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tv   Americas News HQ  FOX News  August 19, 2017 9:00am-11:00am PDT

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>> we'll continue the coverage. we'll close out. america is not a racist country, absolutely not. we have moved so far and will continue to keep moving forward. that is what we do as americans. thank you for watching. i will see you monday on the fox business. >> showdown in boston as conservative activists rally for free speech at boston common and thousands of counter-protesters marched toward them at this hour. we're live on the ground. >> fallout at the white house, a day after chief strategist steve bannon hits the door. and today, president trump thanking him. >> and more in barcelona to learn more about the terrorists behind two deadly vehicle attacks. ♪ and welcome to america's news headquarters from washington on a very busy saturday.
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i'm elizabeth prann, thank you for joining us. >> nice to be with you at home. a lot of news to get to i'm leland vittert. leland: just after noon in boston, a speech rally has officially begun at the boston common in the heart of that city. it's been put together by self-described conservative activists. meanwhile, a counter protest march is making its way up towards the boston common, that's made up of leftist groups like black lives matter, and hundreds of police are in the middle. our own steve her harrigan there as well as this develops on the streets of boston. how, steve. >> leland, these are the counter-protesters and this crowd goes back for about eight city blocks. we've heard some police estimates of the crowd as perhaps more than 15,000. we have seen the numbers grow throughout the morning and i've got to tell you, so far it has
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been organized and peaceful. loud and almost a festive air so far. we're seeing people carrying signs against white supremacy and against president trump, we've seen very few people with masks or helmets or any kind of threatening menacing behavior. so far we haven't seen any arrests either. the real question, what's going to happen next? about a mile down the road the counter-protesters will be in the same place as those conservative, free-speech protesters. the two groups are going to meet in boston common about a mile down the road sometime within the next hour, the goal for the police to keep two groups apart. they're using barricades, concrete and metal. city garbage trucks, that's the real test. the mayor said the city is well-prepared. they never wanted this to happen. if it gets out of control, they're going to shut it down. strict rules in effect. you're not going to see anybody with anything that can be used
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as weapons inside boston common, and there's been a message to people stay away from the area if possible. you can see from the crowd, it's a real mix. black lives matter, people against anti-semitism, men, women, children, older, younger, different races, and so far, a peaceful and enormous crowd here in boston. leland, back to you. leland: the aerial pictures coming from our affiliate in boston give you a sense how big that crowd is. steve harrigan on the ground. back to steve as news warrants, as we look at those pictures, liz, such a different scene than what what happened a week ago in charlottesville and we certainly hope it stays that way. elizabeth: yes, it's a very different scene. let's bring in ed davis, the former boston police commissioner and fox news contributor. thank you for joining us. can you he will it us what the -- can you tell us what the city did for this event. there are already about 15,000
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people out and about. >> this is a huge crowd. good afternoon to both of you. commissioner evans was on television yesterday and he talked about the various plans in place. they have 500 police officers, barricades, significant numbers of cameras in the area to hold people accountable and what they're doing right now is maintaining the barricade that's been put up. there's an area for the counter-protesters, there's an area for free speech zone for the people who want to talk, and then there's a bit of a buffer zone that is filled with police officers in between there. they've put together significant plans to deal with this crowd. elizabeth: you know, you and i were talking this time last weekend and in fact we saw a very different scene. obviously, the two different groups had collided at this point last weekend in charlottesville, virginia. i'm curious as to how you prevent that from happening when you have such a big crowd because although there are
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15,000 now and that's huge, we could see even more, so keeping those two groups separate, how are law enforcement going to be able to accomplish that? >> well, the first thing they're going to do is use the training that they've been filled in on and the tactics that they know very well, because they've managed a bunch of events like this, to keep those crowds separate. they have public platoons, officers, large numbers of officers if it's necessary in the event and to push crowds in one way or the other. they have quick response teams that are out there. the guys that you saw on bicycles are specialty trained to go into the fray if something happened inside that crowd. the amend responsibility is to keep the two groups separate and considering the numbers, the discrepancy in numbers here, tens of thousands on one side, a handful on the other, their job may be to escort those individuals away, if any trouble
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starts, just get them out of the area very quickly, so that the large crowd will not be able to get their hands on them. elizabeth: that was going to sort of have been my next question. we watched some of the violence unfold and criticism that perhaps law enforcement didn't act soon enough to charlottesville and i know there was some trepidation for law enforcement to enter into some of the altercations taking place. i suspect that we won't see that trepidation when it comes to law enforcement in boston? >> well, the great thing about the boston police department, they have an enormous amount of experience in this area. they managed, when i was there, the occupy movement. we've had seven sports victories that resulted in some rioting that occurred. the officers are well-trained and well-experienced in this area. you will see a much more forward-leaning police department here than what you saw in charlottesville and that's not to criticize the charlottesville police. elizabeth: right. >> there were a lot of tactical reasons they couldn't do what they could do.
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here it's well-planned in an open area and the police will not accept any violent behavior, they'll move quickly to stop it. elizabeth: my final question is sort of the elephant in the room. because on the heels of the attack in barcelona this week, you can't help, but be really concerned about outside sources coming in. has nothing to do with black lives matter or nothing do do with the free speech group, but perhaps terror. are they looking at the possibility on any open entry for a van to get through? this is on the mind of just about everyone right now. >> there's no question that's a great concern, especially with this crowd that's there right now. they have a significant amount of police resources that could intervene if anyone can anything like that. the great concern though today are people like the black block and the anarchists. they've come here all masked up and they've done that because they don't want to be held accountable for their behavior. there are special undercover
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teams watching those individuals to make sure they don't get violent. if they do, forces will descend upon them quickly. elizabeth: ed davis, we're thinking of the law enforcements officers and thank them for their service and hope today stays peaceful. we thank you for your time. >> thank you. elizabeth: leland. leland: the funeral wrapping up, police officers around the country honored lieutenant jake cowan who died in the fatal crash of a helicopter that had been monitoring violent pro it is-- protests last week in charlottesville. mountainers gathered at southside church in richard richmond virginia. and they paid tributes. >> today we go off the member of our family. dorothy and i are heart broken. it will never be the same when i step into this helicopter and
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not see jay on the right front seat with "cullen" on the back of his helmet. however, when i do get in that helicopter, i will think of jay and i'll think what a silent giant he was. leland: the funeral for the other trooper on board, trooper pilot bates was held yesterday. elizabeth: all right, back to politics, a man credited for helping build the strategy that put donald trump in the white house is now out of the white house. former chief strategist steve bannon is no longer with the trump administration, he's back at breitbart news, where he says he can quote, fight better. bannon was a lightning rod outside of the west wing and inside as well, said to be the center of clashes. what happened to the populous agenda that he campaigned on. rich, what can you tell us? >> yeah, good afternoon, liz.
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steve bannon, another high profile exit at the white house, will try to manufacture the policy from outside the west wing. the departure shortly after john kelly left the department of homeland security and took over as chief of staff at the white house and to reorganize it and appears he's doing so. the president tweeted this morning saying, quote, i want to thank steve bannon for the service, he came during my campaign run against crooked hillary clinton. thanks. and he's ousted and with the weekly standard he said, the trump presidency we fought for and won is over. we still have a huge movement and we will make something of this trump presidency, but that presidency is over. it will be something else and there will be all kinds of fights and good days and bad days, but that presidency is over. president trump now without his chief strategist is working,
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and the president tweeted that he's made some decisions, many decisions made on afghanistan. we've asked the white house for specifics on that and we've gotten no further clarity what this president might be talking about, what decisions have been made and the announcements will be coming when the time is appropriate and if the united states will commit more forces to afghanistan. this is also as the white house says, the president and first lady are not going to attend the annual kennedy center honors. in a statement, the white house press secretary says, the president and first lady decided not to participate in this year's activities, to allow the honorees to celebrate without any political distraction. each year the gala awards performers for their contributions to american culture. liz, back to you. elizabeth: rich edson with the latest. leland has more. leland: let's bring in a correspondent from bloomberg tv.
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kevin covered the entire trump campaign. incredible work, nice to see you back, good to have you. the quote from bannon to the weekly standard, that presidency is over. agree, disagree, needs more clarification? >> look, i think that there is no question, based off of everyone that i've spoken to, both inside the white house, outside of the white house. fans of steve bannon, critics of steve bannon, they agree he's still going to have a large role in shaping conservative politics for many years to come. this is someone who is-- >> he's going to shape conservative politics or shape the president's agenda? because they may be two different things. >> they're two very different things. in terms of the ideological framing of this, it's really going to become not tea party versus moderates, but nationalist versus globalist and particularly on the president's economic agenda, you're going to start to see some very different ideological differences between folks who align more with the
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steve bannon politics and other folks. leland: and probably nothing laid those processes more bare than the response to charlottesville. the video out of boston, the pictures of the rally, and we're keep monitoring these to see if they descend into violence of last week. how much does steve bannon's departure had to do with charlottesville? >> the reporting i've done, i can tell you that the president had really been looking at his inner staff and inner circle, saw a really back when chief of staff reince priebus was there, reviewing how effective his inner staff was at accomplishing his agenda. look, the president has said consistently they've added more than 1 million jobs since he has taken office, but in terms of the legislative agenda, in terms of getting cross health care reform, lowering taxes, tax reform, raising the debt limit, passing some type of government
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funding bill. this is going to be a very intense september and in terms of the legislative win, that's what the president is hungry for. leland: if you think about the president's voice on a number of issues, whether it be on charlottesville, whether it be about immigration, whether it be his speech at rnc, his inaugural, the american carnage speech. that was steve bannon's voice. how much of this is my inner circle is not working effectively. how much is this the president wants a different voice for himself? >> i think it's a little of both and i think that the president, you know, i spoke with several sources yesterday who argued, look, the president has wondered where are the conservatives who represented me early on in the campaign and worked with me, where have they gone essentially, why am i not seeing them in the white house. the president is headed to arizona early next week. i think you'll continue to hear much of the conservative tone that we've heard from him. at the end of the day, the
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president is the president and i think there has been, you know, perhaps the palace intrigue stories that we in the washington press corps of obsessed with. at the end of the day, the people at home think this is a washington person and they want lower taxes. leland: all of a sudden, as we hear steve bannon that he's going, quote, to war against president trump's enemies, conceivably those enemies could be democrats, those enemies could be fellow republicans. you think about ben, jeff flake, think about speaker ryan, majority leader mcconnell. how worried are those folks about barbarian bannon, as he's now called, on the loose? >> as we head into the 2018 med terms, we could be covering some interesting republican primaries and looking beyond to 2020, i think you could have some republican primaries for prominent senators, including like senator lindsey graham.
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if you're a republican and you're watching at home and you know, i think there's no question that the divide within the republican party in terms of where this is all headed, headed into mid terms, we're going to be balking about it for quite some time. really, again, it's nothing new. republicans and democrats have been fighting and it's like a dysfunctional family. leland: we haven't probably seen though, bringing this back to boston, we haven't seen these kinds of divides. >> i agree. leland: and divide in rhetoric. before we let you go. bannon's loyalties, is it to his belief, populous, nationalist, breitbart. or to the president? i'm asking what you think? >> i think na, my reporting has led me to conclusion that this is someone who is very much trying to accomplish his agenda, but i think, you know, when you look at these images, when you look at the divide right now in
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terms of many people are wondering what year is it as we're watching the images. leland: and we'll see how the day develops in boston. 12:16 in boston, a lot to come as the two groups meet at boston common, the boston common, the site of a lot of american history. kevin, thanks so much. liz. elizabeth: the search is underway for the man police say drove a van into a crowd in barcelona, killing 13 people on thursday, as you know. we're learning more about some the victims today. connor powell is live in barcelona with the latest. hi, connor. >> elizabeth, spanish authorities provided an update a few minutes ago saying they've identified now nine of the 14 people killed in two attacks, one in barcelona and one in the seaside town of cambrils. they're working to identify and notify the other five remaining
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families. authorities here are asking for some patience as they troy to-- try to do this and work with local embries. there's a huge array of nationalities, countries here impacted by the violence here. it's more than 30 countries of people who were both injured or killed, everything from spain to great britain, to italy, venezuela, pakistan, the u.s. obviously as well and china as well. so, it's a huge array of people, but as we have seen all day here along the promenade here in las ramblas. "i am not scared" has been the chant here. people have been hugging police officers, who were so valiant stopping the attacks from being much, much worse. there's a massive manhunt for one of the attackers, believed to be the only one of the 12 that authorities say is still alive or not currently in custody. 22-year-old yonis, is the one
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they say he drove down the promenade swerving back and forth and killing 13, injuries more than 100. police have not seen him for more than about 48 hours now since he fled that white van. there have been raids all over barcelona, the town where the 12 attackers are from as well. police are trying to track him down. now, one other thing to bring you up to speed on, there's still a seven-year-old boy who has been missing since the time of the attack. his mother was injured and he disappeared in the chaos after the attack. authorities are trying to track him down. the mother is a filipino-australian national in the hospital still and the family is still desperately trying to find him, elizabeth. elizabeth: all right, connor powell with the latest, thank you so much. so sad. keep it here on fox news all weekend long for the latest on the investigation into this week's terror attack. later this hour, we're going to speak to a terrorism expert
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about the attacks in spain and in finland. and be sure to tune into fox news sunday tomorrow. bill hemmer is sitting in for chris wallace. he's going to speak to ben ca carden for the foreign relations committee. check your times and channels. leland: the images of from boston, live pictures there on the ground, from the, quote, freeway speech rally, and then the counter protests. we'll go back to boston as news warrants and plus, our fair and balanced political panel breaking down the fallout from steve bannon's exit. and a deadly night for police officers. yet, another reminder of the dangers that they increasingly face every day, incidents up and down the eastern seaboard, the latest on that when we come back. you don't let anything keep you sidelined. that's why you drink ensure. with 9 grams of protein and 26 vitamins and minerals. for the strength and energy to get back to doing...
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>> all right, you're taking a live look at boston. this is a group of anywhere between 15,000 people, an early estimate from authorities there, marching towards boston common. they've been together now for the better of a half hour now. and this particular group is made up of all kinds of protesters, black lives matter, other groups marching forward.
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another organized protest, if i'm not mistaken, conservative groups marching together inside boston common. we spoke with edward davis, former boston police commissioner, what they're working toward keeping these two groups separate, of course, to prevent violence like we saw in virginia last week. predicted 15,000, but they were expecting up to 30 and our steve harrigan said these are growing. leland: both crowds are growing. we have reporters with both groups. if you look at the signs, many we can't show you on a family friendly television network. so far nobody has acted on the signs in terms of violence. you get the sentence they are a lot more prepared. they've learned the lessons of charlottesville and the groups cannot be allowed to mix and
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they've created the buffer zones. not only the bicycle police out, but police officers in the crowds undercover officers and then, also, large groups of riot police, ready to disperse these crowds in very different rule. if you look into the crowds, there's not one picture that i've seen of somebody carrying an automatic weapon around, slung over their shoulder. i have note seen flag poles that can be used as weapons. those are forbidden. and how many people you wonder have been searched for tear gas and mace used in violence. elizabeth: steve harrigan said he didn't see a lot of folks with masks. that could be seen as provocative, but he didn't -- he said a few with bandanas and a few with masks. leland: different pictures. elizabeth: different pictures from what we saw a week from today. leland: he will woo he-- we will keep monitoring in boston and back as news warrants. a number of officers there in
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harm's way as they are certainly around the country and one of the officers was killed and others wounded in three separate incidents between florida and pennsylvania. phil keating, with more. so far we don't think these are coordinated attacks, but a pretty tough friday night. >> yeah, as you indicated, a rough night for law enforcement involved in several shootings, all unconnected, apparently everyday violent crime, but in this case, all three cases the victims were wearing blue. this central florida in particular, devastatingly tragic as a kissimmee, florida police officer shot dead in the street after sunset last night. another officer whom he was with, also shot. he remains in the hospital in grave condition and the mr. is -- police chief said it does not look good for survival. officers baxter and howard were in a neighborhood known for drugs and crimes and saw three suspicious men on a corner and
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approached them. within seconds one of the men shot them at point blank range. they didn't have a chance to draw their weapons. all three men in custody. the last one arrested, a former marine recently hospitalized for psychiatric reasons, capital tu turd-- captured dramatically in a bar last night. >> they went hands on, tackled him to the ground and secured him, located a .9 millimeter handgun and .22 revolver on his person. >> even president trump responding via twitter, quote, my thoughts and prayers are with the kissimmee police and their loved ones. we are with you. two more cops were wounded another shooting in jacksonville, florida. those officers responding to a call about a suicidal man. when they arrived, that man barged outside shooting both cops with a high-powered rifle. one is in critical condition. the other in serious condition. they were able to shoot that suspect dead at the scene.
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and in pennsylvania, yesterday, two state troopers were trying to approach a burglary suspect when this that burglary suspect pulled out a handgun, shooting one trooper in the stomach and the other in the hand and they were able to shoot and kill that suspect as well. three unrelated incidents, but reminding everybody how dangerous that job is. >> well said, phil keating there in florida. thank you, as we continue to monitor boston. elizabeth: that's right, you're taking a live look at boston right now. as you know, 500 police officers are ready in that city where a free speech rally and a counter demonstration are drawing thousands of protesters. the city is trying to avoid the repeat of the violence that we saw last weekend in charlottesville. of course, we're going to update you on the scene in boston right after the break. stay with us. my mom's pain from
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and there is protesters and counter-protesters marching towards each other. the counter protests are chanting anti-nazi slogans, in this response to what is being called a free speech rally that many believe that a lot of white supremacists will show up at. we've not been able to confirm that any white supremacists have shown up so far. more than 500 police officers on the ground and more police officers on reserve, if you will, ready to be called in as necessary. so far though, things pretty peaceful. ed davis, former boston police commissioner will joining us by phone in just a minute. steve harrigan on the ground. steve, you have covered an awful lot of protests, an awful lot of situations like this, how does this feel at this point? is this crowd itching for a fight or is everybody happy to separate by the barricades?
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>> as you know things can change quickly and takes a few amount of people to change. it's not a crowd at all looking for a fight, is the impression, they're not carrying sticks or flags. they're holding their signs in their hands, because anything that could be used as a weapon has been banned from boston commons. t police have been using soft power. they've been on bicycles and don't have shields or helmets on. it's getting warmer out and it's a mix of people, ages, races and sexes and causes. we've heard anti-trump chants and anti-supremacist chants. and people itching for a fight we've seen maybe 20 or 30 people with masks and with helmets, but the overwhelming majority seem to be out for a peaceful afternoon march about one mile away from boston common where things could change this
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afternoon. leland: steve, we know you're having a tough time hearing. we'll speak up to you. you're with the counter-protesters. there is the free speech protesters, they call themselves a conservative movement. have you been able to eye any ever them? we've been looking at the free speech protesters. are these the same that were in charlottesville, the pro nazi, and others and they're brought to the forefront in charlottesville? >> who exactly is going to show up on the conservative side or extreme right said has been changing daily. it could be a different group and there could be overlap, depends what's going on. one difference has the attitude of boston officials. they've been clear not letting anyone threatening or with weapons in the boston common.
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and they're keeping these two groups separated. leland: steve harrigan on the ground with counter-protesters. as steve noted there are all sorts of groups within. stay with us, back to you as news warrants and as you move along with the group as they approach the boston common. the screen left is the counter-protesters, to make this sort of simple, the left, the lefties in this march, if you will. and then screen right is the more conservative groups who have already arrived at boston common and then the counter-protesters are the ones moving towards boston common. elizabeth: the extreme right, the group initially filed for the permits. leland: the permits. elizabeth: to be at this particular rally and the mayor said regardless what you think of a group you need to honor free speech. which is why they're hosting it. i want to bring in ed davis, former boston police commissioner, and we had him on the show not only this weekend, but last weekend as well.
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thank you for joining us. we've heard from our own steve harrigan in preparation for this event, as we see upwards of perhaps 15,000 people turning out, law enforcement officers said no sticks, nothing that can be used as a weapon. it was obviously banned. nothing threatening or menacing, but i want to talk to you a little about what law enforcement is prepared for because even steve said himself, you know, things can change very, very quickly and this is when the two groups will just start to converge. obviously, boston common is a huge, huge area, but that being said, when you have 15,000 if not more, there is a possibility where these two groups can come together at some point. >> right, there's no request that is of great concern, elizabeth. i'll tell you that we've learned over the years that projecting soft power the way to start this off. there's no need to have tacticically deployed officers with helmets and shields until someone starts to do something
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that requires that, but i can tell you they're in close proximity to this event and they will come in very quickly if that's necessary. if you'll notice, the bicycle officers are upfront. those bike officers are tactical. they've all been trained in crowd techniques, and in removing agitators and activists and you can see in the crowd that there are these black block people pushing their way back and forth through the crowd. they tend to be the agitators. those are the ones that we're going to be keeping an eye on. these are the anarchists looking for a fight. they're all masked up. so the preparations are in place and we've learned over the years to do it in a gradual and graduated way, as the need starts to present itself. elizabeth: when we talked to you earlier, boston is no stranger to large events, sporting events or big rallying groups that have met over the past couple of years.
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i want to ask you, what has boston done right and done wrong to handle this today as we see so far, it's 12:40 eastern time and like you mentioned, so far it's quite peaceful despite the fact there are thousands of people. >> right, well, the first thing is setting the tone. yesterday, the mayor and the police commissioner got on the television and they told people that they would not accept any weapons brought in here. so, in other places you've seen people showing up sticks, with bats, with, you know, really dangerous weapons. that was made clear at the outset. that would not be accepted. so all the signs are not on sticks, they're being carried. the whole tenor of the crowd is different because of the warnings and the planning that was done to keep those things out of the mix. so now you've got a situation where you might have fistfights, but you're not going to have assault and battery with a
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dangerous weapon. the injuring occurring will be much less serious. elizabeth: what we touched on as well, when we saw the violence break out in charlottesville, law enforcement wasn't quite sure exactly how to handle it. there was quite a bit of violence as we watched it live. i think in this case, you won't see the police hold back, not to mince words, but they simply won't tolerate it. >> right, they'll have sufficient resources there to move in and arrest the individuals who are committing crimes, but also push the crowd and the protests fairly quickly. again, a lot of this has to do with experience. boston has the largest number of college students per capita in the country, a lot of protests, a lot of sports victories brought us to the point where we know how to handle these things and it hasn't always been that way. we've made mistakes at the outset. so it's a tough business. elizabeth: well, ed. thank you for joining us, sir,
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ed davis, former boston police commissioner. we've watched the crowds grow here and the peaceful protests continue. thank you, we appreciate it. >> thank you, elizabeth. leland: peaceful so far. as steve harrigan noted the temperatures are rising in boston and we'll see if the tempers do as well. we'll take a look at the fate of the statue that sparked violent protests in charlottesville last week and really, charlottesville has put a spotlight on other confederate monuments around the country. what is the fate of them and whether this is really about a statue or something else when we come back.
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>> you are taking a live look at the protesters that we have been watching in boston. there is a group of about 15,000 counter-protesters marching toward boston common. that's what we're looking at right now. and there is a group inside of
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boston common, a self-described extreme right, we're seeing a lot of different factions of protesters arriving and converging on what is now a very peaceful protest in boston. what's the political fallout from this. we're looking at protests across the country and not the size of boston. that doesn't mean folks in washington are not watching. let's bring in our panel. radio and civil rights host is here. along with david, the founder of capital gig and serves as george w. bush address. i want your thoughts because we see, obviously, a very different picture. robert, i'll start with you. a very peaceful protest. that being said, we're hearing their message. the first estimate was 15,000 and we could expect up to 30,000. what is the message sent today? >> the extreme far right, white supremacist movement is not what america wants. it's shows the progressives in
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the country are energized and ready. i think it's a big message for 2018 for congressional republicans, there is energy on the progressive side. we're going to see a very exciting and a very transformative election cycle. and president trump's policies towards the white supremacist community, policies in the people he's had in his administration, is going to make it very difficult for g.o.p. republicans to hold onto the house. elizabeth: and we had a protester on the ground in my ear that the free speech, of those, the speakers, the organizers were on stage at the rally in boston common and they have now cleared the stage. so, they're still there and we're trying to figure out why. i want to sort of bring this to you, david, because we look at the two groups and we hear roberts that the progressives are energized. but we're seeing both sides energized. they have a message they want out. >> we live in had a country where we're free to speak and
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believe what we want and we may disagree with a lot of the hate speech and bigotry exemplified today. right now it's a peaceful protest and we pray it stays that way. elizabeth: when we see the groups together, it sort of has a ripple effect across the nation. do you see it conclude-- >> the people have to turn their protest into policy and turn this into legislative agendas. elizabeth: that's the hard part. you can get people out on a beautiful saturday afternoon any day of the week in any city. but turning it into policy and legislative action is totally different. >> the reason that dr. king has a holiday and other leaders don't. his ability to meet with johnson and turn the civil rights movement into what it is held today is significant. and when the protesters can turn
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these things into electoral issues used in the 2018 campaign. that's when it will make a difference. elizabeth: we'll be back after these short messages.
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>> all right, welcome back.
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we have our panel joining us as we look at the protests growing in boston. civil rights attorney is here. along with david of capital gig and he served as george w. bush's internet director. robert you brought up an interesting point, we look at the groups, thousands of people, but what really needs to happen is turn into action. that applies to both sides not just one. >> absolutely. and legislation is great, but laws are broken all the time. we need parents to sit down and with their children and talk about what it means to be an american. elizabeth: what do they talk about right now, looking at the crowds. >> they can talk about there are a lot of different viewpoints and stand up for what is right. when someone says something antithetical to our country, we need to speak out and demonstrate peacefully and have a debate and discussion, that's
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the point of america, it's for everyone regardless of race, gender, creed and religion. elizabeth: and as we watched the protests turn violent last weekend and the point of the conversation was lost. that being said, i think you think the point of the conversation this weekend is actually going to get across loud and clear because so far it's peaceful and yes, we're seeing signs and folks hold up signs with their messages, but we're not seeing fistfights or we're not seeing violence, that's the point of this type of an event over a weekend like this? >> exactly. i think that's important, particularly for democratic leadership is, you don't see people marching like this to talk about russia. no one is marching like this to talk about the paris accord. democratic party needs to focus on what the american people care about. if you see 15,000 people in the streets protesting, talk to them, get their issues on the board and into the party platform, talk about the issues and that's how you win, michigan, ohio, pennsylvania, and the rest. elizabeth: the republicans seem to be having the same conversation.
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they won in some of the states, but it was a surprise and they need to win again. >> this could be a distraction, there are a lot of issues in the country that needs to be addressed, but this debate has been won and lost already by those to support hate. the civil war was fought, and the right side won and so we need to move forward and think about what this means for the future. what can congress do today to-- >> the lawmakers need to be watching? >> absolutely need to be watching and sensitive to issues that effect americans every day a lot more. elizabeth: gentlemen, thank you very much. of course, we have much more at the top of the hour from boston. stay with us. that's why you drink ensure. with 9 grams of protein and 26 vitamins and minerals. for the strength and energy to get back to doing... ...what you love. ensure. always be you. ♪ music
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and we hear from the producer on the ground that there were some event organizers on stage there, and inside of boston common, they have since removed themselves from the stage and we're not sure if they're coming back from the stage. if i'm not mistaken, they're waiting for the groups to come together which is something that law enforcement has been waiting for. some have already been in fact, come together and police are making sure it's a peaceful
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event and so far it has been. leland: so far very different pictures from boston than what we saw a week ago in charlottesville. they're in the helicopter probably headed back to refuel. and that's one of our affiliate helicopters from boston. we don't have any control. we'll get pictures, we've got cameras and liberal groups. there are pictures of the counter-protesters making their way to boston common and they're making their way to where the conservative groups originally decided to hold the rallies in boston common already. our molly line on the ground. they're with some of the conservative protesters. molly, first of all, we're glad you're with us. second of all, give us a sense of the crowd. is this a neo-nazi supremacist
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group-- >> the free speech rally as they've doubled this. and-- (inaudible) actually very surprised that's what the city thought, that the rally was organized before charlottesville had happened of the the reason that city leaders thought it was a hate-involved group because the list of initial speakers did include some very controversial figures, including one figure that did speak at the rally in charlottesville. there were speakers that said voile and repulsive things and that's how the city leaders viewed this. this was a potential stereo that could turn out like charlottesville. some 500 law enforcement officers that showed up. and the free speech were numbered and it was hard to
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tell. they were on a band stand in the center of a series of barricades. around them, almost completely surrounding them was a counter protest in the thousands according to law enforcement. they're arriving and the bandstand to clear and the controversial speakers and came to listen to them, said their rally was ending political violence and the most controversial viewpoints. that group of people have left the bandstand. i was witness to one of those surrounded by the counter-protesters as they left the commons. the police officers were there, there was shoving and law enforcement pushing through the crowd as well. and throughout the day we've seen the counter protests that swelled here, a lot of times anti-kkk signs, anti-white supremacist signs that love conquers hate.
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and we've seen people arriving that had pro trump signs or flag or wearing a hat and surrounded by the counter protest crowd and making it very difficult for those to move through, perhaps that they were trying to get to the band stand or just to walk through, as a pro trump-- >> molly, give us a sense. hold on one second for us. trying to understand this. are you saying that sort of all of the free speech conservative folks are gone out of the commons or are they still-- some still hanging around? >> it's hard to tell. there are groups of people that are gathering and we've seen this throughout the day, actually, even as the protesters, the boston free speech rallies, people were arriving and rying -- trying to get to the commons, and people are gathering together and every person on the bandstand has left this crowd and a lot of passionate
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discussions going on and members, someone with a pro-trump hat having a discussion with someone who has a black lives matter pin on. we can't be sure that every single individual that was on the bandstand has left. we do know that some have tried to leave and are surrounded by the much larger crowd of protesters. i'm witnessing at the bottom of the hill, what appears to be a confrontational conversation at least, we've seen this as well, a lot of people screaming, we don't want you here, get out. when i was walking, trying to follow a group, who was the individual who was surrounded, someone for trump. the trump people on the bandstand the rest are out here. there are a lot of political divides, people passion that the where they stand on the political spectrum and a broad array in both groups. leland: we're watching video from earlier. they're around where you are and boston common, of the boston police on their bikes coming through and we talked to ed
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davis who said that the police are using sort of soft power there, but also, very critically, they had banned any type of weapon, flag poles, any type of brass knuckles, mace, all the things that caused so many problems in charlottesville. were you witnessing that as well? were they searching people to make sure they didn't have the weapons or was it an honor system? how did that work? >> there were-- when you enter the counter protest rally, there was a funnel you had to go through. those folks were searched. outside of that band stand and the surrounding barricades, there's a huge group of people. i can see people holding up signs on sticks, so, clearly signs on sticks, so, clearly i've seen the police pushing through this crowd, clearly surrounding some individuals while that group of individuals, the police, whoever they're
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with, surrounded by the counter-protest ralliers have gathered around. we've heard a lot of people chanting shame, shame, shame, is what they chant once they surround an individual that presumably is from the bandstand crowd proximate the boston free speech crowd, or from the other side of the political aisle. that's what -- when they exit and they join this counter-protest crowd, this is the sort of chanting that they hear. leland: all right. molly line there in the crowd. molly, as always, stay safe. as we've heard a lot of shouting and commotion in the back, it's difficult to get molly's video signal because there's so many people that are there in boston common using their cell phones, and that's how we use on the ground in these kinds of protests to transmit video, is via cell phones. molly, we're going to try to reestablish your camera and also stay close on the phone in case you see something that happens. these pictures from earlier. this, obviously, sort of brings
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back everyone thinking to what happened in charlottesville last week, how charlottesville started was the statue of robert e. lee there in the city park in charlottesville. these are now pictures coming back. wbz is the cbs affiliate in boston, live pictures from boston common. it looks empty there. elizabeth: right. leland: where that exact position relates to where molly line was, we don't know. you see a couple of police officers who look awfully lonely. these pictures do not look empty -- elizabeth: in the streets, obviously -- leland: yeah. these pictures look like riot police, and that would be the first we've seen of police officers in riot gear. elizabeth: we had seen such a large police presence, a lot of police on bikes patrolling in plain clothes up and down what ended up being a huge swath of people, at least 15,000. and he said any type of intimidating gear, perhaps
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appearing more aggressive, like you had just seen was something they were going to held off on. whether or not this means that skirmishes broke out, we don't know. molly line said she had seen quite a few heated discussions, but we don't have word from police about anything violent so far. obviously, you would expect to see at least the preparation. you know, we even heard from steve harrigan that it was getting warmer, and some of these folks have been out since 10:00 in the morning and have been walking upwards of two miles to get to boston common, so perhaps there were smaller skirmishes which is why we could be seeing a small escalation there. leland: robert rosen, attorney and author based in south carolina and was involved in similar protests to what we saw in charlotte over the confederate flag. robert, appreciate you being with us. give us your sense. you've watched both the groups in charlottesville and the groups here.
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are these angry people looking for a cause, or are they united around a cause that they think is worth fighting for? >> i think that people who came to charlottesville, and i went to the university of virginia. i think they were just there to cause a ruckus and create violence. they just -- i don't think, they don't know anything about robert e. lee, they don't care about the real history of the south. they're just, you know, a lot of thugs who wanted to start a fight with people. is i don't have too much sympathy for them. and i think having dragged the con confederate leaders and monuments into the debate, i think, is just tragic. because i think american history's something we all need to learn about and live with. and i think what's happened is just tragic really for the study of history. leland: as you watch these crowds in boston, a number of them with a lot of signs protesting people and chanting about the kkk and neo-nazis,
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that so far we haven't seen show up in boston. has this been a lightning rod and a rallying cry for something bigger? has this sparked something bigger as far as you could tell? >> well, i hope not. i think people are using the media and the 24/7 news coverage and facebook and everybody -- people's emotions are just running very, very high. and so, you know, when you talk about issues about racism and the confederacy and slavery, of course people are just, their emotions are just wound up. and, you know, in charleston we're having a civil conversation about what to do about our monuments and how history should be presented. and i think, i think people can calm down and talk rationally, i think these are all problems that could be solved. leland: rational conversation has been something that's been lacking at least in a lot of these situations for a while now. >> yeah. leland: how, how was it dealt with in the south? we'll sort of monitor boston,
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but right now we're seeing pictures of people, for lack of a better term, milling around on the streets of boston. we'll sort of move on on to this larger discussion that the president talked about and others have of these confederate statues whether it be lee in charlottesville, lee at appomattox, confederate generals in statue tear hall -- statuary hall in the center of the capitol. is there -- do you have a sense that things are being dealt with differently without a sense of history? what's your take on it? >> yeah. my take on it is i think people are in a very emotional moment. i think the president is very unpopular, and i think that this whole issue, you know, he's not articulated his position very well. i think the, you know, people are just so wound up that it's hard to really have a rational conversation with rational people. and, you know, i really think things need to calm down. i mean, in charleston we had a big debate some years ago about
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putting up a monument to denmark vizzi who led a slave rebellion -- leland: i want to just stop you, robert, and bring our viewers' attention to what appears to be happening on the screen. a helicopter is circling there, but it certainly appears as though the police have formed two distinct lines and are trying the separate those crowds. we're going to check in as we can with steve harrigan, molly line, our assets on the ground, to see if that's what's happening and, if so, why. as we continue to watch these pictures of the helicopter circle above boston. robert, last word from a historical perspective. is this reminiscent, these kinds of crowds and this kind of anger, is this reminiscent of the vietnam war era, the civil war era? is there any context you can put it in for usesome. >> i don't think the civil war. [laughter] i lived through the vietnam war, and i think people are very
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wound up. and i think there's a lot of agitation in the country. but hopefully, you know, the people who are the moderates can get together and some reason can prevail in this debate. leland: well, that would be a good hope and a good start. bring in elizabeth prann as we're watching from boston, and these crowds at least appear to be moving around in a a way that we haven't seen. elizabeth: right. leland: those rush of crowds going back and forth. and as molly line talked about, a lot of signs on sticks. and we were told that sticks and anything could be used as a weapon wasn't going to be allowed. elizabeth: right. leland: so have things changed? we'll have to see. elizabeth: robert, i do want to bring you in, i know the south carolina statehouse had a confederate flag flying up until about two years ago. bring us up to speed, because certainly, you know, you saw some pushback from that, you saw protests like that, and i want to get the end result in that conflict and what has come out
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after. >> well, the confederate flag has been used as a symbol by the kkk and racists for many years, i mean, since the 1940s. and it's always been something that most white moderates in the south and black folks have wanted taken down. so we did take the flag down, and that was a good thing. the monuments are a little different. i mean, the minnesota -- the monuments are part of the physical history in our city. and the mayor in charleston has put people together, black folks and white folks, to talk sensibly about monuments both the african-americans and to, and white people who fought in the civil war. so, you know, we're working toward a reconciliation. we're working toward adding monuments the african-americans, and we're working toward solving these problems. elizabeth: well, when you say you're working towards that, what's the balance between preserving history even if it's reminiscent of a dark chapter?
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>> well, i think what we're going to do in charleston, what i hope we're going to do, is we're going to put up signage and explain who john c. calhoun was, for example. that's the big issue in charleston. calhoun was vice president of the united states, he was secretary of war, he's a major figure in american history. but on the other hand, he was one of the big promoters of slavery. he called slavery a positive good. he did a lot of bad things. so we need some balance. we need to tell that story. in charleston we've also erected monuments to african-american heroes. so to us, the way we're feeling is let's tell both stories, let's tell everyone's story, and let's not erase history, but let's balance history and let's tell all versions of it. that's where we're headed, i hope. elizabeth: all right. robert rosen, thank you so much for joining us with perspective from things you've learned in the past. a conversation that is happening in cities across the united states, so we appreciate it, sir. >> thank you. elizabeth: and stay with us.
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we are still covering the rival protests many boston. this is boston common now. there are thousands of people who have showed up to what is so far a peaceful afternoon. of course, we're going to have more news from those on the ground right after the break. ♪ thy. so i feed jake purina cat chow naturals indoor, a nutritious formula with no artificial flavors. made specifically for indoor cats. purina cat chow. nutrition to build better lives. g new cars. you're smart. you already knew that. but it's also great for finding the perfect used car. you'll see what a fair price is, and you can connect with a truecar certified dealer. now you're even smarter. this is truecar.
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leland: fox news alert as we continue to watch the protests in boston. these pictures from earlier, and you can see the size of the crowds there. they're estimated well above 10,000. it's stretched for eight city blocks. now live pictures coming in, and you can see things have taken a little bit different tone. they've sort of formed up, the protesters have, in lines, and you can see the police in their bright yellow jackets. they are on the streets around boston common. earlier we had seen some police out in there riot gear and if in their tactical gear beginning to form up. whether or not that was precautionary or because something happened, we don't know. i 1:20 in the afternoon, new a few hours into this -- now a few hours into this protest and counter-protest in boston of a huge number of different groups on both sides angry about different things. we will keep watching this as hinges develop in boston --
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things develop in boston. we've got crews both on the ground and, obviously, aerial pictures from wfxt in boston, our affiliate. elizabeth: right. and, of course, we're going to continue following the protests, but we also want to talk about another major story in the headlines. as you know, reaction has been swift following news steve bannon is out as white house chief strategist. the move comes exactly one year after bannon joined the trump team in 2016 on the campaign. garrett tenney has the story and the latest fallout. it was a big announcement this week in washington. >> reporter: it was, and there was a lot of concern after this announcement came from conservatives who are concerned about the departure of steve bannon. in bannon, they saw someone who shared president trump's populist, nationalist world view, and they felt like they had an additional ally who would push for the changes the president campaigned on. with his departure, many conservative groups are concerned the president will now be influenced towards more
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moderate positions on issues such as trade and immigration. yesterday a group of 19 conservative groups wrote the president saying in part, it is important that those who have been your staunchest supporters know they are not being drowned out by the swamp which seeks to engulf the white house. steve bonn northern and -- bannon and kellyanne conway provide support. bannon himself told "the weekly standard" that the influence of moderate republicans both in the white house and in congress is impeding the president from implementing the agenda he ran to on to, saying the path forward on things like economic nationalism and immigration and his ability to kind of move freely. i just think his ability to get anything done particularly the bigger, broader things that we fought for is just going to be that much harder. and now that bannon has returned to breitbart news, his allies say he will be able to do more to pressure republicans to back the president. >> i think steve is going to be
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now a major voice from the outside really with taking the handcuffs off that really, you know, kind of bound him inside the white house and doesn't allow him -- didn't allow him to work as he would like to when you are in the confines of a federal job. >> reporter: and bannon told several reporters yesterday he has more weapons at his disposal outside of the administration than he did inside. it'll be interesting to see how it plays out, especially on capitol hill as they have a lot of big issues. elizabeth: yeah, there's going to be a ripple effect. we'll see. garrett tenney, appreciate it. let's bring in our next guest to shed some light, rahim kassam is the editor-in-chief of breitbart london and the author of a new book, "no-go zones." rahim, thank you so much for joining us, i appreciate it, sir. i know you've been on the network quite a few times since the news broke.
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when's the last time to you spoke with many bannon? >> earlier today. elizabeth: what did he say, sirsome. >> he's pleased to be back. he's very excited what he can do. to paraphrase him, getting his hands back on his weapons. you know, let's not forget that the web site was instrumental in pushing the economic nationalist agenda that president trump won on. this is something that donald trump as a candidate and a citizen had talked about for a great very many years, and now he -- then he had a media ally and somebody who had a great public voice and a big, big audience in steven k. bannon. so i think what david bossie just said to you guys is correct. i think it gives him now a little bit more freedom to operate. he has a lot more allies on the outside than did on the inside. but let's not, you know, twist this into something it isn't as other networks are trying to do -- elizabeth: well, that's what i was going to ask you. you have, certainly, a lot of speculation and there's are so much attention on the timing of
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steve bannon's interview with "the american prospect." and you have theories that this was him laying out his differences. that when you say he's getting his hands on his weapons, that he's not on the same team as the president. what do you say to those critics and those reports and that speculation? >> you know, honestly, they don't know what they're talking about. president trump and steve bannon are on the same page on these issues. it's the other people around not just in the white house, but also on capitol hill that have been attempting to stifle the economic nationalist voices that have been attempting to stymy that agenda. and that's why, by the way, it should be relatively obvious. there are reasons why we didn't get the health care reform as quickly as we should have got it, tax reform still up in the air, where is the border wall. people want to know these things. you know, the fact is these things aren't being stopped by people like steven k. bannon, they're being hindered by the
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opposite crowd. and my concern is that, actually, you have a white house now that looks more like a george w. bush white house, probably even a little more like an obama white house would have looked like. they're talking about more troops on the ground in afghanistan already. we've heard that coming out the last few days, than what it was elected to be. the american people spoke, and they wanted this economic nationalist agenda. and now i think some people are afraid their not going to -- they're not going to get it. elizabeth: well, that really brings me to my next question because you look at the white house, and i want to ask you about the long-run ideological effect inside the white house. you talk about steve bannon representing economic nationalists. certainly it's no secret there were different factions inside the west wig. you have big business conservatives, all of them influencing the president, and are you concerned that steve bannon is out of the west wing that his influence has really been stifled? >> well, look, i'm no trekkie,
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but somebody brought to my attention earlier today the "star wars" movie where captain james t. kirk has to stop from being an admiral and go back and captain the uss enterprise in order to defeat a big monster in the sky. well, this is a big monster, the swamp monster n washington d.c. and i think admiral bannon is going back to command the uss breitbart. i think it's not so much that people need to be that concerned because he's got a big voice, and he'll still be able to significantly impact where the policy agenda and the narratives go. i think on a day-to-day basis what i'd say is that president trump will probably miss his inputs there. i don't know if they're going to continue speaking. i certainly would hope that they would continue speaking. but i think the west wing will miss bannon. i think bannon himself will really, really enjoy being back at breitbart. elizabeth: sir, thank you for joining us as we look at the corner of your screen. we're watching, obviously, the breaking news out of boston, but we wanted to fit in this.
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thank you so much. leland, i know you have more. leland: yeah. interesting intersections between the response by the white house this week and some of the protests and feelings being aired here, especially as they relate to mr. bannon and his voice. live pictures now wfxt just outside boston common as there are huge crowds in the streets, but so far these crowds have been peaceful. this just one week after charlottesville. clearly very different images than what we saw in charlottesville. we're going to get reaction from the heartland, what do folks in iowa and missouri and oklahoma think about all these guys in the streets back east when we come back. ♪ ♪ n you and life's beautiful moments. flonase outperforms the #1 non-drowsy allergy pill. it helps block 6 key inflammatory substances that cause symptoms. pills block one and 6 is greater than 1. flonase changes everything.
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leland: live pictures pack to boston, ad you can see the police lines have formed up in boston, now 1:30 eastern time on a hot day
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there, a hot summer saturday. and this is the first time really we're seeing the police in riot gear forming up. and hen you see the bicycle -- and then you see the bicycle police stepping back, the fellows in the fluorescent yellow jackets. coming now from the boston police department, the free speech rally -- which was the conservative groups -- is officially over. demonstrators have left the commons. compare that to what we're seeing on the screen. there were also tens of thousands or at least upwards of 10,000 of counter-demonstrators to the free speech rally who have come out, and at times like this sometimes these labels get a little confused in terms of what everybody wants. suffice it to say, there were a lot more people who were counter-demonstrators than there were originally demonstrators. and with that, we bring many morning show host from cedar rapids, iowa, on the big 600
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wmt, doug wagner. doug, we've had sort of a week to digest what happened in charlottesville, and now get ready for boston and now boston's happened. how is playing with your listeners? when they're calling up, are they angry about these protests? are they angry at antifa and those groups, black lives matter, that seem to have used this as an opportunity to sort of further their cause somewhat's the pulse of the heartland? >> well, first of all, thanks for having me on. i think that people are upset because of the concept of white nationalists and the protesting that they're doing. they're kind of embarrassed about that. but because it is the heartland, because we are here in iowa, you really do have a very big mixture of ideas. for example, down in iowa city, the university of iowa, they are probably more antifa, they are probably very much counter-protesting. whereas if you go to some of the more rural areas, they won't say a lot. they won't. what they'll do, i was out here
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this last weekend talking with some people, and their opinion is that they're going to be like they were before. they're going to be quiet, they're going to go about their business, and they're going to let the media do whatever they're going to do because as you saw even if the election of donald trump, that group of people, a quiet trump supporter sort of underplayed in the polls. and i think you're seeing this now again. people are keeping quiet, keeping their heads down. leland: what is the view of how this is becoming such a political story vis-a-vis the president? we spent an entire week talking about basically can we condemn nazis and at the same time say violence from groups like antifa is bad rather than solving so many of the problems that the president and other elected officials were sent to washington to solve? is there anger? has that started to creep up yet of, hey, can't we just move on from all of this and deal with
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jobs and health care? >> yeah, there is. i think there's anger on both sides. part of it is, i think you referenced the antifa, the idea is it okay to punch a nazi in the face day. isn't that like any day mow? you hear them talking about that. but then on the other hand to, you hear people that are very reasonable, hear people who have been very moral individuals i guess if you want to call them conservative christians, they support donald trump despite all of his flaws. and most of all it's because they see him wanting to move forward with an agenda. however, they wish he would stop with the twitter machine, because they think that's not helping at all, and it's not doing anything to help his people and especially his new chief of staff, retired general john kelly. leland: it's worth pointing out, doug, it appears as though the police riot lines are moving a little bit there in boston, and sometimes that's what they do as the police try to grab some of the agitators in this crowd. a lot of times they have undercover officers inside these
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crowds identifying exactly the people doug was talking about -- elizabeth: we're hearing from some of our producers on the ground, as you mentioned that some of the original free speech self-described conservatives that were on stage that have now been removed, they're removed themselves off the stage. law enforcement officers are actually trying to put them on wagons and remove them from that scene. whether or not that's because of the sheer number of counter-protesters, they obviously are trying to prevent any violence, we're working to get our reporter on the phone, as you can imagine. it's fairly hard to get a signal out at this time. that's sort of the word that we're getting. and when we spoke with ed davis earlier, law enforcement was prepared to do anything possible to prevent violence, whether or not that was for the riot gear to come out, and we've seen these lines while you were talking to doug, we saw the riot, the law enforcement riot gear physically, which they are now, physically pushing people back which is where you start to see it get a little bit more tense. but they'll do anything they need to do to prevent -- leland: and when you look at
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these crowds, i don't know if doug has these images in front of him, but this some ways these -- in some ways these, as we heard from steve harrigan, the antifa and the sort of angry, violent black lives matter groups, it doesn't appear as if the police are trying to protect any protesters. it seems as though the protesters have now turned on the police x. you saw that guy out in front begin to taunt some of the police. and now there's this pushing and shoving between groups and police officers not over any other protesters. this is about the police, and you can see them now taking, beginning to take people into custody this. this is a very different police response than what we saw -- >> than charlottesville. leland: and also doug makes a good point, that this is a very different police response than what we saw in charlottesville. elizabeth: right. leland: there was not a lot of leash given to these protesters. >> the police made it very clear in charlottesville, they said if
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we were to go in and do anything at this point, it would have turned out very much more negatively. maybe it's the -- i don't know if it's manpower, but they were allowed. they were two to one over the white nationalists, the antifa, the counter-protesters were. i can imagine it's only larger in boston, massachusetts and in this case it sounds as if almost the police are taking the isn't to take care of the people who were doing the free speech protests, and that really cannot make the people happy who were the counter-protesters. elizabeth: right. >> now, i want to focus on something else real quick here. you take a look at what "the new york times" did, they ran an op-ed from somebody the other day who said, aclu, why are you defending white nationalists? you should not be defending their freedom of speech. in the heartland, that really goes sour. you see people who are very quiet, very moral, very dignified all of a sudden getting angry because if you don't agree with the progressive left, then you have become evil
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in their eyes. and that's, i think that's really the most frustrating thing for people who are in the flyover states, the midwest states, specifically when they see what's happening out on the east coast, new york, boston or even on the west coast as well. elizabeth: and i want to ask you, doug, because you talked about the people coming out, and initially when we heard the news of charlottesville, of course, it was over the proposed removal of the robert e. lee statue. but when our reporters on the ground, doug mckelway, would talk to the protesters, everybody was there for a different cause. and i'm sort of curious the ripping effect when we do have these protests with five or six different themes, and now we see people pushing back against the police. leland: from from my experience being in these crowds, these are sort of anti-police agitators. there's no -- they don't seem to be everybodying any other -- serving any other purpose other than just taking on the police. elizabeth: that's why i wanted to bring in doug because of the ripple effect of that. there's not a clear and concise
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message that is coming out of a weekend like this, how does that impact any potential progress when there isn't a coercive message? >> i think it depends on how the media outlet portrays it, because right now you're calling it as it is, i'd say based on what i'm hearing you say and based on what i know on the ground over in boston, massachusetts, is that the group that is in there, there are, like you said, a whole menagerie of groups that are represented. but there are some people who sprinkle themselves in there to who just want to raise cain, and that's all they want to do. and the other people maybe they're embarrassed, but maybe they get sucked into it as well, and the violence goes that way. that's why when we start taking a look at this, even when donald trump was in cedar rapids, he filled up the center, 8500 people. but some media outlets made it look as if there were thousands of them, and that's the difficulty. you've got people who just
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want -- let's move on with getting health care fixed, let's move on with getting tax reform done, let's move on with getting the budget back down to where it needs to be, and let's start concentrating on things that are really critical for our nation rather than who's screaming what on twitter and what monuments are up. because in iowa they have a single monument, and it's not even really a monument, to iowa's only confederate general, simon conway -- a friend of mine who works at who in des moines -- he actually had information from their private facebook group that they're looking to go and go after that monument and rip it from where it is. and they're trying to get -- leland: doug, i just want to come back to what we're seeing on the screen which is a group of a couple of dozen riot police are trying to push back this group based on at least sort of the looks of things, we've heard the free speech, the conservative free speech rally is over, is these would most likely be counter-protesters judging from their signs who are
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being pushed back down street and sort of taking on police. and you bring up an important point. is the national media giving a fewage today taters -- agitators who are willing to get in the face of the police and yell and scream at them, are we giving them too much air time? and, thus, sort of distracting the national conversation from the important issues you brought up of health care and tax reform, of the debt ceiling as boring as this is, jobs, energy policy? >> no, and i think that for what we're looking at here in iowa, in the midwest states, the most critical things is, fine, you have freedom of speech -- leland: doug, i'm going to stop you for a second because we've established connection with molly line down there on the ground. molly, tell us what's happening. we have an aerial view, but we can't tell what's going on on ground. >> reporter: hi, leland, i
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hope you guys can hear me. we've heard a number of sirens, a lot of sirens, so we rushed over here to get some idea of what's going on. we were told by multiple witnesses that the free speech rally crowd had been brought out on this side of the commons and had been taken into the streets, put into wagons by the police that had helped them secure safety getting off of the common and that now they're trying to make their way through boston. they've gotten just a little bit past the corner of boyleston and fremont where a huge crowd of counter-protesters had initially been blocking -- maybe even more clear from my view from the street -- they're trying to make their way through boston and safely get these boston rally free speech folks safely through this much, much larger counter-protest on the streets. that that's what witnesses described. i can barely see the top of an ambulance rounding the corner, or a wagon rounding the corner as they move to get these folks
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safely out of this part of boston. it's unclear where those free speech rally folks will be taken, and right now the streets are very much filled with these counter-protest members watching as the police walk through. leland? elizabeth: molly, it's elizabeth. i have a quick question, and it may be too early for the answer, but i'm wondering if law enforcement has given you any indication of what the reason was to bring them out of boston common and what was sort of that moment where they made the decision? was it because they were fearful of simply the sheer amount of numbers that were heading toward the same location? did they fear for their safety? what made them make that decision? >> reporter: well, i don't have anything specific from the boston police regarding exactly why they did it in that exact moment. we do know they were prepared for all instances. this is a city that knows how the hand big crowds, they handle the boston marathon, huge sports victories, they're used to moving large crowds and they
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said they would be prepared for a variety of scenarios. they did say that while there would be a soft presence, essentially, a lot of police officers but that you would not see the more hardened police officers, the riot type of gear unless it was needed. so they apparently believed that the free speech rally folks needed safe passage up onto the streets -- leland: hey, molly -- >> reporter: -- and they provided that to get these folks through and around the corner. leland: molly, we've seen a stable uptick -- substantial uptick in the police presence, and we're sort of mixing in some pictures from before, and evidently we've lost the live feed of that standoff between the riot police and some of the counter-protesters, if you will. were you there, molly, for any of these arrests as the riot police were trying to push the protesters down the street? >> reporter: no. we were actually very close to that though. there are a number of witnesses that have been standing up higher on certain barricades, and they have described a few
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people being taken into custody. i can say i did witness several people that had tried to leave presumably from the free speech rally side of things being surrounded by counter-protesters. one individual saying i'm just trying to get home, he was covered in glitter, pushing through surrounded by police that were trying to help him get off of the commons. i saw at least two instances of that where people were screaming all sorts of wild things that can't be repeated on television while that individual was trying to leave the common. be there are people that were saying hands up, don't shoot just a little further down where the police are working to get through the crowd. we saw more police officers, crews coming through on motorcycles to help to to clear crowd. and right now we're witnessing a group of police carrying batons now into the streets just off the side of the common and a row of motorcycle officers cruising up in the opposite direction. so it's pretty clear they're taking in this very seriously, concerned about any escalation
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in the crowd. we know there has been a couple of avests, and -- arrests, and we've seen a lot of shoving, a lot of high tension. elizabeth? leland? elizabeth: molly, we were looking at live pictures when leland mentioned some of the law enforcement in riot gear were physically pushing people back, that was close to the statehouse. and i know that you mentioned that there was, obviously, a difference in the side crowds and that the law enforcement was very concerned about a quick escalation. i want to just get your peopling on the tone of the -- your feeling on the tone of the afternoon. you said initially it seemed fairly peacefully, and then there were some skirmishes. i want to get your take on how it's panned out, how law enforcement has handled it probably through the better part of four or five hours that we've been watching the boston common. >> reporter: for the large part, this was an absolutely enormous crowd, tens of thousands, that ended up ultimately gathering on the boston common. and for the most part, the vast number of the crowd was peaceful and wanted to be peaceful.
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there were groups of people that when they saw something that led them to believe an individual might be of a different political ideology, for instance, someone wearing a trump banner, a great number of the counter-protest crowd would gather around that individual, very much outnumbering and a tremendous amount of screaming would ensue. sometimes a police officer would be over break up that crowd. i also saw among the counter-protest ors groups of veterans, older veterans that were moving in when they saw that type of tension beginning to unfold, getting in there and saying this is peaceful, this is peaceful, back it up, back it up and actually protecting people that they felt needed protection to move safely through the much larger counter-protest crowd, people that perhaps were trying to get to the boston free speech rally. leland: molly, there's those folks who are there to diffuse tensions, and you rightly point out there's some people who show up at these events and allow cooler heads to prevail. have you also seen the other
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side that we've seen in so many of these cases of the antifa, of the sort of violent black lives matter folks, the anarchists, the anti-cop folks who are just there to cause trouble? are they intermixed in that crowd as well? >> reporter: we have seen a lot of people that are wearing masks, that are hiding their faces. there was a group that arrived very early on, more than an hour before the boston free speech rally was slated to begin, entirely dressed in black and holding an anti-fascist sign. i did try to speak with them. i can't repeat what they said other than they said they were against fascists. so there are elements of that in the crowd. i didn't see that particular group do anything violent or throw anything or push anyone, but they were here moving around through the crowd and getting a lot of media attention, folks following them and taking a lot of pictures. but i didn't actually see them being violent. elizabeth: molly, stand by if you can. we're going to be following the developments. in the meantime, doug joins us
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now in studio, the author and historian of game of thorns. i want to get your reaction. you've obviously seen what's taken place over the haas couple weekends -- the last couple weekends. obviously, much different than what we saw in charlottesville. that being said, we're hearing the voices of thousands of people, and i want to get your take on the protests this afternoon. >> yeah. elizabeth, my feeling is that many of the great emancipators of the 18th century, 19th century, 17th century would not be politically correct by today's standard. and that's too bad because if society didn't take those initial early steps towards liberty and freedom, we wouldn't have it. there'd be no barack obama without george washington. elizabeth: right. >> and abraham lincoln, for example, by today's standards when he signed the emancipation proclamation, he left one million slaves in bondage. and washington had slaves.
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but those initial steps taken by washington and jefferson and others, they wanted washington to be a king. he said, no, he wasn't going to be a king. leland: as this is happening, we often know the president spends his weekends -- he's now in bedminster up in new jersey still at his golf club, but he's been tweeting, and he just tweeted out this: steve bannon will be a tough and smart new voice at breitbart news, maybe even better than before. fake news needs the competition. and if you watch the more conservative web sites during situations like this of what's happening in boston, they will point out that a huge number of these groups are sort of paid protesters and/or agitators who have come out and picked fights with the police. we saw some video of that earlier. doug, historical perspective for us. have we ever seen a time in america where these sort of very small but very angry groups take over the national conversation
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in the way that black lives matter and antifa seem to have been able to do lately? >> we've seen it in 1968, 140 cities in america, neighborhoods were burnt to the ground, tanks on the streets right here in washington d.c. so we've seen it before. leland: right outside the statehouse there in boston you've got one of the s.w.a.t. vehicles from the boston police or one of the other agencies that look an awful lot like tanks. >> the tragedy is there's a little bit of a tinge of red guard in this. the red guard, the mayo red guard, they wanted to purify things in china, and they went into the streets, the mobs went into the streets and yanked people out of automobiles and whipped them because they were stopping. they wanted them to go on red and stop on green because red was the color of the revolution. and they went into homes and killed pet cats and pet birds because they were consuming grain, and people were staiving. so when the mob -- starving. so when the mob takes over, the
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reason there's so many robert e. lee statues all over south is he was the one guy who was a moderating force. he ran schools for black children to teach him -- teach them how to read out of his mansion, which was illegal are. his wife and mother smuggled slaves out of the confederacy to liberia. he tried to bring healing when the war was over. so that's why there was this proliferation of all these statues. in fact, for 35 years nancy pelosi has walked by a statue of robert e. lee in the rotunda that was put there by democratic lawmen, a democratic president, lyndon johnson, a democratic senate, a democratic house voted to make the robert e. lee dorm at west point because he was one pirg they could agree on. -- figure they could agree on. elizabeth: my question is when does the conversation change to we need to remember these chapters in our history that are dark as opposed to ignore them
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altogether? >> yeah. well, it's -- that was an issue that the president brought up. he said where do you draw the linesome because, certainly, washington had slaves, andrew jackson's statue is in lafayette park looking out the front door of the white house, you can see it. he's waving his hat. he had slaves. thomas jefferson had slaves. the old greek, the cradle of democracy was greece, but half of the population of that republic were slaves. the other half that were free included women who couldn't vote, they couldn't testify in a court of law, they weren't even counted in a census. so freedom takes these little, tiny steps, and we need to recognize steps they took or we wouldn't arrive at the freedom we have. elizabeth: did these type of events help the conversation? the way you see this? >> well, i'll tell you what helps the conversation is you and leland -- [laughter] having a conversation while the american people watch this. if you weren't here, if there
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was no commentary, if there was no journalism left and it was all up to these mobs, i hate to think what would happen. leland: we appreciate the shout-out, doug. [laughter] somehow the media has been brought into this as a player rather than, as you point out, an observer and contextualizer, but we'll try to offer a little more context. you said the last time you'd seen things like this was 1968, and that was a dark time in american history. how do we come back from here? because politicians on both sides seem all too willing to fan the flames. the folks on the street seem all too willing to come back out and agitate, and the more attention that's paid to these fringe groups, the more they are emboldened. how do we come back from this as a country? >> boy, it's going to be hard, but i think a lot of people look to the president -- [laughter] whether he will do it, be he gave a national address and he
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hit the right cord. he did -- chord. he did it in saudi arabia, he did it to the joint session of congress. if he could do it again now to the american people, it might bring some hope and healing. there are good people on both sides who understand that we need to get along with each other, and they appreciate the jobs that are coming. that's the best thing you can do for the issue of race. it's the best answer -- elizabeth: the timing is now for the president to do that? >> the timing's now. he doesn't need to delay on that. america needs to hear it, and it needs to be very clearly sounded without a tweet that takes it back. [laughter] elizabeth: you know, i'm curious though because we see what the white house and the political fallout, there's a lot of other distractions. and i'm wondering if focusing on a unity of, a theme of unity would really move the administration forward and then in turn have a ripple effect, and we could perhaps see some legislative action. >> i think you're right. people want to unite, and they want to believe. i don't think they want this
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hatred on either side. no one wants this. and the president could take a leadership -- people would get behind him. people would forgive the things -- elizabeth: that's what i was going to ask you too, because with tensions this high, he does have some convincing to do. whether or not you voted for him or not, there's a lot of people who didn't, so he does have a lot of convincing to do. can he accomplish that? >> i go back to that jared kushner event in saudi arabia and israel. it was so profound, his speech back to back, saudi arabia and israel, was so profound, the world forgot everything he said up to that moment. and his speech to the joint session of congress, the democrats were stunned. they were ready to roadway act to what -- react the what they thought he would say, and they didn't know how to react to his performance. i think he could do it again. elizabeth: well, doug, we can't tell you how much we appreciate the perspective of what's happeninged today in boston. we've been watching what turned out to be a fairly peaceful
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protest in boston. leland: a few arrests in boston, but as we take a picture from above, it seems as though at least some of the standoffs with police have temperedded down. from new york next. >> a fox news alert, it's 2 p.m. here on the east coast, and what's billed as free speech rally held by conservative activists in boston is now over, ending an hour early. but thousands of counter-protesters are still flooding the city's streets. hello and welcome to a brand new hour inside "america's news headquarters," i'm kelly wright. melissa: and i'm melissa francis. hundreds of officers are maintaining order, and though we've had some small skirmishes with authorities, we've seen those, today's demonstrations have been largely peaceful. we have live team coverage with steve hey began who is with the -- steve harrigan who's with the counter-protester


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