not anticipate that there'd be such a stalwart effort to make sure that the most important thing was that president biden didn't get anything done. >> is there anything that you are confident you can get signed into law before the mid-term elections? >> yes. i'm confident we can get pieces,
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big chunks of the build back better law signed into law. >> can you now lay out your strategy to protect voting rights? >> well, i'm not prepared to do that in detail in terms of the executive orders i may be able to engage in and other things i can do. we have begun to organize in ways that we didn't before the communities beyond the civil rights community. >> when you were in geneva in june you said to us about president putin, i think the last thing he wants now is a cold war. now, since then, of course, you've seen him gather these troops, hundred thousand troops around ukraine. >> i think he still does not want any full-blown war, number one. number two, do i think he'll test the west, test the united states and nato? yes. as significantly as he can, yes, i think he will.
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>> biden added that putin would regret such a move. and later in the hour the former united states ambassador to russia, michael mcfaul was going to join us for more on the russian threat. meanwhile the supreme court handed a major blow to president trump and gave the january 6th investigation a huge break. eight of the nine justices rejected trump's request to block the release of white house records concerning the capitol riot to the january 6th committee. the chairman of the committee benny thompson, called the high cower's decision a victory to the rule of law and democracy. earlier tonight another member confirmed some of that material trump hoped to keep hidden is already being released. >> some of the material has already been received at the committee. i think it's very important that this material will start flowing very soon, documents, videos, notes, logs, et cetera. we'll be getting the visitors
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logs, the call logs, the outtakes from the videos that he made as people were trying to talk him into asking the mob to leave the capitol. it will help us put together the picture of what happened leading up to the riot and on the day of the riot. >> the committee has also issued two more subpoenas to far right activist nick fuentes and patrick casey. the panel says both individuals participated in the events prior to january 6th. also tonight the trump organization is responding to the new york attorney general letitia james' assertion that her civil investigation into the former president's business has uncovered significant evidence suggesting fraud. the trump organization released a statement that read in part, quote, the only one misleading the public is letitia james. she defrauded new yorkers by basing her entire candidacy on a
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promise to get trump at all costs without having seen a shred of evidence. her allegations are baseless. there's also news tonight on the administration's latest effort to try to contain the omicron variant. the biden administration will make 400 million free n95 masks available to u.s. residents. shipments will begin this week. they will be available at drugstores and community health centers across the country. and with that let's bring in our lead off guests on this wednesday night. peter baker is the chief white house correspondent for "the new york times." garret haake our new nbc senior correspondent covering capitol hill, and former attorney joyce vance who spent several years as a federal prosecutor. she's now co-host of the podcast "sisters in law." peter baker, let's start with you. the president stood out there for a long time talking to reporters, but he was trying to make the case this was a reset, that there are things that have
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not been done that should be done. there were a lot of things he did do that didn't garner him the credit and recognition he would have liked. what did you make of it? >> well, look, the president came out today with two basic talking points he wanted to make. one, things in america are going better than you think, the economy is doing better, the people are focused on the progress on covid. he got two really big bills through infrastructure and stimulus. and the second talking point was when republicans criticized biden, if he'd stuck to those two talking points it would have been one thing. of course he didn't stick to those things and from there the press conference went off the rails. and you know it went off the rails when a white house has to put out a statement after the press conference clarifying or illuminating what the president
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said which is what they did -- that russia if they had a minor incursion wouldn't require the same retaliation if it been a major incursion. that immediately set alarm bells off through europe throughout the night and was that seen as an invitation in moskow to go ahead and try something short of a full-scale invasion. i think the other thing you saw with this president today was a desire to, you know, show that he is up to the job. but when you're sitting there trying to defend your competence or defend your stability you're on the defensive, and that's not where he wanted to be one year into his office. he said he didn't anticipate the republicans would be so unanimous in opposition against him, which makes you wonder why he promised that he could unify the country in the first place given that everyone else knew that a year ago when he took office. a lot of things at this press
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conference to chew on. i think they probably did not accomplish exactly what he wanted to do. >> we've got a lot of news tonight. that's one piece of it. the supreme court has rejected donald trump's efforts to prevent the national archives from handing over documents to the january 6th committee. now, we're not all 100% sure what these documents are. we have some reporting some of the documents have already started to flow, but tell us about the supreme court decision, what they did, what they said and what it means. >> it's an interesting decision. it's unusually short, just really a paragraph to the key holding which is that the court is declining to block the national archives from turning over documents that the january 6th committee has asked to receive. and these were, of course, materials from the trump presidency that normally would remain in the archives for a period of years before being discloseable. the court says it's important for the committee to have access
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to these so no privilege, but they rely on a ruling from the lower cower that this would be the outcome even if trump was still the president. so they make that ruling, and they decline to decide the question of whether or not a former president has the right and to what extent he has the right to assert an ability to block release by his successor. that sounds like a little bit of an inside baseball picking a legal point, but it's really not because we may see this issue come to the forefront, again, as various witnesses try to assert executive privilege or perhaps as there are more efforts to turn over papers from trump or maybe even joe biden down the road. >> garret haake, yet more news tonight. the united states has voted and failed to pass the two voting rights bills. then the senate voted on changing the filibuster rules. that failed on a 52-48 vote. 48 were democrats. the 52 were all republicans plus
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kyrsten sinema and joe manchin. what happens now? >> this has been a dispiriting week for senate democrats who knew late last week that this was probably the result they would be seeing when these votes came up. they decided to press ahead hoping to show party unity on the election reform bills themselves. you did not see that party unity on the defensive, the filibuster i suppose you could say. you saw it from republicans. you had bipartisan support for keeping the filibuster, that 60-vote threshold for ledge silation in place. this would prevent in theory what might have happened on january 6th, the idea the vice president can simply toss out votes he or she doesn't like and raise the standard for challenges to the electoral votes when they come in from the state. and it's possible it could include changes to protect how
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states count their votes, to prevent interference at the state level. for democrats this is not half a loaf. it's a slice of the electoral bread they were looking to get with their voting rights package. there's a bipartisan group of senators already working on it. we heard from president biden in this news conference today he thinks this is something that could get done. and now it's the only game in town with the defeat for those two bills rolled into one big package tonight on the senate floor. >> peter, i want to read to you what the president has said. he's released a statement in which he he said i'm profoundly disappointed the united states senate has failed to stand up for our democracy. i'm disappointed, but i am not deterred. my administration will never stop fighting to ensure that the heart and soul of our democracy, the right to vote is protected at all costs. we will continue to work with allies to advance necessary legislation to protect the right to vote. parse that for me, please,
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because everyone has been looking to the white house to say what exactly can you do to get this done. and so far it's been reliant on what we just saw go down in flames tonight. >> yeah, i think it was reliant on legislation they're not likely to get very far. i think the vote tonight and the president's speech last week and the statement you just read are to a certain extent meant to reassure the base he cares about these issues, they're important to him, and he understands they're important to him, too and it was worth in his mind highlighting the failure of republicans to go along even knowing this vote was going to go down. of course it also highlights the two democratic senators who refused to go along with it as well. i think, you know, again, it's a motivating issue at this point for a lot of democrats, what he can do substantively is a different question. there's not a lot of options a president has without legislation to intervene in elections in the states at this point. you heard him say something really interesting at the press conference tonight, one that may actually provide ammunition for
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the other side unintentionally, where he was asked whether he'd consider the elections this fall, mid-term elections to be legitimate even if the republican state legislatures pass some of these initiatives without congress weighing in. if he says it's not legitimate when he's concerned about the rules of the game we get to say the 2020 election wasn't legitimate because we didn't like the rules the democrats setback then. and it kind of takes a little of the high ground president biden has been on over the 2020 election and makes it a little more difficult to make that argument. we'll see if he continues to stick with the idea the 2022 mid-term elections might not be legitimate or not. but that's a pretty interesting moment in that press conference today. >> we've just received a statement from the vice president, kamala harris, on this which reads in part today senators voted to the american
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people will not forget this moment and neither will history. you also spoke to the chairman of the january 6th committee today, benny thompson. what did you learn in that conversation? >> it feels like a long time ago. there's been so much news today. >> several news thingies ago, yes. >> it really was. the chairman's trying to keep his options open. i was asking him mostly about the subpoenas that came out yesterday for the attorneys that had worked with then-president trump. what we've heard from those attorneys so far mainly giuliani and epstein they would rely on attorney-client privilege not to testify. thompson told me they were reviewing their options to compel them further beyond these subpoenas, and he thinks they're on sound footing to force that issue legally, to get around that potential privilege. you know, i tried to ask him
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whether he's concerned about the way the time that might take. time is the enemy of the january 6th committee as we look to the mid-terms and whatever might come after that. he is patient to a point, and this perhaps he didn't know it at the time but maybe he got a bit of backup from the supreme court acting as quickly as they did on the documents issue today. maybe they might get more favorable court rulings more quickly than a lot of us who cover them have been expecting. >> joyce, the idea some of these people are practicing lawyers is a bit cringe worthy sometimes. but i am curious, i've waited 24 hours to get your take on rudy giuliani, sydney powell and ellis being invited to provide testimony and evidence to the committee. >> the perpetrators of the big lie, right? i mean, this is the gang of lawyers who really got the big lie going in the press and gave it life in the media. it will be interesting to see if any of them cooperate.
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i think traditional thinking here suggests that they will not and that they will have to be subpoenaed. and of course they'll say, well, we were the president's lawyers. we were in a relationship with him that prevents us from testifying, but the privilege is not that expansive. and there's a lot of opportunity here for the committee to ask questions. for instance, if there was a third person in the room when they were with the president and they were giving advice, that can cut off the privilege. if they were talking independently to legislators or other people, no privilege there. this is pretty much a situation they'd have to come in to be compliant with subpoenas and assert to each question individually where there's attorney-client privilege and answer those questions that aren't covered by the privilege. of course as you say what they'll likely do here is try to delay, go to court, take other steps to avoid testimony. but one of the strong impacts of this ruling that we've seen from the supreme court today is that courts may move more quickly.
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some courts will be able to rely on today's ruling to push cases forward. and the supreme court has done something remarkable here. they have declined to hear an appeal from a sitting president. these are the kind of cases you would expect the court to take just because they're cases of first impression, new legal ground. the court here i'm really cutting this off in this very rapid three months to go through all three levels of courts in this country i think sends a strong message time may not be on the committee's side but the courts may be willing to move faster than normal. >> peter baker, the president made some indication that some of the build back better stuff they might be able to get done, others have recommended this in the past by slicing it up and putting it into pieces. you made a reference to that earlier. is there some sort of a road map for how that goes? >> yeah, i think you heard that road map today. and that is in some ways the biggest substantive news out of
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this press conference. remember a lot of its component parts are popular. and lot of americans would like some of the things he's talking about doing. they just didn't understand i think a lot of people that this big bill was about all those thing. all they heard was the reconciliation bill, the spending package rather than here's what we're actually going to do with that. what he talked about, of course, is pre-k education, for instance. that's something he thinks he could get some traction on, prescription drugs. two things he didn't think he could get through were an extension of the child tax credit and free college for all. he seems to not be giving up on those things. in effect he said he doesn't think he's going to get those through. certainly senator manchin supports some of the priorities. if he can get all 50 democrats onboard or someone individually, he could possibly get some through, recover some of his agenda and perhaps build some momem going into the spring which would obviously be
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something welcome at the white house. >> guys, thanks very much for joining us this evening. we appreciate you kicking off this evening for us. season 2 of the biden white house, i'm going to ask our political experts to game it out. and later, russia, if you're listening the president's blunt warning for vladimir putin. we'll talk to a former u.s. ambassador to russia to see if it's enough to stop an invasion of ukraine. "the 11th hour" just getting under way on a wednesday night. t with relapsing forms of ms...
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democrats who presumably understand the importance of the freedom to vote act and as i understand it will vote for the freedom to vote act are not prepared to change the rules so that that bill could actually become law. >> to no surprise it was senators kyrsten sinema and joe manchin who helped kill reform for voting rights. "the wall street journal" reporting today president biden has a new strategy to help resurrect talks with biden but comes with a fresh set of problems. quote, even if democrats are able to revive the talks and reach a deal with mr. manchin, all 50 senate democrats would have to agree with it and then also be approved by the house where democrats hold a narrow majority. progressive lawmakers in both chambers have resisted the idea of narrowing the package any
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further. with us tonight eugene robinson, and mark kinnen. welcome to you both this evening. mark, let's start with you. what do you think biden's options are right now? on some levels his path forward is narrow, but on other he has to deal with things that yesterday he could think about avoiding? >> well, he may not get a whole loaf, maybe not half a loaf but maybe a slice of bread out of joe manchin. he wanted to go to republican and he thought he could get ten republican votes to help on voting recognizes. well, he got zero. this is really three categories of voting rights broadly speaking when it comes to casting ballots, counting ballots and certifying ballots. i think what we're going to get down to now is really focusing on the certification of votes, which at the end of the day you could argue is the most important element of those three. obviously we want all three to be fair and free and not
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corrupted. but it's the certification where you can really overthrow a government which is what we almost saw happen on january 6th. we sue how close it could come, and we also saw how flawed the laws are that were written many, many decades ago that really need to be updated. so maybe that's where joe biden and joe manchin can come together. >> what's your sense of what can get achieved? one slice is better than no slices. is there some way in which they can get lots of slices out of a loaf of bread with manchin and sinema? >> well, look, manchin and sinema are onboard on voting rights, right? i mean they support the legislation. the problem is they don't support changing the filibuster rule in any way. and we've talked about this adin finitem over the last few months. we knew what was going to happen tonight and it happened.
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so we can't have that same fight again. the question is how you get past that 60-vote threshold in the senate. because you have to assume right now that there's no way you're going to get manchin and sinema to move on the filibuster. therefore, i don't see how substantial voting rights legislation gets through unless you get, i don't know, something from susan collins and mitt romney and lisa murkowski and then who were the other seven. i just don't see it. >> mark, let's talk about that for a second. in fact, i want to show you some video after the vote of what appears to be republican senators congratulating kyrsten sinema on her vote. coming up to her and shaking her hand. you can see it on the left side of your screen there. sinema is wearing a red dress. mark, is there no hope of a
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rational conversation with republicans about coming around on the protection of voter rights other than the electoral college act? >> i don't think so. i mean, you have to realize that the greatest fraud in american politics is the notion there's -- that there was systemic voting fraud in the last election or really any fraud at all after millions of dollars, countless lawsuits. there have been literally zero examples of election fraud. so but the problem is donald trump has proved that if you just repeat a lie enough it will be believed. and a dramatic example of that is three quarters of the republican party believe that the last election was fraudulent and that we have a fraudulent president or an illegitimate president. so when you think about the votes their representatives are being asked to cast on these issues, it's pretty obvious where they're voting because they think this federal voting rights act would just reinforce and make worse what they think
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happened or their voters think happened in the last election. >> i just don't understand how it is that 50 united states senators have fallen for that. i understand a lot of rank can file people might have, but this one remains a mystery to me. please stick around, gentlemen. i hear your point. coming up, year two of the biden administration kicks off in about half an hour. we'll get into the many challenges that are still ahead when "the 11th hour" continues. when "the 11th hour" continues here we go... remember, mom's a kayak denier,
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there's a lot we have to do. it's not going to be easy but i think we can get it done, but it's going to be painful for a lot of people in the meantime. that's why the single best way, the single best way to take the burden off middle class and working class folks is to pass the build back better. i don't think there's been much on any incoming president's plate that's been a bigger menu than the plate i've had. i'm not complaining. and the fact of the matter is we got an awful lot done, an awful lot done. and there's more to get done. >> while no one enjoys a food metaphor more than i do, that one did get a little messy toward the end. but the president made his point at today's news conference. he sees his first year in office as a success, but he recognizes there's a long way to go. the l.a. times took a similar
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view on its opinion page. one year into his presidency biden's accomplishments have been short changed. still with us now is eugene robinson is mark mckinnon. good evening again to you. welcome back to both of you. eugene, how do you think the president did in that press conference, and to that very specific point of we've actually done well but there's more to do, do you think he conveyed that well? >> i actually think he did. we all know repetition is key to getting a message through, and so i think president biden today did something he probably should have done a while ago and that he should do more -- do a lot more often in the future, and that is he stood up for two hours and talked and took questions from reporters and talked directly to the american people. he set the agenda. he wrote to -- and i think
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that's what he needs to do to take the initiative as he tries to get, you know, what he can of build back better through congress as he confronts potential international crises like russia and ukraine, as he deals with covid, as he tries to fight inflation. he does have a lot on his plate. but i think the first step is to take the initiative and to go out there and to talk to people directly a lot more. >> mark, let's play a little bit of what the president said a little later in that press conference. >> what is the trajectory of the country? is it moving in the right direction now? i don't know how we can say it's not. >> i don't know how we can say it's not. now, here's the thing, mark. most americans are saying that the country's not in the right trajectory, and recent polls show 68% of americans say things in the country are on the wrong tack track. i'm always curious about polls
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like this because one can say it's on the wrong track. we've got covid still. we've got, you know, inflation, but people do associate these things with the president. so how does he address that? >> a cup of things. i remember how john mccain used to say it's always dark just before it goes completely black. we've kind of gone completely black at this point, so i do think that there's really -- you can't go much lower, so i think there's a lot of potential upside in the next year including two particular issues. one is the diminishment of the covid resurgence, and in combination with that a continued uplift of the american economy, which i think is happening but people just don't recognize it because of covid. so i think those two things are going to happen on their own absent anything biden does. he had the press conference. i mean, there was a narrative
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about joe biden that, a, he hadn't had any press conferences, he was hiding and that was feeding the narrative about competence. just to stand up and hold an mvp sort of -- or a historically long press conference proved that he is capable of just simply doing what people expect the president to do which is stand in the pulpit and answer questions. >> eugene robinson, can joe biden continue with some of these successes particularly with some of the economic successes and tamp down covid, do all these things and yet still not give a particular base in the party, a progressive base what they need in terms of build back better or that base that says i thought you were going to solve voting problems? does he need to do those two things despite the fact he's got a pretty good economy and maybe covid is going to get better? >> well, look, it would be better for him if he could do those two things and progressives would certainly
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love him for it. look, what's possible is possible. voting rights does not look possible. and so that converged into an issue to run on in 2022. on build back better i think there are pieces of that he can get through. and not the child tax credit, not free community college but other pieces of -- that are quite important and will have a real impact on peoples lives. and give him new stuff to talk about in addition to what he's done over the past year. so, you know, i think that's the wheel we're playing on right now. >> eugene robinson and mark mckinnon, always a pleasure to talk to both of you. thank you for being with us tonight. coming up, the prediction that rattled the world. president biden saying russia probably will invade ukraine. a former u.s. ambassador to russia joins us when "the 11th hour" continues. ambassador to ambassador to russia joins us when "the 11th
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as we mentioned during his press conference president biden predicted that russia will invade ukraine. earlier today the secretary of state antony blinken was in kiev assuring officials there that the united states stands firmly by ukraine. blinken is still set to meet with russia's foreign minister on friday despite the lack of any breakthroughs in negotiations so far. nbc news chief foreign correspondent richard engel is in ukraine following this story for us tonight. >> reporter: even as u.s. officials warn russia now has enough troops in position to invade ukraine, president biden today appeared to suggest if russia does a partial incursion, the u.s. could live with it. >> russia will be held accountable if it invades, and it depends on what it does. it's one thing if it's a minor incursion and we end up having to fight about what to do and not do, et cetera. but if they actually do what
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they're capable of doing with the force amassed on the border, it is going to be a disaster for russia. >> reporter: president biden warned a significant russian invasion, a massive invasion would trigger devastating economic consequences. >> if they invade, they're going to pay. banks will not be able to deal in dollars. >> reporter: but even when pressed president biden repeated that he sees a difference between a small and big military incursion in ukraine and that he expects one. >> my guess is he will move in. he has to do something. >> reporter: here in ukraine there is only one area where russia could launch a small or in any way ambiguous military incursion. that is in the far reiss where pro-russian separatists already control territory. and tonight here in ukraine and most likely in russia officials are wondering if president biden just gave president putin a green light to launch a military
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operation in or around those enclaves. richard engel, nbc news, kiev. tonight the press secretary jen psaki, released a statement saying, quote, president biden has been clear with the russian president. if any russian military forces move across the ukrainian border, that's a renewed invasion, and it will be met with a swift, severe and united response from the united states and our allies, end quote. back with us tonight is michael mcfaul, former united states ambassador to russia and an msnbc international affairs analyst. his book is titled "from cold war to hot peace, an american ambassador in putin's russia." good to see you again this evening. first of all, do you think that the white house has sufficiently clarified what joe biden said in his statement, this business about a small invasion versus a large invasion? >> i haven't read everything they said. i think what jen psaki just said is right. from what i understand that is definitely official u.s. policy.
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i think what they're struggling with is a full out invasion where russian soldiers march to kiev is one response. but a more limited military invasion. notice i use the word invasion, might elicit a different response especially to try to keep our allies together so that that is a comprehensive economic response. and that'll be more difficult. but let's make no mistake. putin has several options. he can do all kinds of things in between. they can use artillery fire to attack ukrainian sites. they can use air attacks. one official close to the kremlin said a couple days ago, yeah, we've learn from you guy that's what we're going to do, just like you did in kosovo and libya, that's what we'll do here. and i think that is the -- how you respond to that is what the biden administration is wrestling with. >> i want to show our viewers a
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couple of maps. you don't need to see them because you can probably recite these in your sleep. but it's nato as it was in 1978, the countries that were nato members in 1978. and now let's see what they look like today. this is part of vladimir putin's argument that nato has come up against russia's borders. and as far as vladimir putin is concerned that weren't part of the deal. is there any legitimacy to that argument? >> no, i don't think there is. honestly, i don't. remember if you go back, if you can move your map back -- i love maps, by the way. >> we'll go back to the '78 map. yeah. >> there you go. you'll notice that's the former war saw pact. so nato was always on the borders of the warsaw pact alliance, the soviet alliance. the soviet union just collapsed, and all those countries in the middle, they were captive nations. they weren't allies of the soviet union. so when given the chance to choose, if you were hungary and
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you were invaded by the soviets in 1956 or you're czechoslovakia in '98 and you have a chance to enhance your security of course you'd want to join. and by the way, many of those countries that have joined have enhanced american national security not just nato security. let's be clear about that. when we were attacked on september 11th istonians deployed with us to go to afghanistan, otherwise a nato alliance. so i think that's important to remember. number two, i think there's a myth out there and i want to dispel it right now, that nato expansion for 30 years has always been this constraint and this problem in u.s.-russian relations. that's not true. it's gone up and down. sometimes it was an issue. sometimes it wasn't. i worked for five years in the obama administration. i was in every meeting that president obama was with the president from prime minister
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putin. i can't tell you one time when this issue was a major issue. and if you go back to the nato meeting from 2010 he was we're in a period of cooperation. what changed was not nato. what changed was what putin perceives as revolutions against him, right? georgia 2003, the orange revolution in ukraine 2004, and most recently another revolution in ukraine in 2014, which overthrew the regime that he supported. and that's when he he's reinvented this threat 06 the nato expansion threat. >> all right, we already squeezed as much value out of you as we deserve, ambassador. but we actually have another segment with you. stay with us. ambassador mcfaul has agreed to come back after the break. we're going to discuss president biden's threat of sanctions against russia and what impact that threat might have when "the 11th hour" continues. might havee 11th hour" continues
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as promised still with us is former united states ambassador to russia michael mcfaul. ambassador, i want to play something that lieutenant colonel alexander vindman said about u.s. allies in the region, very worried about what might happen. let's listen. >> we have very anxious allies along ukraine's western border. those allies are going to want some assurances that article 5 actually means something. we should be doing more. we should be doing more. positions troops in europe after an escalation, that is the wrong way to look at it. we should be doing things now. >> and i'll ask my director to put up that map of nato members today so that our viewers understand what we're talking about. give me an evaluation of what colonel vindman was saying. >> colonel vindman and i served in moskow together.
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i don't know if you knew that. >> i did not know that. >> not many people know that. i think he was right. if it were up to me i'd want to move our troops now, not later, not in response. just yesterday the ministry of foreign affairs said we have the right to move our troops in our country so nato should have the right to move our troops among our nato allies. what's good for russia should be good for us. that's not the biden strategy. the biden strategy is saving that move and they're saving sanctions, and they're saving more military assistance to ukraine in response because they want to have some response. and i understand that logic, too. recall they don't have good cards. they don't have good responses here. let's be clear, putin has the stronger cards, and their view is they need to have something to respond should there be a military invasion. >> so something was said today by the president that caught my attention as sort of an economics guy. joe biden said to russia if they
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invade, they're going to pay. their banks are not going toby able to deal in dollars, so there's a lot to kind of happen. what does that mean? is that something that has always been on the table, and would that have a meaningful effect on russia if they had some inability to use u.s. dollars to trade. >> that's a great observation you made because we actually don't know what the threats have been. as deputy secretary sherman did and secretary blinken is going to do it again, they have hinted at it. i think the president went a little farther today, and that made it sound to me like state owned banks are going to be sanctioned, and that has pretty big consequences for the russian economy without question. that has always been back in the debates about esicating sanctions back in 2014. the investment world always wanted to know is their bank going to be sanctioned or not because that implications for many investments inside the
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russianchy. >> ambassador, it's my pleasure to talk to you this evening. michael mcfaul is a former united states ambassador to russia. coming up, imagine trying to outlaw discussions that might make you feel uneasy. these days the cancel culture is coming from inside the gop, when "the 11th hour" continues. , when "the 11th hour" continues. psoriasis really messes with you. try. hope. fail. no one should suffer like that. i started cosentyx®. five years clear. real people with psoriasis
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you think about what mlk stood for he said he didn't want people judged on the color of their skin but on the content of their character. you listen to some of these people nowadays they don't talk about that. >> last thing before we go tonight. that was florida governor ron desantis talking to reporters just last month using the words of the reverend dr. martin luther king jr. of all people to speak against so-called critical race theory. desantis is pushing a bill to, quote, shield white people from discomfort over questions of discrimination in our nation's past in schools and during job training. an individual by virtue of his or her race or sex does not bear responsibility for actions committed in the past by other members of the same race or sex. an individual should not be made to feel discomfort, guilt,
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anguish or any other form of psychological distress on account of his or her race, end quote. now, once this individual freedom bill is passed florida's senate education committee passed it along a party line vote yesterday, the aclu of florida issued a statement calling the measure, quote, a blatant attempt to suppress speech. desantis and certain legislatures do not like adding that legislators should not interfere with a student or employee's right to receive an inclusive education just because certain aspects of our history make some people uncomfortable. democratic chevron jones is a florida state senator. >> we have to have uncomfortable conversations of our past. if our children don't understand where we come from, where do we plan ongoing? >> and our friends at the daily show shared their take on the republican's discomfort bill in a tweet today. still don't think climate change
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is real? check out all these snowflakes in florida. that is our broadcast on this wednesday night. with our thanks for being with us on behalf of all my colleagues at the networks of nbc news, good night. f nbc news, good night ,. i know this looks a little different, i am at my home studio. i am appearing at my home studio with no notice because -- this is not one of those times. nothing is really wrong. there is nothing serious going on. we just have a little bit of technical difficulty, something about the internet not working

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